Blogger daydreaming around London - iPhone in one hand, camera in the other, and wearing something vintage.
Blogger daydreaming around London - iPhone in one hand, camera in the other, and wearing something vintage.
I’m all for positivity. I think it’s important to put life and life matters into perspective and not to allow the small things to get you down too much. It’s hard, and an individual’s life, and what affects them is subjective, but pretending something doesn’t affect you isn’t positive at all.
“Don’t feed the trolls.”
“They want you to respond.”
“Don’t be so sensitive.”
The above notions are said about a variety of situations, and to be frank, I’m not here for any of them. Let’s take two recent horror shows for example – Nivea and Pepsi.
If you were lucky enough to miss the storm, Pepsi released a TV ad that was likened to the Black Lives Matter movement, where protests and marches, were organised to denounce police brutality against black people. The ad has a white model, played by Kendall Jenner, join a march and hand a can of Pepsi to one of the police officers acting as a barricade. There was a massive backlash on social media because the appropriation of a black movement merely to sell a few more cans of a fizzy drink was, and is, the greatest of insults; and although I don’t particularly want to share the ad, I do want to share one reaction from the world of Twitter.
The above tweet was from the actual daughter of Martin Luther King Jr. Imagine creating something so offensive and heinous that the daughter of one of the greatest black influencers of all time felt compelled to express her disgust?! Pepsi really messed up (to say the least), but they weren’t the only ones.
Nivea have a history of causing race controversy. In 2011 they released this ad:
Now, it’s pretty self-explanatory, but depicting a decapitated black man with an afro, and surmising him as uncivilised, touched a nerve or two; but this didn’t seem to deter them from their latest ad:
An ad with ‘White is Purity’ sends a message that anything other than white is impure, unclean, unwanted, and undesirable. This message was always going to be seen as deplorable, and again, Twitter were on hand to name and shame Nivea:
In both instances, many echoed the views of each ad being racially insensitive, but some of the responses to the ads perturbed me somewhat. Responses like the ones I listed above, about not allowing oneself to be dragged into the negative whirlpool. Surmising that the ads were designed to create hype. But is this true?
Well yes, of course it’s true! Brands don’t spend millions on advertising in the hope that people don’t talk about their product. That’s the whole purpose of advertising. What brands don’t want is negative coverage, and I can’t imagine either thought that the avalanche of negative comments and coverage did their brand any good. Both apologised and the ads were removed within 48 hours of release but the damage was done, and I’m glad that people stood up and called out these brands. We can’t stay silent when things like this happen. Staying silent, whether intended or not, shows complicity and gives brands the green light to continue making ads that put one race, or one type of body, or one type of religion, or one type of sexual orientation, above another. That’s not the world I want to live in and I will always speak up and call out something I find wrong.
So yeah, let’s give these people all the coverage in the world. Let’s spread far and wide their wrong doings; let’s educate them and others like them that their actions have consequences and we will not be silent, we will not be complicit and we will not let their hate and discrimination slide because it’s wrapped up in a colourful, naïve package.
I think that’s one of the most positive messages of all.
You always want what you can’t have, right?! Well that’s how I feel about clothing brands in the US. I always swoon over items from companies based in the US, ruing the fact that I would either have to do without or pay the hideous customs charge. For the most part, I’ve done without with the secret hope that one day they should ship overseas. Well, all good things come to those who wait, and when Eloquii announced they would be shipping overseas, the Internet rejoiced.
You see, Eloquii are one of those rare gems: a brand that are inclusive and are seen interacting with customers daily. They answer questions and address concerns with humility, and showcase their clothes with models of varying shapes and ethnicities. Every seasonal collection is bursting with colour which is such a rare thing amongst plus size brands; bucking the tired notion that us plus size folk don’t like or enjoy colourful clothes.
Their collections include crop tops, pencil skirts, horizontal lines and fitted items without apology and to my knowledge they have never done what so many other brands tend to do – post body shaming material. They take what they do seriously and making beautiful clothes that cater to the masses is their primary goal.
And boy do they do it well!
So now that Eloquii ship to the good old UK its taken all of my inner strength to avoid their website, but with payday round the corner, I’ve have taken a peek at their ‘New Arrivals’ tab and have selected five of my favourite pieces.
Double Layer Easy Dress $124.90
Sleeveless Ruffle Shirt Dress $124.90
Off Shoulder Metallic Dot Dress $139.90
Embroidered Maxi Skirt $89.90
Floral Scalloped Shorts $79.90
The list could have gone on and on, and I look forward to really delving into the wonderful depths of the Eloquii website. I follow so many bloggers on social media and it isn’t a coincidence that Eloquii are consistent in blogger praise.
You can shop the ‘New Arrivals’ collection here. Happy shopping!
Ah, Valentine’s Day. The plucked out of nothing celebration of love is approaching, and whether you’re in a relationship or not, it’s pretty hard to ignore with the explosion of reds, pinks, hearts and 3D cards. But is such a day really necessary?
