Plus size style file: Lala from Plus Size is Me

While around the world plus size liberation and the body positivity movement are big, booming trends, here in South Africa those talking about the topic are fewer and far between. Lala and her sister Nkanyezi Tshabalala are amongst some of the most well-known voices on the subject in South Africa, with almost 50 000 followers on their Facebook page alone. I had the great honour of chatting to Lala about her personal style, and thoughts on body positivity.

South African plus size style - Lala Tshabalala

About Lala from Plus Size is Me

My name is Lala, I am a plus size fashion blogger, activist and sometimes model. I have my own fashion and lifestyle brand for fuller figured women called Plus Size is ME which I started 3 years ago.

How do you define your style?

Style is about figuring out what looks good on you whether it’s a current or past trend. It’s about taking chances and creating a look which people can identify you with. E.g. Kim Kardashian may wear new items everyday but her ‘style identity’ is pieces that are tight fitted, sometimes revealing and accentuate her curves.

Who inspires your style?

My top 3 ‘style icons’ would have to be Amber Rose, Kim and Khloe Kardashian.

South African plus size style - Lala Tshabalala

Where do you shop?

I shop at many different stores. I’m not afraid to pop in even if I don’t think they will have my size because you never know. I have assumed the worst about certain stores and walked out with items. My main stores would have to be Cotton On, YDE, Mr Price and a lot of boutiques.

Who is your favourite designer or label?

My favourite label would have to be Babes and Felines. It is an international brand and the reason I love the clothing so much is because it WORKS FOR CURVY WOMEN AND LOOKS DAMN GOOD. I haven’t bought anything from their online store yet because I’m so afraid of purchasing from so far away and the size not quite fitting my body, BUT I’m DETERMINED TO OWN some of those pieces.

What are some things you can never leave the house without?

I wouldn’t leave the house without a phly pair of shades, red lipstick, mascara and my wallet.

South African plus size style - Lala Tshabalala

What is your favourite fashion item at the moment?

Bodysuits

What does the term ‘body positivity’ mean to you?

Body positivity is a positive way of looking at your body and a positive messages being spread about body image.

What are your ‘secrets’ for learning to love your body?

I have four factors that have helped build my self-esteem. Social media, people, physical and psychological health. Social media refers to taking control of your pages and following pages that contribute to the way you feel about yourself positively. “People” is about surrounding yourself with positive people and physical and psychological health is about taking care of YOU by being active and kinder to yourself. I had posted a video on YouTube explaining all of this in depth.

What are you passionate about?

I’m super passionate about this body positive/ healthy body image movement. I live for it every day, it is my work, I believe in it and will keep working on it. It’s important that we spread this message and get it right so that men and women can learn how to love themselves, so that we can keep fighting eating disorders, suicides and all these issues that come from self-hate.

If you were a character from a book, TV or the movies, who would you be and why?

I would want to be Hannah (Lena Dunham) on the tv series “Girls”. I watched that series for the first time a few weeks ago and I remember thinking ‘now this is absolute SELF ACCEPTANCE’. Lena has put herself out there on one of the most public platforms for literally the world to see and you can only do that if you are more than ok with yourself. I don’t know if her intention was for her character to inspire women to be at peace with their bodies and love themselves but that is exactly what she is doing without outright saying it. One of my favourite scenes is when they were away on vacay and Hannah rode her bicycle from the house to the shop in her bikini!!! Ahahahhahaha ha  hahahhahaha! Not even her skinny friends did that. She is too awesome.

South African plus size style - Lala Tshabalala

Who has been the most important person in your journey to body positivity?

I would have to say Toccara Jones definitely put me on the path of body love and acceptance. Watching her on America’s Next Top Model as the first plus size woman gave me a sense of hope and belonging. Now I would have to say I’m inspired by a lot of plus size bloggers, activists, models and other women who are owning their “flaws” and are choosing to celebrate them, such as Chrissy Teigan and Lena Dunham. The most important lesson about confidence I have learnt is to surround yourself with positive people. If you are constantly around negative people it will rub off on you and it will be very hard to feel good.

What wisdom would you pass on to someone at the beginning of their body positivity journey?

Be patient with yourself. You will have good days and bad days but whatever happens remember to be good to yourself.

