Sunday, January 30

Hey all! Gin and antics have made the past weekend a bit slow on the writing front, though most pleasant otherwise. This is what I wore to work on Friday, then to pick up some friends for a weekend of fun. The dress was from the etsy seller If Autumn Ends, though I bought it on a fatshionista sales post for cheaper than her list prices. It's a fantastic fit (despite not being custom made) and one of my most staple work dresses (despite the odd looks I get in it!).

Run down:
Dress, £40, If Autumn Ends via fatshionista sales post
Tights, M&S
Shoes, £5 vintage store

Wednesday, January 26

Peter Pan collars

So everyone (including me) seems to be in love with cute collars this year, particularly Peter Pan styles. There are a few limited options around for these styles to fit plus sizes, but I feel (personally) that they're a bit basic and out of my price range, so I'm looking into crafting a collar of my own instead. I'm interested in making a detachable collar because that way it can be co-ordinated with many of the dresses, blouses and t-shirts that I already own, rather than adapting items to include a permanent collar.

I did some googling and found a few brilliant tutorials that I'm recommending:
The Busty Traveller

Also, I have a big craft project on the go currently, potentially for the Plus London meet. It involves adapting the neckline of a vogue pattern, which I've never done before! I'm taking it slowly and not really posting about it because I'm a bit scared it won't work out (though I am photographing it as I go, so hopefully next week I'll be able to update about it!). I'm thinking about making one of these collars to accompany it, probably the fake fur style as there are a few shops in Brighton with permanent faux fur remnant boxes.

Tuesday, January 25

Here's another work outfit for you. I was eager to try out the new velvet shorts I scored from the ASOS sale, and decided to try and workwear look with them - I work in a super casual environment, but somehow I still feel a bit odd wearing shorts to the office (even though this is much more formal than most of my colleagues!). Anyhow, the shorts are simply fantastic. I'm a larger size 22 around my hips (sometimes a 24) and these are actually slightly loose on me, making them a much more comfortable fit than other styles I've owned. The velvet is a dark grey which catches the light really nicely, with hugggge pockets (they're the entire length of the shorts!).

Shorts, £9, ASOS Curve sale
Polo neck, £7, Dorothy Perkins sale
Jumper, 99p, charity shop
Necklace, £2, Primark
Tights, M&S
Boots, £39.50, Evans

Monday, January 24

Gah, house hunting! Still super busy. Here's an outfit from Friday to tide you all over though... this shirt is the best shirt I own. It's a thick winter-y flannel, and it fits so well. I own two shirts of a similar shape from New Look's Inspire range (the other is a khaki summer shirt), and find them to be the best fit for my very hip-py self.

Shirt, £10, New Look sale
Skirt, £10, River Island
Tights, M&S
Docs, gifted (and oh so loved, I think these deserve a post of their very own some time soon).

I'm wearing this outfit but with skinnies today as well! Hurrah for remixes!

Friday, January 21

A quick post today. I'm house hunting at the minute, so afraid my evenings are rather full up to post as much.

Blouse, ASOS curve via fatshionista sales post, £8.50 including shipping
Dress, Next, £20
Tights, M&S
Loafers, £5 vintage shop

Wednesday, January 19

It arrived! This is the camel pencil skirt I ordered from the ASOS sale. A rather uninspired outfit but I wanted to post about it because it's amazing! I ordered a size 22. The skirt is a body con shape, and more importantly it's actually a pencil skirt! I find it really hard to find knee length skirts (I'm only 5'9" but somehow they always end up mid thigh), so I normally just stick to minis and a-line or full skirts. This fits *perfectly* and ends at my calf. The thing I love about it the most, however, is that it's made from a stretchy, thick fabric. As a belly-heavy fatty, I often find tailoring hard to work because my fat spreads when I sit down - thus, a skirt or pair of trousers that are fine around my hips when stood up are often uncomfortable when I sit down. As this is stretchy, it makes it comfortable in both positions. So to conclude, I love it!

Top, £10, Dorothy Perkins
Skirt, £9 ASOS
Nude fishnets, £1 New Look
Loafer heels, £15 Clarks

Tuesday, January 18


I haven't spent all that much in the sales this year, partially due to the £10 limit (which I'll admit I did slacken a bit for the sake of the Next sale, which I found a cute pink pussy bow blouse and a lilac tulle skirt in! Sorry, no photos yet!) still being firmly in place, and partially because I'm learning to remix a lot more. However, this week I have treated myself to some bits from ASOS and Dorothy Perkins (the ASOS bag has arrived! It's sat next to me at work and I'm a bit too excited).

Here they are:

and some velvet leggings (£6) which have sold out since!

I also bought the last pair of these tie dye wide legged trousers from Dorothy Perkins in a size 22 for £10. I recently sourced the sheer cream pussy bow blouse that ASOS curve sold until last year (and as soon as it sold out, of course, I HAD to have it. Dear oh dear), and imagine myself teaming it with these for that 70s silouhette I'm in love with. Or with old band tees for a grungey look.

