Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Aussie Curves - Then & Now

Just a short post for Then & Now week. 

Every year since I was one year old, my Dad has a tradition of taking a photo of me in front of the Christmas Tree. He recently gave me a flash drive full of photos, which included the Christmas shots. I had a great time rummaging through, and made up a collage to share with you.

It's pretty amazing how many times my looks changed... as did my confidence in front of the camera! There were certainly some shocking haircuts (thanks for the mega short bob when I was 10 years old, Mum!) some great party dresses and some 'what was I thinking?' moments. Ah, memories.

Here we go... 1989-2013. Which one is your favourite? 1989 & 2011 are mine.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

Hope & Harvest - Nauticas SS15

*This post contains items gifted by the designer.

I've been sitting on my special pieces of Hope & Harvest fabulousness for a couple of weeks, positively dying to show everyone!

I'm absolutely in love with the SS15 Nauticas collection and think it's H&H's best yet! I jumped around like a silly person when I first unwrapped these lovelies, but because I've been house-sitting for a month, I haven't had time to grab my camera and take some photos. So here they are!
Jacket: City Chic (Size S)
Shoes: Vintage
Bag: Vintage

The Anchor Tee ($44.95) is the perfect signature piece for H&H. It's fantastic branding, and I adore the 'engineering for curves' slogan. I've had a bit of a tendency to shun T-shirts in my wardrobe, but am now re-incorporating them into my regular rotation. This style is particularly fab for curvy girls because it's longer than most tees on offer and has a decent sleeve length. The neckline is also deep enough not to choke you. I wanted to show how I could dress it up with the H&H Y.O.L.O Skirt ($39) and a white jacket for a dressed-up look, as well as a casual and relaxed look
Skirt: City Chic (Size M)
Vest: Boohoo (UK Size 20)
Shoes: Zu (Circa 2010)
Bag: Vintage

I've already been living in both colours of the Anchor Tee this spring. They're 100% cotton so they're ideal for the hot weather. So, not only do they look cool, but they feel it too! I'm wearing the Large, but could comfortably size down to a Medium if I wanted a slimmer line.

Skirt: City Chic
Shoes: Alannah Hill (Circa 2013)
Bag: Thrifted

This top is my Holy Grail. End of story.

The Wrap Top in French Navy ($79) promised to be my best friend... and boy did it deliver!!! The fabric is luscious, silky and lightweight and the long sleeves can be gently pushed back to the elbow (I'm a serial sleeve-pusher) In this top I have no back fat bulges, no under-bust rolls... nothing! I'm wearing the Large, and could easily fit into the Medium if the upper sleeves were just a touch bigger. 

Did I mention it can be worn as a cardigan too??? Talk about versatile! All you need to do is leave it undone, and it transforms into a lightweight waterfall cardi, perfect for warm spring evenings. I effing love this top! From what I hear, they're selling fast, so if it's on your list you'd better get in quickly.

Don't forget, by buying Hope & Harvest, you are supporting our local industry instead of offshore workshops with questionable conditions and wages. If we don't help our Aussie brands, they will cease to exist.


Friday, October 10, 2014

Spring 2014 Launches for Aussie Plus Size Labels

They are the 'Holy Trinity' of Australian plus size fashion: Harlow, Hope & Harvest and 17 Sundays. Over the past couple of weeks they've kicked off their Spring 2014 collections with a bang! I thought I'd share a couple of my favourite pieces from the collections (no doubt a few will feature in my outfit posts soon!)

Harvest gave me an exclusive sneaky peek of the 'Nauticas' collection a couple of days before it was set to drop. I received the photos while I was on my way to a camping trip in rural NSW with Mum. We sat at Goulburn Maccas 'oohing' and 'aching' over the amazing, nautical-inspired pieces. The colour palette circles around navy blue, black & white, with hints of mauve, powder blue and bubblegum pink, with fabulous shapes designed to suit the most curvaceous of ladies. Seriously... I think I drooled a little bit.

special snaps for the new model... she is so beautiful and wears the clothes perfectly.

Hope & Harvest Wrap Top

I'm not usually excited by a wrap style... but the Nauticas Wrap Top ($79) caught my attention straight away! The shape is absolutely stunning and the colours are fab. The bird print is already sold out (that was damn quick!) but there's still plenty of the French Navy and Blush Pink. 

Styling tip: this can also be worn as a lightweight cardi for summer evenings. 

Hope & Harvest Anchor T-Shirt & Mariner Shirt

Who doesn't love a great T-shirt? I'm adoring the anchor design with the 'Engineering for Curves' slogan... it's the sort of brand advertising that I'd be more than happy to wear. The Anchor T-Shirt ($44.95) comes in either black or white. I have to tell you... it's not a short tee! I hate it when tees are just that little bit too short and ride up over my belly... it's not cool. Major win there H&H!!!

