Merry Christmas and Thank You

Hasn't 2016 been a wild ride?!? 
But we've done it, we're here with just eight days left to go and fun and games with Father Christmas to look forward to. 
My plans for the next week are to do the following:
Be massively merry.
Fatale Dress - Revival Retro 
I hope that your plans are similar and that you all have a beautifully restful, safe and happy festive period readers and I'd like to take this opportunity to wish those of you who celebrate it a very, very 
 I would also like to say a huge
 for your love, support and general ace-ness in 2016 - It means the world to me and I think you are all marvelous!

I would also just like to take a moment here to acknowledge that this time of year can be incredibly difficult for so many of us. Below is a list of organisations and helplines compiled by Lovely Kellie from Big Fashionista and displayed so beautifully by Lottie L'Amour. Please keep a copy of this to hand and don't hesitate to reach out if you need support this festive season. 
Please know that you are loved, you are important and You Are Not Alone

I'll be back with you all in 2017, if not sooner!

IT'S CHRISTMAS with Joanie clothing

I've been desperate to share this Joanie Clothing dress with you all but a bit like with Christmas decorations, I didn't want to share it too soon and for it to lose any sparkle!
Odette Cocktail Dress - Joanie Clothing
Shoes - New Look (Old) 
As you may know, I was extremely lucky earlier this year in that I modeled some of the Christmas range for Joanie, meaning that I not only got a sneak peak but also got to wear it.  Which is where I fell for the Odette...

The epitome of 1950s cocktail dress fom the scalloped neckline to the full skirt, this dress is an item which I am genuinely excited to have in my wardrobe. Just look at that print (CAN YOU TELL I'M IN LOVE?)
Bag - Vintage Gift 
There is also an utterly stunning cocktail skirt in the Cocktail print (The Noelle) which I am the proud owner of and have already worn on three separate occasions - It really is gorgeous. With both the dress and the skirt, the volume comes from the cut - This means that there is no need for an underskirt to achieve the beautiful 50's silhouette which brings me such joy. 

As with most of the fitted items from Joanie, I have sized up half a size with the Odette meaning that this dress is an 18. There is plenty of room around the bust and hips and it sits beautifully close around the waist.

I honestly could not ask for a more beautiful dress for the festive season, it is total perfection. For me, Joanie Clothing have been instrumental in brightening up what has otherwise been a pretty grim year and I'm hugely enjoying seeing them go from strength to strength. If you like brands who care about style, elegance and most importantly their customers; Joanie clothing are the guys for you.
Em x
* Denotes items gifted for review - All views are my own.

Alternative Glamour with Elvi

I was going to save this Elvi post until after New Year but it ended up looking so effortlessly glam I just needed to get it out there before we all start the January pyjama party. 

High Neck Jumper* - Elvi
Leather look skirt* - Elvi
Earrings - Topshop (Similar)
Shoes - New Look (Similar)
Elvi's 2017 Transitional collection is utterly stunning, with a plethora of textures, prints and tones but my favourite piece by far is this leather look hi-low skirt. Isn't it utterly banging? It's just such a versatile piece - I love how it's styled here but I also can't wait to wear it with strappy sandals and a silk shirt. 

I knew that the elastic waistband of the skirt would work on me after falling in love with the checked Tulip Skirt I reviewed earlier in the year. This particular skirt doesn't zip up the back but the elastic is sufficiently stretchy that its goes up over my hips easily and springs back into shape around my waist. The front sits just below my knees and the back just above the ankle - It's utterly perfect.

The jumper I have styled it with here is also from Elvi and IS SO FLUFFY I COULD DIE. It is just the most delightful thing to have against your body, albeit VERY warm. The neckline is also delightful, the height with the raglan sleeves means that it sits really nicely across my shoulders and gives the perfect base for some glam earrings. I've tucked it into the skirt here so it's hard to see in the pictures but the jumper is cropped length which works perfectly with a higher waistband. Both items here are a 16 and completely true to size.

 The whole look is ideal for a mulled wine with the family which, funnily enough, is something I'm just about to do!  My next post is actually going to be a bit/very festive and I CANNOT WAIT FOR YOU TO SEE IT.
Em x
* Denotes items gifted for review - All views are my own.

