PZI Jeans

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Jeans – the bane of a curvy girls life. But for no longer! This is the outfit I wore on Saturday morning when I rushed myself to my local Parcelforce depot in order to collect my parcel before it shut and, unsure about the weather that morning, I threw these on without a though.

These are my PZI jeans. PZI is an American company that specifies in jeans for the curvier woman of today and I have to say, the results are pretty fabulous. These are their straight leg dark wash jeans and, though they are a little bit baggy on me (I did buy it off a friend from eBay) you can see how it skims my legs and bum – something that’s really all too hard to find for me when I shop for jeans on the high street. The best part of it? It actually goes in again at my waist! That 10 inch difference between my waist and my hips beautifully enclosed in these jeans without me needing to use a belt. It’s like pure magic and it makes me wonder why I spent so many years wearing badly fitting jeans where I had an extra 6+ inches at the waist just because otherwise I couldn’t get my ample rear into them!

Now as a general rule, I try not to wear a lot of jeans or trousers. But a great fitting pair of jeans is a must for every girl’s wardrobe and I’m thrilled that PZI can fill that niche for me.

Oh, and please excuse that awful face I’m making in this photo – DH was already at work and I was running around like a maniac trying to find some ID.

Top: Dorothy Perkins
Jeans: PZI Jeans

 

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Knowing Your Shape: How To Figure It Out

Recently I’ve been getting lots of compliments on my clothing and just my general dress sense and I’ve been asked a lot about where I shop and what types of clothes I buy only to be met with comments like “Oh but I shop there too and I never find anything that works for me”. Well I’ll tell you a secret, looking good is half about confidence and half about knowing your body shape.

I for example, am a fairly classic hourglass. My measurements are 39-29-39. if you visualize this into a line drawing it should look something like this;

 

Now there’s tons of “classic” shapes such as apple, pear, hourglass, boyish. If you’re looking to find your body shape, get yourself a tailors tape measure (one of decent length – those tiny ones from IKEA don’t cut it), and measure around the fullest part of your bust (A), the smallest part of your waist (B), and your hips (C). Now, for my favourite bit.

This is a great example of some of the basic body shapes and a great starting point for finding clothes that fit and flatter you wonderfully. If you’re still confused here’s a quick rundown;

Apple Shaped – When you are larger round your waist than your bust or hips
Athletic – When all your measurements are pretty much the same
Hourglass – When your bust and hips are roughly the same and are larger than your hips
Inverted Triangle – When your bust is larger than your waist and your hips are the narrowest part of your body
Pear Shaped – When your hips are larger than your waist or bust

Over the next few weeks I plan to write a series of posts on how to dress your different body shape – but for now what shape did you find out you were? Was it different to what you thought you were?

Ashley Dress in Green Chrysanthemum

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I seem to be on a bit of a Trashy Diva kick at the moment so do please bear with me. But in truth, they have fast become my favourite “go-to” brand for dresses! Yesterday was my first day at my new workplace so I went with my first and favourite Trashy Diva dress, the Ashley Dress in Green Chrysanthemum. I love it’s emerald green base and the 40’s style nipped in waist and the fact that it’s not quite as full skirted as some of the other dresses which is a bonus on a slightly windy day! It is a bit cleavage-y for my ample chest but when I’m feeling extra confident it doesn’t bother me at all, though I did notice some men on the train staring at me. It’s just a shame the spring-like green and white print didn’t translate to the weather at all!

Dress: Ashley Dress in Green Chrysanthemum via eBay
Shoes: Clarks
Tights (nude): ASDA
Necklace: Gift from DH
Bra worn: Curvy Kate’s Tempt Me

Alison Dress in Purple Floral

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One of my favourite dresses in my collection is my Alison Dress from none other than Trashy Diva. In it’s vibrant purple hues and it’s funky floral print what’s not to love? I do have to say, as a bustier lady, I do sometimes have trouble with the dress slipping to one side and exposing a little bit of my bra cup but never a lot as to make me feel uncomfortable – and I just make sure I wear pretty bras underneath!

On that note if you are interested in purchasing some Trashy Diva I would probably invest in an excellent plunge bra (I recommend Curvy Kate’s Tempt Me bra and you probably want to invest in some good knickers as well, as a sudden gust of wind can sometimes catch you off guard!

Dress: Alison Dress in Purple Floral, Trashy Diva
Shoes: Clarks
Tights (not pictured, nude): ASDA
Necklace: Gift from DH at our wedding
Bra worn: Deco in Pistachio, Freya

Going mad for polka dots

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Why is a dot, by itself just a dot? But when it is with other dots it suddenly becomes a polka dot?

