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3 Ways to Dress to Feel Better From a Cold

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So excited to share with you 3 ways to use fashion to overcome a cold! My poor family has been sick this week, and it’s been so sad. I wanted to find some ways to use the clothing I had to help me feel better. I find these 3 things helpful when I’m feeling sick to see my mood brighten and help me feel less sick. This helps me not focus on how awful I feel, and it really does help me feel better!

Wear Bright Colors

Most of my pajamas are bright colors. They don’t all match because I wear workout clothes for pajamas- I can’t stand the wide legs of pajamas pants, they ride up in my blankets and don’t keep my legs warm at all! Workout clothes and leggings are so much more comfortable, and thankfully they come in all kinds of bright colors.

I am one of those people who does like things to match, but having bright colors to help me feel cheery trumps matching, right? Anyway, I try to wear fun printed leggings that are comfortable and stretchy. I’m sure I don’t need to go into detail about the comfort of leggings, but in case you haven’t tried any yet, you need to. Leggings will change you life.

Bright colors will boost your mood, and you can’t help but feel a little more bubbly when you are glowing like a neon sign in your workout pajamas! This tip can work for all kinds of situations! Having a bad day? Change into something bright! Weather getting you down? Bring in some sun with bright clothes!

I know this may sound silly, but it really does work! What are your favorite bright colors to wear to boost your mood? My all time favorite is pink. If I’m wearing pink then I will feel more peppy.

Style with Scarves

When I was taking voice lessons in high school I had this one teacher who was adamant that I wear a scarf anytime it was even slightly cold outside, and that if I were to get sick I absolutely needed to wear a good thick warm scarf to protect my voice. Now that I am a voice teacher, I have my students do the same thing!

One of the big reasons I like to wear scarves when I have a cold is to keep my neck muscles cozy and cramp/ache free. When my body is warmer, my aches tend to lessen or disappear. Having a good scarf around your neck will help reduce or eliminate neck stiffness, headaches, and help your throat to not be so sore!

Don’t believe me? Try it! It totally works! My body is especially sensitive to cold temperatures because of one of my chronic illnesses, so wearing a scarf is a great way to keep my entire body temperature stable. I am one of those people who really bundle up when it’s cold, but not because I’m freezing, but because the cold is painful. Weird huh? But the same principle of wearing a scarf to keep aches down can apply to your entire body! Wear clothes that will keep you warm and that you like the look of.

If I don’t like the way something looks, no matter how warm, then I don’t feel totally comfortable or relaxed. Like if I were to wear a huge winter coat and my leggings in the house because I’m freezing, I would feel really silly and not be able to fully relax. But adding a nice oversized sweater that looks beautiful and is comfortable? Now that would help me relax!

Wear Beautifully Cozy Materials

I absolutely love soft things. When our bodies are achy all over, a great way to feel better is to create a soft and cozy barrier between our skin and everything else. When I wear materials that are extra soft and cozy, I automatically feel more relaxed, and my body gets less tense. If I’m wearing a piece of clothing that is kind of stiff or rough, even when I’m not sick, it’s hard to really relax all the way.

Fabrics are a big part of fashion. You can have the most stunning dress but if it’s made out of horrible and itchy material you won’t want to wear it! Some fabrics I suggest are: cashmere, 100% cotton, linnen, 95% rayon 5% spandex. Try some form of fancy alpaca blended fiber or other soft animal fiber for your socks, a sweater or scarves and you will totally love that luxury feel.

What kind of materials do you like to wear? I hoe these 3 ideas will help you feel better as you battle your next cold, or even help you on a day when you are grumpy or tired! They have definitely helped me! What is your favorite thing to wear to help you feel less gross when you are sick?

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One Easy Way to Love Your Wardrobe

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Hey lovelies! Here is one easy way to love your wardrobe, and then any outfits you wear!!!-

You only have pieces in your wardrobe that you absolutely love.

It might sound silly or like it won’t work, but I’ve gone through and done this to my own wardrobe, and it really works!! I went through my closet and looked at each piece and decided if I really loved the color, how it fit, how it felt on, and if I felt confident in it. If there was any reason that I didn’t 100% love it, I got rid of it. You can often sell your clothes online, or donate them!

There are a few pieces of clothes that I love because they look awesome on the hanger, the colors are perfect or I love the style, but when I put them on I just don’t feel like I look awesome! For example, I have this beautiful stretchy black dress that has a tan underlay, and I love it, but I don’t love the hemline or the neckline. I always feel a bit uncomfortable and have to fidget around in it, and constantly pull it down because it rides up wicked high when I sit. So I love love this dress, but it’s time to have it go.

The first time I tried this, I ended up giving a lot of clothing away, and it felt like my closet was bare! But each outfit I put together looked amazing, and I loved it. As I’ve been buying clothing pieces that I love, I’ve been able to spend my money wisely and have a full wardrobe to choose from. My style changes from time to time, so if I notice some pieces aren’t really favorites anymore, then I just do another closet cleanse!

