Hellooooo! Sorry for the radio silence, I’ve had a million things I needed to do and none were blog related, alas. But I’m here now!

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll know that the designer collaboration between Clements Ribiero (famed for producing a lot of Adele’s red carpet wear) and Evans launched online a week ago, and then in selected stores  from Monday. I always love an opportunity to try things on so I went down to Marble Arch along with Em to try things out – you can see Em’s two incredibly in depth reviews here: Part One and Part Two. What’s great is that we both have such different bodies – I guess if you were to go by Evans’ shape sheet, she’s a busty and I’m a pear. There’s also a height difference which will be important later…

Before the photos, I’ll answer some of the questions I’ve been asked most and get those out of the way.

  • Do you like the range? Yes! I understand it’s not “edgy” or anything, it’s a very specific look: 1940’s tea party. But that happens to be one of my favourite looks ever, so yes I loved it. Of course there are items I wouldn’t have touched with a bargepole (Although Angela makes me regret not trying the Joan as she looks so lovely in her post!) but you find that with every shop, every range.
  • Do you think the collection is worth the money? Yes, actually. I do. Yes it’d be lovely if the dresses were a tenner, but you’re paying a higher price point for the name – and the cut and tailoring was far more intricate than what you find in Evans’ main range. They are investment pieces, you know? There is a slight niggle though, which you’ll see below…
  • Were the items true to size? I know Em had problems with the fit and kept having to swap sizes, however for me I found them pretty consistent with Evans’ sizing. In the fitted dresses I took a 20 and they were pretty much bang on. I’m guessing this is because I have small breasts? And in the trousers I was a 22/22-24.
  • Were there any disappointments? The biggest issue for me was the length of the dresses. I’m only diddy, and when even taller women were saying in the dressing room that they would have to hem the dresses I guessed they’d be far too long. I’d have to have hacked off at least 8 inches for them to look right. However, I’d definitely do it although when it comes to the cost, having to pay more for a dress and then alter it is quite unfortunate.
  • Is it better than the Beth Ditto ranges? Nah – Beth’s my homegirl, nothing could compare!

On to the photos! Blurry phone ones, I’m afraid – turns out my camera had no battery. Silly me!

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans “Swallow” coat, size 20

Hubba hubba. This was perfect. I love the way it’s tailored so it is like a large cocoon. It really reminded me of Jil Sander actually, which is awesome. This came home with me, although by some horrible financial twist of fate I may have to return it, alas.

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans “Peggy” dress, size 20

Sorry for the blurriness! This was my favourite dress from the promo shots. I loved the shape, despite it being a tea dress the shoulder pads lend an air of sauce. I would have to hem it significantly and pin the bust (I couldn’t fill it as well as Em!), but it was beautiful. It really made me look curvy, which is new!

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans “Betty” dress, size 20

This is the dress based on one of the design duo’s custom makes for Adele.  You can also see Nicolette looking fabulous in it. Again, it’s a beautiful shape, with a fitted waistband that really pulls you in. As well as the tailoring, it was fully lined and the fabric was a lovely broderie anglaise, 100% cotton. Because I have a smaller chest the high neckline worked like a dream. The biggest problem was again the length, it would have to be hemmed.

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans “21” dress, size 22

I accidentally took a size 22 in the dressing room, and it was far too big. I tried an 18 but that was too tight and there were no 20s left, alas! This was another favourite from the promo shots – the neckline and lace inserts reminded me of the latest Erdem collection. However it didn’t suit me very well at all which made me very sad!

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans “Joan” dress size 20

Another dress I loved from the previews – Diana looked absolutely stunning in it – and named after Joan from Mad Men and definitely cut for a woman of her dimensions! This didn’t work on me but I maintain the dress is an absolute show stopper. Gorgeous.

Talking of not quite working…

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans “Diana” blouse (size 20) and pansy print crepe trousers (size 22)

Not reeeeally a good look on me, haha. I felt like a modern Andy Pandy! I will talk about the top later – the trousers were a really nice cut, I have to say. I couldn’t rock them as they’re much too long and hemming them would take away their shape, but if you’re over 5’5″ then I think these would be awesome. (Tiffany, I implore you to buy!) The fabric doesn’t give, but the back waistband is elasticated so it’s an easy fit.

