Category Archives: Fashion

I’ve Finally Lost Enough To Wear Jeans from Lane Bryant

I’m sitting at my laptop with a glass of sparkling water after a lovely day with Michael and Mom, and I want to talk about clothes right now. It’s crazy to think that I had to lose nearly 100 pounds before being able to wear jeans from Lane Bryant, but that’s reality. It’s sad, but true.

The number on the scale finally seems to be moving again, at least a little, and I’m knocking on the door of 100 pounds lost. There’s something about that number that makes me feel like I’m accomplishing something, particularly since I’m so close to it at my 6-month mark. I’m not sure if I’ll hit that number goal before March 28th. Actually, I don’t know if I’ll even weigh in on that day because I already feel like I’m experiencing success.

Michael and I went to Mom’s house recently, and I pulled out several pairs of jeans that haven’t fit in the last several years. There are some that are still one size too small, but several of them already fit again. I even have a couple pairs from Avenue that are smaller in size. (I’m thankful they were around when nothing from LB worked!)

The number inside the jeans doesn’t matter too much though. It’s just a good feeling to know I’m back on a healthier track, and it’s even cooler to see the evidence of that in my clothing! A couple of weeks ago I cleaned out my closet and got rid of several bags of clothes that are too big now. Whew!

Now I need to find tops. I love tunics and long cardigans because they typically make me feel more put together than a simple shirt. I also have a long torso, so it can be challenging finding shirts that are long enough even when they fit everywhere else.

I am currently using GwynnieBee to supplement my wardrobe. I wear dresses to work frequently, and I love closeting items that are a size smaller than the last ones. I seriously need to take pictures in the dresses because several of them have been adorable! They’re great for dresses, but I rarely closet tops there because I like to have complete outfits when my boxes arrive. Does anyone else here use GwynnieBee?

It’s hard to express how good it feels to wear clothes that were way too small. I regretted gaining too much weight to wear them for quite some time, but now I choose to focus on the fact that I’m getting smaller and feeling healthier once again.

Now I’m going to finish my relaxing glass of sparkly and prepare for a long day at the office tomorrow.

 

 

Blood Work, Parties and Pictures…

My pain level has decreased significantly since my last post, and while I’m not 100% better, I feel well enough to exercise again and do the things I usually do.

My weekend started with friends and colleagues at a work party Friday night when I went to the Sizzling Summer Soiree, our biggest fundraiser of the year. We’ve been looking forward to it for months, and finally being there felt like a huge success.

Michael and MeMy boyfriend, Michael, was my date for the event (obviously,) and we arrived early with a car load of sushi that had been donated for the event. When we arrived he went to work as if he had been a part of the team forever. I love that about him. He’s incredibly intelligent, bright and successful, but when a job needs to be done he gets it done. No job is beneath him because he values everyone, which is such an attractive characteristic.

He already knows the folks I work with because we’re all friends, and they’ve known him since before we were really dating. The cool thing is that he would have worked just as hard or strangers. His parents definitely raised him right. Swoon.

Stacie and KenlieStacie, who has become one of our aforementioned close friends, worked tirelessly to make this event happen. I know others did too, but I saw the work she did first-hand. We definitely all breathed a sigh of relief as we saw the event come together, then she and I took our first selfie. Seriously, we’ve had some great times together, yet we had never taken a picture? We’ve talked about that a few times.  Aren’t we cute?!

After we took our first one we took a few more with our friends and awesome co-workers. (Why not?! We were all feeling snazzy without our ponytails and gym clothes. Haha We were only missing Haley, who looked gorgeous and sparkly from head to toe! )

YMCA Friends

Michael even took one of us that was not a selfie. Who doesn’t love a good group photo?

The Cannery New Orleans

Following the party Saturday and Sunday were the quietest days I’ve had in quite a while. Michael flew out of town for work early that morning and landed as I was waking up for the day (at 7:30 am) while I ran errands around town before returning home. I typically fill my weekends with activities and events,  but I chose to take a much needed rest from all the things.