Have you ever done this before? Give it a try and let me know what you find out about yourself! And don’t forgot to check out my new boutique here at Plus Size Presence to add awesome pieces to your new wardrobe you love!

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Plus Size Work Tops

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I know many of you lovelies are boss ladies who are killing it at work! I have heard from several working roundy women that it is difficult to find tops that are work appropriate yet comfortable, and affordable. This is part of the reason I opened up my boutique here on Plus Size Presence. I don’t think clothing should cost an arm and a leg, and I don’t think the market should be limited to ugly ill fitting options!

Blouse Style

As you may know by now, I LOVE blouses. They are so comfortable and I really like how feminine they can be. I am not a fan of the boxy blouses that roundy characters wear on tv, nor am I a fan of the ill fitting slinky leopard print shirts available at Ross and Marshalls. You know the ones I’m talking about?

Fabric and structure are huge components of what will make a blouse look great, or hideous. You want to find a blouse that has a nice shape- A line, bell like, flowy- something that will compliment your natural curves. Stay away from shapes that are boxy or rectangular, or excessively poufy in the stomach area.

One blouse style that I love and that looks great on all body types is a tunic. A good classic tunic top will be long enough to come down to the middle of your bum or lower. Having this elongated top creates long lines, and will balance out wide hips, wide shoulder, prominent bellies, and will flatter rectangular shaped bodies.

Be careful of blouses that have a nylon like feel- that are really stretchy and loose, and feel really slippery. When you put this style of blouse on, it will hang funny and make your boozies look like bizarre poky triangles, and then will show any and all bulges and bumps. These types of tops are usually really affordable, but don’t give it. You will end up wasting your money because you will never wear it.

Go for fabrics that are polyester based, cotton, or linen.

Casual Shirt Top

You can wear a more casual shirt top to work, as long as it looks fancy. What do I mean by this? Take the Burgundy Babe that is available in my shop right now.( Pictured) It is a beautiful color but also has a nice velvet look. The casual aspect of this blouse is the pocket and t shirt style. But when you pair it with a nice blazer or sweater, it’s easily jazzed up! This style top is excellent when you are wanting to have something really comfortable but still look fancy.

If you were to pair this top with a pencil skirt and tuck it in, then it would create a really nice business casual look. To find casual and comfortable tops that would be perfect for work, stay away from crazy or weird prints or shirts with words on them. Find a shirt that is a solid color or has a basic pattern- like polka dots or stripes.

Blazers and Coverups

I love love love blazers and coverups. They are a great way to add depth to an outfit, but also are perfect for layering if you tend to have temperature issues like me. I like to have layers I can play with to find the most optimal temperature. Blazers tend to make an outfit look more fancy or on a more professional side, while open cardis give a more business casual vibe.

I also really like having options to go over sleeveless blouses. I personally like to keep my shoulders covered but love a lot of sleeveless styles. Having a blazer or open cardi helps take a sleeveless blouse to a more professional look. Many companies with a dress code do not permit sleeveless tops, so having a few basic overlayers will give you an easy option to comply with the dress code. I suggest having blazers or open front cardis that are brown, black, or white. That way you have something to match almost all sleeveless tops.

I also have a few bolero jackets that I use as coverups. Boleros are a great option for the summer time. They are often short sleeve or 3/4 sleeve, and usually accentuate your waist. This type of coverup can be really fancy or casual. The ones I have are typically made out of cotton or polyspandex.

Your Favorite?

What is your favorite type of work top? Do you have any styling questions for me? I love to hear from you so drop a comment below!

Check out my new Plus Size Presence Boutique!

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Positives of Social Media

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If you follow me on Instagram then you probably saw in my stories I talked about the authenticity movement happening on Instagram, and social media in general. I know social media has been getting a bad rap lately, but I have found it to be an extremely positive force in my life! So let’s chat about it! I am really interested to hear your thoughts, and if you have a favorite social media platform, or if there is one that you absolutely will not use!

Escape and Dream

For me, social media is a great escape! Not that I’m not happy with my life and want to leave or anything. I live up on a mountain in Northern Arizona and there aren’t any fashion shows, or interior design parties, or amazing inspirational support groups. To find those things, I turn to social media. It’s a place where I can find what I love, and daydream about the world and home I want to create.

This is a great creative process for me, and something I really enjoy! I have begun planning my dream home and other vacations for the future, but I also use social media for the here and now. I love getting ideas for foods to have my baby try, activities we can do on cold days, books I should read to him… there are so many awesome moms out there, and it’s really fun for me to learn from them, and connect for support.

I also love going on Instagram or Pinterest and getting fashion ideas! I have a pretty set style, but I love looking at all different kinds of style out there, and getting to know the people in the plus size fashion world! I love how I can be on my phone and have a conversation about fashion with someone in Europe! It is so fun, and I feel like I get an amazing glimpse into the world that I never would otherwise experience.