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans matchstick print lounge pants, size 20

Lounge is definitely a keyword, here. They’re made from silky nylon with a fully elasticated waistband so they’re super comfortable. I don’t think the cut came across very well on my short legged-frame, so I’m going to link you to two beauties who were able to pull these off: Bethany and Amy. Gorgeous!

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans pansy print “Diana” blouse, size 20

I will admit the blouses didn’t take my fancy in the promo shots, however on I thought they were gorgeous. This pansy one especially I loved and very nearly bought! I think it’d look fab tucked into a high waisted pencil skirt, or worn loose over a black mini.

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans heart print “Diana” blouse, size 20

Again, no complaints about this at all, I loved it. I have to say, I almost wish these tops were longer so I could’ve worn them as tunic dresses! Typical, eh? But I would still buy if I had the money!

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans heart print “Betty” dress, size 20

The same cut as the black version, however in a different fabric. If you remember the Beth Ditto polka dot dress, this (and the pansy print items) are in the same material. Again I would have to hem the bottom quite a lot, and I did notice that unlike the black version there was a lot more room in the bust – even Em had some space!

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Swan by Clements Ribiero x Evans “Adele” shift dress, size 20

Finally here’s Em and I in the same dress – I think we can all agree it looks far better on her than myself!

PHEW! What do you think, peeps? Have you bought anything from the range? I hope this helped. I really loved most of what I tried on, but I would recommend the Joan dresses if you have a large bust, the Betty dresses if you have a smaller bust, and that they work best on the taller amongst you.

Apparently there are at least two more collaborations in the pipeline, which is very exciting.


So to break up the current one note of my blog, here are some bits and bobs that I’ve worn over the past couple of months. I’d not felt like properly getting dressed up and taking outfit photos, but I would quickly shoot pictures on my phone…

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These were the wellies I bought from Simply Be’s Bury launch last year. I didn’t think I’d ever get a chance to wear them, but if there was one good thing about February’s snowfall it was that I got to stomp about in these bad boys.

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Cardigan: Littlewoods (many years ago); Skirt: Forever 21+; Brooch: vintage; Spike ring: Chubby Cartwheels

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Jumper: H&M; Skirt: New Look Inspire; Bag: Accessorize; Ring: Primark

This was my dismal two attempts at Fatshion February – to be fair, I wore both of these outfits a few times, although the top one is my favourite as it’s bright! That pink cardigan cost me about £12 at least five years ago and is still going strong. I bought both skirts in one recent shopping trip at Westfield (I know, I know… consumerist bitch alert). Both the New Look and Forever 21 stores stock their plus size sections, and the panicky part of me felt like “if I don’t buy, they won’t make money, and they’ll think no fatties wanna shop there, and they’ll close the section! And this skirt’s only a tenner!”. I have to say both have served me very well, and I’m glad they’re in my wardrobe.

I also ordered, tried on a few items and snapped them before sending back:

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ASOS Curve lilac skinnies. They looked better than I expected on, but I can’t deal with them being low-rise. I need things practically hoiked up under my bra! I’ve not worn trousers or jeans for over ten years, but I’ll keep my eyes open in future.

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I was BEYOND excited when Ax Paris launched their Curves range that I placed an order at 3 in the morning as soon as I found out. I did, however, send them both back in the end. I sized up for the bodycon dress, however it was still a little too tight to be comfortable. But I loved the look of it with the sweetheart neckline, and if I order again I’ll just size up one more. The second dress I was also unsure about, and I think I’d size up just to be on the safe side. HOWEVER, I’m so, so glad this range is available!