The Mariner Shirt ($89) is another fabulous piece. I love that it has the drawstring waist to give shape where other shirts fail... it's a great, young adaptation of a classic. Available in Pink, White or French Navy.

Harlow's SS14 Lookbook launched last night, and I was squealing with excitement! With the amazing Crave T-Dress ($249) on the cover, how could I not? i am in absolute raptures over this fabric... it's beyond amazing! The SS14 collection has three capsule collections: Sports Luxe, Rock Chick and Boho, so there's something for everyone. The collection is mostly monochromatic, but would look amazing with some colourful accessories.

Harlow's Love Me or Leave Me Shift Dress & Summer Love Maxi Dress

Most people know I'm a sucker for Royal Blue, so the Love Me or Leave Me Shift Dress ($189) was always going to be a winner. It's a slightly more versatile shape that the previous Lipstick & Leather Bodycon Dress. Plus... leather. Need I say more?

The Summer Love Maxi Dress ($189) is probably not one I would personally wear, but I had to include it 'cos it's just so darn cute! A lot, and i mean A LOT of women will love this dress because it's a fabulous shape, has sleeves and sits below the knee... I think I might pester Mum into buying one. It would look totally fab on her!

Harlow's Jean Genie Skinny Jeans & Sweet Freedom Fringed Kimono

I've been holding on to the secret for months that Harlow were going to venture into jeans... and here they are; the Jean Genie Skinny Jeans ($199) in all their skinny perfection! A solid indigo wash with no distressing, and a great skinny leg... I've been dreaming of these babies!!!

The Sweet Freedom Fringed Kimono ($199) caught my attention big time. Sheer + Fringe = Nirvana for Elise. I've seen plenty of similar things, but they always have oriental floral patterns that I'm just not cool with, but I love the subtle spot on this one. I could see this being a summer wardrobe favourite, especially over swimmers.

Harlow's SS14 collection will be released over the course of the next few months... so be patient with those wish lists!

17 Sundays seem to be conquering the world right now, with their Spring/Summer 2014 collection stocked in selected Myer stores across Australia. It's accessible, high quality and fun fashion, filling a casual niche in the plus size fashion market.

I don't know about you, but I love an easy-wear dress. The Dissolve Me Print Dress ($149.95) is no exception. Teamed with a pair of sandals by day, and fun accessories by night, this in one dress that would have all bases covered. It shows cleavage (which is awesome) and is shaped beautifully under the bust to show off those curves.

The After the Disco Shirt Dress ($149.95) was a major hit at the Curvy Couture Roadshow in March, so I'm sure plenty of women will be excited to see it finally available for sale. Just look at that vibrant colour! And the laser cutting! Seriously... I might just go to fashion Heaven right now.

I keep seeing the Like Clockwork Frill Sleeved Dress ($149.95) and thinking' I really must try that one.  I really love the silhouette, the fabric, the pattern, the sleeves... you get the picture. I think it would look amazing under my longline blazers too!

A few people would say that I like the Paris is Calling Dress ($149.95) purely for it's name... I might not argue. I do love the upper half of this dress; the combination of the colour blocking and the batwing sleeves is so simple but has an amazing impact!

Yes, I know all the 17 Sunday's pieces I've chosen are dresses, but that's just a reflection on my own wardrobe... I love dresses and will probably always prefer them to pants and shorts. It's just me!

Now what are you still doing here? Get shopping!!!


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Iceni Coat by Bombshell Vintage

The Iceni Coat from Bombshell Vintage was a purchase of pure lust. I saw it on the runway at the Curvy Couture Roadshow and wanted it in my wardrobe ASAP! I've always wanted a houndstooth coat, and this one ticked all the boxes.

I was a bit devastated back in June when designer, Kate, told me that they were sold out. She had the sample in her studio, but alas, it was too small. I had to accept that it wasn't meant to be. Until a message popped up on Facebook saying that she'd found enough houndstooth fabric to make one last Iceni Coat... of course I fell all over myself to get that coat!

I have styled the coat in a slightly different way than it was intended, and turned it into a wrap dress (sorry Kate!) I found this styling to really draw in my waist an lengthen my torso, while wearing it as a coat over-emphasised my hips. But it is absolute dynamite as a dress!!! It also has a great 1960's vibe that I'm going to utilise for an editorial photo shoot I have coming up. 

Nearly forgot to mention... pockets!!! Seriously, there is nothing better than a coat (or dress) with a good pair of pockets right? This one has them! Yay!

Bombshell Vintage had this piece made for me in a size 20 to allow extra room to move (it is a coat after all!) I found the fit across the back and bust to be a little smaller than I'd like from a coat, but there is heaps of room in the waist and hips. It's perfectly comfortable.

