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Curvy Canadian

Curvy Canadian: January 2012

Monday, January 30, 2012

My New E-Store (!) and an Outfit of the Day: Love in Black and Grey

Hey Guys!

It's been a long time between posts. I'm really sorry, but things have been very hectic lately. I was also working on getting my new e-store up and running. I've called it "Your BIG Sister's Closet" and I hope you guys will visit regularly because I'm always adding new items! I am also thinking of doing some consignment sales with ladies in the Toronto area, so if you're nearby and you have some fashionable clothes to consign, let me know and we'll see if we can work something out. There's some lovely stuff up on the site, and I've already made a few sales! It's very exciting!
So without further ado, here is my outfit of the day... I just wore this for a casual day walking around in Toronto, which I love doing. I am loving high, messy buns right now (if you can't tell already). It's kind of casual, but with a little twist added by the height (not to mention it makes you look a bit taller (which I totally need at only 5'4"). I wanted something comfy, but also cool-looking, so this is what I went with. What do you guys think? I really like the pleated skirt, which I found in a thrift store.

Coat and Skirt- Thrifted/Love Cropped Top - Dots/Boots - Courtesy of Torrid/Jewellery - Forever 21/Handbag - Gift (esprit brand)

Make sure you take a look at my new e-store, Your BIG Sister's Closet, when you get a chance! There are actually a couple of vintage plus size coats on sale that are like the one I have on in this picture...

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Monday, January 23, 2012

Toni + Spring Media Preview

Hey Guys,

About a week ago, I was invited to attend a Spring preview event for Canadian plus size retailer Toni +. With locations in Toronto, Calgary, and Edmonton, Toni + caters to the plus size woman looking for more high-end, designer items, and with labels such as Not Your Daughter's Jeans, David Meister, Donna Ricco, Lafayette 148 New York, Lauren Ralph Lauren, Marina Rinaldi, SULU and Yoek, they are doing a great job. I got to meet with Toni Tiraborelli, the owner and founder of Toni +, as well as Albert La Penna, Toni's right hand man and the company's VP.

The event was held in the morning at the Toni + store located in The Bay Queen Street on the fourth floor, and I was the first to arrive, so I got extra time with Toni to chat about all of the Spring fashions coming in and just to talk shop in general. I suggested the she start carrying the Greek brand MAT Fashion, which I totally love. She said she was going on a buying trip very soon and she would look into it, and I really hope it happens because I love MAT Fashion! We also talked a bit about her beginning to carry more youthful items in her stores, and how the younger generation is now emerging and growing in the workforce, and need high-quality and fashionable career and business casual wear. Her new in-house brand, Toni T, is meant to serve as a sort of cornerstone to this initiative.

We were treated to a lovely breakfast complete with pastries, fruit, and coffee, and got to see much of the Spring collection modelled. I also got to meet some fantastic people from all sorts of other Toronto media outlets. It was a great event, and I was very pleased to meet the faces behind the Toni + brand.

The models show us the first outfits.
Toni, Centre, chats with Melissa (left) and Karyn (right) from Killer Kurves, about plus size fashion
Lynn Spence from Cityline Toronto chats with and photographs one of the models in preparation for her segment on plus size style on Friday. Make sure you tune in!
And a couple of pictures of what I had on... Shirt - Evans via The Bay Square One, Skirt -, Tights and Bracelets - Forever 21+, Boots - Dots, Purse - Dots, Neckace - Laura, Earrings - Vintage Alfred Sung.

Also, make sure you check out CityLine this Friday, January 27th, and  you can watch a vido of Toni + being featured on Breakfast Television here.

Happy Shopping Ladies!

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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Outfit of the Day: Coffee and Errands

Hey Guys,
I wore this outfit on Saturday to get some coffee with Peter and run some errands. We also got to check out the Junction area of Toronto, and I found a couple of really cool stores down there.

With all the heels I wear, I was super suprised that these combat boots, which I assumed would be more comfortable, actually ended up giving me blisters on my heels. Ouch. I'll stick with my comfy heels, I guess!