'Tis the season to be sultry with Live Unlimited

One of the things I struggle with in Winter is dressing for the weather when I'm going to be in and out of bars (Literally the whole of my Winter). Jumpers are too sweaty and shrugs are too...well..they're shrugs aren't they. That's why I was over the moon when Live Unlimited sent me this gorgeous plus size lace jacket.
Lace Jacket* - Live Unlimited
Jumpsuit - Yours Clothing (Similar)
Shoes - New Look (Similar)
Choker - ASOS
All of Live Unlimited's AW16 collection is dark, sultry and extremely elegant but this jacket is very much a standout piece for me. The quality is amazing, the lace is so delicate, running down into a scalloped edge at the bottom which would look incredible over a contrasting colour. The length is spot on and the herringbone detailing gives it a bit of an edge. This jacket is the perfect mix between delicate and rock-y and I'm really looking forward to finding other ways to style it.

It's rare that I wear an item which I like equally fastened up as I do open but the top fastening on this jacket is really sweet and gives you a little bit more coverage should you need or want it. I've styled it here with a simple black jumpsuit and a wide choker (I've gotten into chokers now that they're going back out of fashion, I'm so bloody contrary)

I'm wearing a 16 here and I would say that it is absolutely perfect to size - I wouldn't be able to wear anything too chunky under it but then I'm not sure that I'd ever want to. For me, simplicity is key with a statement item like this. If you're looking for a timeless, piece for the party season, I wholeheartedly recommend perusing the Live Unlimited website - There are sequins and beads a-plenty. 

As you can see, I've been able to take advantage of some good lighting so I have a few posts for you this week, including a festive frock which gave me the opportunity to legitimately drink whilst I posed - WINNER.
Em x
* Denotes items gifted for review - All views are my own

I'm a Ssssnake - The Elvi Shirt Dress

Look, I'm wearing clothes again. Well done me.
Now you all know I like Elvi, their clothes are consistently stylish, well made and fit me like a dream - This shirt dress is no different.
Printed Dip Hem Shirt Dress* - Elvi
Leggings - H&M
Over the knee boots - Primark
Gold Tassel Earrings - H&M (Similar)
Bag - Vintage
Shirt Dresses are just so flipping easy to wear, I've worn this one with and without the belt, over jeans and leggings. I love how this sheer one it looks with gold accessories and my much loved OTK boots. The side splits are extremely high so I don't think that I would wear it with tights but I know plenty of women who would brave it and look incredible. I'm currently considering some leather look leggings (WHAT IS HAPPENING TO ME) that this dress would look BANGING with.

In terms of sizing, I could have definitely gone for true to size here but usually size up with anything shirt related due to my broad back, so this is an 18 and it is lovely and loose, hence me cinching it up over the belt. The Dip hem means that it is on the knee for me at the front the calf length at the back when not cinched - Ideal for you taller ladies.

I've got another lovely Elvi dress with a very 70s vibe to show you soon - Watch this space! 
Em x
* Denotes items gifted for review - All views are my own

A different kind of Black Friday with Brastop...

This Black Friday I've managed to spend a lot of money. Like a REAL lot of money, every single penny of which has been on other people... With this in mind, I'm very lucky that the lovely team from Brastop sent me this beautiful Pour Moi fuller bust lingerie set in order to enjoy a prettier and less expensive kind of Black Friday.
Pour Moi Longline Bra - Brastop
Pour Moi Brief - Brastop 
The longline shape and, sating fabric and mesh detailing of this plunge bra gives it a beautiful retro look - This is not a cleavage-inducing bra, it's a slink-around-the-house -feeling-very-glamorous bra. The briefs only add to this feel with a satin panel to the front and mesh throughout. I love how this set feels, the cut of both the bra and briefs is ideal for someone who carries their chub around the middle.

The fit is perfectly true to size - I'm wearing a 36F and 18 here - Although the mesh gathers slightly on the smaller cup, it is minimal and the edging ensures that overall it sits flush to my chest. I think that fact that you're seeing me wearing it in a full length picture where I'm not hiding behind anything demonstrates just how fab I feel in this set.

