Friday, October 31, 2008

Clever Solutions for Clever Girls

One of my favorite blogs, If I Owned a Boutique, highlights a woman from Paris who relocated the buttons on a pair of shorts, creating an interesting tulip shape that made me wince in pleasure.


Passe silhouettes like pleat-front pants in larger sizes aren't usually a terrible rarity in your local thrift store. I love the idea of giving what I consider to be one of the cornerstones of tragic plus-sized fashion, the pleated pant, an effortless makeover into such an urbane, graceful centerpiece. I'll be on the lookout for a pair to transform myself!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Buffalo Soldier


Man, I am so into buffalo plaid, you don't even know. This might explain why I nearly dropped dead when I found a buffalo plaid top with ruffles. Combine two of my favorite trends in one adorable piece? Yes please.

The model on the website pairs it with jeans, but I'd probably wear it with a black high waisted mini, cute skinny belt, black tights (try deep purple or teal if you're feelin' risky), and some great ankle boots. Or you could definitely dress it down by wearing it with black skinnies or leggings and a slouchy knit hat. Ah, versatility at its best. It's $44 from with sizes up to 24W. 

Monday, October 27, 2008

YFF Girl of the Moment: Marisela


So one of the things I want to do with this blog is feature YFF girls weekly (or, uh, as close to weekly as I can get). Meet Marisela, an adorable college student with a unique personal style. It's a little offbeat, but in a totally cute way (and the fact that she's gorgeous doesn't exactly hurt). Check out a few of her signature looks...something tells me she's into cardigans:




 
Name: Marisela
Age: 20
Location: Outside of Chicago, IL
Size: 20
Favorite Places to Shop: Always looking, absolutely anywhere
Fashion Icons: I don't care how typical fat girl of an answer this is, but I love Beth Ditto. I draw inspiration from her ridiculousness. She is how I know that I can push the envelope and totally look bad ass while doing so.
Current Obsession: Finding the perfect shade of rouge
Advice to other YFF girls: Dress for yourself, always have fun, and don't be predictable. Never worry about the size on the tag--go as little or as big as you need, don't feel like you need to stick to just one size of anything! I know being YF&F is not easy and finding affordable clothing that is stylish can be frustrating. Second hand shops are perfect for adding an eclectic feel to an otherwise bland wardrobe.

Want to be featured on YFF? send an email to gabrielle.gregg@gmail.com with a picture of yourself in your favorite outfit. You might be chosen next!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Fat Stylista

Did any of you watch the premiere of the CW's new show, Stylista? It's basically like any other competition-driven reality TV show, except this time the contestants are vying for a job as a junior editor at Elle Magazine (not to mention free rent and clothing from H&M for a year). Uh, why did I not hear about the auditions for this thing? It definitely gave me a little confidence though, partly because I have better style than half of those people, and partly because it was refreshing that a lot of them didn't have backgrounds in fashion! MAYBE THERE IS HOPE FOR ME YET, MAMA! 

Okay, sorry, I didn't mean to let this turn into my personal journal. Onto the good stuff: while most of the 20-somethings were exactly what you'd expect to see in the fashion industry, I was pleasantly surprised to find that one of the stylists was actually fat! Her name is Danielle, and so far she totally seems to have the right to be there, unlike some of her peers. I was (and still sort of am) afraid that they only threw her in there to create drama as "the fat girl," but so far so good (though from the previews it doesn't seem like it will stay that way for long). 

The senior editors were actually exceedingly nice to her and complimented her skills throughout the show. I have to admit though, I was wondering if it was genuine or if it was their way of trying to pretend weight isn't an important factor in the fashion industry (uh, right). Either way, I'm psyched to see where this thing heads and I'm crossing my fingers that she does well. For now I'm living vicariously though her, but with any luck I'll be next season's token fatty.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Pant Rant

So a friend of mine writes to me and says, and I quote, "Can you please make a post about the right pants to wear with an ass like mine?!" Well, ask and you shall receive, sweet thang. That's what I'm here for.

Let me preface this post by getting this out of the way though: I absolutely hate pants. I stay away from the things as much as possible for the very reason my friend wanted me to write about them: when you're fat, pants are seriously the most complicated article of clothing to get right. That's why personally, I try to stick to skirts and dresses and thus side step the entire mess.

