LARGER THAN LIFE | & | TONIGHT I AM | WEARING WHITE
It is the weekend of the NAPTG Dress in Pastel & White Summer Ball. The unprecedented June clear blue skies afford us little or no protection from the heatwave that beats down on the United Kingdom. The temperature has hit record levels and is predicted to continue to rise throughout the coming week.
What was not foreseeable is that tonight, Saturday 30th June 2018 I will step out of my comfort zone and wearing an “all white” outfit and step into The Park Plaza Victoria Hotel and the NAPTG Dress in Pastel & White Summer Ball! I have always wanted to wear “all white” but hid behind lifelong body hang-ups or entrenched clichés as an excuse for not doing so.
I do wish I hadn’t sought motivation/inspiration by watching so many “plus size all white outfit” Youtube videos that had me recoiling at any image where inferior materials were stretched to breaking point around voluptuous bodies. Far from distracting the eye from problem areas the fit was so bad my eyes were focused on nothing else!
Wearing white used to be one of those rules that I, as a plus size women, just didn’t break! I knew that if I decided to take this step, it was going to be a huge adjustment for me. For so long any white in my wardrobe has been restricted to white button down shirts, tops or blouses worn mainly in the corporate office environment where I look professional and as if I have got it going on.
Comfort level and confidence really do go hand-in-hand and it is a common reaction, especially as we get older, to remain secure in our “tried and tested” body armour and consistently wear clothes that we are familiar with. Giving up the right to remain in our “comfort zone” is never easy. Can I be bothered to wear new things? What if I don’t look youthful, trendy and fashion forward but end up looking too young, desperate or as if I am trying too hard. Questions like these cause many of us to shy away from anything new and foreign. I recall how alien the simple act of sitting down and taking time out to articulately dress and make-up my face, felt to me.
The apprehensive and anxious roller coaster of emotions of whether I should take the risk, really push the envelope and wear white was decided in the final hour, 5 days before the Ball and unknown to me, with the last dress in stock sitting precariously in my basket!!! This call was too close for comfort.
Having finally made my purchase I felt what can only be described as going “not wearing any black cold turkey”. I hadn’t been prepared for the nuances, psychological awkwardness and doubt that came with kicking the lifelong “I am too big to wear this” or “too old to wear that” habit. Personal stylists/Youtube Gurus all agree that placing limits on ourselves as to what we can or cannot wear can take the fun out of dressing and sucks the inspiration out of our creation process. A period of discomfort is inevitable and that by taking baby steps e.g. making on trend non-committal purchases like my bucket bag, trendy sunglasses pointed toe shoes can help to ease me in. What I hadn’t realised, is that by writing my blog, and embarking on this journey with you I have, for nearly a year now, been warming up and easing into wearing and/or trying new things. I have inadvertently made non-committal on trend purchases e.g. wearing pointy toed shoes, buying a bucket bag, statement accessories. I admit that at first it felt weird but once I had worn my first pair of pointed shoes and experienced my first fix of how it elongated my body, or riding the wave of compliments that ensued after wearing my first statement accessory, handbag or outfit from capsule wardrobe I knew, that I was hooked on a new addiction and my fashion drug habit of choice had irrevocably changed.
Determined that historical shackles like “white makes you look fat” or “white gets dirty too quickly” would not deter or discourage me from taking a risk and trying different things I trolled the internet for an outfit. With the Latin proverb “fortune favours the brave” at the forefront of my mind I cherry-picked this audacious ASOS Design Curve Premium Extreme Kimono Sleeve Scuba Bodycon creation - Size 28 (£60). Wearing white is fresh and crisp and when done correctly, a monochrome white outfit is not only chic but classic.
This is one of those dresses that not only turns heads but is only available in a “plus size”!!! The plunging neckline and huge Eastern Kimono inspired sleeves leaves no room for “the camouflaging mentality” because if I get it wrong, this dress will show every lump and bump as “white” doesn’t hide a thing. It was not easy for me to source a white plus size dress that was on trend, good quality and at a cost of £60 this is my idea of “high end”. This dress ticks all of the personal stylist/Youtube guru, pinterest and instagram boxes. This white bodycon has structure to it and 7% Elastane for a little “wiggle” room. The thicker material means that it will drape/fit correctly and with the right undergarments, create a sleek silhouette. The model and I are the same height and the midi-length hem will not only give a more conservative look and offset the plunging neckline but echoes my preference that “as I get older I minimise the amount of skin exposure”. When I tried the dress on, without makeup or any of the essential trimmings, I was very happy with what I saw looking back at me in the mirror. Did you know that if you wear a column of white from head to toe it not only looks classy but can be slimming!!
It occurred to me that this is the kind of dress I would want to take on holiday with me. With my elbow on my knee and chin in my hand I can see myself strolling back to our hotel along the beach, sling-backs dangling from my fingertips, the tranquil sound of waves against the shoreline and cool sand beneath my feet. (Dreamy deep sigh).
Tweak the Chic – I hope a simple ponytail, manicured nails, minimal makeup and large hoop earrings on Saturday night will give me the desired effect of an effortlessness, understated, subtle, elegant, classy look – while most importantly HAVING FUN!!!!
Mix Things up a Bit - To create an effortless look and keep my white outfit interesting I decided on these softer than butter, Next White Bow Sling-backs (Size 9) £38 for all the reasons I
keep on about when wearing a pointed heel. I have the height, comfort, and elongation of my body. Contrasting the clean dress and shoes against the hard ostentatious diamanté New Look White Gold Trim Tote Bag (£16) and ASOS Liars & Lovers Extra Large Fine Gold Hoop Earrings (£6) adds depth, texture and style to my look.
