Over the past few years it has become a trend in mainstream magazine culture to do feature issues on different fashion “minorities”. Vogue Italia has given us the insanely popular “Black Issue” while Elle, Vogue and V magazines have done issues centered entirely around body shape.
This month the June issue of Vogue Italia launched to a frenzy of plus size excitement. It's cover featured three plus size beauties, Tara Lynn, Candice Huffine and Robyn Lawley in a rather sexy pose, showing that yes, curves are indeed quite beautiful.
The editorial is quite sultry and gorgeous. These women really do know how to model like the rest of em! Take a look at some photos and a behind the scenes video from the shoot (but be warned, there is some nudity) on the Vogue Italia website.
These issues are usually so wildly successful that I have to wonder, why are we only doing it once a year? If there is an obvious demand to see different colors and sizes in the glossy pages of these magazines, how do publishers continue to ignore it? How do we as readers show how much we want it in every issue of every magazine?!
When it comes down to it, this is an issue of normalizing beauty in every shade and size that it comes in. We can't win if all we do is relegate one month of the year to “other” beauties. Imagine seeing Tara Lynn in the same editorial as Crystal Renn and Lara Stone. Does clothing look all that different on any one of these women?
I'm not entirely sure how to change the way that beauty is portrayed in our media, but I suppose it's a start when popular magazines admit that plus size models are just as good as their straight size counterparts. But it's definitely not enough. Is there a way to change this from the ground up? Do we write letters? Buy massive amounts of issues when they do come out?
Who can I talk to to get some more curves in this place?!
Amalia Nicholson is a plus-size blogger, fashion enthusiast and advocate of beauty at every size. She currently resides in Minneapolis, Minnesota where runs her personal style blog, Double Vision.
Back at the beginning of the Obama campaign and shortly after becoming First Lady, Michelle Obama’s style was the talk of the fashion world. Some of the initial excitement has faded, but I thought it would be fun to take a look at what Michelle is wearing now, especially when it comes to fancy evening gowns.
Did you see this dress from the dinner with Queen Elizabeth? I LOVE this beautifully elegant and amazingly flattering white dress and long gloves.
In January 2011, Mrs. Obama wore a red Alexander McQueen gown to welcome Chinese President Hu Jintao to a White House State Dinner. While I tend to prefer sleeker lines, she does still look red hot.
And here she is in May 2010 at a State Dinner with the Calderons of Mexico in a stunning blue sparkly one-shoulder.
Let’s take a moment to look at the overall ugliness of some celebrity fashion choices. While I love seeing a classic or beautiful or modern look on the red carpet, sometimes it’s just fun to see something that flopped royally.
Here’s Chloe Sevigny in an oversized caftan-type gown that completely disguises all her curves and hangs on her like a blanket. On top of that, it’s pretty much see-through. So completely unsexy in so many ways.
Also, I have no idea what is going on with Charlotte Gainsbourg (left) in this picture. While that may be a baby bump, pairing it with some kind of romper dress (one of the most unflattering articles of clothing around) just makes it look like a disfiguring tumor.
And here’s Freida Pinto in what appears to be a metallic lamé robot dress. Her legs look great, but there is nothing else flattering about this.
Do you know what your clothes are made of? I don’t, not usually. Sometimes I check the tags or whatever, and I can recognize things like linen or spandex…but normally? I just assume everything’s a cotton-poly-rayon blend.
But there is value in learning exactly what fabrics feel like or look like, especially if you are buying things online. When the description says the fabric is “georgette”, do you know what that is? It’s some pretty valuable info!
And while you can see pictures of cut and shape and all that, do you know what terms like “duster” or “natural waist” refer to? Also valuable when you’re trying to find clothes online. If you know what the words in the description mean, you’re much more likely to have success in ordering.
There’s a handy glossary of all kinds of terms here. You should check it out, especially if you’ve ever wondered what “poplin” is or if you need a refresher on something like “voile.” I learned a ton just skimming through it!
If you love fashion blogs as much as I do, then you probably already know there are lots of other bloggers out there writing about plus size women's clothing and related trends. One of them is Amalia Nicholson, who cofounded the blog Double Vision and often writes for Silhouettes too. She has some great items that she recommends…
This roll sleeve dress is one of them. The faux wrap dress draws attention to your top half and looks flattering on most any figure. Amalia says, “I love the nautical vibe of this dress. Perfect for a sunny walk in the park or a day at the beach.”