I also really enjoy doing photoshoots for my website and social media. I hand pick all the pieces that go in my shop, I do all my hair and makeup myself, and I really enjoy having my picture taken! I try to be as authentic as possible, but I also don’t want to stress you out with pictures of my messy house or mismatched pajamas. I like going online and seeing the beautiful and clean houses and outfits of others. It’s so much fun!

This picture is a screenshot of my phone. I have all the social media platforms I like on this first page. I also have ways to watch shows and ways to read scriptures here too. It’s important to remember that social media is not life, but that pieces of our lives can be found on social media.

Support

As you may know, I have several chronic illnesses. It can be really frustrating trying to navigate through the stressors of life while trying to battle your own body. I have found some amazing support groups on social media where other people who have my conditions talk together and share ideas. These groups have really eased my anxiety as well. I have some strange symptoms and when I google them the diagnosis of the internet is the bubonic plague, so naturally I think I’m dying.

When other people post about their symptoms, or assure me that mine are not in fact the plague but totally normal for my new diagnosis, it changes everything! I can’t imagine what it must have been like 50 or 100 years ago when information was not readily and easily available! I am one of those people who does better with scary news when I can learn all there is about it, and reassure myself that I have an action plan. We are so blessed to have the knowledge of the world at our fingertips.

Some other great options for support on social media are the closed or private groups. You can find groups for anything you may be struggling with! For me, being able to connect with people who understand and who don’t judge has been so liberating! Imagine how many wonderful opportunities there are for people to find help with addictions, suicide, abuse etc.

A big factor that not everyone would classify as support but I do, is the network you form. Connecting with other people, building friendships, creating a web of bonds is such a powerful and amazing experience! I love building this tribe for plus size lovelies here on my website, and on social media. It’s amazing to hear your stories and have a chance to connect with you!

I think social media is a powerful tool to get positive messages out there- like body positivity!! It is so exciting to be a part of this new conversation and movement about loving ourselves, and our bodies!

Negative Aspect

I’m sure we are all familiar with the negative sides of social media. Bullying, shaming, leaking content or pictures without permission, plagiarizing etc. It seems like these things have never been worse. There has always been bad behavior, people have been and will always be mean, and now they have a new platform to hide their identity and attack. I’m sorry if anything awful has happened to you. Being brave and not letting the mean/rude things people say or post or steal takes such power and courage.

I think it is important to speak up and share your story when things like this happen. Speaking out shows cowardly people who have done bad things that they didn’t win. Your story will also help others who have been hurt to be brave and not let the words or actions of someone else ruin your life.

Do mean things, even read over a screen hurt? Most definitely! And I’m sorry if this has happened to you. But you have the choice how to respond, and how to move forward integrating social media in your life. Maybe you want to take a break, or completely shut down certain platforms. Go for it, you do what you need to do. It’s ok to step back, to take a break, or to move on. I give you permission.

It is not weak to walk away from social media if you are struggling. The amazing thing is, life goes on! You don’t need to connect your self worth with the number of comments or followers. It’s ok to enjoy living in the moment and being away from social media.

Perfectionism

The big movement for authenticity was started by a man on Instagram. From what I could gather, he was angry and irritated with people on social media being fake and portraying a life that is simply unachievable. There are some people out there who photoshop and who lie and are fake. But you get that in everyday real life too! There are a lot of people who fake their way through their day, or who lie, or who give off a vibe of perfection.

This doesn’t bother me. Want to know why? Because I choose not to follow them. It’s easy- you control your feed, you control who and what you see. If someone is being fake, don’t follow them. If they pretend to be perfect, oh well. That’s on them, they are probably lonely and feel that their worth is dependent on followers, and that is sad.

I don’t think we need to get up in arms and launch a crusade on social media because some people are lying. Social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook are free. You control who you follow, and you have the ability to comment on someone’s feed. If you don’t want to see fake people, then don’t follow them.

I think each person needs to decide what they want their feed to do for them- inspire, uplift, educate, daydream- when you know what you can’t, then go curate that. I have followed some people for a while and then they start posting inappropriate things. I don’t get angry or offended that they didn’t think of me and that I don’t care for inappropriate things. When this happens, I simply unfollow them.

People are putting a lot of time and effort into that they put out in the world, and you as the viewer are allowed to have your own thoughts and opinions. A person cannot please the rest of the world, so they need to focus on putting out content that they are proud of.

Your Choice

Yes, with social media comes the tendency to compare ourselves to the positives that people show us. If you get overwhelmed or annoyed, just take a break. Unfollow people who aren’t adding to your life, and stick with the people who are. It’s important to recognize that most people are not on social media with the goal to make you think your life isn’t as good as theirs. And it’s true that most people only show the positive sides of their lives, and that’s ok.

I don’t really want to see more messy houses like mine, or dirty dishes. I like to see the perfectly clean and fabulously decorated houses. It gives me something to shoot for. So you have a choice, you choose who you will follow, but you also choose how you respond to what you see. If you are constantly getting offended or feeling less than awesome because of the things you see, then remove those things or those people.