Brastop have a plethora of Black Friday deals this weekend - Including 25% off the set above, so if you're a D-K cup head on over for a good old fashioned bargain.
Em x
* Denotes items gifted for review - All views are my own

Taking Floral into Autumn with Lovedrobe

I've heard of people who pack away their Summer wardrobe. Like they actually put everything they wear in the warmer months into suitcases and then get them out again the next year. 
1.   Who is this organised?
2.   How do they have this much time?
3.   Why would you do this?
Shift dress* - Lovedrobe
Block Heel Ankle Boots* - Simply Be
Aviator Jacket - River Island (Similar)
Most of my wardrobe is incredibly versatile in that I wear it all year round; Sometimes I put a roll neck under an item, sometimes I swap a skirt for a pair of skinny jeans. More often than not, I bang on a pair of tights, ankle boots and a big old coat to keep out the cold, just as I have with this Plus Size Shift dress from Lovedrobe.

This dress is already pretty seasonal in that it is knee length, fully lined and has a beautiful embroidery to the front and sleeves. I'm an eternal fan of navy blue but this particular dress is also available in maroon (As seen here on gorgeous Lucy) Size-wise, I opted to size up twice due to the generally small fit of Lovedrobe, actually an 18 would have been fine but I like the looser fit of it, particularly around the sleeves.

I've been pairing the dress with my River Island aviator jacket which I invested in after getting hold of a 25% discount in October and I LOVE IT. It's so warm and the over-sizing of it means that it sits in exactly the right place and isn't at all boxy. Plus I get to look like Del Boy - What more could one want from life? I've looked online and can't see it in stock other than in black but have definitely seen it still in store so if you're interested it may be worth having a look about.

I've also been wearing these Simply Be Ankle Boots* non-stop recently, they go with absolutely everything. If you fancy reading a bit more about them I've written the first of two Autumn guest posts for them over on the Simply Be blog - Why not have a read.
Em x
*Denotes items gifted for review - All views are my own FACT.

A Retro Autumn with Yours Clothing

You all know I love a good year round retro look and this Autumnal outfit of bell sleeved mini dress and over the knee boots is currently rocking my world.
Khaki Swing Dress* - Yours Clothing
Dogtooth Blanket Scarf* - Yours Clothing
Over the knee boots - Primark 
The ladder detailing at the front of this Yours Clothing Swing Dress give it the feel of a dress much more expensive than its £26. It may be mini but as long as I don't stand in any wind tunnels my dignity will remain in tact. I'm wearing an 18 here but could have probably sized down to a 16, I just wasn't sure about that waistline -Turns out it's less skater cut and more swing which makes it nice and loose. The sleeves are also very true to size SO I'd recommend that if you're into this frock, go for your own size or the lower if you're between.  Coupled with an extremely versatile (and delightfully big!) monochrome Dogtooth scarf I'm feeling very mod chick.

So I did it, I bought some over the knee boots. You may have noticed from this here blog that you read, I have long legs, looooooooong legs. I also have a pair of legs which are smack bang in the middle of regular and wide. This means that OTKs have always been well off my radar despite loving them deep down in my heart. Enter Primark with this utterly bloody perfect pair of size 8, block heel, pull up pair of dream boots. They fit me perfectly both in length and width, are comfortable and were only £20: WINNER!

I love, love, LOVE this look.The 60s aesthetic is everything to me and Autumn is the perfect time to showcase it. It's likely that I'll put a pair of tights on with this from this day forward because BOY IS IT COLD but with a long woolen coat and my bobble hat I can see this being a key outfit for 2016.

I'd just like to thank my wonderful sister Tomato for taking these pictures - She's got MAD skillz.
Em x
*Denotes items gifted for review - All views are my own FACT.

Gothic Glamour with Missguided

Unlike most people, I'm not that big on Halloween, I feel like it's become a big deal out of nowhere and I can't keep up with the pressure to be a sexy cat/zombie/squirrel/piece of cutlery. That said, I do quite like a good old fashioned gothic look so this weekend that's what I've done. Right here.
Tassel Earrings - H&M (Similar
Black Pointed shoes - New Look (Similar)
THIS DRESS IS SO SEXY. The length is perfect, the neckline is low but still allows you to wear a good bra and a choker neckline always looks quite saucy in my eyes. I've styled it here with simple black court shoes here and YET ANOTHER pair of tasseled earrings from H&M. These ones are my snazzy going out tassels due to them being diamant√©. Obviously. 