I love my body because…

… it has been so good to me. I have abused it and mistreated it but every morning it gets up and carries me through my life.

South African plus size style - Lala Tshabalala

You can read Lala’s blog here, or follow here on Twitter and Instagram on the handles @misscurvylala + @plussizeisme. Her Facebook page is here.

If you would like to be featured on my plus size Style File, please drop me an email on mindthecurvesza@gmail.com.

 

What confidence means to me – a reverse before and after shoot

Forgive, for a minute please, that this blog post is all of *counts on fingers and toes* 6 months overdue. (My blog went through a black hole period where I failed to post about a bunch of really cool things, and I’m trying to make up for that a little now, almost in the spirit of #throwbackthursdays.)

Right at the very top of my list is the reverse before and after shoot experience that I had with Abigail K Photography. Abigail invited me – along with some of my favourite Cape Town beauty bloggers – to her studio for a shoot that focused on making us feel confident – not just when we were dolled up to the nines with fluttery eyelashes and sparkly lips, but also when we were barefaced in our most informal lounge-around-the-house clothes.

One of the greatest lessons I learned from the experience was that confidence is so much about how you hold yourself and the energy that you put out. I feel that so much of the reason we think we look better when we have makeup and pretty frocks on, is because we’re projecting ourselves from a place of confidence – we’re ‘enabled’ by what we’re wearing. But, as the #CTConfidence shoot shows, if we present ourselves in the same way – with confidence –  without a bit of makeup on, we look just as good.

Take a look at the video Abi put together, and see for yourself:

You can also find out more about the project on Abigail’s blog, here.

As she was taking the photos, I was expecting to love the ones where I’m dressed up, and loathe the ‘afters’, without makeup, but upon seeing them I realised I loved them both, for different reasons. There was something about the makeup-free ones that revealed a bit more of the ‘inside me’.

Take a look:

#CT Confidence - Picture by Abigail Klopper
Credit: Abigail Klopper
#CT Confidence - Picture by Abigail Klopper
Credit: Abigail Klopper
#CT Confidence - Picture by Abigail Klopper
Credit: Abigail Klopper
#CT Confidence - Picture by Abigail Klopper
Credit: Abigail Klopper

I would also love to take this opportunity to challenge you, my readers, to experiment with this idea of confidence. Why not do your own reverse before and after pics, and post them to Twitter and Instagram with the #CTConfidence? Please tag me in them too, I would love to see 🙂

For anyone who’s interested, Abigail takes the most amazing profile pictures – professional, family portraits, or otherwise. You can find out more about her services here.

Plus size style file: Georgina from She Might be Loved

This week’s plus size style file is on another Instagram crush, Georgina from She Might be Loved. Not only is Georgina a foxy ‘Instalebrity’, but she also holds several awards and accolades for her achievements in plus size blogging. Read below to find out why I’m so smitten with her.

Plus size style file of Georgina Grogan

About Georgina from She Might be Loved

I’m Georgina and I’m a Beauty and Fashion Blogger/Social Media Manager from Sheffield, UK.

How do you define your style?

I’m what they call an ‘hourglass’ shape so I really love to show that off in skater dresses and fitted dresses to accentuate my curves.

Plus size style file of Georgina Grogan

Who inspires your style?

That’s a tough one as I don’t really look to anyone for inspiration, it’s more so a collective of everything I see mixed with my imagination and then I wear what I can find.

What are some things you can never leave the house without?

MAC Diva, concealer and my phone!

Which is your favourite fashion item at the moment?

My Newlook boots actually, they make me so tall and feel like a goddess.

Plus size style file of Georgina Grogan

What does the term ‘body positivity’ mean to you?

It means being able to look at anyone and not judge them over their shape, size or anything else other than their personality. It means loving yourself and others for the way they are and not wanting to change anything about them or yourself. Loving everyone for how they look. It’s such a simple concept but not many seem to be able to comprehend or put it into practice.

What are your ‘secrets’ for learning to love your body?

Look at yourself in the mirror a lot, I’m often called vain, but I’m just generally happy with what I’ve got and I’d rather always look out for mirrors and stop than avoid them.
Also finding your ‘style’ and those clothes that can really make you feel hot and confident is so important.

Plus size style file of Georgina Grogan

What do you still want to achieve?

