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Saturday, 17 November 2012

Aussie Curves - Pastel

I really didn't think that I would manage to get my post up for Aussie Curves this week. Work has been really busy as it is report writing and exam marking crazy season for me. Added to that I caught a cold, and also had a cranky daughter to tend to, who had developed conjunctivitis, an ear infection and the sniffles!

I don;t have many pastel colours in my wardrobe, simply because they don;t seem to suit my skin tone. Most pastels make me look washed out and frumpy. However, there is always the exception to the rule!

I really wanted to share this dress with you. Sadly it is a past season dress, but I just adore it. I bought about 3 years ago, and it has been a summer staple ever since.

Dress - Target (Hot options)
Cardigan - Temt
Belt - Equip
Neecklace - Gift
Bangles - Diva

There is so much to love about the dress. The beautiful colours, the silky, flowy satin, the lovely v neck bodice. The dress is really lightweight and it perfect to wear on a hot summer day. I love to dress down the dress with sandals and a plain necklace  or dress it up with heels and a sparkly necklace. I have worn this dress to a wedding when  I was 6 months pregnant. 

Pear Tip: Wear a dress that is fitted at the bodice but flows out from either below the bust or the waist. This draws attention to your narrowest point. Add a belt to further accentuate your narrowest point.

I am really into belts lately too. I have made quite a few purchases recently of skinny belts. The one I am wearing is rose gold (my favourite metallic colour) and came as part of a 3 pack along with a mint green and a floral. I learnt a nifty trick to loop a belt so you don't have a lot of excess belt sticking out. 

Nerida is also wearing a dress for this week's theme

Dress - Big W (current)
Cardigan - SES
Shoes- Rivers
Bracelet - Tiffany & Co

It is very unusual for Nerida to wear floral print, as she generally prefers to wear bold prints or block colours. She spied this dress in Big W and tried it on. It fits perfectly and is really feminine. This is another dress that can be dressed down for something casual, bu can also be dressed up for a special occasion. 

The draping at the belly also is really flattering for her shape. The navy background on the dress makes the pastel floral print stand out, and also prevents Nerida from looking washed out. 

Apple Tip: Look for a dress that has a slight gather over the stomach, it prevents the dress from looking like it is clinging to your belly.

We both really love these dresses and are glad we have managed to squeeze this post in before the blog hop ends!

Tell us, do you have a favourite summer frock? What do you love about it?

Friday, 9 November 2012

Budget Plus Size clothing - Millers

I think for most of us, when we think of Millers we think of elasticated pants and matching floral pantsuits. We certainly would not always consider that it could be a place where you can find fashionable plus size clothing.

Lately though i have been finding my eye catch on some of their displays as I go past, and browsing through the racks. In the last year I have purchased some really great items from there, in particular some wonderful  coats during winter.

Millers clothing goes up to a size 22, although not on all items. I do find some of their items a bit hit and miss. Not everything fits right, and the quality varies. Although, much can be said for most items from many retailers. What you can count on if everything being very affordable. They frequently have sales where everything is less that $15. At the moment tops are $20 and pants are $15. I mean really, where else can you get an outfit for less than $40?

I recently purchased this top (although mine is sleeveless), It has a beautiful cowl neckline and is made from a sthick stretch fabric. I love it and wear it to work often.

I also bought a stunning one piece strapless costume, while I was pregnant, from Millers. The quality was actually far better than anything I found at Target and other retailers. It was fully lined, and even had padding in the bust. It also had a wonderful pattern with ruching along the side. Here I am wearing it for a belly shot

Lets take a look at some of my favourite picks from this season.


Round Neck Curved Hem Stripe Top, Stud detail shirt, Flutter sleeve top, Kaftan top, Geo print tunic

Colourful isn't it? It certainly does not look like the granny fashion were used to. You could easily be mistaken into thinking that the above pictures were from a City Chic or Autograph catalouge.

I do believe in trying to wear quality items and not buying 'junk' clothing. However, the reality is that I also am aware of how much I spend on clothing. I can not always afford to spend $50 or more on one item of clothing. In fact, the thought of spending $50 on a top make me feel a little queasy. I do think you need to look at the individual item and weigh up the quality and cost. As I said before, some of Millers items are a bit  'miss' quality wise, but on the other hand, there are plenty of 'hit' to be had too!

Next time you are at the shops make sure you duck into Millers and have a look. You may be surprised!

Have you found some unexpected buys from a shop you wouldn't usually shop at? I'd love to hear about it. Comment below! 

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Aussie Curves - Polka Dot 2

Skirt - LoveToLoveYou from etsy,
 Top- City Chic
Belt - City Chic

This is Nerida's polka dot outfit. She was going to wear this dress again, but then remembered she owned this very cool skirt!

We both love Etsy. You can buy unique custom made outfits, often for less than what yo would buy in a shop. It can be a bit hit and miss. I mis-measured myself once for a dress and was a little generous, then they were also a bit generous so the resulting dress way about 2 sizes up! It was a lesson learnt though, and now I make sure I follow the sellers instructions precisely to get the right fit. 

This great skirt alternates polka dot fabric with a floral print. It is so fun with the ruffles peeking through and the buttons.

Check out the other polka dot outfits here 

And if you want to play along just follow these instructions

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Aussie Curves - Polka dot

I quite like the classic polka dot combination of red, black and white. Polka dot just screams retro, and I love the retro look.