I did some writing, cooking, reading, baking and shopping. I also watched Hillary and Kaine as she announced him as her VP and  picked up a ring that I had resized. (More on the ring later.)

I had such a quiet and relaxing weekend that I almost felt guilty about it, then I was reminded that sometimes I need that. I’ll get back to my regularly scheduled lifestyle tomorrow, but it felt good to have some rest after the last few weeks. I can’t say that I’ve been busier than usual, but I do have to say that everything feels more tiring and challenging when I don’t feel well.

Thankfully, I’m on the mend. I’m seeing my doctor again on Tuesday, and I hope to have a lot of questions answered pertaining to weight-loss surgery.

Oh, and my blood work came back normal. They tested my A1C (Yay! No diabetes,) thyroid, cholesterol and a long list of other things, and it all looked fine apart from my weight and blood pressure. (Both are higher than they should be, but I’m working on it.) I figured I was probably okay when I didn’t hear back from them immediately, but it’s comforting to know  that I’m alright for the most part anyway.

 

 

 

 

An Honest Look At My Weight

I lost four pounds last week. Having a schedule that requires me to plan what I’m going to eat has definitely been helpful, but I had mixed emotions after looking at some photos that my friend, Simone, took of me over the weekend. 

  

I know I’ve gained a lot of weight. I don’t beat myself up for it because that doesn’t lead to positive results (at least not in the long run.) I don’t try to hide it, nor do I feel sorry myself. My weight gain, which happened for the most part last year, came as a direct result of choices that I made. I’ve talked about them here many times before, so I’ll skip that today. 

The added weight feels more noticeable now that it’s back than it did before I ever lost it. I’m still thankful that I stopped myself before I gained it all back, but I’ve gained enough to feel a significant shift. It’s incredibly visible too when I look at photos of myself from 2010, 2011, and 2012 compared to now. 

It’s easy to get frustrated, but that won’t yield any postive results. It’s just hard to recognize and admit that I don’t look or feel how I want to. I dress well, and I am well-groomed. I don’t feel ugly. In fact, I’ve been feeling kind of pretty a lot lately. (Thank you, GwynnieBee.) I’m just still aware of changes that I need to make. 

Life is so much better than it was a few years ago. I’m more content on the inside than I’ve ever been, but I also know that there’s more work to do on the outside. I’m glad I lost 4 pounds this week. Now I’m working toward being smaller next week, which has happened several times this year. 

I know that if I shed some of the excess I’ll feel better than I do now even though I don’t feel awful (yet.) I’d rather see the scale move down than move up, and it seems like the only way to make that happen is to go back to tracking everything that I put in my mouth. I started doing that when I started my new position, and it definitely makes me more congnizant of what I’m doing.

It’s incredibly frustrating, but I don’t hate myself for messing up so much of the work that I put into getting healthy. The truth is that I love myself enough to see my needs here and to change them. 

This road is a long and tedious one, but I’m still here…still not indulging in everything I want and recognizing that I spent far too much time trying to fill the gaping hole in my heart with food again last year. 

Now I’m focusing more on seeing myself the way God sees me, and I’m asking Him to be strong in my weakness. He promised to do that before I ever asked, and now I’m finally starting to take Him up on it in several areas of my life (including this one.)

I’m bigger than I want to be, and I’m working toward fixing that. It’s not my top priority, but at least it’s back in my top 5. I need to incorporate exercise back into my daily life, which means I may have to skip other things. (More on that later.)

I have a long way to go, but it feels like I’m moving in the right direction. 

Tieks and Tory Burch and Why Target Won

Last week I wrote a post about Tieks and Tory Burch because I desperately needed new flats.  I love Tory Burch, but when I was searching for a replacement for my latest, doomed pair, I didn’t see anything as cute or versatile my last pair.

While I was at Target with my friend, Ariel, we decided to take a look at the shoes.  I don’t often buy shoes from Target, but I have been happy with the ones that I’ve had in the past so I looked too.