I’ve been going a bit polka dot mad lately, must be the weather! This particular dress is from Pepperberry’s summer collection – the spotty day dress. And it has some amazing things going for it.

Firstly, and most noticeably when you put it on. It’s a great fabric. Almost chiffon like and it’s lined as well. It is a fitted dress but there’s a bit of give in the skirt which I love. The straps are also adjustable depending on how much leg vs. cleavage you want to show – as I’m quite wide set in the boobs area I opted for leg for work but I have to say, did catch some friends staring at my chest today, regardless! And theres also little bra placement holders if you don’t want to advertise what bra you’re wearing to the world!

I sized up in the “curviness” size for this dress so anyone who regularly shops with Bravissimo/Pepperberry may want to do the same. And of course, loving the polka dot print!

Dress: Spotty Day Dress from Pepperberry (12 Super Curvy)
Coat: All weather mac from Bravissimo (12 Really Curvy)
Shoes: Clarks
Necklace: Duty Free in Australia approx four years ago

eBay’d Up

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I’ve already spoken about how much I love polka dots and when I saw the lovely Georgina Horne modelling this dress on her blog Fuller Figure, Fuller Bust I had to have it! Unfortunately for me, this dress was in Bravissimo in 2007, well before I got into their clothing.

Thankfully though, readers, there is a little website known as eBay.

Now there is some folks who disapprove of eBay and prefer not to use it, that’s fine. I, however, am all about recycling and I think selling clothes off to try and recoup some money back after a few years and for the garment to go to a good home is a great way to recycle. As a consumer you can find great bargains on there and you can save searches and have eBay email you daily when new items that match your search come up (though I don’t recommend just putting in a popular brand name as there can be over 100 items added every day with that brand name in their description!).

This particular outfit is all “recycled” clothing items from eBay (except the shoes, of which, sadly I don’t remember what I was wearing and I own around 3 pairs of black ballerina pumps) and, though the dress is actually probably a half size too big for me, with the belt I think I can get away with it.

Dress: Satin Spot Dress from Bravissimo via eBay
Belt: Topshop via eBay

What do you think about recycling clothes? Do you prefer to send your unwanted garments to charity or do you try to recoup some of your losses and sell them second hand?

Flattering Fashion: Bravissimo/Pepperberry

One day around 4 years ago I went online and, in total desperation, searched for clothes for women with a DD+ chest. I was so tired and upset of shopping on the UK high street and finding that I was having to size up in tops just to fit my boobs in them and then find that there was so much material I could have made another small shirt out of it!

And then I found Bravissimo.

With a headline assuring me that it was a brand “designed with your boobs in mind” I already felt more at home there than I ever did trundling myself into one shop after another at my local high street. Originally I was just thrilled that they did bras that went above a DD, something I hadn’t even thought about properly before. And then I found out that they did clothes.

I have to say, I wasn’t smitten with my choices there. I didn’t like the styles and I was skeptical, after years of struggling myself into ill-fitting dresses and t-shirts, that they would actually fit and flatter my figure. I bought a black dress from there, intending for it to be my LBD, it fit on the bust but had loads of extra material at the back. I was devastated and that dress hung in my wardrobe, unworn, for around a year before I donated it to charity.

But in the last 20 months or so I revisited Bravissimo’s website, and this time boy did I like what I saw! Fun, flirty, feminine clothes that didn’t swamp my figure. I went wild and my bank balance cried, but it was worth it to finally feel amazing in clothes.

20110619-095927.jpgPepperberry’s Jersey Border Print Dress

Bravissimo recently rebranded their clothing range (tops, coats, dresses but not nightwear, oddly) as a sister company, Pepperberry, but the ethos of the company has remained the same. And wow they do know their market! They’ve just brought out their high summer range and, as usual, there are gorgeous dresses that I would love to own. The dress I’m modelling above is their very popular Jersey Border Print dress from their spring collection but with the current rainy spell in London I find that it works just as well keeping me dry but also looking fashionable. It is sold out in lots of sizes already but I always find that the most popular dresses tend to crop up on eBay around 8 months after release if you can bear to wait!

Now finding your dress size can be a bit of a challenge with Bravissimo/Pepperberry, and they have just revamped their sizing for their clothes to fit in more with the mainstream high street sizing charts (oh why!) so I do recommend going to try on clothes before you buy or, if you are buying online, buying in a couple sizes and then returning the ones that don’t fit. But they are amazing and if you’re struggling with finding clothes that fit on the high street then your confidence is going to skyrocket when (not if) you try Pepperberry for yourself!