I did have a particular top in mind for this weeks challenge. It is a nice white with black spot top. However while I was out shopping I spied this scarf at a $2 shop! I just loved the colour and the pattern (and the $4 price tag).  One of the aims of this blog is to show that you can still look great as a plus size woman, while on a budget.

Scarf - Hot Dollar
Top - Dorothy Perkins
Dress/Skirt - Crossroads
Shoes - Rivers
Bracelet - Gifted from a boutique shop
Sunnies - Target

Buying a cheap scarf from a cheap shop may not be everyone's cup of tea. However I really believe in not spending a lot of money on things like accessories so you can spend more money on great statement pieces or good quality staple items. I felt this scarf was a great example of not spending a lot on something small.

Budget Tip: Spend less on accessories or fashion trend pieces so you can spend more on other items

I loved how the pop of orange looked with the navy blue peplum top I was wearing. I also loved the fun mix up of the spots with the stripey 'skirt'. In fact, it is not actually a skirt, but a dress with my top worn over it. I find putting a top over a dress often works really well, and it adds a bit of versatility to the piece when you are able to mix it up a bit.

Budget Tip: Make the most of your clothing. Consider turning a dress into a skirt by adding a top over it.

The peplum top is a recent buy from Dorothy Perkins in the UK. I recently sold a bunch of clothing on Ebay with the purpose of making money that I can spend trying some stores from the U.K. I often look at Dorothy Perkins and ASOS but never felt like I could risk spending my money on something that may not fit. By selling my pieces I no longer wear I made a bit of pocket money that I could spend guilt free.

I purchased this peplum top, as well as a stunning red peplum dress (which I am saving for a wedding). I was delighted with both items, and they turned out to only be $35 including postage. One tip I learnt was to go a google search for Dorothy Perkins coupons because you may find coupon codes that can give you a further discount. I put my already heavily reduced items in the shopping basket, then added in the coupon code and received an extra 15% off. Yay!

I was really unsure if peplum would work for my pear shape. However this top is great. It has a soft stretch material. It doesn't stick out too much, and the peplum part starts from the bottom of my rib cage, so it basically glides over my tummy, but stops just below my hips.

Pear Tip: Don't dismiss clothing without trying it on. It is often about the cut of the item, so something may look good, even if it shouldn't suit your shape.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Towards a healthier me

I have struggled with my weight all my life. I was chubby in Primary school, and through High School. I did lose 20 kg's during my senior years at school. I looked and felt great, but I worked hard to get there. 1 - 2 hours of exercise a day. Lots of points counting. I kept most of the weight off for a few years.

 I can't say I've tried every diet though, because I have always known that for me a 'diet' where I take away entire food groups would not work for me. I did try the Tony Ferguson shakes at one point. I was so hungry by the end of the week I would have happily eaten my own arm.

I have done some pretty full on personal training in the past. I worked so hard, yet the weight didn't come off very fast. I did get fit though, very fit. My personal trainer was puzzled. She couldn't quite work out why the weight wasn't shifting. I wasn't eating bad, and was working so hard. A trip to a dietitian was ordered. There I was told I had a slow metabolism and was a little insulin resistant. Nothing much could be done other than keep trying. I kept going until after my wedding. Then I stopped.

I was tired of caring. Tired of counting everything that went into my mouth. Tired of a life of restriction and worry. So I ate what I wanted. I ate too much. Exercised too little. My clothing size increased.

I fell pregnant. I was happy that I didn't put too much weight on through it. Until I went on maternity leave. The searing heat combined with incredible heartburn led to me eating too many ice creams and milkshakes. I had Abbie and sadly realized it wasn't all baby (she was only 6 pounds after all), it was mostly me! Boo!

I tried Weight Watchers. I did well for awhile, I lost 10 kg's, but I had about another 30 to lose. Then I just stopped. I again became tired of caring. What I didn't know was that life had some other plans.

I started getting a pain in my right leg. I thought it was shin splints or a muscle cramp from wearing shoes that were too flat and thin. I ignored it. The pain became worse. I still assumed it was a cramp and I popped painkillers. Until I could barely stand without being in incredible pain. Sitting caused pain. Sleep was non existent.  I even went and had a leg massage.

Finally I went to the doctor. After a series of tests I was diagnosed with a blood clot. A large clot that extended from behind my knee. I was put on injection and blood thinners. Most of all I was scared. I realised I could have caused a heart attack or a stroke (especially after having the massage, I think my doctor nearly fainted when I told her I did this).

After a trip to the specialist I was forced to face reality. I needed to lose weight. I needed to get healthy. I had a family history of diabetes and was heading towards being diabetic myself. My chances of more clots are higher with the more weight I carry. The specialist pointed out it wasn't about not being attractive  it wasn't about aesthetics  It was about being there to watch my daughter grow up. Really, what better motivation is there?

I have joined Curves and go 3 times a week. I like it because it is quick, it monitors how hard I work and gives me feedback. I have cut back on bread and pasta. I eat salads as often as possible. Snack on fruit and cottage cheese. I am feeling good. Great in fact

I realised that this time it is different. I haven't set myself a goal weight, although I would like to fit into a size 14 eventually.  I have no set time to achieve this. I am not focusing on a number on the scales. My goal is just to be healthy. Eat well. Drink water. Exercise often.

 I have no goal in mind other than living a long, full, healthy life.

I am working towards a healthier me. I am happy.