I wanted to create a look that was very feminine, but with a bit of a rough edge, which is why I wore the boots with the floral print and the pouffy skirt. I wpre sheer hose from Secret, which I actually got in a swag bag at an event I attended. When I first got them, I wasn't that excited because I thought that they would have runs in them before I even got out the door, but this is about my fourth time wearing them, and they are as durable (if not more so) than totally opaque tights, which is so suprising to me. My experience with sheers has been that they run really easily, but these are great. I also got a pair with tiny polka dots and a pair of fishnets, which I haven't tried yet. I actually really like how this outfit turned out, and in one of the photos, you can see how windy it is, which made the picture look pretty cool.

If you guys aren't following/liking me on your social networks yet, I would love for you to join me there! I sometimes post sneak peek pictures of my outfits in advance of posting them on here, and I always tweet on location from fun fashion events that I am at. I would love to interact with you. Each of these links will open in a new tab, so you don't have to leave in order to add me.

Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr | Flickr | Lookbook | Bloglovin | Google Friend Connect

But now to the good stuff: the outfit! What do you ladies think?

Top and Bracelets- Forever 21+/Skirt and Petticoat - c/o Sofistafunk/Boots - Famous Footwear/Purse - Vintage/Pantyhose - c/o Secret

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Monday, January 9, 2012

Outfit of the Day: The Start of Winter Term

Hey Guys,
So last Wednesday, the Winter term started and I got a whole new group of students and a different course to teach. I kind of miss my last term's class, but I know that I'll probably feel the same thing about this group at the beginning of next semester too. I always like to dress well when I'm teaching because it helps the students (whom I'm not much older than) see me as an authoritative person, it helps some of the girls who enjoy fashion to relate to me, and, well, it gives me something to post here for you! I don't know why, but I am really in love with all shades of green suddenly...!

Dress - Winners (Straight Size XL, but stretchy)/Leggings - F21+/Boots - Dots/Purse - Ardene/Necklace - Joe Fresh

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Friday, January 6, 2012

Product Review - Eshakti!

Hey Guys!

So I was recently contacted by eShakti to see if I would like to do a review of one of their products of my choosing. Since I had a couple of eShakti dresses on my wishlist already, I excitedly agreed! If you are not yet familiar with eShakti, you are in for a real treat. They offer sizes 0-26W (so for any of you who are not plus size out there and reading this, yes, you can buy from them too!), and you can also simply send them your measurements so that they can custom size ANY PIECE from their collection for you. They do this for a $7.50 charge normally, but for your first custom sizing order, they waive the fee. The prices are reasonable and the selection is wonderful. You can also customize the length (if you are particularly tall or short - or particularly conservative or racy), or the neckline to your preference. For instance, if you see a dress that has a sweetheart neckline, but would prefer a v-neck, no problem - just ask. Sleeves are the same. You can choose whether you like sleeveless, cap sleeves, spaghetti straps, 3/4 length - whatever! The ability to customize gives you an amazing amount of choice in terms of how your finished product turns out. This is a very unique and rare concept boutique that is giving its customers the ability to find a piece that suits and fits them perfectly. I highly recommend them. Apparently, Shakti means power in Sanskrit. eShakti therefore means the power of the Net. Eshakti's philosophy is that the internet empowers customers and helps companies be customer-centered - and by allowing you to specify exactly what you want, they are empowering plus size (and straight size) consumers to get just what it is they're looking for.

You might remember this dress from my A/W 2011 wishlist... I absolutely adore it! I wore it to my sister-in-law's birthday part at West 50 in Mississauga. I felt like a million bucks all night. And this dress is on sale for only $29.95 right now! That's a steal.

