Smart Glamour and Body Positivity

Today, I'm excited to introduce you to a company that is doing some very amazing things. 
Alexa Low-High Tank - customized with sleeves:  Smart Glamour (Available here)
Smart Glamour, owned by designer Mallorie Carrington, offers affordable made-to-order women's fashion. 

I was very excited when Mallorie reached out to me about doing a collaboration with her company.  As I've learned more information about Smart Glamour, I find my respect and admiration for everything she is doing continues to increase.

Skirt:  The Limited
Booties:  Target (Available here)
One of the things I really love about Smart Glamour is that you will always know where your clothes come from!  All of Mallorie's designs are handmade by her in Queens, NY.  Her turnaround time is 5-7 business days (which is amazing for made-to-order pieces!), and she purchases her fabrics in Manhattan. 

As her company grows, Mallorie plans to first hire NY freelancers to help and then eventually head to production houses to manufacture. She attests that her manufacturing will always be done in USA-based production houses that she can visit personally to ensure that workers are treated fairly.

Earrings:  Torrid (Available here)
Bracelets:  New York & Company
In addition to ensuring fair labor practices, Mallorie hopes to promote body confidence through her work. 

Smart Glamour offers custom sizing and other customizations to ensure a good fit and all the details that will make you feel your best (lower or raise a hemline, add or remove sleeves depending on preference).

Besides ensuring that her clothes fit women of every size at a very reasonable price, Mallorie has started a campaign to encourage women to know their measurements.  She emphasizes that our measurements are just numbers and that knowing them puts US in control of our bodies and our clothing purchases.  She started a social media campaign for women to share their measurements, using the hashtag, #measuremebeautiful.

Skirt:  Target
I find this campaign to be such an amazing and empowering idea. So many women don't know their own measurements, are scared to take their own measurements, and even more afraid about sharing those measurements with the world.  The #measuremebeautiful campaign helps us see so many different body types and to get a better understanding of body size/shape and the measurements that may go with that.
Rings:  Torrid, eloquii (Available here, and here)
So many of us don't really understand what other women's bodies look like without airbrushing, and we certainly haven't been shown other women's measurements.  I grew up with the notion that to be "perfect," I needed measurements of 34"-24"-34" because that is the ideal that many of us have been taught.

I have NEVER had these proportions.  At my thinnest...when I was wearing a size 0...when girls' clothing was too big for my waist, my waist was bigger than this, my hips smaller.

This set of measurements is just that - a set of numbers, no more or less beautiful than any other set because they're JUST NUMBERS, after all!

Necklace:  Ixora Boutique
As I have talked about on the blog before, women's clothing sizes are extremely inconsistent.  Knowing your measurements is a useful tool in shopping for new clothes, but it also helps do away with some of that anxiety that often comes with having to choose a bigger size with a particular brand or store.

In addition to promoting body confidence, Mallorie also works to reduce conflict and negativity between women that so often comes with the competition over appearance (and the attention and social success that comes with it).  She is off to an amazing start with her company and this campaign.  The idea of women sharing their measurements, putting themselves out there, choosing not to compete with other women (or themselves) is PARADIGM-SHIFTING.

Shoes:  Target
I admit...I struggled with the thought of sharing my measurements.  I know I'm overweight...you read my blog - you know I'm overweight.  There's no secret I'm hiding, but for some reason it's been more difficult to share my clothing size or my measurements. 

It wasn't until just recently I started sharing my clothing size with people outside of a few close acquaintances.  That ideal of "perfection" that I constantly fight has for too long reared its ugly head and forced me to put up a front.

But why hide my clothing size?  It's just a number, an inconsistent one at that!  So, I've started doing it!  The earth didn't stop rotating.  The ground didn't open up and swallow me hole.  In fact, no one has even batted an eyelash or made a disparaging remark. 

So, with that thought, why not share my measurements too?  They're just numbers - numbers that represent a few of the my body's proportions.  They don't define me any more than your measurements define you.

I encourage you to take your own measurements if you don't already know them.  If you're so inclined, share them and join the SmartGlamour campaign!

Do you know your own measurements?  Would you buy custom-made clothing?

For the pencil skirt in other looks, see here, here, here, here, and here.
For the sheer maxi skirt in other looks, see here, here, and here.