Often if I start to compare or worry that my body doesn’t have the right curves in the right places I can catch myself quickly, and take a break from social media. I don’t just take a break, but I do a self assessment. I notice what is going great in my life, what I am grateful for, and then I make sure to remind myself that the only person who’s opinion really matters is the Lord’s, and honestly he doesn’t care about the placement of my curves. It helps me to put my worries into perspective.

So what will you do? How will you react? Do you have a favorite platform, or one that you can’t stand? Tell me all about it in the comments below!

Don’t forget to check out my shop here at Plus Size Presence

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Review Of Torrid Lingerie and Intimates

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Hello lovelies!!! I had an amazing comment from a fabulous reader on size questions about Torrid’s lingerie and intimates section, so I decided to go in store and figure out what fit!! I hope this is super helpful for you, and that you can purchase with confidence having more knowledge going in to your shopping!

As you probably know, my belly is my most prominent feature, so though I wear a size 1 in Torrid tops, I actually wear a size 2 in bottoms! When you go in store you cannot try on their panties in the dressing room, which makes sense, but you can try on swim suits, so I started there. I have only awesome things to say about their fit and options, and I seriously walked out with 3 stuffed bags!! ( they were having a HUGE semiannual sale and so I got swim separates for like $4!!)

Bra Size

I was happy to discover I was a larger bra size than I thought, and they have excellent size options. I seriously mean that. I went to Walmart a few weeks ago because my bras were literally falling apart, and I wanted a 40- which is the measurement of how big around the band under the bra is. They had like one 40 A and it fit soooo weird, and I hated it. So I basically gave up on ever finding a great bra that wouldn’t hurt or give me mega size boobs.

Fast forward to this past weekend, and ta-da! My bra doom days were over! Not only did Torrid have size 40, but they also had cup size B, which was practically IMPOSSIBLE to find on Amazon. ( I did buy 1 on Amazon but it digs into my boozies in the front). Anyway, so they had a ton of bra sizes, with a ton of cups to go along with them! I found that a 40 C worked best for me. Because of my boozie shape, I think I will always have a slight amount of side boob, but with Torrid’s bras, it’s basically invisible.

They have a really good height and thickness on the side of the bra, which gives some control to eliminate rolls. The straps are really adjustable, and they also have bra extenders available so if they don’t carry your size you can make one work. I was so happy to see such a large variety of sizes, and that their quality is amazing. Seriously, these bras are better than Victoria’s Secret, and more affordable too!

They start at 36″ band size, and go to 48″, with cup size B-DDD and then F and G. You can look on their website for a fit guide where they teach you how to find your cup size! You can read their fit guide here. You can also have a bra fitting in store too if you are worried or have questions!

Bra Types and Price

There are a lot of different types of bras available, I was just so happy with the push up style and fit and how awesome it made me look that I bought 6 push up bras! I wanted one that made my boozies look awesome, but that was comfortable and didn’t have weird pinching things or bizarre clasps. I also wanted one that would actually provide support, and not just be a t shirt. Some people really like the t shirt style bra, but for me if I’m going to wear a bra, it has to actually do something for me.

Torrid has strapless, pushup, sports and fancy lacy bras available. They have cotton or lace styles, and have different shapes to the top of the cups, like added lace, more coverage over the breast etc. I didn’t really care about the level of coverage, but more about the fit. I bought all Demi push up bras. I think there are slight differences in the straps and cup coverage, but they all fit really well, and I’m very happy with them.

Another feature on the bras that I really love is the back clasp. Each clasp has 3 clips going up and down, sometimes 4, and then 3 size options going right to left. I found that the thicker strap and 3 clasp eliminated the back roll that I would get with my other awful bras. It feels awesome to look and see a perfectly smooth and streamlined back! And with the thicker bands I felt like I was really getting great support.

I wore one of my new bras all day today, and loved it. The only negative was that I actually had to have good posture so the underwire didn’t press into my sensitive belly. But I need to have better posture anyway so this negative in reality is actually a positive. I loved that the straps had a really big range of adjustability, and how soft the fabric was. I also felt sexy walking around knowing how pretty my bra was! That may sound silly, but it’s so fun to have something beautiful on and it gives you some extra confidence!

Panty/Thong Size

Since my belly is my most prominent body part, that affects the bottoms that I wear. I tried on swim bottoms, and the size 2 fit the best. They were a little tight, but you don’t want your swim suit to fall off! Because the 2 fit in swim, I was confident the panties size 2 would also fit. I asked the sales associate about it just in case, and she said they were consistent in sizing. Thankfully she was right, and now I have 5 pair of perfectly fitting absolutely beautiful and sexy bottoms.

I think it might be a standard sale but you buy 3 panties/thongs, and you get 2 free, but I haven’t checked before, so next time you shop there, let me know if they still have this deal! I got some that matched the bras I selected, so not only do I have cute and sexy separates, but now I have cute lingerie sets!