Dress - c/o eShakti/Tights - c/o Secret/Shoes - Rainbow/Jewellery - Forever 21/Belt - Redress NYC

I totally love this dress and can't wait to wear it again! I might even pop a cropped blazer on over it and wear it to work. It's so chic, and the peplum waist-line is really in right now. ´╗┐There are a bunch of other dresses I want from eShakti too now! It was really great to just send my measurements in and not worry about receiving something that may or may not fit. I know a lot of people I talk to (especially straight size women) are wary of shopping online because they're not sure if they'll like the fit of the garment once it arrives (plus size women are decidely less picky about this, because if limited to brick and mortar stores, we'd have SO little to wear!). With eShakti you don't have to worry about fit at all, because it's made for you. I would definitely say that if you are concerned about internet shopping and fit, eShakti is a good store to start with - this way, your anxieties about proper fit don't have to be a consideration for your first purchase. I am so pleased with my dress and its fit. Usually I find that dresses that are fitted throughout tend to be really tight around my hips (my widest part), causing the dress to bunch and bind all night, meaning I'm always fidgeting with it. With this dress, I was not concerned about it riding up or bunching at all, and it was totally comfortable for the whole evening. I think it was Coco Chanel who said that "there is no luxury without comfort," and this dress definitely delivers in both of those categories. Needless to say, but I highly recommend eShakti. Check 'em out.

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Thursday, January 5, 2012

Outfit of the Day: At the Cafe Again...

Hey Everyone,

So you already know that I tend to spend a lot of time in cafes. It might be less clear why. Well, I am working on my PhD at the moment, and I honestly find cafes among the easiest places in which to do research and write.

I get a lot of quizzical looks when I tell people this, but it really works for me. It gives me a reason to wake up, eat breakfast, shower, and get ready for the day, when if I planned to spend my whole day at home, I'd probably have none of that stuff done by noon. I also see others in a similar situation at the cafe, and I feel a quiet but discernable sense of camraderie with these fellow writers and readers. There's a certain appeal about working amongst others. I know I am not alone, and if I let my eyes wander from my screen or page for too long, I can be sure that one of these kindred spirits will shame me back into focus with their own prying and distracted eyes.

There is also an endless supply of caffeinated beverages just waiting for me to order them, giving me that 3pm boost that I always so desperately need. There is no tv, couch - or worse yet - bed, to draw me into hours of procrastination that will ultimately lead to an all-nighter or a missed deadline. So the cafe is a warm place of solace for readers and writers to gather and work, drink coffee and think. And for that reason it will always be one of my favourite places - either to study, write, or pass a Sunday morning with The New York Times style section. Baristas - you have no idea how appreciated you are!

I tried a new cafe in Toronto, and I absolutely love it, despite the fact that it's almost always absolutely full of patrons (and there are many good reasons why). Peter took these pictures of me at Crema (the Junction location) in Toronto. Such excellent coffee, atmosphere, and the best chocolate almond croissant you've ever had.

I got this amazing (yes - shoulder-padded, deal with it!) dress at Goodwill for $4. The boots are c/o Torrid, the leggings and bracelets are F21+, and the scrabble piece necklace (which spells out LOVE) is from ASOS.

Another couple of fun new things to show you: my "new" (another $4 Goodwill score) bright blue coat, and my closet jewelry organizer. Peter was tired of untangling all my necklaces all the time (I do NOT have the patience for that kind of thing!), so I've been looking for something like this for ages. I found one by Umbra, which was featured in January's Vogue, that was shaped like a little black dress, but it was $25, and didn't have as many pockets as this one that I ended up with. I found it at Wal-Mart in the jewelry section amongst the 50% off stocking stuffers and I was ecstatic. Each one was $7, so I bought two, because I have quite a bit of jewelry! I am so pleased with them. No more tangles, and now I can find everything so easily - no more burrowing through my jewelry box for that matching earring that can't be located anywhere when I'm already running 15 minutes late. It makes it easier to co-ordinate jewelry choices with clothing as well. Big time saver! If you can't tell, I'm really excited about organization, lol. Anyway, just thought I'd share that fun stuff with you!

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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Outfit of the Day: New Dress from Lucie Lu!

Hey Guys,

Awhile back, I got sent this lovely dress from designer Lucie Lu. It's a beautiful dress with such a gorgeous mint colour and a right-on-trend grey lace overlay. I wanted to pick the perfect occasion to wear this for, and so I decided I would debut it at Christmas dinner! I had a lot to choose from, but this dress just seemed so perfect.