These aren’t the bitter rantings of a single woman, I promise, as even when in a relationship I made a point not to celebrate Valentine’s Day. It has always felt quite hollow to me as I feel love should be celebrated everyday, not just on calendar scheduled days. With each passing year there is added pressure, whether self inflicted or not, to show not just your partner, but the entire world that your love is at a height no-one else can match; that your love is indescribable and that Valentine’s Day in particular fills you with unrelenting joy.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t begrudge people loving each other and expressing that love in any way they see fit, but for me, love doesn’t need to be showy. It doesn’t need IG likes and Twitter RT’s as being with your love, and having your love know how you feel about them, should be the only thing that matters.
It’s an old saying, but life is far too short to waste time proving yourself or your relationship to anyone, and life is certainly too short to only reserve showing the person (or persons) you love for a single day in the calendar. So those in relationships: celebrate or don’t celebrate, but make sure whatever you do is what you want to do, not what others expect from you. If that means just sitting in front of the telly with a pizza, so be it! Your relationship doesn’t need to be defined by anyone but you and your love.
Singles are the much forgotten bunch on Valentine’s Day and the sympathetic eye from a friend in a relationship can often feel like a slap in the face. There isn’t a day for singles is there? Instead we’re made to feel like lost souls who should be trawling the streets for someone to marry just so we’re not single shamed next year! Well, fear not because I have a few words for my fellow singles: Here’s to you! Here’s to you for not still being with that loser. Here’s to you for getting out that abusive relationship. Here’s to you for not marrying that moron. Here’s to you for refusing to accept anything less than you deserve, and instead, for waiting out for that special someone whom you’ll want to share your days with, celebratory or not. Here’s to you for choosing to love yourself first!
Love is a great thing, but love between couples isn’t the only love around. Whether you’re in a relationship or not, tell someone how much they mean to you. We can often live in our own bubble, succumbing to our own woes while forgetting the support group around us whom might like to hear they’re making a difference. Showing appreciation is taken for granted but it’s so important, particularly in these uncertain times, to tell those in your life that you adore them.
So however you spend V-Day, and whomever you spend it with, don’t forget to spread the love!
So, we’re all familiar with the term “size fat please!” well, for me, the same applies when it comes to footwear.
The range of wide fit shoes is frankly, abysmal. Even amongst some of our favourite brands, there is a very limited supply of wide fit shoes and boots. You visit a website and see a great pair that would go perfectly with that outfit you’ve got planned for a friend’s wedding, only to find there is only standard fit. I have spent literally hours online and trawling the high street in search of wide fit flats. That’s it, nothing special or groundbreaking, just a simple pair of black wide fit flats. It’s been the bane of my life. The ones I came across were either not the right size or shape, or just not my style. I finally found a pair from Simply Be’s new range.
The thing is it shouldn’t be this hard, and the array of fabulous shoes for those lucky enough to buy standard fit should be extended to those who can’t. I know the demand is there. Just glancing at social media proves that people are tired of not being able to find a suitable pair of shoes that fit without having to stretch them out or having feet shredded from walking in uncomfortable shoes all day. Below is just a small selection of fabulous shoes I wish were in a wider fit:
Knot Slippers, £36 | Skater Loafers, £35 | Slipper Shoes, £38
Red Velvet Block Sandals, £40 | Black Patent Tassel Loafers, £28 | Pink Slip-on Mules, £55
Speaker Pointed Heel, £28 | Heeled Sandals, £38 | Tie Heeled Sandals, £45
This post could go on forever with shoes, boots and sandals that are glorious, but unavailable in wide fit. There needs to be more effort put into making consumers feel like they are catered for. However, I just wanted to give a nod to New Look, as they seem to have the most “on trend” selection of wide fit footwear.
So this is my war cry to all brands – Size WIDE please!
And so it begins. Countless articles, TV programmes, adverts and Facebook status’ talking about how it’s new year and thus, we need to change ourselves from top to bottom in order to have the new year be a success. Titles like “New Year, New You” and “Post Christmas Detox” are so blinding and constant that you’re made to feel like you’ve failed before you’ve even started!
But here’s the thing: YOU DON’T HAVE TO CHANGE A THING IF YOU DON’T WANT TO! There you go, nice and easy. You don’t have to succumb to the intolerable bombardment of (unasked for) advice as to how to change yourself because it’s a new year. We all have goals and we all have things we’d like to improve on, and I get that a new year can be seen a fresh start, but do not fall down the rabbit hole and into a trap of self-doubt, chastisement, anxiety, and failure just because you may not have a list of things you “need” to change. If you’re happy with the way you are and where you are in life, pat yourself on the back and continue on your path. If you only have one thing you think you want to change, pat yourself on the back for acknowledging it and have at it! If you have a plethora of things you want to change, go through each one at your own pace and try not to put too much pressure on yourself.
My point is there is no “right” way to start a new year. You do not have to have a list of resolutions to feel like you’re moving forward. And if you do have a list, don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t achieve everything you want at the end of the year. Life happens and sometimes you can’t always predict how each day, let alone, each year, is going to pan out. Be strong and if something does make you stutter, ride the wave and keep going.
