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Win a JC Penney Gift Card!

In honor of JC Penney’s amazing intimate brand Ambrielle, I’m giving away 3 JC Penney gift cards! 

Click the link below to enter or enter through the rafflecopter widget at the top of my blog!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Swap With Me On Swapdom!

With the proliferation of selling websites (ebay, Threadfilp, Shop Hers and oh-so-many more), it’s hard to stand out from the pack. So, when I came across Swapdom, I have to say I was impressed. 

Instead of the typical, post an item, tell us your price, and then we take a cut (does that ever make anyone else feel like they’re working with a pimp?), Swapdom facilitates a clothing swap and you only pay for shipping. 

They literally do all the work for you, swapping items between multiple people so you can get exactly what you want! But of course, before you can get anything, you need to sign up and post what you’re willing to swap!

This is killer for me because I have SO. MUCH. STUFF. Great stuff, things I love, beautiful pieces that pain me to part with, but really should be owned by someone else, and I’m certainly always looking for other great items to make my own. (What can I say, I like stuff!)

So sign up, make a profile (here’s mine if you want to swap with me- cough, cough, Fendi sunglasses and Isabel Marant for H&M exclusives), and start listing things. When you find something you want, just make a request, and Swapdom does the rest to arrange the perfect swap.

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*This post was sponsored by Swapdom but all opinions are my own.

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You know what this means, right? No, you’re not dreaming, ELOQUII is back and better than ever! I will be at the exclusive blogger breakfast tomorrow, so tune in and check out photos of the clothes and event! 

If you can’t wait, check out all the shoppable styles at www.eloquii.com

You know what this means, right? No, you’re not dreaming, ELOQUII is back and better than ever! I will be at the exclusive blogger breakfast tomorrow, so tune in and check out photos of the clothes and event!

If you can’t wait, check out all the shoppable styles at www.eloquii.com

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Show #1: Ann Yee. Inspired by the grittiness of Detroit.

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The Plus-Size Problem We Just Haven’t Solved…Yet

(This article was originally written for, and appeared on, Refinery29. You can read the original here.)

plus-sizeWe’ve rattled off these stats before: The average American woman is a size 14. The plus-size consumer comprises 67% of the apparel-purchasing community. However, so many companies still refuse to expand their size range. In fact, they’re practically fighting against the opportunity.

From Abercrombie & Fitch CEO Mike Jeffries’ “anti-fat” stance to Lululemon’s unwillingness to offer larger sizes, it seems that the stigma behind plus-sized fashion is still alive and well. “I understand that the process of designing and creating a plus-size range is a huge and challenging undertaking, but I have no doubt that many designers and brands don’t expand simply because they don’t want fat people wearing their clothing,” said Gabi Gregg, InStyle contributor and blogger of GabiFresh. “Most designers who don’t make plus sizes feel similarly; [Jeffries] just happened to be stupid enough to say it out loud.”

In recent news about ModCloth’s size expansion among a decent percentage of its vendors, it turned out that not all the e-commerce site’s vendors were onboard. Samara Fetto, ModCloth’s plus-size category manager and scout, explained that some designers are “just not interested in addressing this customer segment,” and in addition, “[they] don’t have resources to execute plus-size fits (people, fit models, grade rules, size specifications, patterns, etc).”

However, Fetto went on to clarify that the market is still well aware of what they’re lacking. “I’d say that everyone recognized the lack of options for plus-size women and the potential growth that can come from addressing this underserved customer segment. This was even true of those people who weren’t interested.”

With an increased level of awareness, you would think designers would be chomping at the bit to reach into this virtually untapped market. But, that’s just not the case. Aimee Cheshire, founder and CEO of Madison Plus Select, explained to us that the mainstream brands are still holding onto the idea that it’s the “high margin, skinny customer” who drives the market. “Similar to when newspaper refused to go online because people like the ‘old way,’ so too will these brands disappear as the normal once again becomes healthy and ‘plus’ loses the stigma.”