She also highlights this splash print tank bathing suit. The mix and match of color and style on this one is fantastic. “There is something so perfectly 80s beach party about this swimsuit,” Amalia says. “I just totally love the color and pattern mixing”
And these stretch jeans are another colorful favorite. "You can never go wrong with a good stretchy jean with a close fit,” Amalia says. “I love these because there are so many colors to choose from.”
To see the rest of Amalia’s picks, go here.
Most weekends I’m tempted to stay in my pajamas or just throw on shorts and a t-shirt. But recently I decided to investigate some other weekend wear options, just to expand my horizons a bit. If I’m going out, even if it’s just to the grocery store, it feels good to look good.
Something like this string beaded tunic is a good weekend wear idea. Casual, but still put together, and you can throw it on with a simple pair of jeans or other close-fitting pants.
Another idea is these super comfortable linen drawstring pants. You get the benefit of comfy weekend clothes without having to wear sweatpants or pajama pants all day!
Don’t forget the shoes! Basic flipflops are all well and good, but there’s something to be said for embellishments like the ones on these flower thongs. Great for summer weekends!
The stars were out for this summer blockbuster premiere at the end of May.
January Jones was showing off her (small) baby bump in this blue and black Preen dress. JJ looks great in just about anything, but this dress seems kind of plain and boring. And the way the fabric ruches up in the front just looks awkward.
I love Rose Byrne’s black lace dress, but am less enthusiastic about the rather “meh” silver gown that Zoe Kravitz is rocking. It’s pretty, but somewhat shapeless.
So I think the ladies were 1-3 on their fashion choices. Your opinion?
Now that Memorial Day has come and gone, summer has begun! What are the key trends and looks that everyone’s talking about this year?
One, of course, is retro.
We’re not talking old-old school, just a dip back in time to the 70s punk glam look or the 60s feminine style. For the 70s look, think high-waisted pants by day and shimmery waterfall dresses by night. As for makeup, heavily smoky eyes by night (think Studio 54 glamour) and a clean, transparent look by day.
When most people think 1960s, they think hippie flower children, but there’s an early 60s trend that’s a great way to accentuate your fuller figure and feminine curves. The 1960s housewife is a look that’s showing up on fashion runways all around the world. Cinched waists, long full skirt—and in this picture some skin showing—because it’s 2011 after all.
And here’s a 1960s school girl look that’s fun. This is more of a fall/winter look, but you can see another long, full skirt:
Keep your eyes peeled for 60s and 70s looks showing up near you!
She’s not the celebrity you hear about every day… but Gwyneth has been everywhere from Glee episodes to blockbuster movies lately. Her style is elegant and eclectic, which makes it especially fun to take a look back at some of her style choices.
In 2008, GP rocked this orange ruffled dress…a bold choice. I’m not a fan of ruffles and pleats, but they look good on her. And I admire the choice to go with a bright non-traditional color, too. If you can wear orange, do it.
Next up: this fishtail dress that GP wore to the Oscars in 2007. This elegant red carpet style has echoes of mermaids and an almost indescribable color. Peach? Auburn? Beige? What would you call it?
And who could forget the pink dress that Gwyneth chose for the Oscar ceremony where she won a Best Actress Academy Award for Shakespeare in Love? As a somewhat girly girl, I love this pink full-skirted style that’s still classic, even 14 years later.
When it’s time to build your warm weather wardrobe, there are some essential pieces that work especially well. Namely, a summer dress, mix-and-match capris and a pair of good sandals.
For summer dresses, choose simple but versatile. The kind of pieces you can wear for an evening out or to a religious service or even to work (perhaps with a short-sleeved cardigan). One example is this beaded linen dress from Gillian Grey. This dress is an example of something that works in multiple situations, so it’s a good summer choice.
Capris like these soft wide-legged pair make an important summer staple. Because they’re cropped, they’re cooler than longer pants, while offering more coverage and slightly more formality than shorts. They’re great for a trip to the beach, grabbing ice cream down the street, or spending the weekend at home.
Sandals (which I’ve written about before) are the best shoes for summer wear. But which pair is the essential pair? Something like this crisscross pair is a great choice. You can wear them with just about anything—the low heel works with skirts, capris or pants—and a variety of colors make them easy to match.
What is a “must have” for your summer wardrobe?