My Measurements: Hip - 129cm/51", Waist - 98cm/38", Bust - 119cm/47", Height - 167cm/5'4"

Corresponding size on Bombshell Vintage's size chart: 18-20

Actual size in the Iceni Coat: 20

Click here to see Bombshell Vintage's Spring/Summer 2014, Fairy Floss Fallout


Monday, September 15, 2014

Aussie Curves - Favourite Piece

For some reason, when I first read the list of Aussie Curves challenges, I thought that this week's one was 'Favourite Place'... seemed an odd theme for an outfit challenge right? Yep. That's because it was really 'Favourite Piece'. Good thing I realised before Shooting this week's outfit. I thought I'd pay homage to my little dyslexic moment by including a little space in my backyard that I love to sit in with a cup of tea when I have a chance.

So my favourite piece? It's only a newbie, but I absolutely adore it! This longline jacket from City Chic made it into my wardrobe a few weeks ago. I saw it online and thought it was nice, but never thought I'd love it as much as I do, until I tried it on. Every time I wear this particular shade of blue, I get compliments... it makes my complexion 'pop'. There's also something about the longline cut that elongates and narrows my bust, waist and hips... Plus it has pockets!!! If City Chic bring this jacket out in other colours... my bank account will be in big trouble. *cough pink cough*

This corner of the yard is definitely one of the best spots in my home. The table and chairs are about 14 years old, and were really worn down by the weather. A few coats of brightly coloured spray paint and they were given a new lease on life! It really gives our rather unexciting backyard a bit of a fun element.

The sunnies need a mention... $5 from Equip! I've always been one to go for the big 'bug-eye' sunnies because they suited my face shape. I never even considered these round retro-style lenses as a look I could pull off. There you go... 7 years as a qualified stylist and still learning!

In this outfit:
Jacket: City Chic (M)
Top: City Chic (XS)
Skirt: Asos Curve (20)
Stockings: City Chic (S/M)
Earrings: Lovisa
Sunglasses: Equip
Watch: Lovisa


Monday, September 8, 2014

Aussie Curves - Tee (take two)

This time last year it was Tee week. but I was forced to admit that I didn't own a t-shirt. Guess what??? I now own four! My personal style has developed a lot over the past 12 months into something a little less complicated. My wardrobe is about mix-and-match basics, a few key trend pieces and a selection of vibrant lipsticks. I barely even touch my hair styling products anymore!

 Let's talk about the t-shirt shall we? It's pretty fab! I bought it and a striped version from Best & Less. 2 for $20 sounds pretty good right? What really impressed me is that they are really sturdy t-shirts. They don't have much give though, so I'd recommend sizing up (I fitted into the 18 but bought the 20 for a little extra room). B&L have really lifted their game with their plus size fashion... I've never bought so many things from there in one hit!

Long blazers are my new favourite things. A good blazer can really trim down bulk around the hips, and a longline style like this one also helps to elongate the torso. This particular jacket can be unzipped at the waist to create a cropped jacket, which doubles its versatility.

Something surprising about this outfit is that I'm not wearing any jewellery (unless you count the headband) I usually feel a bit naked without earrings, but I just wanted to roll with the clean lines today. I get like that sometimes.

I really wish I could handle wearing heels more often... they make my legs look long and lean (pardon the alliteration!) Damn weak left ankle!!! I switched to ballet flats for the rest of the day.

 And yes... that is a beaten up seat in the background. It was there when we moved in and I actually kind of love it being there, all rusty and worn. I'd love to move it somewhere more prominent but I'm pretty sure it would fall apart at the slightest touch. You might see it pop up in a few outfit posts in the future.

In this outfit:
T-shirt: Best & Less (Size 20)
Jacket: City Chic (It Girl Jacket. Size M)
Jeans: City Chic (TDF Hourglass Skinny Jean, Short. Size 16)
Headband: Gifted
Shoes: Robert Robert (Via David Jones)


Monday, September 1, 2014

Aussie Curves - Your Wardrobe

I've recently moved house and discovered my wardrobe to be lacking in floorspace to store my shoes. By the standards of most fashionistas, I don't have that many shoes (32 pairs), but I had to get creative and figure out a practical and decorative way of storing my shoes... space for my jewellery and makeup was also on the cards. I came up with a solution that I'm quite proud of! I thought it would be a slightly different take on the 'Your Wardrobe' challenge.

What do you do,
When you find your shoes,
Will not fit into the space,
Your wardrobe allocates?

Shoe rails no.
How to fix these woes?!
Clear shoe boxes maybe?
But now I cannot see!!!

The answer my friends,
Puts troubles at and end,
The solution is up,
It’ll even fit my makeup.

A bookshelf of white,
Two metres in height,
With extra shelves to store,
Shoes, makeup, jewellery and more.

Some picture frames,
I must proclaim,
Do set the mood
All but subdued.

And then those draws,
Which I first saw,
On Danimezza’s suggest,
They are just the best!

The one sad little bit,
That I must now admit,
I still have more shoes…
Oh what shall I do???

Bookshelf: Fantastic Furniture $79
Clear drawers: Officeworks $16.96
Make up brush canister: Typo
Clear earring cubes: Pink Lily from $49