Styling Four Plus Size Looks from One Blazer!

I have been dying to add a longline blazer to my wardrobe since I started following Lizzie Hadfield of Shot from the Street a couple years ago…and now I also drool over the outfits of Emma Hill for the same reason. They’ve both got this super cool, minimal, slightly-masculine-tailoring-but-in-a-very-chic-way thing down. They make it look effortless. Us mere mortals have to work at it a bit more…and on a round plus size body, that lean minimal look never looks quite right. But I just keep plugging away and one of these days I’ll get it! In the meantime I’m coming up with some outfits I’m pretty happy with – and this Karen Kane soft structure blazer has starred in several of them.

First I created an office look, with a black and white polka dot blouse and black cropped trousers with black loafers. I don’t know what was up with my face!

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Polka-dot blouse from Who What Wear/Target, no longer available. Similar here and here in plus size and here and here in straight size / Black cropped Harper trousers from Old Navy 

Adding the Third Piece of the blazer pulled the outfit together and made it more office appropriate. And, yay, face back to normal!

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Karen Kane Open Tweed Blazer, size 3x, no longer available. Comparable here and here in plus size and here and here in straight size. 

The second look is very casual, maybe weekending with the girls or running errands.

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Striped cold-shoulder top from Rainbow Shops, size 3x. No longer available. Comparable here and here in plus size and here and here in straight size. 

Take it up a notch with blazer and scarf!

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The third look is a little more artsy, starting with a solid black base layer…(ooh, there’s That Face again!).

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Black Joan Vass Plus Tunic, size 3x. No longer available, comparable here and here in plus size and here and here in straight size. Black denim skinnies from Charlotte Russe, size 22. Booties from Avenue, no longer available. Comparable here and here. (old)/Turquoise Necklace: Vintage. Comparable here.

Dress it up a bit with the blazer over top!

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And lastly, another very casual look, but this time in pastels and white (GASP! WHITE JEANS IN FEBRUARY?!? WHAT IS SHE THINKING?? I’m thinking I can wear white denim whenever the heck I want).

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Pink long sleeve tee from Old Navy, size 4x. No longer available, comparable here and here in plus size and here and here in straight size. White denim Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda jeans, size 22W short. 

And a blazer makes it a little less casual and a little more polished…even though it’s still basically an outfit with jeans and trainers!

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Do you have one piece that can complete many different outfits?

There’s a little video if you want to see all the outfits in action (and hear me blather on about one thing or another). If you watch and like the video I’d really appreciate if you’d give it a thumbs up on YouTube.

I’m linking up today with Emma at Style Splash and her Style With a Smile Link-up! Make sure you check out her blog and the other lovelies linking up there this week! I’ve made many new bloggy friends through link-ups…you might, too!

This post contains affiliate links, which means that I may receive a small commission if you click on them and/or buy something as a result of clicking that link.

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Resolutions + Plus Size Try-on Haul Video

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I’m still working on my resolutions for the new year. I’m not usually a hard-and-fast resolution sorta gal; I usually pick a fun thing I want to challenge myself to do more of – like drink more or wear more jewelry, ha ha. But after 2017 I do sort of feel like I need to get some things in order. I need to get PREPARED. That’s one of the resolutions, but I’m still fine-tuning (that seems to be a recurrent theme of the new year also) it and most of them…but the one I’m certain of is…to pamper myself.

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To have flowers in the house, go for mani-pedis and foot massages and get my hair done when I have hair again. Have a facial. Not just pampering, but being kind and gentle with myself. Last year was a hard year. It was painful and exhausting and took a lot out of me. I need to feed myself and care for myself and build my mind and heart back up. Get a comfortable sofa so I can relax and read and enjoy looking out the window. Ask friends for help when things are too hard. Eat good food. Be Good to my body. Nourish it, stretch it, exercise it. Rest it. If I need to sleep all day once in a while, do that without feeling guilty. Make my home more pleasing. Empty the corners of boxes and piles of stuff. Create lovely vignettes to enjoy when I come home. Live in silence when I want, live in music when I want. Just be good to myself.
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I’m still working out the technicalities on this one, but one year (I think 2011) I did “Do Something New Every Week,” and that was really a good one but it was more Big Picture things, like “do a 5k,” “get reiki.” etc. I think this year I might do a “Try Something New Every Day” resolution. I know that sounds imposing but they can be Very Small Things: go to a new bagel shop, turn down a different street when driving home, make a new recipe, try on a pair of shoes you wouldn’t normally try. It’s just the point of keeping your mind open to new and untried things rather than being comfortable and settled in routine.
That’s it for resolutions for now…and onto something NEW and exciting that got its start in 2017 but just went live in 2018 – and that is that my new blog-friend Nancy of Nancy’s Fashion Style shared Fashion Schlub as one of her “Styled By…” posts! I’ve been reading such nice comments from her regular readers, I’m so grateful to her! Be sure to take a look at her blog – she has such an adventurous and fun fashion sense – I think you’ll really enjoy her blog – AND she’s a sweetheart, to boot!

