I'm a great believer of images as an important part of body acceptance. They're often what you base your self-hatred on beforehand, by deconstructing your appearance, and, for me at least, seeing images of fat bodies on fatshion blogs and communities showed me that my body was not worth that self-hatred. We aren't often exposed to photographs of fat people in any other guise than the headless fatty or in generally a negative or incomplete portrayal, and this lack of images to relate to makes you feel as if your body is an anomoly. Fat positive online spaces contradict this by reclaiming their own image and sharing it on their own terms, with their own chosen aesthetic and presentation.
So, for me, seeing my body (whether by writing this blog, or hanging out with other fat people, or by being visible on my own terms) has become a really empowering way of negotiating my own relationship with my body. Maybe this makes me vain as hell, but it also makes me happy, and that's more important ultimately.
Anyway, to get to the point I'm trying to make(!), I recently got a copy of The Colette Sewing Handbook by Colette Patterns. They're an ace company who make vintage inspired patterns which have always hit the spot for me. They only go up to a UK size 20, but I've often been able to make the patterns work for me by working with smaller seam allowances. I would LOVE it if they'd expand their sizing so that more plus sizers could enjoy their work too *hint hint*. In the book, the author suggests that it's a good idea to make your own sewing doll/dummy on which to base your sketches for future craft projects. You do this by photographing yourself in either tight clothing or your underwear, printing a copy out, tracing your outline and then scanning or rephotographing it again. You've then got a digital copy of yourself that you can doodle ideas for, photocopy endlessly and design clothes for.
This excited me endlessly, because A) I'm a pretty bad artist and tracing is easy, and B) it meant I could doodle ideas for future creations on a copy of my own body. This is fantastic for craft purposes, but it's also a pretty fun thing to do in general - I found it a positive experience that helped me reconnect with myself after generally feeling a bit low. You can use the form to play around with outfit ideas, make zines, plan projects, or just doodle. It's a little thing, but I found it an affirming body positive experience, so thought I'd reflect upon it.
Here's mine (and if you don't want to see drawings of me in my pants, you should probably look away now!):
And here's some stuff I'd like to make or own:
An unashamed rip off of a Queen of Holloway dress I've had my eye on. Hopeful future project!
40s esque high waisted trousers (a current project), and a nice fitting blouse with a Peter Pan collar.