Remember that you are all awesome whatever the outcome of this year, enjoy being you, have fun and be happy – that’s the real achievement.
So you’re probably wondering why I say ‘reluctant’, right?! Well it all began when I started to plug into acceptance. Acceptance of my body, acceptance of how my body was and that it was ok to look the way that I did. The more I read from bloggers and activists, the more I felt lighter (no pun intended) on my feet. I felt a different way waking up and looking in the mirror and this also meant a change in the way that I chose to dress.
You see, when I was feeling bad about my body, with a head full of negative thoughts, I did nothing but wear black: black tops, black jeans or trousers, black cardigan; I was head-to-toe black. Occasionally I’d change it up and throw on some dark wash jeans, but that was as expansive as my flare for style went! I just didn’t see myself in anything else and convinced myself that black was the way forward as it made me “invisible” (of course we all knew that wasn’t true but we told ourselves this didn’t we?!)
When I decided to finally branch out, I decided that the first thing I was going to do was set myself a challenge – I wasn’t going to wear black anymore. Have you found yourself setting a similar challenge? If you have, you know how scary it is to take that first plunge. I’d go to a rack of t-shirts (baby steps!) and pick up grey! I giggle to myself but at the time I really thought I’d achieved something miraculous, and I guess at the time I had.
Over time, I have become more and more bold, with brighter and brighter colours, and I maintained my ‘no black’ policy. However, it has become increasing difficult, as brands are really stepping up and making some gorgeous black garments for us plus size ladies. I ventured into the abyss a little while ago and wore my first black dress in forever and I felt fabulous!
So yes, below is a reluctant list of some quite stunning black dresses I wouldn’t be at all reluctant to wear.
Aren’t they dreamy? Which is your favourite?
We all need a clear out sometimes, and moving home, like I’m currently in the process of doing, is a great excuse to throw out all the stuff you think you need but in reality, you know you don’t.
The wardrobe has a sense of Narnia for most women and we tend to hold onto things for far longer than we should. We think we’ll get back into that dress, or that we’ll get that skirt mended; but we know deep down that in reality there is very little chance that these things will happen.
I get it though; letting go of a piece of clothing that may have meant a lot to you is a difficult thing to do. It sounds silly but we develop attachments to things that hold a fond memory or remind us of a time we maybe felt a little bit more confident about ourselves than we currently do. Maybe it was something bought by a loved one and handing it over to someone else isn’t something you particularly want to do. I’m guilty of all these things but I’ve come to realise that the journey for said item doesn’t have to stop with me. There are people who will find as much, if not more joy from wearing an item you’ve donated, and that will in turn give you a warm glow knowing that you were able to do that for someone else. What use is an item from your first date with your partner if it’s sat in your wardrobe? What good is that pair of jeans you used to fit into, if they’re sat in a drawer while you wait to “fit” back into them? Do yourself a favour and love the body you’re in now and let the past stay just there. The memories you have in your head far outweigh the item itself.
Now is the time to be ruthless.
I have two wardrobes full of clothes – TWO! There is no person on earth who really needs two wardrobes of clothes. They are items I have bought over the years, most of which I’ve never worn or have chosen to “save” for a special occasion. I convince myself every time I buy something new that I’ll definitely wear it, only to find it randomly one day in the depths, with the tags still on.
It’s time to sort it out. I’m going to go through each and every piece of clothing and be cut throat as to A. Whether I actually wear it; B. Whether I’m likely to wear it in the next month; C. Whether I have a special occasion (like a pending wedding) to go to where something fancy is needed? If the answer to any or all of these questions is no, I’m throwing it in a black bag and taking it all to a charity shop. I’m not going to hold onto things to sell because I know how lazy I am and they’ll be sitting in my room for months on end while I find the time to photograph and post it all.
Yep, I’m getting rid of half my clothes and I’m actually excited about doing it. They’ll go to loving homes and I’ll have space in my room for more important things…like books!
What piece of clothing have you found difficult to give away?
Autumn is such a popular season. In fact, it is many people’s favourite season, including mine. I think it’s so popular, fashion wise, because of the colour palettes, including warm reds, mustards, greys, browns, and forest greens. These palettes allow you to incorporate your summer wardrobe without the need for a complete wardrobe overhaul. I for one love this as I really love my summer wardrobe and try to sneak out as many wears as possible and throwing on a cardigan or colourful pair of tights is a great way to do that. Wraps and boots are also handy and I think brands have really caught on that consumers want fun, classic prints and textures to accessorize an outfit, and one brand in particular caught my eye…
Marks and Spencer have really stepped up their game these last few seasons, and their A/W collection is no exception. I particularly love the wraps they have for when the temperature dips, and decided it would be fun to team some of my favourite wraps with wide fit boots for those crunch-filled walks in the park. Any of these combinations would be great for autumn or a mild winter’s day…
I would honestly wear any of these combinations and I think it shows how much Marks and Spencer has thought about the fashion conscious shopper. Yes, we want to stay warm, but we want to look good while doing so!
What do you guys think of Marks and Spencer? What are some of your favourite pieces from their current collection?