The thing is, telling you what pants to buy is tricky because it honestly comes down to trying the darn things on. A pair that looks great on the hanger (or on someone else) could give you massive camel toe or make you look ridiculously stumpy. It sucks, but it's true: when it comes to buying pants, there are few tangible rules since they fit everyone so differently. But, that said, I will give you some recommendations on what I think you should keep an eye out for:
  • Make sure pants fit nicely (read: snug) in the hip and thigh area, everything else can be altered by a tailor. There are few things worse than loose-fitting jeans, unless that's the look you're going for (which I don't really recommend for plus sized girls--the more body conscious, the better). Please note, this does not mean you should be squeezing into anything.
  • Small back pockets are usually a no-go.
  • No back pockets are always a no-go.
  • Do not believe the lie that fat girls can't wear skinny jeans, I don't care what Stacy and Clinton say.
  • A good place to shop is in the department stores that carry the ever elusive "Juniors plus" section (or places like Delias and Alloy, which carry jr. sizes up to 19 and 25, respectively). They get the whole "just because we're fat doesn't mean we wanna wear mom jeans" thing.
  • I am extremely partial to dark denim, and usually stay away from any fading/designs/etc. No, I would not like rhinestones on my ass, thanks for the offer though.
  • Okay, I must admit that while I am all for plus-sized girls breaking stereotypes of what they supposedly can and can't pull off, I gotta say, I'm totally not a fan of fat girls in high-waisted pants. I am open to someone proving me wrong, but so far it hasn't happened. And unless you have the fashion know-how to be sure you look bangin' in 'em, I'd avoid those too.
As for me, I've had success with pants and jeans from Old Navy and Torrid, and I've heard great things about urban brands like Apple Bottoms (yes, I know some of their stuff is downright heinous, but if nothing else, they know how to make a good fat-girl jean. Again, just stay away from the rhinestone/neon apples and stick to the basics please). Lastly, as most of you probably know, Lane Bryant came out with the "Right Fit" sizing system, which is supposed to solve all of these problems by making different sized pants based not only on how big you are, but also on your body-type. I haven't tried these myself (I tend to avoid LB like the plague), but I've heard mixed reviews. Here are a couple of examples of jeans I'd actually consider worth checking out:



Denim101 by GabiGregg


I have nowhere near that many pairs of pants in my closet though; the only ones I do wear on a regular basis are my absolute favorite, the Tripp Skinny Twill Pant from Torrid. These things are fabulous. They're made with the most forgiving fabric, I swear it's like wearing leggings. Here I am sporting them with a jersey knit size large (I told you, magic) top from f21:




Don't hate me; I know I wrote a lot to say a little. Just know there is only one message hiding within all of this text: to find pants, you gotta do the grunt work. Go try a bunch on and cross your fingers that you find that perfect fit (and if you do, memorize what aspects of the pants you like so you can look for them in the future!) And remember, depending on your body type, sometimes it really is just necessary to get your pants tailored. It's relatively inexpensive and will make a world of difference.

...Or you can just be like me, say to hell with pants altogether, and throw on some leggings or tights with a cute dress. Trust me, it's much easier that way.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Magic Fabric

My sister is a size 6. I am a size 18. Every once in a while we can actually share clothing. Impossible, you say? You are wrong, my dear...it is very, very possible, all because of the most amazing fabric to ever grace the market: jersey knit. Jersey knit dresses and tops seriously break every law of sizing known to mankind. Thought you were an XL? Wrong! Slip on that medium and watch magic happen as it hugs your curves in the right places, while still flowing over those hips and creating the most flattering of silhouettes. For example, I have a (size medium) jersey knit dress that I bought back when I was 160 lbs. Fifty pounds later and I'm still rockin' it. And don't fret, I promise I am not one of those delusional fat girls who walks around and thinks something fits when it doesn't. I only wish I had pictorial proof, but ya just gotta trust me on this one. Now I'm not telling you to go grab every extra small jersey knit item you can find; what I am saying is that you shouldn't discount that cute top just because it's marked Large and not 3X. There is a good chance it might fit, especially if it has the extra bonus of an elastic waistband.

