Changing The Way We See Our Bodies with Bodies that Look Like Ours

It’s difficult to have a realistic depiction of what a short sleeved, horizontal striped v neck t-shirt is going to look like on a plus size body when we only sample our garments in a size 8. If you and I are anything alike this garment is the epitome of unattractive on my body type. A simple v-neck for me goes from being simple and conservative to utterly pornographic because of the size of my bust. What started as a simple way to dress myself ends up being an ordeal of layers and questions about what else I need to make this ridiculously mundane garment less complicated on my shape.

Not to mention, some of us don’t look at a garment and see the 50 other garments in our closet that will easily match what we are about to purchase. Some of us need a bit of extra guidance and that is okay. But to the point, readers. Introducing, plus sized model Tess Holiday.

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She’s been creating buzz around the Internet for the last 2 months or so, but what is so significant about Tess that differs from the other plus size models on runways? Well first she’s a size 22 not a sample size 14 (which translates in to a size 10), and secondly she’s only 5’5″. Even more the point? She, in my opinion, is showing women of a short and larger stature that you can be beautiful at whatever size. It really comes down to confidence!

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When it comes down to it, for me, I think that all of us have something beautiful about each of us, and I am not about to start slamming the gorgeous women who won the genetic lottery and get to play their hands at the big bucks, walking catwalks in Paris and Milan. Let’s face it for those of us who love fashion, getting to be a designers visual muse is an untapped dream and the ladies who get to be a part of that most definitely have our envy. The thing that is significant here is we are beginning to see diversity in body type rep-ing the garments we wear. I don’t have to guess what a two piece high waisted suit is going to look like on a girl with thick thighs anymore, and I definitely don’t have to feel bad about myself leaving the poorly lit store to decide it is or isn’t for me.

Look her up, it’s nice to see another plus sized gal crushing it in the fashion world! Plus size women do make up one of the largest untapped markets of clothing! Keep rocking it, Tess!

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Be fabulous, as always!

❤ Evelynlouise

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The ‘This woman is beautiful’ Challenge

Sometimes, life has a way of bringing even the most confident people down. I’ve been continuing to re-examine what I talk about in this blog, as I want it to be a place of positivity and motivation for those who come to it. So this week I am going to tell you a story and follow it up with a pretty simple challenge.

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When I was in college I knew this absolutely fierce woman. When I look back, I often think I put her on a pedestal because she possessed many qualities that I was envious to have. She was cool and calm in almost all of the right situations. Cruel and calculated when the occasion called for it. But in the privacy of her home she was kind and unapologetic. I know her now to also be incredibly sensitive and just as damaged as the rest of us, maybe more, but her fervor enamored me. I would spend hours on the floor of her one bedroom apartment listening to her talk, listening to her music, listening for how I would somehow absorb some of this tenacity.

 

There are many things I remember well about her apartment, but the one I always like the most was the fact that she always wrote at the top of her mirrors in dry erase marker. Messages to herself, messages of things for her to remember. The mirror in the hallway, which was the mirror you saw last before you left her apartment, said, “this woman is beautiful.” It quite frankly offended me. I thought, that’s super conceded, but as I chewed on the idea it grew on me. As copying is the sincerest form of flattery, I decided to discretely go home and try it on my mirror in my bedroom. The difference those words make in the way you feel before you leave the house is astounding. I started changing the text a little:

“This woman is beautiful.” “This woman is smart.” “This woman is hilarious.” “This woman is not a door mat.” “This woman deserves to be loved” “This woman is a bad ass.”

I even annoyed my roommate by leaving these messages on our bathroom mirror with the collective, “these women.” Self positive talk doesn’t have to be as ridiculous as that old SNL skit.

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But sometimes we need to remind each other how awesome we are. So It isn’t a leap to where I am going with this weeks challenge and it’s certainly not a new concept. Get a dry erase marker and have at it! Mirrors, windows, shower doors. There is only one stipulation, it has to be something positive. Try it for the whole week. If you find it works, try it for a month. I find it helpful in those months where I’m having trouble motivating myself.