I was looking for a g-string thong, but only found a thicker thong. The fabric that goes between the cheeks is about 3/4″, so not a string, but when I tried them on at home I was happy to see that it looks wicked sexy! I also felt like it looked really classic and a bit more fancy, so that is fun!

I also really liked that the bottoms come up a little higher on the belly, but not like high waisted, just that they offered better coverage. Lingerie bottoms I have purchased in the past go really low in the front which not only creates a really uncomfortable fit, but also not a very sexy one. (It just looks so awkward!) Another feature that I really like about Torrid’s intimate bottoms is the elastic that holds them up. It isn’t thick and tight, but thin and dainty and allows for a lot of room to stretch.

I really hate things pressing hard on my belly, so the loose elastic and thin silky smooth fabric felt so dreamy on my poor belly! (Some of my chronic conditions cause intense swelling and pain in my belly) I also like how the thin fabric and elastic make it feel like you aren’t wearing anything! I definitely feel sexy in each of the bottoms I purchased!

Not only did they have the silky lingerie type bottoms, they also have more traditional cotton styles, and you can have a thicker waist band if you want. They have some really cute prints with a variation of fits- cheeky, hipster etc. I love the variety Torrid offers. I felt like I had all the options for bras and panties that you would find at a Victoria’s Secret, except I am happier with the quality of Torrid’s selection!

Lingerie

I found a beautiful hot pink chemise lingerie dress in the clearance section! Score!!! yay! It’s stretchy and beautiful, and like the rest of their items, fit true to size. Knowing what size you are makes it so much easier to shop with confidence! I’m so happy I did this investigation, now I can watch sales and look for great deals and be able to purchase final sale items without having to worry!

They had a few different lingerie options in store, tight fitting chemise dress styles, babydoll sets, matching bra and panties, and sexy lace bralettes. If you go online they have even more options. There are garter options, which I personally think are super sexy and fun, and fancy silky robes. They even have bustiers, corsets, and short petticoats.

Their lingerie prices are like the rest of their prices, a bit high but fair. The quality is amazing, so you really do get your money’s worth. Their babydoll sets are about $55, bralettes range from $28-32, and the most expensive piece I found was $57, for a robe of all things. So check the materials and the description. I have never felt like Torrid was charging outrageous prices for garbage product. Do I think they are expensive? Yes, for my budget. But do I think it’s worth it? yes! I will only be buying my intimates from Torrid in the future.

I also signed up for their customer rewards, which is basically like a grocery savings card where you get discounts. This will also send me an email letting me know about their sales, like their amazing semiannual sales. Seriously ladies, it was worth driving over 3 hours to go to this store! We went to Phoenix for other things, but it would have been worth it just to shop that sale.

Conclusion

I am now a huge believer and fan of Torrid’s intimates being great quality, comfortable, and beautiful. The prices are very comparable to other lingerie options, but are better quality. The fit is consistent with their other items across the store, so if you know your size in leggings or other bottoms, then you know your size in their intimates.

I had so much fun going shopping for this review and putting it all together for you. My old bras were seriously disgraceful, and I’m so glad I went shopping to buy new ones! I feel like I took the “treat yo’ self” motto a little too seriously! I hope your shopping experience for intimates is as fun and awesome as mine was. And if you can’t make it in store, Torrid has excellent options online, complete with really fast 3 day shipping!

I want to hear your thoughts! Are you going to go buy yourself some new beautiful things? Have you found the perfect style bra? I love hearing your stories and opinions, it’s so fun to connect with you!

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Instagram Giveaway

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Go check out my Instagram, and the Instagram of @jaime_jetaime. She is hosting a giveaway for me and the winner will receive a $75 gift card to my shop! Jaime is awesome, and takes fabulous pictures where she shows you how to rock your look like a boss!!

The giveaway is easy to enter, you just follow her and follow me, and then tag 2 friends! For each additional 2 friends tagged, you get an additional entry! Good luck!!!

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January Jamboree

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For me, the month following Christmas is very difficult. I LOVE Christmas, and so without the fun twinkle lights and holiday parties, I get bored of January realllllly fast. The next holiday to look forward to is Valentine’s Day, and though that is super fun, it’s a long way off! So, to solve my January blues, I’ve invented a holiday, and I’m calling it- “January Jamboree”!!

What is this January Jamboree?

What is this magical holiday I’ve brainstormed up? Truth be told I got part of the idea from my awesome Daddy. He suggested one Christmas that we each take a certain amount of money and go buy the presents we realllllly wanted for Christmas, wrap them up, and open them on Christmas morning! Then everyone else would be surprised, and you would have to wait to have your awesome present until Christmas. I personally love getting people presents, but this was a really fun year!

