Plus Size Trends for Spring 2016

Plus size fashion is a growing niche in the industry, and its very exciting to have more options out there. Finally plus size fashion is beginning to take on bolder statements, and more defined trends, sometimes different from straight size fashion. And as the snow melts and the sun shine is warmer, I can’t help but dream of updating spring and summer wardrobes. I would like to share some ideas for getting your closet springtime ready, and trendy pieces to look out for that you will wear over and over.

Make Over Your Existing Wardrobe

My first thought is that I am trying to live with the mantra of “make do and mend” when it comes to my clothing. I am lucky – I have an extensive sewing background and can pretty easily mend my clothing, and this is not so for every person out there. But instead of throwing out your top with a hole in the seam or a missing button, it might be worth it to learn to wield a needle and thread – or take it to a tailor, it’s often cheaper than you think! A couple things I plan on doing on the cheap to get my wardrobe ready for spring includes some crafty DIY-ing.

Firstly, I am going to turn one of my pairs of regular length jeans into crops. I bought these Levis last fall, and I have barely worn them. The fact is, the leg is just a bit too wide for my short and curvy frame. I love the way they fit and feel, but they look pretty dorky on me. My plan is to cut several inches off the bottom and cuff them up into a crop pant. And crops are perfect for spring as you start to show more leg little by little. There’s really not a lot of sewing involved, and you can always buy a no-sew hem tape that might just do the trick instead. This would also be a good idea to do with used denim from the thrift store if you don’t like the leg, just turn them into jeans or shorts on the cheap. I have done this for many of my friends, and I only charged them $10 a pair – worth the cost to update a piece in your wardrobe that you already own, and then you can spend your saved money from this project on something new for spring.

Secondly, I have this great boxy sweater that I bought years ago, but as I gain weight the sleeves get tighter and the sweater needs more length. I am going to add some fringe to the hem to add some length and cut the sleeves short and make it into a cute t-shirt/sweater for spring. Don’t be afraid to get a bit arts and craftsy on your wardrobe, it can make adorable, unique pieces like this Anthropologie DIY knock off sweater, or this sleveless polkadot blouse.

 

Trends To Invest In

While I love to find inexpensive ways to have a new wardrobe, I won’t deny that I love to purchase new clothing as well. If you are through updating your wardrobe using some basic crafty skills, here are a few trends you might want to invest in when going through a spring update.

All White Everything – Chic as can be, all white is a bold way to stand out in the crowd. It would be fun to add hot pops of colour with accessories into an outfit like this – think bolder versions of Rose Quartz and Serenity – but keeping it all white will step up your wardrobe game just a little bit more. And since white is timeless, you won’t be throwing away your springtime purchases when it comes to winter. You can also opt for cream instead of white, to make a softer, yet still bold, statement. This white sheath dress is a classic shift style that can be retro or modern. Pair it with a white wide-brimmed hat, all-white Birks, and some white jewelry and you’re ready to go!

Jumpsuits, Baby! – Oh, what can’t a girl accomplish in a jumpsuit? A one-piece wonder that you only have to add accessories to is what dreams are made of. Don’t be afraid to rock some print and colour with it, and feel free to show a little leg in a playsuit. This paisley printed playsuit can be played up with the 1970’s trend, but it can also be paired with a few clunky, modern accessories to keep it updated. as well. I also love how bright and cheery this floral jumpsuit is – keep it simple with white accessories so you stay super chic in the hot weather.

Minimalistic Shapes – I am kind of over the “minimalistic” look for myself (I just don’t think it suits my shape or frame), but nonetheless it’s still prominent in fashion today, and can very easily look high fashion without breaking the bank. Truthfully, you’ll never go wrong with a simple shape with bold accessories, and it’s still new for plus size ladies as designers begin to break the rules of plus size fashion. I love the new collection at Rachel Roy, and each piece is very wearable for every figure. Some of my favourite pieces for this trend include this punchy blue dress that is so easy to wear alone, or this minimal black dress could be paired with a longline vest to create a bit more interest and a younger look.