Last but not least, these beige suedette shorts for £7. Shorts appear to be an obsession of late, this is strange because until summer 2009 I never wore them! I used to think that shorts were a fat girl no-no, but now they're a wardrobe staple. I have long legs (which prove super pesky to shop for) and find well fitting shorts easier to find than trousers. Plus, they show them off more!

p.s. sorry for lack of outfit posts again. I had a sleepy weekend involving no remarkable clothes. In other news, I highly recommend sleeping. Insomnia has hit me quite badly these past months and I have forgotten what a good night's sleep feels like!

Saturday, January 15

70s power flare

70s power flare
70s power flare by prettymary_k featuring wide leg pants

Excuse my slightly sketchy polyvore skills here. I'm big into wide legs and palazzo pants this season. I'm really interested in wearing these styles as a fatty, as I feel the super wide leg is deemed inappropriate to wear (as well as the super skinny, it seems to be all about being as AVERAGE AS POSSIBLE). Here are some fatty fitting examples - most from Dorothy Perkins which goes up to a size 22, two from Love Label (20, though I reckon they'd both fit larger, and that dress is more 60s than 70s, but the camel is more 70s as a colour) and one from ASOS curve (26). I've got to say I'm loving the focus Dotty P's has on the palazzo this season - normally I feel I have to wait months for an on trend cut to arrive (in a highly diluted form) in high street shops, but they're on it this season.

Anyway, I love the 70s as a period, and the luxurious nature of the excessive amounts of fabric used to create such styles, I love the garish-ness of the patterns, the uncoventional colour palettes (I have a serious love for 70s homewares in this respect too, in a horrific kitsch-y fashion). I'd love to wear some palazzos with the sheer waterfall style jacket above and a cami.

I'm interested in the wide leg as a 90s thing too - I can imagine turning the third trousers (which aren't a full length style) in a grungey look with the cropped blouse and my trusty docs and a plaid shirt.

These are all inspirations, as I'm still sticking to my £10 rule this month! So I'll be hunting out similar styles on sale rails, at vintage stores and car boot sales and on ebay.

Tuesday, January 11

Hello lovelies! I'm showing off one of my car boot scores from the weekend today. This sheer floral shirt cost £2 this weekend from the Brighton Marina antiques fair and car boot. I found it rummaging amidst a pile of goodies that also contained some liberty print culottes and the most amazing gold brocade evening dress (I left that behind as sadly it wasn't my size). I think this is a 1960s housecoat as it's very unfitted with a huge pocket. I'm big into sheer florals and sheer colours at the moment, they are just so effortlessly girly.

Look at the detail! Beautiful!

Shirt, Brighton Marina car boot, £2
Bustier (just seen beneath), £4 Dorothy Perkins
Jeggings, New Look, £7
Docs, gifted
Belt, old vintage stock

On the car boot front, I really can't recommend Brighton Marina's Sunday sale enough. Whilst there are a lot of "proper" antiques/vintage sellers who I find incredibly overpriced, I was surprised to find some house clearance stalls with gigantic piles of vintage on the floor. As well as this top I also found;

Huge amount of vintage 60s polyester (perfect for shift dresses), £1, about 4 metres of grey polka dot cotton, £5 (bit more than I would normally pay, but it's beautiful), brown patchwork belt, £1. I also got a vintage slip for £1 that I plan to grunge up with some docs and a plaid shirt, and a copy of Watchmen on DVD for 50p. And looootttts of vintage stock.

These were all hidden bargains, found by rummaging on the floor and avoiding the "proper" stalls. I really enjoyed the day, I have to say, despite the cold and long walk over!

Ebaying for fatties

Ebay buying has been a big part of my life since I was about 15 or so. I started out as a record collector, searching out rarities, then turned to clothes when I realised that ebay is actually a pretty good resource for plus size shopping. When I was in my final year of university, I started buying vintage wholesale and set up an ebay business specialising in vintage clothes for all sizes. This paid me through an MA in Gender Studies (I love that selling fatty vintage clothes paid for my research into fat activism!), and came to an end earlier this year when I had to stop living with my boyfriend and move into a shared house again (and start working a full time job again). I still do a bit of selling (my etsy shop is here) but not on the same scale anymore.