The whole point of celebrating this holiday is to celebrate your life, your favorite things, basically- YOU! It may sound selfish, and it kind of it, but it’s important that you take time to refuel yourself and remind yourself how awesome you are. More on this topic at the bottom.

Didn’t get what you were dreaming of this Christmas? Or perhaps like me you realized you actually NEEDED a few things that you forgot to mention for Christmas, and still need them, so this is a perfect excuse? My husband spoils me all year long, but I realized with all my baking over the holidays that I need new measuring cups and new teaspoon measuring sets. I have random odds and ends for measuring- like who needs 1/2 a tablespoon? A lot of my recipes called for 2 tablespoons, and when you have to measure 4 half tbsp out, it doesn’t quite add up the way you want- I don’t know how that’s possible, but trust me, my holiday candy proved that was the case.

For January Jamboree you buy yourself something you need or something you want, preferably something you can wear, especially since there are amazing deals in January. Speaking of deals, use code JAMBOREE to get 15% off your entire order! I also really need pants because the thigh area near my bum keeps wearing out in all my jeans! So I will be getting myself multiple presents for this years celebration of January Jamboree! Then you wrap up your present, and wait! Ahhh waiting is so hard!! But it’s so fun!

When and How do you par-tay?

Then on January Jamboree day, which is January 25th- exactly 1 month after Christmas- you get to have a PARTY!!! Traditionally, as in this year I’m setting the tradition, you celebrate in the evening, around 7:30. But what does the celebration look like?

You invite friends or family- basically your biggest fans, but you also need to be their biggest fans- this isn’t a totally selfish holiday! Basically your favorite people should be there. Each person brings their favorite dish, and you talk about your favorite things! Then before dessert you each open your present from yourself to yourself! It’s going to be so amazing, I can’t wait!!

Need other ideas? Watch your favorite youtube videos, watch a favorite movie, play favorite games, talk about your favorite things about each other! This is a holiday where you can really make it your own. Go all out crazy fancy, or keep it really low key!

Is there an unselfish side to this holiday?

Why yes, thanks for asking, there totally is! I was under the impression that suicide rates would go up between Christmas and Valentine’s Day when the winter blues set it, but in fact, this is not the case! Suicide rates actually rise in the spring. Suicide prevention is very important to me, so we are going to do something about it now, before the rates start to rise in the spring.

The unselfish side to this holiday? Price match the gift you have given yourself and donate that to suicide prevention causes. Some great ones are: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, or AFSP , or to the national suicide hotline- this is the number you see floating around on Facebook which is called  National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.  While we are celebrating self and the joy of being alive, let’s help other people find that joy and reason to stay!

Many people don’t feel they are worth celebrating, and I’m hoping this holiday will help them realize how much they deserve to be celebrated and loved, and that this life is one worth living. I know there are so many factors that cause a person to want to commit suicide, and if you are battling this crisis, you are not alone. You are important, and needed. You are so loved, and there are people who care about you. The world will NOT be a better place without you. Reach out and call 1-800-273-8255 to speak to someone right now.

What Will My Holiday Look Like?

It’s going to be amazing, I’ve already invited all my girlfriends to come over on the 25th at 7:30 and to bring their favorite dessert! Because we all have kids we will have already eaten with our families, so dessert is a fabulous and delicious option. Then we will take turns telling each other our favorite things in life, and our favorite things about each other! And we will open our presents, and talk about our dreams for the future.

What gifts will I be giving myself? New pants, because I realllllly need some, and then a set of measuring cups and spoons because I need them. And then some candy because I want it! What will you be getting?

Check out the Shop at Plus Size Presence to buy yourself a Gift!!

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New Year, New You?

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Have you seen this tagline a lot this past week? I feel like every new year I see this line: New Year, New You. I can see why people feel like writing or teaching or promoting a business with this platform, but honestly, it doesn’t resonate well with me. I’ve worked hard to be the person I am, and honestly none of the changes I’ve made in my life have happened overnight. I really don’t think you can create a whole new you that will be authentic and that you will like in just a year.

You can probably change up your look somewhat, but that will be limited by finances. It’s super expensive to build a whole new wardrobe from scratch. What about changing everything about yourself? And did you know it takes at least 3 weeks of solid repetition of a habit to get it to actually stick? That means each day at the same time you are adding in this new behavior or habit. Some people learn and change faster than others. I’ve been working on making studying my scriptures a daily habit for years, and I still struggle with that.

For the sake of your finances and your time, start small. Do you want to change your look? Your clothes? Your behavior? Pick one thing and get to work. We are often more successful with changing ourselves when we take it one step at a time. A great fast way to change your look is to get a new hairstyle. Depending on your budget and what you want done, you can have a totally different look in the extreme! Then start to change your makeup. Having a new makeup style with new colors and ways you apply your makeup is another great and fast way to change your look. Unfortunately, this is a pretty expensive route.

What’s Wrong With the Old You?

Another reason I’m not a super fan of this tagline is because it implies something is wrong with the old you. It really bothers me that in society we have so many messages of women not being enough- not pretty enough, thin enough, and that something is wrong with us.