Well, that all for today. I have a stinking cold/flu so I’m going to go hibernate in bed! Hope you’re all well, my lovelies. xx


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Dress (originally a skirt): Red Bows Vintage
Belt: Forever21+
Turquoise fake fur collar: ASOS
Feather headband: Cygne de Lac by Bijou Bijoux
Shoes: New Look
Ring: Primark

I was well excited when I heard that there was a new plus size vintage label starting in London, so I hurried down on their opening day. It was pretty eventful getting there – I’d heard the EDL (fascist scumbags) were protesting and I assured myself I wouldn’t be near them. Unfortunately, a group were protesting loudly right outside Liverpool St station when I got there. Made me feel ill, to be quite honest with you. After a walk round Aldgate where it was me and 300 policemen, I eventually tracked Red Bows down. Michelle was lovely and super cool, and the selection was great – although apparently Amy Lamé bought the most outrageous stuff before I got there, including a gold suit(!!!). We chatted about other potential things we could do, and sewing/customisation classes were thought up which I think is an AWESOME idea though I will probably talk about that more in another post! I was eyeing up a few things, but plumped for this midi skirt in a gorgeous teal colour with tiny polka dots. It’s far too long for me to wear as a skirt, but as a dress, belted, I really like it. It reminds me a bit of Marc Jacobs’ AW collection which was littered with teal and dots, albeit slightly larger ones.

So, you know… this whole post is kind of a cheat. If I had a wedding to go to, a fabulous function, I would be wearing this outfit for sure. But alas I’m at home, faffing about with knitting needles and later on I’ll be watching Dr Who with a Chinese takeaway. But who cares, when I can upload pictures on to the internet and pretend I have an amazing place to go? ;)

To be honest though, I don’t think you neccesarily need an occasion to dress up. Sometimes when I feel like poop (which is often) putting on a lovely dress and prancing around my bedroom lifts my mood. Of course, lots of the time even something as non-descript as brushing my teeth seems like a monumental task that I can’t even bear to complete, but every now and again when I feel able to do a little bit more, decking myself out in my finest – even if no one is around to see it – really helps. It’s actually become a good self care/self confidence practice for me.

I suppose it is a rather shallow and conceited thing to do. Though I’ve never denied that about myself. I am pretty vain and I’m plagued with delusions of grandeur… In my head, I’m this mega-famous actress/novelist/musician/muse/politician who on top of being capable, intelligent, tenacious and creative, is constantly winning awards, being interviewed on various chat shows and getting papped on the red carpet. Dressing up bridges the gap a little between the real me and the me I wish I was, haha. God, I am gonna regret writing that down in public!

That’s one thing that’s different now is I can at least take photos and share them with a small corner of the world. I know it probably doesn’t seem as authentic as the kind of style blogs that have these wonderful clothes AND exciting lives to wear them all in, but sometimes documenting dressing up for dressing up’s sake is just as valid. I don’t have a particularly eventful or glamorous life, but I’ll still try to look nice sometimes, because sometimes that’s all the fun I can have.


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Image: Me, short, fat, pale skinned with mid length dark hair and sunglasses, sitting in a garden with my legs crossed. I'm wearing a long khaki dress with floral print, big brown wedge sandals and holding my big floppy straw hat. I look vaguely amused at something going on off camera.

FINALLY the sun is out! When we had our previous heatwave back in April, I sorted my wardrobe and got out all my summer clothes. Then May was absolutely dire and I had to dig out all my knitwear! So I’m really happy, especially as I’ve been waiting to wear this dress for almost a year…

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Image: Me, short, fat, pale skinned with mid length dark hair and sunglasses, standing on decking in my garden. I am wearing a long khaki and red floral dress, brown platform wedge sandals, tortoiseshell sunglasses, a giant floppy straw hat and a brown satchel. I am smiling at the camera.

Dress: ASOS Curve
Hat: Primark
Sunglasses: Accessorize
Satchel: Yours Clothing
Wedges: My mum’s (vintage! so adorable etc)

I never expected maxi dresses to feature in my wardrobe, for obvious reasons (I’m a midge). But I really wanted this one and got it in the sale. Naturally, it was about 5 inches to long so my mum altered it for me. Thanks mum! She also took these photos! She’s getting slightly more confident behind the camera, bless her, even giving me some directions. She still won’t go in front of it though – she hasn’t even put a photo of herself on facebook yet.