I have been shopping at my size for long enough to have perfected the art of walking into a straight-sized store and knowing at first glance whether or not something will stretch to fit me without looking strained. In case your eye hasn't been trained yet, I've provided some examples of non-plus size things that someone my size can probably fit. But seriously, if nothing else, remember this: elastic waistband+jersey knit=99% fail proof.

Everything below can be purchased on the Urban Outfitters website.



See the similarities between those four items? Stretch, fabric, general drapey-ness? Okay, I think you get the point. Obviously this doesn't apply to all cuts and fabrics--once you get into more structured pieces, forget about it. But when it comes to knit, at the very least, don't be afraid to try it on! You might just be surprised.

CarmaKomagnificent

So remember that whole "black nirvana" thing I wrote about a few days ago? Well, I'm pretty sure I've reached enlightenment. I'm referring to CarmaKoma, the Danish brand which provides "High Fashion for Curvy Girls." Their fall/winter '08  line is glamorous, chic, and fun, not to mention... you guessed it: black. Two words: hello, lover.

It's a rarity to find our size in anything besides cheap mass-manufactured pieces of crap, so though the price tag for this designer is hefty (no pun intended), its mere existence is a total breath of fresh air. I'm absolutely ga-ga for their shiny leggings and leather belt and sequins dress and...well...everything. Check out their website and lust with me, will ya?

Cocktail, Anyone?


Can we all just please take a moment to praise the heavenliness that is this Adrianna Papell dress?

I have no words. Okay, yes I do, I have many: gorgeous, superb, beautiful, killer, timeless...I could go on.

This is the ideal little black dress, and the perfect addition to your closet just in time for holiday parties! I so love when department stores actually get it right when it comes to plus sizes. The detailing is subtle yet adds just enough flavor, and the A-line cut and awesome neckline flatter every figure. It's $220 from Macy's. For those of you YFF girls with a bigger budget than me, get to buyin' so I can die knowing this gorgeous thing didn't go to waste.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Fat Prep

I never thought I'd say this, but I adore the preppy look that is ever so popular right now. And yes, like many of you, this became an addiction with the premiere of the guilty pleasure that is Gossip Girl. Chuck Bass, will you marry me? And better yet, can Blair Waldorf please style our wedding? The show is so full of fashion magnificence it's almost hard to focus on the plotline (which is surprisingly enthralling, I should add). It's like The OC went Vogue...and got hotter actors. 

Blair, Serena, Jenny, and yes, even Vanessa (I spotted her in an Urban Outfitters dress I own during last week's episode) are so well-dressed it makes me ashamed that their characters are at least four years younger than me. Nevertheless, I swallow my pride and take notes from the teens every Monday night at 8pm, hoping that a little of their fabulousness will rub off.

 If you are as excited as I am about this look, get these things in your closet immediately:
  • brightly colored tights
  • cable knit, plaid, and argyle everything
  • bows & ruffles
  • pleated skirts
  • well-fitted blazers, cardigans & vests
  • socks! ankle, knee, and thigh high all work.
  • when in doubt, stick to navy blues, creams, whites, reds, yellows, and greens
  • ties, ties, ties!
I've put together a look for us girls whose bodies don't exactly resemble Leighton Meester's. Grab your preppiest little black dress (the one below is from Evans):

Photobucket


Add some color and fun with the following items:
(Click the above image for purchasing details)

And voila! Now you are totally competing with Serena and Blair for the position of queen bee. Have fun ladies, but play nice.

xoxo, 
gossip girl
(hey, i can pretend, right?)

Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize

If there's one place a fat girl loves to shop, it's in the accessories section. I can stand tall walking into a store knowing that while I may not fit their jeans, I can fit their necklaces just fine, thank you very much. I don't care how many times it's been said, it is worth repeating: accessories can (and do) make or break outfits. The addition of the right purse, headband, or bracelet can totally revamp a look which would have otherwise been plain-jane. And again, while I obviously love designer bags and jewelry, my pocketbook just ain't ready for those kind of purchases. Luckily, this is when disposable fashion is a fatty's best friend. While all the skinny girls get to enjoy the luxuries of $15 dresses from forever21 and H&M on a regular basis, when it comes to accessories, we can get the cheap stuff too. Here are a few of my favorite things from f21 right now. And I am giving you fair warning: I like my jewelry big, chunky, and on a little on the the gaudy side. 
Okay, so maybe I bit off more than I could chew, I love way too much at that place and if I kept adding things soon I'd be copy/pasting their entire selection. But, if you like any of the above items (which are all dirt cheap, I should add), just check out Forever21's website, with over 70 pages of fat girl friendly accessories.



Back in Black

There are few things I adore more than autumn; the turning of the leaves, the crisp evening air, and best of all: fall fashion. 

If there is one thing that will always be "in," it is the color black.  It's common knowledge that you can never go wrong in a little black dress or an all black ensemble. And while I've never doubted this fact, there has not been a time before this season that I have simply relished this look. I am down right obsessed. You name it, I want it black: tights, dresses, coats, accessories, shoes, hair, coffee, men...just kidding. Kind of.

Let me be clear though, black does not have to mean boring. Playing with layers, textures, and cuts--when done right--keeps things interesting. Anything lace and/or leather (faux, in my case, considering my lack of funds) pretty much puts you on a one-way track to fab in my book. Throw in a little hardware detail and knee high boots, and I'm officially smitten. I know, I know, this isn't exactly a ground-breaking, fashion-forward look, but it's one that works and looks great on almost everyone, regardless of size. One celeb that gets it right every time is Rihanna, who, while not fat, is most definitely fab, and inspires me on my quest for the perfect all black ensemble. 


Now, I've read enough fashion blogs to know this is not everyone's cup of tea; some call it fug, others say it's overdone. I say, fuck that noise and throw on a black bomber. I'm not a huge Torrid fan by any means, but I have to give them props for offering up plus size pleather leggings this year. And seriously, how adorable are their lace thigh highs?

Snag 'em, ladies, and you're well on your way to a little thing we in the fashion world call black nirvana (okay, so maybe I just made that term up, but it's totally accurate). It's nice here, but be forewarned, once you're in it, it's a hard place to leave.

Fat Fashion?

Like most young, hip, and fabulous women, I love all things fashion. Alexander McQueen's dresses give me chills, Balenciaga bags make me weak in the knees, and nothing can put a twinkle in my eye like an editorial spread on New York Fashion Week . I devour Vogue for breakfast, Elle for lunch, and W for dinner, only to then look you in the eye and inquire about dessert. 

I know there are a ton of us out there, many of us blogging away about what's in and what's out, about our most recent obsessions on the runway, and about our burning desire to one day work under Anna Wintour. Face it, since we're young, we're also most likely broke, which kind of puts a damper on our dreams of lining our closets in designer dresses anytime soon. But unlike a lot of my fellow fashionistas, there is something else that prohibits me from buying designer: a little (er, big) thing called fat.

That's right, I'm fat. And no, not the "fat" that the fashion industry defines (size 8), but the real kind, you know, the kind that means that yes, I have stepped foot in the oh-so-dreaded plus-size stores, and the kind that means it's a rare (but celebratory) occasion that I can squeeze my rather large ass into a generously cut XL at straight-sized stores. 

The dilemmas of fat fashion are innumerable, which brings us to the burning question that I'm sure is running through all of your minds this very second: is it possible to be both fat and fabulous? I'm not gonna lie, it is it a hell of a lot harder for us than the waifs whose biggest shopping concern is that the store may be out of their size (hello, try going into a store that doesn't carry your size in the first place). But, my fat friends, do not give up hope, for I know from first hand experience that while it may be difficult, it is not impossible. Learn to put in a little more effort in the right places, and you'll be surprised at how damn good your size 22 body will look when you see yourself in that dressing room mirror, honey.

This blog is dedicated to those girls like me; the ones who are so in love with an industry that is, well, so not in love with us. Rants, raves, reviews; it's all here, baby. We're young. We're fat. We're fabulous. (Which, by the way, will henceforth be shortened to YFF).

Oh, and just for the record, this is me, Gabi, your YFF blogger. Pleased to meetcha.