 

And this week’s weekly vlog is a plus size winter try-on haul showing clothes from Old Navy, Woman Within and Charlotte Russe. Take a look and let me know what you think – I think my videoing and editing skills are getting a little better!

All photography by me.

Week in Review: Week 94

Busy week. Busy busy busy. I’m making myself busy with blogging and vlogging and vlogmassing (spellcheck wanted to change that to massaging and that sounds really good). I tend, when I get into something, to go all in. And I’m really really trying to learn video editing. And while my vlogs are still crappy, they’re getting a little less crappy each time (smile).

Did a photo shoot last Saturday with a new photographer. I look tired but the pictures are nice.

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Then I made a video about increasing your wardrobe by incorporating the use of base layers.

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Caleb and I made it to the little local beach.

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Sunrise.

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Designing a graphic tee.

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A walk in the park.

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Caleb makes friends wherever he goes.

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Katie went through TWO chocolate-filled advent calendars in about four days.

She’ll be home this Wednesday – yay!!!

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Santa Claus is coming to town.

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I did something a little extra this time cuz I heard about a new Adobe video app called Spark so I gave it a try. It’s basically the same as Animoto, but it’s free. Take a look and let me know what you think in the comments!

Using Base Layers to Build Your Wardrobe

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This week’s video is all about using a couple simple base layers to build your wardrobe.

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I did a little “fashion math,” and realized that once you start using base layers + third item, you will start increasing the number of outfits you have in your wardrobe, exponentially.

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For example, a black tunic and leggings as the base layer + 5 different “third pieces,” whether a cardigan, vest, kimono or blazer, creates 7 different outfits. If you add another base layer – say a black turtleneck and black jeans or slacks + the same 5 different third pieces, you now have another 7 outfits, just by adding 2 additional items. Add a white tee and a pair of denim to the mix as another base layer, and those 2 items add ANOTHER 7 outfits…and so on.

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It’s kind of brilliant when you think about it. Rather than just buying things willy-nilly…”oh, I like this so I’ll buy it,” ask yourself the question, does it go well over one of your base layers. If it does, then that’s a wise purchase.

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Of course, you’re always going to want to have some “wild cards” in your wardrobe to spice things up a bit, like this black floral print. But I try to limit the number of outliers I purchase and stick to “things that will go with many other things.” That way I can make the most outfits.

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I explain it more fully in the video and you’ll see the theory in action, as I make many different outfits from just a few items.

What I Wore:

* Pink chenille cardigan from Charlotte Russe, size 3x. Out of stock, comparable here and here in plus size and here and here in straight sizes.
* Black floral top by American Rag from Gwynnie Bee, size 3x. No longer available, comparable here and here in plus size and here and here in straight size.
* Black skinny jeans from Charlotte Russe, size 22.

This post contains affiliate links, which means that I may receive a small commission if you click on them and/or buy something as a result of clicking that link.

 

Switching Out My Wardrobe from Summer to Winter

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So, I FINALLY got around to switching out my warm weather wardrobe for cold. We had such a lovely long pleasant Indian summer here on Long Island, I just couldn’t bring myself to do it any earlier even though I’d had to pull an item or two out for the few chillier days…and I had already bought a couple new things (see Fall Haul). The video got so so long as I explained my reasons for leaving this in or taking that out…that I decided to split it into two videos. So, Part 1 is taking out warm weather items…and Part 2 is putting in cold weather items. Ha, it kinda sounds like watching paint dry, but I know I LOVE watching this kind of stuff, so…maybe you will, too!