The little things that have had the biggest impact on my life – These tips may be only a drop in the ocean of the things that really matter in our lives but I believe that by fixing small things we eventually do more and more of the things that makes us happier. Below are practical purchases that is easy to adopt and adjust to your individual needs.
3D Face Massager Body Sculpting Firmer Shaper E-BAY £6.98 – This unassuming tool is my purchase of the month. I initially bought it thinking that I would only use it on my face and was staggered to find it is an all over my body, whenever I want, self-administering unwinding, loosen me up, ease tension in my muscles tool.
I stand a bottle of carrier oil in hot water for 10 minutes and generously apply the warm oil to my body before using the Massager. The two 360 degree rotation rollers spin smoothly over my skin in whatever direction I move it. The beauty of it is that I know how much pressure to apply and find myself leaning my face, particularly my forehead or body into the diamond shaped grooves of the rollers and exhaling as my stress hormone levels decrease and my muscles relax.
We have all been there and know nothing is worse than jumping out of your bed with chronic spasms in the glutes, hamstrings or quads. This 3D Massager untangles knots, relieves fatigue and cramped muscles. After a hot bubble bath, (yes I still have those even after a woman once pointed out to me it was like pouring money down the plug hole), I apply a generous amount of warm oil, to my body and allow the Massager to work on the protective layers of tissue which surround the bones, joints and muscles to release tension and provide relief and/or relaxation. While the carrier oil acts as a lubricant to prevent the rollers from pinching when in use, for me
using warm oil is truly a luxurious indulgence in the extreme and why I always sleep like a baby afterwards.
Reviews have confirmed that the 3D Massager has helped tighten a sagging jaw line, promote circulation and that you can feel it tightening lose skin on your arms.
Revolving Rotating Black Earring Display Stand E-Bay £5.99 – This 72 hole, easily accessible, 360 degree rotating earring stand is not only cute but means I can see all of my earrings at a glance. Over time as I come across earrings I have forgotten about in handbags or containers I will add them to my earring stand.
Decorative Diamonte and/or Rhinestone Bra Straps E-BAY £2.99 and £4.99 -
I discovered there is more out there I discovered there is more out therefor us big busted girls who cannot or do not feel comfortable wearing a strapless bra or those uncomfortable, sweat inducing, destined to turn cloudy clear bra straps. These bra straps present a stunning interchangeable alternative. Some of these decorative bra straps are adjustable!
My Shoe Storage Hack – I have researched different ideas to store and accommodate my low heeled priceless comfortable, chic, wide fitting shoe collection. What
works for me is delivered free to my home with every on-line purchase – yes you guessed it clear plastic bags. I swear the more I blog the more common sense I seem to have!!! I needed to be able to protect my shoes whenever I am not wearing them and needed easy access to them to ensure that I did wear them. Every item of clothing I order on-line is packaged in clear plastic bags. So one day I placed a pair of shoes in a plastic bag to change into when I got to the office. When I came home I noticed that we didn’t really use the small IKEA Bevara Food Bag Storage Clips so I returned the paper stuffing to the inside of the shoe, sealed the plastic bag with a small clip and placed it in the bottom of my wardrobe. Over the next fortnight I noticed that I created outfits around the grey sling-backs or white bow front slip-ons as they were easily accessible and visible through the
plastic bag. That weekend I recycled all shoe boxes, and placed all of my shoes in clear plastic bags and secured with a clip, in the much needed space at the bottom of my wardrobe which now has room to spare. I have just ordered a wireless Vigilamp LED Motion Sensor Light from Argos, with adhesive tape to stick it up in seconds which operates using 3 x 1.5v batteries (not included). The base rotates 360 degree and the light is adjustable in any direction and can be used as a torch. The detection angle motion sensor means that when I open the wardrobe door the light will automatically come on sensing movement and when I close the door it will turn itself off.
AMLA OIL AND ESSENTIAL OILS CONCOCTION HAIR UPDATE: The Amla carrier oil concoction I created for my hair, and oils added to both my shampoo and conditioner seems to be working. My hair was re-plaited on 14.06.18 (15 days ago at the time of writing) and already I have just over half an inch of regrowth whenever I lift a plaited row off the scalp. My hairline has made such regrowth progress I am staggered. I will share with you my findings together with date stamped and timed photographs when I next take out my extensions.
CONCLUSION: I didn’t want to go to bed before sharing with you a quote from BlushwithmeParmita and how my own recent 56 year old cloud 9 experience may go some way to support this and reaffirm the time old cliché that “it’s never too late” – “...The way we dress affects the way we THINK, FEEL, ACT and the way others REACT to us… and sometimes it can literally take you on cloud 9…”
I can think of no better way, for me to relive the experience, than post the timed texts as I did to my girls at the time on a glorious sunny day:
15:48 When a damn fine specimen of a man changes seats on the bus so that he can discreetly drink his water and through the corner of his eyes look you up and down that’s the time to be glad you got on a cute pair of trainers, ripped jeans showing a bit of ankle and some lipstick 💄 😱😱😱
16:04 Some woman with clammy arms had to sit next to me and spoil the flow wait it’s ok he is repositioning himself so he can see past her 😂😂😂
16.09 He just took off his top so we can see his physic through his t shirt I can’t breath 😂😂😂😂😂
16:43 That’s my Diet Coke moment done 🙈😭😢
It goes without saying that in my next blog I will share with you photos of my outfit, minimalistic makeup, hair, accessories and our evening at the Dress in Pastel & White Summer Ball. Here’s hoping these old knees can still get on down!!! Enjoy the weather, keep hydrated, wear sunscreen, and don’t forget those on trend cat eye sunglasses that can make or break an outfit. Be kind to each other and take time out for yourself. I had better get some sleep, as I need to be up early tomorrow to post this blog first thing, so that the title makes perfect sense! Chit chat again very soon. X