Let’s get one thing straight, there is nothing wrong with who you are. True, no one is perfect, but that doesn’t mean you as a person are bad or need fixing. Let’s change the conversation and speak up about the positives within ourselves and those around us. Do we need to work hard to be better today than we were yesterday? Yes, but that does not mean we need to beat ourselves up, or completely revamp who we are.

Now fashion wise, I’m all for adding new fun pieces, or creating a new look with an outfit. It’s financially unrealistic to build a new wardrobe from scratch. If you get a ne job and need a special wardrobe, that’s different. I’m talking about your personal look and are time wardrobe. Don’t succumb to the pressures of social media and feel that what you have and are wearing is not good enough.

Do you want to add new pieces? Create a few new outfits or new “looks”? Great! But don’t feel like you need to start from scratch and spend a ton of money. A great way to be able to add trendy things to a wardrobe without breaking the bank is to have a base wardrobe.

Base Wardrobe

In my base wardrobe I have basics- tank tops, jeans, dark pants, a black skirt, leggings, and a few white tops. Then I add new pieces that are trendy or in season, and as I rotate through the seasons and as things go in and out of style, it’s not too expensive to add new pieces! I have dark wash jeans in my basic wardrobe, because dark pants don’t go out of style. Pants with light or acid washes will fluctuate in and out of style.

I also have a great jean skirt in my basic wardrobe that I wear with leggings and boots in the fall and winter. I have a few white and black sweaters that I can wear over blouses and when the weather gets cold. It’s kind of like having a capsule wardrobe, but with the ability to add new pieces and colors while being budget conscious! Another big difference from a capsule wardrobe is that a base wardrobe can be as large as you want.

What Will You Do?

So what goals do you have? What areas in your life are you wanting to grow in? Do you have a base wardrobe? This year I’m focusing on being more loving and patient with my body, and celebrating it. I’m not going to worry or stress about my weight, but continue to eat healthy and do my very best each day.

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Fashion and Self Confidence

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As you may know, I have some intense physical limitations. But the more I think about it, the more I see and hear of other limitations in the media, like when you focus on something you begin to notice it everywhere. This was actually a great thing for me, because I realized we ALL have limitations, and that’s just life. The problem with limitations is when we don’t know how to work around them, and they consume us. What does this problem have to do with fashion? Everything.

Psychology of Fashion

I honestly felt these past few years that I was trying my hardest to climb out from under the weight of my limitations. It felt impossible some days, and I still have days where my limitations keep me out of the game, but I’ve found ways to help myself feel a bit better. My solution has been fashion.

That may sound strange, but when I dress nice and feel cute or beautiful, it makes me feel just a little better. I think there is a lot that fashion can do psychologically. If you were an inmate in prison and had to wear orange or other drab clothes, that would definitely wear on your self esteem, don’t you think?

I had a few years where I was so tired and stressed that I put my fashion on the back burner, and those years I didn’t have my regular self confidence, and it really showed. Then I made the decision to make myself and my clothes a priority, and it really did make a difference.

Some days I’m home in my jammies or work out clothes, and that’s ok. But I try to change into something less casual for when I go out of the house. I’m not worried about seeing someone I know and looking casual, but I want to let myself know that I am a priority, and that my body can run all the errands I need. I am much more confident when I go out in jeans and a nicer shirt than I am in pajamas.

Finding the Style that is Right For You

I really do believe that in order to let fashion be this magical self esteem booster for you, that you need to find your own sense of style, or fashion personality. I tried to dress like punk rockers in 8th grade, and it just never felt right. Once I went to high school I decided to dress more feminine and classical and preppy. And I LOVED it!  Now my style has changed a little bit, but I only wear things that I like, and that make me happy.

I have purchased a few things in the last year that have been trendy or “in style” but that didn’t reflect me very well. Where are those pieces now? Hiding in the back of my closet. I try to make myself wear them because I spent money on them, but then I just get super anxious. Fashion is the first thing people will see when they look at you/meet you. Don’t be afraid to let your style reflect your personality. that way other can get a true sense of who you are!

Not that they are entitled to now that right off the bat, but dressing for yourself and in a way that is true to you is for your benefit, not anyone else’s. Fashion shouldn’t be a burden or a platform that you feel forced to conform to the rest of the world. Fashion is really a blank canvas for you to express yourself, or what you want people to know about you!

For example, I LOVE to wear ribbons in my hair. I think I look so cute with a ribbon tied around my head with a small bow in the front. It really is fun and whimsical, and I think ribbons are so cute! It’s nothing extreme, but it gives people a peek into my personality, which I think is really fun.