I’m nearly 21 and I’ve done so much more than I ever expected, so this is a really tricky question. World Domination? Seriously though, I just want to do more of everything that I’m already doing and try to spread more of my positive attitude to more people.

What do you do for fun?

I hang out with friends and ignore emails!

If you were a character from a book, TV or the movies, who would you be and why?

Piper from Charmed, came to mind but I think that’s more of who I’d like to be as she was wise and always had to solve things. I asked my boyfriend and he said Maleficent, but again, that’s probably just my obsession with her. I mean I guess I could come off as Maleficent, as many people think I’m intimidating until they actually get to know me. I think it’s how I draw my eyebrows on….

Plus size style file of Georgina Grogan

Who has been the most important person in your journey to body positivity? Can you tell me about him or her?

Another difficult one as it’s actually been myself. I was the one who despite what other people said, I’d always be happy with myself deep down, I just needed to stop listening to others. As soon as I was to come away from all those negative people, I did, and since I’ve surrounded myself with positive people and tried to keep a positive mindset and that has really helped. It wasn’t easy, but there’s never been anyone in my life growing up who was just fat and happy, so I guess I had to be that person for me as I didn’t and still don’t want to change myself. I’m happy, others will just have to deal with it.

What wisdom would you pass on to someone at the beginning of their body positivity journey?

Get rid of the negativity in your life, if it means losing friends, it’s not the end of the world and you will make more when you’re ready. Delete people on Facebook, get a hobby where you can express yourself, clear out your life and start a new positive one.
It really worked for me and although I was at my lowest before I started my blog and started to climb the really steep hill up to body positivity, I now look back and realise I’m better for doing it.

What is your favourite feature, and how did you discover it?

Immediately I think my eyes, but then I like my cheeks too. I discovered it from makeup and knowing how to accentuate them, but then I started to appreciate them without anything on them.

Plus size style file of Georgina Grogan

You can read Georgina’s blog here, follow her on Instagram here, on Facebook here and Twitter here.

If you missed last week’s plus size style file, you can read about Cherry Lady Lisa here.

If you would like to be featured on my plus size Style File, please drop me an email on mindthecurvesza@gmail.com.

 

Plus size style file: Lisa from Cherry Lisa

It is my great pleasure to showcase the awesome style of another lovely local lass – Cherry Lady Lisa of Durban. A little bit goth, a little bit pinup, a little bit geeky  – I could just gobble this lady up in one, smooth bite! (Does that make me sound creepy? Good.)

Here’s what I found out about her:

Plus size style file: Lisa Hayes Foley
Credit: George Vosloo Photography

About Cherry Lady Lisa:

My name is Lisa Hayes Foley, also known as Cherry Lisa. I am a textile designer and I own and run Frockabilly SA, an artisanal store specialising in handmade cute & geeky hair bows. I’m curiously obsessed with the 1950’s, My Little Pony, Alice in Wonderland, American McGee’s Alice, cats,  crafting and Studio Ghibli.

How do you define your style?

Rockabilly with a dash of Goth and a sprinkling of Geek. [Note from Ed: ‘Hey! That’s what I said!’]

Who inspires your style?

I am inspired by the Rockabilly culture as well as the modern Goth culture. I use Tumblr for a lot of my inspiration.

Plus size style file: Lisa Hayes Foley
Credit: George Vosloo Photography

What are some things you can never leave the house without?

A pair of ballet flats (I own many different coloured ones), a Geeky accessory of some kind (be it a hair piece or jewellery) and lipstick – my favourite brand is Jeffree Star Cosmetics Liquid Lipsticks, I have quite a collection growing.

Which is your favourite fashion item at the moment?

Cupcake petticoats. I absolutely adore them and currently own 4 in different colours. They are the perfect accent to a full circle skirt or dress.

Plus size style file: Lisa Hayes Foley
Credit: George Vosloo Photography

What does the term ‘body positivity’ mean to you?

It means acceptance for all body types and not judging someone based on their appearance. Everyone is walking on their own path, separate to yours, and going through their own trials and struggles. There is no room for judgement in this world.

What are your ‘secrets’ for learning to love your body?

Figure out what you like about your body and focus hard on that, and flaunt it as best you can. The things you don’t like about your body will slowly diminish as they are overpowered by the positive.