However, while we slowly watch some brands adapt to the need for more plus options, there is one brand that’s revolutionizing the approach: ASOS Curve. The collection runs parallel to its straight-size collections, and maintains the same high quality of style throughout all the sizes offered. “The main ASOS collection is fashion forward and directional, so why make the plus range any different?” says ASOS’s Curve buyer Natasha Smith. “If a girl loves fashion and wants to shop at ASOS then she wants to be able to buy the same product as our ASOS main range.”

This all leaves us wondering: What’s the truth behind the general size-expansion refusal? Are straight-size designers more concerned about being associated with antiquated notions regarding body size and fashion, or are they hoping to avoid the effort with the belief that the segment will change and revert back to what it once was? “We shouldn’t try to convince those that don’t want our business to take it,” Cheshire pointedly states. “Let’s just give it to those that want it!” After all, with so many talented designers, such as Cult of California and One One Three, willing to respond to the demands of this majority, mainstream’s loss might just be their gain.

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NEW POST: Errand Runner

Errands. Love ‘em, hate ‘em, whatever, this ish has got to get done. And until I win the Powerball, I’m stuck doing my own errands. And when running around THE CITY in the summer it’s best to air on the fashionable comfort; flat shoes or sandals, breezy tops or dresses, loose cotton pants and chic sunglasses. So, do the fashion math, and it only made sense that I decided to wear my high-waist ASOS peg pants, Forever21 cropped tank top, Lane Bryant spiked sandals and Forever21 sunnies. (And of course, my almost ubiquitous neon MICHAEL Michael Kors crossbody.)

So, off I went into the great blue yonder  to NYC, for a few fashion-ish errands. After a veggie lunch at Qi, we trotted off the the Paper Super Duper Market for an Imperial Woodpecker Sno-ball (birthday cake, ugh, yum!) and to check out the general scene.

Then we jetted subwayed/cabbed our way to the Javits Center to stop by Intermezzo & ENK (thanks for the invite Seventh House PR). We wandered around from stall to stall, gawking at the dazzling dresses, stunning shoes, brilliant baubles and so much more.

Top: Forever21 (Size L)

Pants: ASOS (Size 14)

Bag: MICHAEL Michael Kors

Sandals: Lane Bryant

Sunglasses: Forever21

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The Plus Size Woman’s Ultimate Style Guide

(This article was originally written by me, and appeared on Refinery29. You can read the original here.)

We know how tough shopping can be when you’re plus-size. Some stores think that just because you’re bigger, you’re shaped like a box and want to spend your life frumping around in a big black sack. Thankfully, more and more companies are wising up, so — good news — there’s been an increase of plus-size-specific stores (both brick & mortar and online) and an expansion of sizes within existing brands (like GAP, ModCloth, etc.).

But now that there are even more options for full figure fashion than ever before, plus-size women are finding themselves with a new challenge: how to wear those styles that they never even had the option of before! But before you get flustered, take a moment and heed our body-positive style advice. Soon enough, you might even find yourself in a crop top!

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Make A Point To Show Off Your Best Assets
Everyone has a part of their body they like to show off. If you worship your waist, bring in the focus by cinching your middle with a beautiful belt. If you love your legs, show them off with patterned or colorful shorts and skirts. Adore your arms? Stick with sleeveless shirts that let them take focus.

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Head Online To Expand Your Range

While many “straight-size” brands keep their stock below a size 14 in stores, their size range can be more expansive online. Gap offers up to a size 20, Old Navy goes up to size 30, and department stores like Saks, Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom, and Macy’s offer up to a size 24W online. Also, U.K.-based stores like ASOS Curve, Evans, and Dorothy Perkins offer shipping perks if you spend above a certain amount of money, so you don’t have to deal with pesky international charges.

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Build Your Foundation The Smart Way
If you want to let it all hang out, that’s your prerogative, but if you’re looking for a smooth silhouette, you should invest in the right shapewear. From high-waist thigh trimmers to stomach-slimming tank tops, there’s a plethora of plus-size shapewear styles available both online and in store.

Additionally, more than 80% of women are wearing the wrong bra size, and the more of a fuller figure or fuller bust you have, the more obvious it is when you’re stuffed in the wrong size. Take a trip to a specialty bra store or to the lingerie department of a major department store and get a proper bra fitting. Can’t make it into a store? Websites like Bare Necessities can help fit you over the phone (and their bras go up to a 56 band & N cup)!