Right, back to watching Forbrydelsen…

 


It’s been one of those days where I want to wear something bright and eyecatching!

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Pink & Black arrow print dress: reworked vintage by SALAD
Sequin & Metal belt: Yours Clothing
Boots: Schuh
Heart Print sunnies: From a stall at Offset festival

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This was my first purchase at the Big Bum Jumble the other week from one of the lovely concession stalls. I went on to wear it on the catwalk actually! I’m so in love with it. There is nothing I enjoy more than prints and sickening cerise. I figured I’d go even sillier and team it with my blingbling belt and ridiculous boots (which are purple, by the way – was trying to get the colour of the dress right). Really wish I was going to Ubop this week as I reckon it’d be the perfect place to wear this!

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I’m so, so busy at the moment what with job hunting being an almost full-time job itself, and trying to finish off some other writing projects, but hopefully I’ll be able to show you my fave bits from NYFW eventually – Reem Acra and Marc by Marc Jacobs are my current highlights.


The Big Bum Jumble took place on Saturday and was a massive success. It was so much fun, an amazing atmosphere and so many incredible clothes! I’m still on a bit of a comedown from it. Well done Kay, Bill, and everyone who helped them organise such an amazing event for us London fatties!

My friend Diana took gorgeous photos of the event including all the beautiful jumblers, and I believe most will be appearing on the BBJ blog very soon. But I just had to share pictures of the catwalk show featuring donated clothes and myself, Kat, Amy and Charlotte as models!

Big Bum Jumble fashion show

The show was styled by the lovely John from Pigeons and Peacocks, and all photos are copyrighted by Diana Thompson @ Fashion Loves Photos.

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Big Bum Jumble fashion show

Bring on the next one!


Woah, I’m really on a roll this week aren’t I? Two things first:

I’ll be drawing the competition winners tomorrow at 12pm sharp so if you haven’t yet entered, comment now!

The reigning queen of fatshion, Gabi, is in the final to become MTV’s 1st ever twitter jockey. Make sure you follow @gabifresh on twitter and tune in to MTV!

Thought I’d show off my newest purchase, teamed with shoes older than myself:

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Dress: New Look (Inspire)
Platform sandals: Vintage

The Inspire dress has been a massive hit, and I’ve seen it all round the blogosphere. I’d given up hope of getting it but miraculously found one returned in my local New look, in my size and reduced to £8. ~FATE~, yo.

Here’s a close up of the sandals. Check these babies out:

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These shoes have been sitting in my mum’s cupboard since before I was born. Bought in 1971, apparently. She was a barmaid in her twenties and used to wear them at work! These were the only ones she kept out of hundreds of platforms. I’ve pledged them to be a family heirloom now, going to my own daughters when I have them.

All my life we’ve brought them out as party pieces, and for me to dress up in when I was little. I wondered if they would ever come back in fashion – right on cue, occasional photos of similar shoes have popped up on fashion blogs and tumblrs. Admittedly these are a little war-torn, but still gorgeous! And unbelievably comfortable, as well – although I go get vertigo being up so high.


Talk about being all dressed up with nowhere to go.

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Dress: Evans
Faux fur coat: thrifted (cost me £5!)
Belt and boots: New Look
Headband: Primark

Has everyone seen the lovely article on fat fashion blogs in the Guardian? Check it out here. Fat Girls Like Nice Clothes Too!, Young Fat & Fabulous, Musings of a Fatshionista, Forays in Fatshion, Fatshionable, The Manfattan Project, Fatshionista, and Frocks & Frou Frou are all featured, photographed and/or interviewed. It’s so great, well done ladies! I have to say I’m pretty jealous – I bloody LOVE Kira Cochrane!

It’s so cool that there are incredible fashionable, stylish plus sized blogs popping up all over the net now. I try and add them all to my links but can barely keep up! So if you have a blog and I’ve forgotten to link you then badger me and I’ll make sure to add you. You’re all completely inspirational. Kiss Kiss!