Good grief!  I found a few pairs of amazing flats!  The gold ones below are adorable and comfy, and they were only $16.99!  Seriously?  They’re cuter than the expensive pairs I saw over the weekend, and they’re versatile too!

Mossimo Flats from Target

I was pretty excited to find a cute pair of flats for under $20, but I also found two additional pairs that were on clearance for $5.08.  Obviously, they found their way into my shopping cart too!

Flats from Target

When Clint met up with Ariel and me, he suggested that I find a pair of black and white flats to match an outfit that I plan to wear on my birthday.  (What? Doesn’t everyone plan their birthday outfit at least a month in advance??)

I disagreed with him, thinking that it would be smarter to invest in black ballet flats until I saw the striped shoes at Target!  I liked the sassy red stripe on the back, and for $5, I was able to complete the outfit.

 

Black and White Flats

By shopping for flats at Target, I was able to pick up three pairs for less than $30.00.  They’re cute and comfy, and while they might not be as durable as my favorite designer flats, they’ll be worth it even if they only last throughout the summer.

I also found a pair of Born wedges at Dillard’s over the weekend.  I’ve gotten out of the habit of wearing shoes with a heel, but these wedges feel sturdy and comfortable.  I also like how they look on my feet.

Born Wedges from Dillards

I found four pairs of shoes over the weekend, and I spent less than half of what I would have spent on a pair of Tieks or Tory Burch flats.  Sure, I’d still like to try the Tieks.  I’d really like a pair of these in black too, but I feels good about the shoes that I found.  I also feel good about their budget-friendly price tags.

Am I the only one who gets excited over awesome shoe finds?

 

 

Does Anyone Here Use GwynnieBee?

I like to feel good about myself, and it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone here. 😉  My hands and feet are well-manicured, and I do my best to wear outfits that flatter my body as it is now.  I don’t take risks with my wardrobe often because I don’t like going back to a store to return things when I decide against them later.

My clothing and style choices have taken a hit over the last several months because I refuse to buy a larger size even though I’ve gained over 20 pounds since the fall.  I’m working to take it off, and I’m not going to invest in bigger jeans, dresses or anything else.  Over the last few weeks I have seen a bit of movement on the scale, and I’m determined to need smaller sizes, not bigger ones.

Buying fashionable, flattering clothes isn’t cheap when you’re plus-size.  It would be easy to spend over a thousand dollars for a week’s worth of new digs so when I heard about GwynnieBee.com, I was intrigued.  I’ve seen the name on twitter and Facebook many times, but I decided to try it when I learned that Skinny Emmie is a subscriber.  She always looks fashionable and well-groomed, and when I learned that I could try a month completely risk-free, I signed up.  (Thanks, Emmie!)

Later this week, I will received three pieces from GwynnieBee.  In addition to cleaning, they pay for shipping both ways, and there’s no time limit on the garments so I can wear them as long as I want to.  I have filled my virtual closet with shirts, dresses and cardigans by Kiyonna, Igigi and several other brands that I adore.

According to GwynnieBee, I should expect a package by the end of the week.  If there’s something I don’t like, or something I want to return after wearing only once, I’ll place it in an envelope, notify them and wait for my next package!  If you took a peek inside my virtual closet, you would find a tunic that I plan to wear with black leggings and a variety of styles and colors – even some lace!

I’m really looking forward to seeing what GwynnieBee can do to enhance my wardrobe.  I ordered some new staple pieces from one of my favorite brands, Sealed with a Kiss, over the weekend too so there’s going to be a party in my mailbox!  Now I just need to find a party to go to so I can wear something pretty.

Has anyone here tried GwynnieBee?  If so, what are your thoughts?  If not, would you try a service like it?