We also have to talk about Chub Rub. It isn’t fun; it can ruin summer outfits, and if your thighs touch — regardless of your size — you’ve had to deal with this problem especially in hot weather. Whether you’d prefer to slip on some lightweight SPANX, pull on an anti-chafing thigh band, or use an anti-chafe gel, there’s no reason you have to suffer.

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Doesn’t Fit Quite Right? Tailor It So It Does
So, you find a hot dress that fits your hips but is too baggy in the waist…get thee to a tailor, ASAP! It’s challenging to find a perfect fit, but a tailor can make an off-the-rack item look custom-made for your curves (which is also a great tip to making a dirt-cheap item look expensive).

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Don’t Be Scurred, It’s Only Patterns!
With more trendy styles in stores than ever before, there is no excuse to hide your curves in another black wrap dress. Embrace colors and patterns — yes, you can wear stripes (in any direction), polka dots, floral and more! Loud prints can bring emphasis to the area you wear them, so pay attention to where you’re wearing your prints. If you’ve got a great ass, there’s nothing sexier than a high-waisted printed pencil skirt. If you want to direct attention to your décolletage, try out a printed blouse or tank.

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Find Inspiration From Other Plus-Size Pros
The internet is filled with amazing plus-size bloggers (ahem, like yours truly) who not only have amazing personal style but are more likely to resemble your body type than the average plus-size model. Whether you’re a size 14 or a size 30, apple-shaped or hourglass, ultra-girly or super-edgy, there’s a style blog that can speak to you! Find a blog that speaks to you and mine them for visual inspiration (don’t forget to check out the comments suggestions for even more info!).

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Dare To Wear…Everything!
Forget all those antiquated rules that say only specific body types can wear certain types of clothing; from crop tops and jumpsuits to bikinis and body-con dresses, plus-size women can pull off any trend! It’s all about finding the right size, cut and style that fits and flatters your curves. Again, plus-size bloggers can help you with specific styling dilemmas, but there’s really nothing like just trying things on. In order to rock the ish out of a certain trend, you need to give yourself the opportunity to try it out first.

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Have you ever wanted to shop my wardrobe? Well, now’s your chance!
Next Wednesday, July 10th, the ‎#NYCurvyCloset sale is going down! 
Come sip on some cocktails, check out the A/W Simply Be USA collection, get in on some awesome giveaways, and shop the closets of some fashionable ladies, including myself! 
Be sure to register for this FREE event at  http://nycurvycloset.eventbrite.com/

Have you ever wanted to shop my wardrobe? Well, now’s your chance!

Next Wednesday, July 10th, the ‎#NYCurvyCloset sale is going down!

Come sip on some cocktails, check out the A/W Simply Be USA collection, get in on some awesome giveaways, and shop the closets of some fashionable ladies, including myself!

Be sure to register for this FREE event at  http://nycurvycloset.eventbrite.com/

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Do you want stylish, edgy, cool plus-size clothes? Of course you do! Then, please, chip in and help save the amazing line CULT of California! Her investors have unwisely backed out, so it’s up to us, the plus-size consumers, to help save this line from going the way of so many other fabulous full-figure collections. Any amount helps, so please donate! http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/wildestwilder/cult-of-california-swim-launch-and-party

Do you want stylish, edgy, cool plus-size clothes? Of course you do! Then, please, chip in and help save the amazing line CULT of California! Her investors have unwisely backed out, so it’s up to us, the plus-size consumers, to help save this line from going the way of so many other fabulous full-figure collections. Any amount helps, so please donate! http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/wildestwilder/cult-of-california-swim-launch-and-party

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(We interrupt your normal plus-size style coverage to bring you a short insight into New York Fashion Week, fall 2013).

I was fortunate enough to cover New York Fashion Week this season for the amazing, fashion-forward website, I Like What You’re Wearing. After attending countless shows and parties, I put together a detailed list of the runway trends that are bound to make their way into your wardrobe come fall!

You can see the original, as well as other articles, here.

This article originally ran in I Like What You’re Wearing Magazine, Issue 4.

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P.S. It's Fashion

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