If I felt well enough and my body would be comfortable I would totally wear fancy 50’s style dresses and pearls everyday! I just love those dresses and that classy look! But I also need to take into account my body. Since I’m a stay at home mom, I can give myself any dress code I want! But with my physical limitations, that kind of dress would be very uncomfortable to wear all day, unless the waist band was stretchy. ( my belly swells throughout the day… I know, weird…)

Have Courage

It can seem very scary or daunting to venture out into the bold world of fashion and try and find styles and colors that feel true to you. Don’t be afraid, just jump straight in! Fashion is meant to be a super fun outlet that is very personal and individual. Of course you may have to work within the parameters of a dress code, but you can still wear clothing that you love that represent you!

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Sometimes it helps to have a guide of where to start out. Go through and read my past articles on sizes, and styles, and body types. That will give you an idea of what types of cuts to wear that will make you look great, and then you can move forward feeling confident that you can and will look great! And don’t be afraid to reach out to me and ask for help or ideas! I LOVE fashion and helping people find their way to self expression!!

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Formal Plus Size Dress

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Hello lovelies! I’m so excited to present to you a custom made formal dress!!! It’s beautiful, has a built in bra, and is modest! I loved changing up this design to be more modest, and more flattering! Take a look! These dresses are perfect for plus size bridesmaids, or for fancy events, and come in sizes 16-30. (1x-6x)

Features

The built in bra: This is a formal dress, and wearing a bra is not always conducive to formal dresses. You don’t want to be worried about bra straps while wearing a stunning dress! I also know it can be difficult to find a truly flattering fit of a plus size bra. This picece has boning in it, which means it gives a set structure to the top, and makes it easy to look great, and not letting your chest look saggy. The built in bra has thick padding so you don’t have to worry about sagging again, and you don’t have to worry about nipples showing through.

This dress also has touching around the waist, which I love! It gives a very defined waist, that is also slimming. My stomach is my most prominent feature, so I love defined THICK waistbands, so my belly doesn’t protrude above or below the waistline. This waistline will also accentuate your small waist and give you an hourglass shape.

The back goes all the way up, with a zipper. I really like this feature because you don’t have to worry about back fat being prominent. This dress is LINED, like really well, so it’s thick and you don’t have to worry your back fat will bulge weird. Maybe that’s just me who gets uncomfortable about that, but I really like not having to worry about that. When you wear formal, you want the dress to look amazing on you and not draw attention to the odd places your body puts more fat. Some people really don’t care, but I’m more confident when I can just flaunt what I’ve got and not have little things bug me.

The skirt is lined as well, with several layers, so it’s very swishy and flowy. I love that you can sit down and the lining will keep everything smooth so the skirt will flow nicely around your legs. I don’t like when the dress clings to your legs and puffs out the lower belly/upper hips. It just ruins your beautiful look! So this dress will keep you looking snazzy, even while sitting!!

The sleeves are awesome. They are flutter sleeves, so they will naturally flow over your shoulders, and not push into them or make our shoulders look larger than the dress. Really this dress takes care of all the things that tend to bother me, and make it look great. My arms are getting a bit more “loose” for lack of a better term, and so I get annoyed when dresses are tight on the arms, because it makes my arms look weird, and not like their beautiful selves!

The flutter sleeve is also really flattering because of the way it hangs. They let the fabric create drama, and it looks great! I also like that the flutter sleeve goes all the way around, so you don’t have your armpits sneaking out. I’m not going to lie, armpit shaving is not always at the top of my to-do list, so making sure they are fully covered is a big thing for me.

Tailoring

So as I said before, these dresses are custom made. The company used my size chart, and used the largest measurements for each set. So the size 16 fits be perfectly, but my boozies are not nearly as big as other ladies, so the built in bra is a tad too big for me. I thought it was fine though because the bra stands on it own, and it was comfortable, so I didn’t feel the need to get mine tailored.

The dress is a couple inches longer than where your foot will be, but that’s on purpose so you can wear tall heels, or if you are taller than most, you don’t have to worry about this being short on you!

Because of these larger measurements in length and bust, you may need to get this tailored to perfectly fit you. And that’s the goal. It’s much easier for a tailor to take things in or shorten them, whereas if they need to be let out or longer in length, you are really limited. You want your formal dress to be a perfect fit on you, and with this dress, if it doesn’t fit perfectly, then it won’t cost a lot of money to get that perfect fit.

These dresses are perfect for special occasions, formal dances, or for bridesmaids dresses. You really don’t want to feel like it looks just “ok” on you, you want to put this dress on and make it work for you! So don’t be afraid to be picky and want things to fit perfectly, thats why we made it easily customizable.

Care Instructions

You could put this in the washer on delicate, but I recommend dry cleaning. That way it will be pressed and perfect, ready to go. I hate having to worry about ironing or steaming things, and so I prefer to go to the dry cleaners. We live in a small town, and so I can’t really price compare, but if you live in a big city you can really find a great dry cleaner in your set budget.

Go Have Fun

I love fancy dresses because I feel like I can look amazing and have the best time just dancing or swishing around in the dress! Where are you going to wear this? What’s your favorite feature? Get this dress here at the shop here at Plus Size Presence