What do you still want to achieve?

I feel that travelling the world would be a big personal feather in my cap. Raising the money myself, not asking for handouts, and then going to visit all the countries still on my bucket list would be a huge personal achievement. I am a self sufficient person and I don’t like to rely on others to help me achieve the goals I set for myself.

What are you passionate about?

My work and standing up for what you believe in.

What do you do for fun?

Crafting and sewing are my hobbies as well as collecting and restoring vintage My Little Ponies. I also love dressing up for classic car shows and the few Rockabilly events that Durban has to offer. Spending time with family and friends is important to me but I’m an introvert so I enjoy my own company just as much.

Plus size style file: Lisa Hayes Foley
Credit: George Vosloo Photography

If you were a character from a book, TV or the movies, who would you be and why?

As a child I would’ve been Alice in Wonderland, living in my own fantasy world. Growing up that character would’ve morphed into the darker form of Alice, from the video game American McGee’s Alice. Straying down the path of darkness and fighting off her inner demons, eventually succeeding.

Who has been the most important person in your journey to body positivity?

Tess Munster-Holliday for sure. When I first discovered her on Tumblr 5 years ago I was in awe of her confidence. She made me realize that I don’t need to shrink myself to be accepted. And that anyone who expects you to be less than who you are, is not worthy of being in your life and not worthy of your time.

What wisdom would you pass on to someone at the beginning of their body positivity journey?

Don’t put up with anyone in your life that isn’t supportive of you as a whole. Yes, even your family. If someone is hurting you with their actions and words, confront them. If they refuse to change, sever the ties. Never change yourself to accommodate someone who wouldn’t do the same for you.

What is your favourite feature, and how did you discover it?

Definitely my bosom and my freckles. Plus model Teer Wayde helped me on my journey to freckle acceptance, and my boobs, well, they’re just awesome.

Plus size style file: Lisa Hayes Foley
Credit: George Vosloo Photography

Please finish the sentence. ‘I love my body because…’

It is unique to me and belongs to me alone.’

Where do you go shopping?

I mostly sew my own clothes, particularly summer dresses. I also love Rockabilly brand Hell Bunny. Other than that, I shop at the general clothing chain stores but try to find items that suit my sense of style rather than being trendy fashion pieces. I dress for myself, not to keep up with trends.

If you’d like to see more of Lisa, please check out her blog, her Facebook page, or follow her in Instagram.

Missed the last Plus Size Style File? You can read about Shannon from The Feminist Unicorn here.

If you would like to be featured on my plus size Style File, please drop me an email on mindthecurvesza@gmail.com.

 

Review: Dial a Stylist

Recently one of my readers contacted me to let me know she’d started a new business. Her company, Dial A Stylist, is a very affordable way of getting dolled up before a night out. Starting at R45 per treatment, Kim will come to your home to do your hair before you go out. Her range of services include blow drying, hair straightening, curling and upstyles, amongst others.

Her super relaxed personality makes it feel as if you’re chatting with a friend before heading out – not to mention how convenient it is to have her come to you in your own home!

I had a special dinner last week, and decided to try out her services. I also set her a real challenge: I wanted a pinup hair-do that I hadn’t yet tried yet. This is how it turned out:
  With layer upon layer of hairspray, she mastered a barrel roll across the top of my head. As you know with pinup hair – bigger is always better.  I got even more excited when I saw the back. How cool do my mermaid tips look in a curled ponytail like this?
  We both agreed that the flower was the perfect touch. Annnnnnd here’s the finished get-up.

It was a great pleasure using Dial A Stylist, and I would certainly do it again when suffering through a bad hair day, or if I wanted to feel that extra bit special. Now… what should I challenge her with next time?

Kim is contactable via her Facebook page.

 

4 Plus Size Transitional Pieces for Any Season

shopping_pixabay copy

Regardless of where you live, chances are the weather can be a bit fickle at times, especially when the seasons are transitioning from one to the next. Unpredictable temperatures can make choosing an outfit tricky, to say the least. After all, what’s a girl to do when it’s cool in the morning but sweltering by noon? The key to this age-old dilemma is to create an ensemble that revolves around layers, allowing you to easily lose or add items, depending on the weather. Use these simple plus size base pieces (that you probably already have hanging in your closet!) to build an outfit for any time of the year, taking your wardrobe effortlessly from one season to the next.