 

 

That Was Quick

I flew to New York Sunday evening then returned to New Orleans Monday night, and it was a busy 24 hours!  When the rain finally stopped it was still cold and gloomy so I’m glad I brought my coat!  When I was in New York in March I tweeted about scoring a coat at Lane Bryant that was originally $200.00 for only ten dollars, but I forgot to post a photo.

It was originally $200.00, and I paid $10.00! Score!

I bought a size 22/24 even though it was slightly snug thinking that I could wear it during next season’s chilly temps, but it kept me warm yesterday.  It also kept my dress from flying up in the breeze!  🙂  I’m glad I took Mom’s advice when she said to bring my coat because I hadn’t planned on it.

When I arrived at home last night I was greeted with a package containing six bottles of nail lacquer from OPI.  Actually, they’re from a friend who works for OPI.  I knew she was sending a color that I’ve been trying to find for months, but she sent five additional colors as well.  And must understand me because every color is incredible!  I want to paint my nails with every color today, but I’ll try to stick to one.  😉

Which one should I choose first?!?

The next couple of weeks are going to be busy as I prepare for finals.  Tomorrow’s class will be devoted to preparing for the final next week.   And I have to work on an important paper for my Monday class.   I can’t believe it’s already that time of year!  It feels like my classes just started!

What’s happening in your world today?  Will you workout?  What’s for dinner?

Fashion Forward

I’ve spent a lot of time reflecting on my body and my weight lately.  And while I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to amp up the loss, I’ve also begun to realize that I like myself.  I no longer see a horrifyingly ugly person when I look in the mirror, and I’m no longer the girl who tries to hide inside her clothes.  I no longer purchase clothes simply because they fit.  I’m changing, and as I change,  my style is evolving.

I’ve always loved dresses.  If you read my blog, you already know that wearing a dress can transform my mood and attitude almost instantly making me feel more confident and all-around awesome.  So it probably won’t surprise you that I’m going to be blogging on Thursdays for my favorite plus-size retailer, Sealed with a Kiss Designs!

Wearing the Victoria Dress from Sealed with a Kiss

Obviously, I’ll still be blogging here on Thursdays too!  I’m just so excited to explore and define my fashion sense as I continue to embrace myself now even though I’m still heavier than I’d like to be. . I can feel pretty, and Sealed with a Kiss opened the doors to their warehouse for me before my Today Show appearance in May to make sure that would happen.  It worked.  I felt like a one-girl revolution in the Victoria Dress, and I’m going to talk about that in depth on Thursday.

 

I hope you’ll join me in my plus-size fashion exploration!  And I hope you’ll explore Sealed with a Kiss and the Sealed with a Kiss blog.  If you do, I’m quite sure that you’ll love them as much as I do!

 

Pretty Things

It’s not always easy to find pieces that make me feel pretty with a bit of glam, but this dress from Dillards definitely helped me succeed in that this week.  It was the first time in years that I was able to walk into that particular department store and find clothes that fit my body.

As a plus-size girl who likes to feel feminine and, dare I say…pretty, I love shopping for clothing that doesn’t look like everything else in my closet so the neck line and sleeves really appealed to me.  It’s the first dress I’ve considered wearing sans cardigan in as long as I can remember.

Close-up...

While I was out, I also tried on a pair of Jones New York cropped jeans that made me feel completely stylish and adorable!  Now I’m on the search for the perfect swim suit – as perfect as it gets when you’re not satisfied with your body.  Hey, I’m a work in progress, remember? 😉

Making a silly face...I know...

This tankini from Avenue is a few sizes smaller than the last swimsuit I bought last year, and it reminded me that I have come a long way even if I don’t always feel like it. At 50% off, it might just have to be mine soon…

My clothing options have opened up so much since I began losing weight, and it seems to grow a bit more with every pound I lose.  Add another one to the list.  I lost 0.8 this week! And while I’ve always enjoyed buying new clothes, it’s fun to choose clothes that are flattering for my shape as opposed to buying whatever fits!

Do you enjoy shopping for clothes?  Has your view of shopping changed due to weight-loss or weight-gain?