Hues of Pink and Blue – As we know, Rose Quartz and Serenity are the colours of the year, and that applies to our spring fashion as well. Some people hate the pink and blue together, but you can mix tones and vibrancy to get a look that more high fashion than easter bunny. Take the pink low key in this retro, geometric shift dress. Make a statement with this bright, asymmetrical top, or keep it pretty and simple in this split front longline tee. Wearing chambray is a great way to go blue with your wardrobe, like this chambray shirt dress, or this on-point denim skirt.

 

If you’re like me, your head is buzzing with the possibilities of a new spring wardrobe, and by now you’re ready to head out and start some shopping – or DIYing – to get your closet updated for the new season. And after you get your new wardrobe, book a fun photoshoot with your photographer to capture those fun, summer moments you have with your friends.

 

Beauty Tips to Transition From Winter to Spring

20150912-145105-DSC_0691-Edit-2Believe it or not, spring is finally here and sunny days are just around the corner! While you might be preoccupied with cleaning out winter’s dust bunnies and scouring Pinterest for a new warm weather wardrobe, the season presents an opportunity to update your beauty routine as well! Here are 6 tips to help you transition from “Winter Blah” to “Spring Hoorah”!

Do A Little Spring Cleaning

Hoarding drawers full of expired makeup is not only bad feng shui, but using product past its prime can lead to eye and skin infections! YIKES! Here is a quick guide to let you know when it’s time to let go:

makeup-expiry-infographic

Don’t forget, for those of us guys & gals for whom “trash can” is a dirty word, a lot of cosmetics companies offer a recycling program for your empties!

Re-Evaluate Your Routine

Let’s face it, what works for you in the winter months may not be what’s best to address your skin concerns when warmer weather comes around. Seasonal change can have a big impact on the skin and it’s important to switch up your skincare routine in order to maintain results.

Hydration is key, no matter your skin type, and you may want to swap out your rich, creamy moisturizers for a lightweight or gel formula. It’s ALWAYS important to protect your skin from harmful UV rays, no matter the season. Make sure you’re using a product with SPF, and if you’re spending time outdoors, you should re-apply every 2 hours for total protection.

Switch Up Your Coverage

Say goodbye to heavy formulas and opaque coverage – spring is the season when BB Creams and tinted moisturizers rule the makeup world. Opt for products with a natural to radiant finish- flat, matte skin is SO last season 😉

When shopping for a new foundation, keep your summer shade in mind. I like to keep two different foundation shades on hand (one darker and one lighter) so that I can mix them to achieve my ideal match. You can also incorporate a liquid bronzer into your routine to deepen your existing foundation. Try mixing it in with your favourite complexion product or primer.

Go For the Glow

“Strobing” is all the rage with beauty gurus on social media, but don’t worry, you don’t need to sport highlighter that can be seen from space to stay on trend. Dewy cheekbones and radiant skin is always a hit come spring, and you can add a little glow on the go without looking like a human disco ball.

Try adding a liquid luminizer to your primer for a lit from within look. You can also dab some on the high points of your face under your foundation for subtle glow. Be mindful of adding too much shine to the T-zone or chin area, as dewy skin can quickly look greasy if you’re not careful about your placement.

Sweeten Those Cheeks

Blush is back, and what a better way to ring in the season than with a pop of colour on the cheek. I love to use a blush with a hint of shimmer when the sun comes out for a playful, flirty sheen.

If you’re stumped on what shade to wear, it can be helpful to look for a colour similar to the shade of your natural lip – but I think a peachy-pink blush looks good on almost every skin tone.

Remember to use a light hand when applying blush to go for a natural looking flush. Keep the colour to the apples of your cheeks for the most youthful look, blending the shade in the direction of your hairline to create lift.

Flip Your Lip

I’ve been loving the dark matte lipstick trend this winter, but it’s time to move on. Brands are releasing tons of new, pigmented, high-tech glosses that are more hydrating and comfortable than matte formulas. Keep your lips in tip top shape by prepping them with a moisturizing balm – then try something new in a bright pop of pink, purple or punchy orange!

You’ve Chosen Your Dress, Now It’s Time To Choose Theirs!