Tunic

Tunics are a must have at any time of the year, but this style is also particularly handy when it comes to creating transitional outfits for us plus size ladies. As Refinery29 points out, the tunic is an easy choice for anyone who wants something that won’t cling to her middle – one reason to love this all-season piece even more. Choose pieces that hit at mid-thigh or just above the knee to get the biggest (and most flattering) bang for your buck. At this length, tunics can be worn alone or with a pair of skinny jeans during the summer, and then paired with a cropped sweater and leggings (aka the curvy girl’s best friend) for fall. To give your look an instant boost, opt for a pair of faux lather paneled leggings for a trendy touch that’s both comfortable and sophisticated.

Pencil Skirt

A timeless wardrobe staple, the pencil skirt never goes out of style, and it’s not hard to see why. With its curve-enhancing silhouette and endless choices of fabrics, colors, and accents, this particular piece can do no wrong. If you’re worried this type of skirt will look too “buttoned-up” for your liking, just know that it’s all about how you wear it. First, choose a fabric that suits your style and shape – a structured ’70s-inspired suede and slimming ponte knit are both top picks in my book. Then, pair with a turtleneck, chunky sweater, or slouchy crew neck sweatshirt for a fall-friendly ensemble.

Fit and Flare Dress

If you’re like most plus size ladies, you have at least one fit and flare dress that has become your go-to for most occasions. Versatile and chic, this style is just as ideal for a cocktail party as it is for running errands on the weekends. Plus, this particular cut does wonders for accentuating all of your best features while downplaying the ones you aren’t crazy about. By now, you can probably guess where I’m going with this: the fit and flare dress makes a great piece for bridging the seasonal gap. Top with an oversized cardigan, layer over tights, add riding boots, or wear with a cropped denim jacket—the options are endless. For inspiration, browse the dress options from Lyst. The collection of different designers highlights a variety of styles that makes it easy to find just the right addition to your transitional wardrobe.

Trench Coat

The last transitional piece on our list just so happens to provide the perfect finishing touch to almost any ensemble: the trench coat. Effortlessly chic when worn open, this outerwear can also be cinched close when temperatures drop, keeping you warm and defining your waist all at once. Not only does the trench coat come in virtually every colour, length, and material that you can imagine, it pairs well with everything. As Vogue writes, it almost doesn’t matter what you have on underneath because the trench is what makes that first great impression. Dresses, trousers, skirts, rompers, and more—you name it, the trench coat will go with it, making it a very complementary, and very essential, transitional piece for any plus size wardrobe.

5 reasons I’m excited for Dusty Rebels and the Bombshells – and a ticket giveaway!

For me, 2015 has been The Year of the Pinup.

From my very first pinup shoot with Grinkie Girls, to being a vintage witch for Halloween and even my Rockabilly birthday bash, this year has been a journey of falling in love with a whole new subculture that deeply resonates within me.

So when I heard about the Dusty Rebels and the Bombshells Rockabilly Lifestyle Festival some months ago, I was quick to jump on board.

Now in its third year, the Dusty Rebels entertainment lineup is looking more fabulous than ever before, I’m so excited to attend this weekend. Take a look at what I’m most looking forward to below, then enter to win your own set of double tickets!

179336-colour logo copy-fef1af-large-1442411267

1. The Miss Bombshell Betty Pinup Pageant

Dusty Rebels will host South Africa’s first ever pinup pageant this year. They’ve been really open about including all different shapes, sizes and colours, and I’m looking forward to seeing gorgeous gals from across the country getting up on stage and having a bit of fun.

Source: www.facebook.com/missbombshellbetty
Source: www.facebook.com/missbombshellbetty

2. All the pretty dresses

I can’t help myself, ok? Really looking forward to seeing all the pretty things on sale – from frocks and fancies from Retrospective, to accessories from Black Betty Designs and more.

3. Rocking tunes

I’m a big fan of Rockabilly music, and really looking forward to getting to see live bands I haven’t yet had the chance to. Really looking forward to catching Martin Rocka and the Sick Shop, but also my all-time faves Mr Cat & the Jackal plus Them Tornados and the Damned Crows. Woohoo!