Keep positive my lovely readers,

❤ Evelynlouise

Evelynlouise: New Years bring New beginnings

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What a serendipitous event that my last entry of the year should fall on the last day of 2014. I have been contemplating for weeks how to end the year on a note of positive and encouraging advice for all of my readers, and what a better way to discuss that than the false hopes of New Year’s resolutions.

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My goal with this blog over everything else was to create a positive space for fashion to exist for plus size women. I wanted to be inclusive to anyone who loves fashion and I wanted above all else to do the opposite of what many fashion magazines do. I wanted to create an encouraging environment for positive body image and social awareness. Fashion is supposed to be fun and an expression of self, not a place of doubts, self loathing and body fear. The industry is good at playing on these insecurities to get you to buy more things.

New years resolutions are touted at you from your television and will be for the next few weeks leading up to and shortly after the new year begins. Gym memberships sky rocket during this time as do health food sales and the sale of exercise equipment. New year’s resolutions at this point for adults tend to center around weight loss or body image. You will undoubtedly have an absolutely beautiful co-worker who grabs hold of there flat stomach and say, “Gawd, I gained so much weight this year, my new years resolution is to stop being realistic about my body expectations and set myself up with a plan to fail.”

Okay, maybe they won’t say that, but the message they deliver is essentially just that. And it’s the same for everyone, fit or not that we will some how miraculously become lovers of kale and juice cleanses and relinquish our desire for french fries and chocolate.

For 2015, I would like to put forth to you my readers a challenge of setting positive realistic goals instead of resolutions. I feel that goals are more obtainable in the sense that we understand as a culture that a goal is something you work toward. We understand it takes time and effort. Resolutions are so tied with our societies need for instant gratification, and when we don’t obtain that immediate result or we don’t gradually build up to whatever high feat we’ve set for ourselves, we always fall short.

I think it’s also important to share positive goals and to encourage those around you. I hope you all find a positive goal to work toward in 2015. Here are my top 5 goals for 2015 as they pertain to this blog and where I hope we will journey together in the new year.

Evelynlouise’s Top 5 Improvement Plans for 2014:

1. Be more positive about my body! I will not be motivated to go the the gym if all I do is beat myself up about my bowling lady arms. In fact, this self hatred will only lead me down a deeper rabbit hole of body hate. I will have bad days, but I will take time in my journals, in my speech to try and speak more positively about myself.

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2. Be more encouraging of myself to realize goals. I think we all experience that sense of defeat from time to time. Sometimes we really are our own worst enemy. This year I will continue to try and use positive speech to keep pushing myself forward, learn from my mistakes and move forward.

3. Be less judgmental of other appearance. As I’ve been writing this blog it has become more apparent to me how many times a day we judge another person. It usually always comes down to someone’s appearance. Because of this I have already been taking steps to stop and ask myself, “why am I being such a mean girl today?” Who is that person? Maybe they are more happy with who they are than I am.

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4. Be more encouraging to others. In follow up to not being such a mean girl, I think that sometimes you’re positive self talk only goes so far. We as human being seek the approval of others. This year as every year I hope to find ways to be more encouraging and loving to those around me, to keep their positive fire going. I really do think it’s a group effort

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5. Be more conscious of the ecological and social impact my consumption has on the world. I’ve already started doing more research on the ethics of the fashion industry. It goes so much deeper than learning to donate your clothes to Goodwill. We as a culture have to stop consuming at such an alarming rate or discussing fashion will be the telling of a horror story that contaminated all of our water, and used up all of our farmable land. We not only have to continue to strive to consume less, but to understand we drive the markets that are creating such a negative impact on not just mother earth, but the lives of people making the products.

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Thank you for following my lovely readers! I hope to see more of you in 2015, and please, if there’s a topic you would like to see me discuss, feel free to leave it in the comments below! I love suggestions!

Happy New Year!

❤ Evelynlouise