I'm wearing a 16, which I feel would easily fit up to a 20. It is available online up to a 24 so if you're anything up to a size 28 I would definitely give it a go. I'm also not wearing any shapewear with the dress - I'm not entirely sure I'm comfortable with it but that's my issue, not yours. I think I just like to feel tightly packed. Like a tube of Pringles. Mmmmm Pringles. I also like how my shape wear slip handles any issues around transparency - Not that this is an issue with this particular dress as the jersey is lovely and thick despite its stretchiness.

It's also the perfect time of year for donning a darker lipstick - This particular one is by Dior and unfortunately, isn't available any more. However I can totally recommend #107 from the Rimmel Kate Moss collection - Not only does it look great but it smells lovely too.

This is the first thing I've ever bought from Missguided but at £25 for something that I know I'll get tonnes of wear out of, I'll definitely be going back for more. 
Em x

A walk on the wild side with Elvi

With their classic, easy to wear plus size capsule ranges, Elvi have been a key contributor to my wardrobe in 2016. Today brings the turn of their luscious Animal Print Dress*.
Animal Print High Neck Dress* - Elvi
Jersey Leggings - H&M
Ankle Boots - Primark
Patchwork Clutch Bag - Simply Be
 I'll be entirely honest, I cant work out what animal this is a print of - The closest I can get is a sort of leopard/snake hybrid (Can you imagine?!? TERRIFYING) with its green and grey highlights. The dress itself is a lovely light silky poly blend which, along with its simple shift cut, makes it an utter delight to wear. I'm well into a high neck at the moment (I can keep my chins warm in them) and I like how this one gives a gentle nod to the 1960s.

I'm wearing an 18 here and I would say it is very true to size in all elements except length. It's much more like a tunic on me but that's just fine because over a pair of jeans or, in this case, leggings, it is such an easy item to wear. I wore it for tea with my husband and he did an awful lot of stroking of the silky fabric so I wouldn't recommend it if you don't want to be gently manhandled.

I've seen a bit of what Elvi have to offer going into the festive period and all I can say is: If you like sequins, gird your loins!
Em x
* Denotes gifted items - All views are absolutely 100% my own as I'm not imaginative enough to make things up...

Finding the perfect fit with the Wide Calf Boot Store

With Autumn comes leaves, with leaves come wet toes and wet toes need the protection some good footwear. More specifically, if, like me, you have incredibly strong legs due to all of the shapes you throw around the kitchen, a pair of wide-fit knee boots. That's where the Wide Calf Boot Store come in.
"Alliance" Wide Calf Knee Boots* - Wide Calf Boot Store
Denim Skirt - ASOS (Similar)
80s Mono Cowl Long Sleeve Top - Topshop
Finding the right fit on the site is SO FLIPPING EASY. At the top of each page is a "Calf Size Calculator" which asks for a few basic details and then presents you with a range of gorgeous boots which will fit you like the proverbial glove. I often find that I don't fit into standard width boots but high street wide calf boots are baggy on me. This bespoke fit means that you have the option of boots which will fasten on the calf perfectly without any gape - Such a rarity. 

My measurements brought me out at a 9 M/L which gave me the choice of around 30 different boots in varying colours and styles. After much internal debate, I finally went for the JJ Footwear Alliance boots in black* because everyone needs a good pair of black boots innit.

The Alliance boots are a perfect fit and have elasticated panel so there's no restriction with movement. They are also the holy grail of new boots in that they have non-slip soles - No more sliding around for the first month or scoring crosses into the bottom in order to maintain your "Staying Alive" status when walking through shopping centres. They also have removable insoles which is fab if you like to use your own. Finally, the pairing of genuine Italian leather and suede gives them a really (dare I say it) grown up look and assures me that I'm not going to destroy these boots in ten minutes flat.

I've worn these boots a number of times already and can honestly tell you that the perfect fit makes a huge difference - There has been no rubbing, no aching calves and most importantly; I have not trapped my skin in anything at any point. I have nothing but gratitude for the Wide Calf Boot Store.

I'm going to leave you with an "Action" picture. This is where my talented photographer has caught me moving in a totally natural, not at all staged manner. I think we're going to stick to the leaning against a wall photos...
 Em x
* Denotes items gifted for review. All opinions and words are entirely my own 

Christina Forever - The Joanie Clothing Hendricks Pencil Dress

Every now and then you find a dress that puts a huge smile on your face and a little wiggle in your tummy. This is that dress.
Hendricks Pencil Dress* - Joanie Clothing
Shoes - Faith (Similar)
Lipstick - Mac "Lady Danger"
Earlier this year, a new brand called Joanie Clothing contacted me wondering if I'd be interested in linking up for some model type stuff prior to their launch. On perusing their Instagram, I immediately fell for their nostalgic aesthetic, plus the fact that most of their items range between sizes 8-22, which is rare and pleasing for a new brand, so OF COURSE I said yes. 