I’m still working on improving the production quality of my videos. I realize that in my Fall Haul video it got so dark it was practically impossible to tell a black item from a dark green one from a plaid one. My apologies. I’m very aware of the imperfections and will rectify them asap. I begged a good friend to go with me to my storage unit yesterday so we could dig out (among other things) my tub of lighting equipment from my vintage clothing selling days, so hopefully that will be better soon. And I think I’ve resolved the lens focus motor noise.

Meanwhile, I’m still trying to round out my cold weather wardrobe by online shopping like a madwoman…and returning like five things for every one kept – online plus size shopping is a Very Slow Process. But so there will be ANOTHER Fall Haul video soon…I promise not as big as the first!

Thanks so so much for sticking around while I learn the ropes about videoing and YouTube. I appreciate every like and view I get! I hope you’ll watch “Switching Out My Wardrobe from Summer to Winter: Part 1” and give it a thumbs up!

What Am I Going to Wear This Week??

So, THIS is a terrifying thing. I’m sharing my first real vlog with you today. Have patience. Be kind. I was going on the “don’t go live til everything is perfect” model but realized…I will NEVER go live! So here goes, for better or worse…

I know there are some issues. Focus is going in and out. The focusing sound the camera makes is quite loud. I feel like I roll my eyes a lot (ha) and I sound a little nervous. I have to figure these things out. And it *will* get better (dammit).

The video explains my process for putting together a weekly wardrobe, so I don’t waste precious time every morning when I could be sleeping or scrolling through my Instagram. Maybe everybody does this already, but maybe it will help *someone,* and that is my hope. It also talks a bit about how I organize my closet so putting outfits together is easier.

If you enjoy the vlog I hope you will give it a thumbs up and comment and even subscribe. Tell me what you liked and didn’t like about it so I can make future videos more helpful and interesting.

Okay. Here goes nuthin’!!!

Ha ha, nice picture, Bettye! I have to figure out how to make a nice thumbnail!

My Favorite Style Vloggers

While I’ve been a fan of reading blogs about various topics for a lonnng time, I’ve recently gotten turned onto watching YouTube vlogs. Watching style vlogs has become my evening dinner companion. Some people are addicted to reality television – I’m addicted to watching shopping hauls, seasonal capsule wardrobes and fitting room try-ons.

I thought I would share some of my favorite vloggers with you!

Plus Size

  • Fat Girl Flow Carissa is so down-to-earth and really real. She does great online shopping haul videos and is very body positive. I just love her attitude!
  • CeCe Olisa: The Plus Size Princess Look, this gal got me to do EXERCISE. What’s not to love?? She does in-store fitting room videos, workout videos, lookbooks and more.
  • Learning to Be Fearless Alexandra is THE most darling girl! If my mother was alive she’d say, “go make friends with that cute Alexandra!” She looks amazing in pretty much everything and her hair and makeup skills are incredible. She’s a real life pretty pretty princess.

Capsule Wardrobe/Ethical Fashion (while I haven’t actually *committed* to shopping more ethically…it’s rolling around in my brain and eventually….)

  • My Green Closet Watching Verena’s vlogs is almost like meditating…she’s lovely and speaks in such a gentle way about living a simpler more ethical life. I feel better about myself just *watching* her.
  • Viviana Does Makeup I have really tried to not even Go There with the makeup videos, but I do enjoy watching the Viviana Does Style videos about her capsule wardrobe/wardrobe makeovers. Her outfit videos usually have me yelling at the computer “WHY DON’T ZARA/REISS/WHISTLES HAVE PLUS SIZES?!?” because I love EVERYTHING she wears.
  • Mademoiselle More capsule and ethical fashioning…but she’s also into Project 333 which is a whole *other* topic for me to get obsessed over…

Hair. Sigh. This is the most frustrating category for me because while I long to wear THE MESSY BUN my hair just doesn’t want to do that. I keep watching the video tutorials, though, and hopefully will someday hear the magic words that will make it all click for me.

  • The Small Things Blog Okay, aside from her simple and lovely hair and makeup tutorials, Katie just feels like your best friend, know what I mean? She’s the cutest, her husband and little boys are the cutest, her house is the cutest. I’ve been following her blog and Instagram for years.

If any of these are new to you, I hope you’ll give watching them a try…and I would love to hear some of *your* favorites!