Peter and I have two Christmas dinners now, because it is so hard to make it to both families' houses in one day (seriously, how DOES Santa do it?!), and previous Christmases were frantic and rushed, and we both felt like we weren't getting all the quality time we wanted with our families. So on Christmas Eve, I hosted my first ever turkey dinner. Yes, "I" (Peter was very little help in the kitchen - except for disposing of the neck and gizzard bag [OMGOMGOMGOMG YUCK!!!!!!], tidying up the house, and carving up the bird while we were getting ready to eat). I was super nervous about the whole thing, but everything turned out really yummy and the in-laws seemed tres-impressed. :D

I also pride myself on presentation - they table and the food has to look great as well as tasting awesome, so I made sure I decorated the place nicely, using a red tablecloth and blue and silver Christmas crackers as accents.

I really love this dress! I am going to wear it out even more in the Spring, since the lovely mint colour complements the regreening happening in nature, and the fabric is the perfect weight for Spring weather. I got a lot of compliments from the in-laws about the dress too, which is nice, because I like to impress on all levels. :D What do you think of my new dress? Isn't it lovely? Lucie Lu has such romantic styles that are so consistent with my own personal style. I love her entire collection. I am really eyeing the Leona dress right now because I think it would be perfect for work, and it is on sale... Sigh. I really must stop shopping!

Dress - C/O Lucie Lu/Shoes - Torrid
And I'm including a picture of the dessert I made because it looks so pretty and yummy. Trifle is my favourite!

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Monday, January 2, 2012

Outfit of the Day: Suede, Leather, and Silk

Hey Guys,

It's been a long time since my last post - sorry! The holidays have been so hectic (but GREAT) and my 5 year old laptop finally decided to give up the ghost, and would no longer hold or accept a charge, so I've been without a computer for a while (gah!). I've got it all figured out now, as I picked up a new one for a great bargain on Boxing Day. I couldn't really afford it, but I had no choice since I need a computer for school... At least the timing (near Boxing Day) was fortuitous. So blogging will be a bit easier for me now as well, which is great. It used to take me a couple of hours or more to do a post, but I am breezing through photo-editing and text composition on this new machine, so I'm pretty happy. =D

Now besides my technical troubles, I had a really lovely holiday and I will have many outfits to show you in the coming week (look out for dresses from Lucie Lu and Eshakti that I wore to recent functions soon). Before Christmas, I saw the most lux leather skirt on Fran from Frantic Dreams, and I just had to have one. I immediately put it on my Christmas wish list, and Santa was very good and put it under my tree!
I chose a different style and colour than Fran, and I truly adore both her skirt and mine. Being plus size, it's sometimes really hard to find anything other than "leatherette" (which is just a fancy word for pleather, people! Retailers be warned - you're not fooling anyone!). Leatherette is fine most of the time, I suppose, and more animal-friendly, but sometimes I would like the option of being able to buy real leather if I want it, just like my more-slender counter-parts, and not be charged a premium price simply because I am being offered the privilege of a non-synthetic in a plus size item. It's the same with polyester. You all know what I'm talking about!

The company that my skirt comes from is called Leather Cult, and they do custom leather work. You send them your measurements, and they make the item to your specifications. They have jackets, skirts, pants, shorts, etc. I have a 13" difference between my waist and my hips, so this is amazing for me. It sounds expensive though, right? Nope. Even with the customizations, and all the leather used to make my skirt, it cost less than $100! I am really in love with this skirt, if you can't already tell. There are a few other items on the website that I am coveting. Including, but not limited to, leather skinny pants. *drool*

So without further ado, here are my outfit of the day pictures. I can't wait to play around with this skirt some more and put it in a few more different outfits!
Red Suede Jacket, Purse, Scarf - Thrifted/Camisole - Forever 21+/Necklace - Laura/Boots - Dots/Skirt - Leather Cult

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