Well Joanie have finally launched and in celebration have sent me the utterly glorious Hendricks Pencil Dress* to show off. Avid readers of the blog(Hi Mum) will know that I adore Christina Hendricks, so I think we all know how I feel about this look.

Firstly, this dress is the perfect green; bright, eye catching but still classy. It fits me like a second skin and sits at the perfect midi length (I'm 6ft if you didn't already know!) The jacquard texture of the Hendricks gives it a bit of added pizzazz and adds to the early 60s feel of the dress. In terms of actually getting the dress on, there's a zip at the back and a tie at the neck but saying this, I have had no issue pulling the dress on over my head thanks to the stretch fabric. 

I'm wearing an 18 here and as you can see, it fits like a glove. I think this could be a winning item if you are large busted as the stretch really is excellent. A word of advice though if you are a plus size lady: Size up, particularly if you are on the cusp.

I feel fierce, strong and utterly beautiful in this dress. Like genuinely beautiful, invincibly so. I can't help but think that it was made for me, I can just imagine slinking up to a fancy hotel bar for an elegant glass of wine and maybe some posh crisps. It's actually more likely that I'm going to wear it down the pub but one can dream.

A piece of excelleng news here - The Hendricks dress is £35. That is it. There's also 10% off your first Joanie order when you sign up to their mailing list so you could have this dress on your body for £31.50. It's unfathomably good. 

Finally, if you slide on over to the Joanie website, you may see a face you recognise (IT'S ME) in amongst the beautiful clothes. No need to thank me for the recommendation - Just make sure you tag me in any pictures!
 Em x
* Denotes items gifted for review. All opinions and words are entirely my own 

A Plus Size Wedding Guest

I'm sorry that this post isn't a little more timely but sadly I somehow put the pictures in a folder on my phone I couldn't see. Don't ask. Anyway, these are a couple of outfits I've worn to weddings this year and they seemed too lovely not to share.
Floral Bardot Midi Dress - ASOS
Sandals - Primark (Old)
Tassel Earrings - H&M
The first wedding I went to was a glorious outdoor affair in North Yorkshire.
This dress is a lovely light pleated organza which gave me a stunning silhouette. The length of the organza layer is the perfect midi on me at mid-calf rather than knee length. Saying this, the underskirt is short, and I mean SHORT. This didn't bother me though, I just wore a giant pair of pants underneath so at least if the wind got up I'd have been know as the girl with the massive pants rather than the girl who got arrested for gross indecency. I'm wearing an 18 here and could have done with a 16 really, although it was pork pie for starters so the additional room came in handy...
Bardot Jacquard Midi Dress - Coast at Simply Be (No longer available)
Shoes and earrings as above

I was originally going to wear the same dress to both weddings but:
1.  It was a bit breezy and I didn't want to flash my knickers.
2.  Any excuse.
3.  Content

 I actually got this Coast Midi dress last year but hadn't had the opportunity to wear it until this year. The 3/4 length thick jersey sleeves and longer length made it ideal for a breezy yet beautiful traditional wedding day with a church ceremony. The waist of the dress sits perfectly on me and FOR CRYING OUT LOUD: POCKETS. It was the occasionwear equivalent of pyjamas in the comfort stakes. This particular dress is no longer available, but Simply Be still have a selection of other Coast items, including this jacquard skirt which is very similar to the lower half of the dress.

I wore both dresses with the most basic sandals, earrings and makeup. My new heated rollers made my hair much easier to handle and therefore not mess with all day. "Keep it simple stupid" was very much my mantra here. I've always struggled with the mid-ground between well dressed and over dressed when it's come to weddings but I could not have been happier with both of these looks. Over the years my concern has always been looking like a very tall Christmas tree in the wedding pictures and finding the right outfit for me has certainly made me rethink my desire to "fit in"; I don't need to be wearing satin and a fascinator to feel good.

On the subject of occasionwear, I've just bought a dress that's knocked my socks off, can't wait to share...

Em x