Searching for bargains on ebay is a lot harder nowadays. You have to be prepared to commit time and effort, and look at a lot of horrible items to find the best available. There's no easy way to find amazing stuff, but I thought I might write a short guide anyway, so here goes:

- Use the minimum amount of search criteria possible. I generally just go with "dress 22" or even "22" if I have time free to look through. The best bargains are items that are labelled "dress size 22" without brand or any depth of detail. You'll have to sift through a lot, but this is where the bargains lie.
- Use the ebay price filters to avoid amazing things that are way out of your price range. These are found on the left hand side of the page, to the left of your results (on ebay UK anyway) This last month I didn't want to spend anything over £10 (including postage) on anything I bought. So if I fancied a browse, I would always use these filters to make sure I didn't fall in love with needlessly pricey items. This will also narrow your results down considerably!
- Search around your size. Sizing is not standardised, so look for a size either way of the one you would normally look for and ask for measurements. You might be surprised!
- Keep aware of what you're looking for, by regularly checking high street websites. Sometimes people take bad pictures, but I recognise a pattern or a shape and connect it to something I saw a year or two back.
- As a follow up, always check badly photographed items!
- WATCH ITEMS, and use an ebay sniper. I use goofbay which is free, and will bid on an item in the last few seconds for you. Don't get caught in a bidding war in the days before the auction ends, as you will end up paying more. Also, I find using a sniper is helpful when it comes to monitoring your spending on an item - if days before the item ends, you determine a maximum price that you are willing to pay, place the snipe, then you won't get caught in a last minute bidding frenzy which sees you spending £15 on something you only wanted for £5.
- With vintage items, I find that some search terms - oversized, swing coat, tent dress, etc - will occasionally bring up plus sized items that are being sold as "oversized" to skinny hipster types.
- A lot of ebay sellers with pin a larger dress on a skinny mannequin - sometimes this is used to make the dress look more fitted (I hate it when sellers do this) to push the price up, but sometimes it's done out of necessity if the seller only has the only mannequin. I often find dresses in my size badly pinned in photographs (but the measurements sound perfect) go for much less than others.
I'd love to hear if anyone else has any tips I've missed? What have been your best ebay bargains?
Oh, also, I'm having a new year's clearout, and I've put a sales post up on fatshionista's selling community. You can check it (and my inability to successfully use my self timer!) out here.

If anyone is not on livejournal, and would like to buy or discuss an item, then send me an email at kirsty [dot] fife [at] gmail [dot] com. I'm open to haggling and will do super awesome deals for the super awesome people who buy more than one item from me ;)

Sunday, January 9

Gooo-ood weekend. More to follow later, but suffice to say it involved a very successful car boot session. I broke out my old vintage cats eyes for the first time in ages this weekend. I had these glazed the same time as my trusty black specs, but the latter soon became my day wear and these more "special occasion". They're so different to my usual style that I often find them hard to style.

Run down:
Jumper, clothes swap, £free
Blouse, Monsoon sale, £15
Shorts, £7ish, fatshionista sales post (shortened by me)
Tights, M&S
Docs, gifted
Cameo, £6, livejournal sales post
Belt, old stock, £free

Saturday, January 8

Firstly, my picture taking sucks, but that's what you get late at night. Oh dear.

I wore this to go out last night, though "out" was just a friend's house (I'm so poor right now, not much else is viable!). The lame jacket was a purchase from Sabrosa Vintage on etsy at a more affluent time - it was gold, but I managed to wash it with the wrong colours (I only wore it once before!) and turned it gun metal! I quite like it this way though, so I guess I'm happy now anyhow.

Jacket, Sabrosa Vintage on etsy - about £30 including shipping
Pixies t-shirt, £1, Traid sale
Skirt, £10, River Island
Tights, M&S
Boots, £20 ebay

Friday, January 7

Bit of a wardrobe remix today. It's funny, because the vintage dress and jumper/cardigan combo used to be my UNIFORM, seriously for about two years I don't think I changed it at all, but now it's definitely something I'm moving away from. I think especially when on a strict budget, it helps more to own interchangeable separates that function equally well in day or night. However, in the mean time my wardrobe is still stuffed to the brim with overelaborate impractical nonsense (which I love), so I doubt I've changed all that much ;)

Dress, about £35, vintage via eBay
Cardigan, £1.99 charity shop
Belt, old vintage stock
Tights, M&S basics
Socks, £1 Primark
Docs, gifted

Tuesday, January 4

First day back at work. Apparently my strategy for hiding my evident lack of sleep involves dressing head to toe in pillar box red... not sure this was the best way to style this, but it was an experiment.

Dress, £1.70 (Tesco via ebay)
Button up blouse, £7 (New Look)
Belt, £8 (vintage)
Tights, £8 M&S
Shoes, Barratts, £10

Sunday, January 2

Happy belated holidays to everyone! I've been really ill with flu for most of the holidays and so my outfits (or rants) haven't been seeing much daylight! I'm better now though, and enjoying the new year in Yorkshire for a few days.

This crushed velvet skirt in red was a score from Primark in the sales for £3. I find their minis surprisingly stretchy, so always worth a try if you're a 20/22. That said, this is maybe a tad too short for me!

Plaid shirt, boyfriend's, borrowed for £free
Cami, Primark, £4
Skirt, Primark £3
Tights, M&S £8
Socks, Primark £1
Brown docs, gifted for Christmas! And they are never leaving my feet...

I will be catching up and posting more again soon! Sorry for any unreplied emails x