St. Louis Blogger Awards Nominations

I'm so excited to announce that I have been chosen as an official blogger of St. Louis Fashion Week!  Expect to see coverage of several upcoming fashion shows and events this October.
In addition, it's time again to nominate bloggers for the St. Louis Fashion Blogger Awards.  Last year, I was so humbled to win the People's Choice Award for Best Delivery of Personal Style

If you like my blog, please consider nominating me this year in whatever categories you see fit (You can nominate in as many categories as you'd like).

You can check out all the St. Louis Fashion Week bloggers and access the nomination form here

Direct access to the nomination form here.

Nominations run through August 22, 2014.

Thank you so much for your support!!!!!

Rung & Sprung Boutiques' Blogger Party - Shopping for a Great Cause

Thursday night, I had the awesome opportunity to attend a blogger event at two second-hand boutiques in St. Louis.  The connected shops, Rung and Sprung, offer second-hand and vintage finds in a boutique atmosphere for a personalized and unique shopping experience. 
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
Rung and Sprung are non-profits, with proceeds benefiting the Women's Foundation of St. Louis (which distributes resources to women and children all over the St. Louis area) and Nurses for Newborns.
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
Rung offers professional clothing for women at a reasonable price, while Sprung specializes in clothing and other items for pregnant women and children. 
Loving the Arch-themed books!!
Looking through the racks and aesthetically-pleasing displays, I saw items that ranged from vintage to Target to Dolce & Gabanna. 
Dolce & Gabanna heels
The boutiques also showcase art from local female artists, including jewelry designer Erica Dunk of Hyper Haute jewelry.
Erica, the designer behind Hyper Haute wearing some of her own pieces
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
Necklace:  Hyper Haute
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
Hyper Haute jewelry
Guests at the Blogger event enjoyed light bites (including yummy cupcakes), cocktails, fun fashion trivia, and a fashion show featuring on-trend looks available at Rung Boutique.
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
Carmen (center) of The Ruby Zipper and host for night with models in Rung fashions
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
It was great to see a few familiar blogger faces, such as Carmen from The Ruby Zipper (who is also a stock associate at Rung), as well as to meet some new ones like Summer from Hipster Hijabis and Latoya of Latoya Elnora.
Carmen of The Ruby Zipper
Photo:  C/o Carmen Boeser
St. Louis blogger, Summer from Hipster Hijabis
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
Latoya of Latoya Elnora, right, with model in dress from Rung
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com

I enjoyed chatting with the Executive Director of Rung and Sprung Boutiques, Mallarie Zimmer.  Besides the fact that she was a delightful person, what struck me was the level of passion and commitment to servicing the community through both the boutique experience and the charitable giving.
Mallarie, the executive director of Rung & Sprung
Photo c/o David Kilper from Arkitography.com
I can't wait to get back out there to pick up some amazing and unique pieces for both me and my kids.  It truly is fashion with a heart!

P.S.  This event was possible due to the partnership of Rung and Sprung with Alive Magazine, Ivy Hill Boutique, Pinnacle Vodka, David Kilper, The Dam, Leopard Boutique, Byrd Style Lounge, Bronx Diba Shoe Outlet, and Hyper Haute.


Maxi and Moto - 3 Ways!

Today, I wanted to share with you the surprising versatility of a maxi skirt/moto jacket combo.

On a recent casual Friday, I decided to wear my maxi skirt and moto jacket to work.  To keep the overall feel a little more professional, I added a button down shirt.

Skirt:  The Limited (Available here)
Jacket:  Torrid
Blouse:  The Limited (Available here)
Clutch:  The Limited
Substituting the button-down shirt out for a cute tee and swapping the clutch and heels for a tote and low-heeled sandals, this outfit is ready for a casual weekend day.

Tee:  Peter Som for Kohl's (Available here)
Tote:  Ruben & Isabel Toledo for Lane Bryant
Necklace:  The Limited (Available here)
Rings:  Torrid
Bangle:  Ann Taylor (Available here)
For evening, a lower-cut top with lingerie-inspired details and a fun clutch help amp up the night-time appeal.  I wore this look last night for a blogger event, and it's my favorite look of the three.

Clutch:  Amazon.com (Available here)
Tank:  The Limited (Available here)
Ring:  Earthbound Trading Company
Bracelets:  The Limited, Ann Taylor, New York & Company
Earrings:  The Limited (Available here)
Which look is your favorite and why?  Do you like a maxi/moto jacket combination?

For this skirt in another look, see here.
For the button down shirt in other looks, see here and here.

For the t-shirt in another look, see here.