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You’ve spent hours choosing your dress, you’ve probably tried on many different gowns, but you’ve finally found it! The one, the dress for your dream wedding day. Now that you have your dress, it is time to pick out dresses for your bridesmaids. These days, many brides are opting to allow their bridesmaids to choose their own dresses – which can be great, as each bridesmaid can get a different dress that they feel comfortable in. However, this may not always be the way to go, especially if you have a very specific colour scheme or style in mind. I have some helpful hints on how to choose the right dress for your bridesmaids to make your job a little bit easier.

 

Listen, Listen, Listen

Yes, we know it’s your day. And it really should revolve around you, but when it comes to your bridesmaids wearing a dress in front of potentially hundreds of people, I am sure you want them to look and feel good! We all have different insecurities about our bodies, and it’s very important to listen to what your bridesmaids say about what they feel comfortable wearing. Not to mention, an ill-fitting gown can become quite apparent in the photos.

 

Choosing the Right Dress For Your Ladies

When I was planning my wedding, I had a pretty strong idea of what I wanted my ladies to wear. I know they had some thoughts as well, and with a combined effort, I was able to pick out dresses that suited them, but also suited my wedding and vision. What it really came down to was seeing what looked good on different shapes, which features to accentuate, and learning what each of the girls felt comfortable wearing. Here’s a quick little guide to reference when you’re picking out dresses.

If you take your bridesmaids measurements, you can begin to determine what will look best. Start by measuring around each person’s hips, waist, and shoulders, and you’ll quickly see what will work best.

If your bridesmaid has:

    • Hips that are several inches larger (or more) than her shoulders and waist: look for a dress that flares out from the waist. This shape is often called a fit and flare, or an A-Line dress, and is a universally flattering shape. If you choose a boat or a sweetheart neckline, a strapless dress, or one with small cap or puff sleeves, this will even out her shape and create a more proportional form .Something like this lovely lace dress would work well! 
    • Shoulders that are several inches larger than her hips and waist: keep your eye out for dresses that are A-line shaped, or something with body on the bottom half of the dress – ruffles, flare, or fullness of any kind. Boat necklines and wide shoulder straps will make her shoulders look smaller, and add a belt if you can for waist definition. This printed wrap dress, or this A-Line dress would be great for a lady with larger shoulders. 
    • Shoulders, waist and hip measurements that are all within a few inches of each other: look for a dress that has a clearly defined waistline, like… you guessed it – an A-Line dress! Or, add a belt to a fitted dress to draw in the waist. Almost any neckline will do for this lady – sweetheart, boat, v-neck or scoop will do well. Another great idea for this lady would be a dress with a wrap top to create curves. This stunning column dress would be amazing with a black ribbon around the waist! 
    • A waistline that measures larger than her hips and shoulders: look for dresses that create curves, with volume at the shoulder or on the bottom. A wrap dress with a flared skirt would be great, and anything a-line would be great. Again, adding waist definition with a belt or a clear waistline would be great, and an empire waistline would work well for this body shape as well. Necklines that work would be square, sweetheart, or v-neck. This gorgeous printed wrap dress would be fabulous on a lady with this shape. 
    • Shoulders and hip that are similar measurements, but a small waist: she won’t really need a ton of waist defining elements, but it never hurts! A sheath dress, empire waist, a-line, or wrap dress would be great for her shape. Look for something that is similar proportions throughout the dress, such as wider necklines with a flare or ruffled  skirt. This jade dress would be stunning on a woman with this figure! 

 

Look Around

Lastly, I must say it is important to look around for your bridesmaid dresses. Bridal shops can only offer so much, and don’t be afraid to get dresses from a website online, or even your favourite local boutique. Be bold and think outside of the box and allow your ladies to wear different prints, colours and shapes to create more colour and variety in your wedding party. Get the guys pocket squares to match the bridesmaid’s dresses, or even let your ladies wear a classy top and skirt. The potential to create an even more unique wedding doesn’t end at the décor – let it flow into your wedding party as well!
It’s also important to keep in mind how these dresses will all look together in your wedding photos. Often different prints, tones, or colours will liven up your photos, and create more unique portraits. Feel free to consult with your wedding photographer on what they think might look great in your photos – and happy hunting for their dresses!