Source: www.facebook.com/missbombshellbetty
Source: www.facebook.com/missbombshellbetty

4. Badass Roller Derby Girls

I WISH I had the time to commit to roller derby – man, it looks like so much fun! Really looking forward to seeing these crazy ladies show off their mad skills on the main stage.

Source: www.dustyrebelsandthebombshells.co.za
Source: www.dustyrebelsandthebombshells.co.za

5. Fun fair

Guys! There’s going to be a fun fair! I’m not so down for the spinny tea-cup thingies, but really hope they have those swings that make you feel like you’re flying. Whooooooo!

There’s so much more on offer too – I know the boys are going to be glued to the hot rods and dirt track all day, and I’m also looking forward to munching down at some of the amazing food trucks that will be there.

Source: www.dustyrebelsandthebombshells.co.za
Source: www.dustyrebelsandthebombshells.co.za

About Dusty Rebels and the Bombshells

Date: 14 November 2015
Venue: West Coast Ostrich Ranch, N7 (25km from Cape Town)
Time: 12:00pm – 12:00am
Tickets available here.

Or, if you’re feeling lucky, enter now to win a set of double tickets for the event. Winner announced midday Friday!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you’re going, please come and find me and say ‘hi’. Otherwise, tune in on Twitter – I’ll be live tweeting from the festival. Hope to catch you there!

A spooktacular Halloween pinup shoot

Those who know me, know one thing for certain – I’m utterly mad for Halloween! Creepies, ghoulies, hobgoblins and bats – these are a few of my favourite things. Everyday is Halloween in my home, from my zombie and monster decor – and my absolute speciality is cooking creepy-looking food! (Brain jello anyone?)

So, when I got asked to partake in a South African pinup calendar, I jumped at the chance to be Miss October because it meant one thing – Halloween pinup shoot!

After my incredible experience doing my boudoir photo shoot with Miss Hepburn Photography and Sam Ellenberger MUA, I was super keen to collaborate with them again – and this seemed like the perfect project to reunite the dream team!

We shot this a few months ago and have been sitting on it excitedly ever since. With this week being Halloween, we just can’t resist sharing some of our favourite images with you.

We wanted to make an homage to the vintage Halloween pinups of old, with their fun shadows and kitschy studio shoots. Images like these were some of our inspiration:

Vintage Halloween Pinup
Source: scottbrothers.files.wordpress.com
Vintage Halloween pinup
Source: static1.squarespace.com
Vintage Halloween Pinup
Source: thebaltimorechop.com

Source: www.churchofhalloween.com

Personally, I think we nailed it. (So much for modesty, eh?).

Miss Hepburn is an artiste – I mean, she got that lighting perfect. And Sam got me absolutely looking the part. I couldn’t be more pleased.

Without further ado: the pics!

Mind the Curves Halloween pinupMind the Curves Halloween pinupIMG_5872 Mind the Curves Halloween pinupMind the Curves Halloween pinup

Always fantasized about a totally obscure photoshoot? Give Miss Hepburn a call – she’ll make your dreams come true 🙂

Arrrwoooooooooo!

Have a spooktacular Halloween this week!

My Rockabilly Birthday Bash

A couple weeks ago I celebrated my 30th birthday, and in true Meg fashion threw a big themed party. While I’m the furtherest thing from a ‘party-party’ girl (you’d be hard-pressed to find me up past midnight and I drink less alcohol than a mormon), I do have a soft spot for themed bashes.

Previous jaunts include Daydreams and Nightmares, Addams Family, Halloween and a Chap Olympiad, and after each one, I’ve said ‘never again!’. Not because they weren’t a complete blast, but gosh they’re a lot of work. This one was no different.

The goals for my parties are usually:

  • dressing up (like I need an excuse)
  • to get all my favourite people in the same place and encourage them to mingle and meet eachother
  • amazing food
  • a gimmick or event that doesn’t put people on the spot, but makes it more fun than just sitting around drinking

After toying with a few alternative ideas, I (along with my party-planning committee of close friends who are ridiculously supportive of my OTT follies) settled on the rockabilly theme. It seemed like the most natural thing in the world after my increasing pinup immersion over the past year, and once we decided on it we couldn’t possibly contemplate doing anything else.

My first stroke of luck was that my bestie, who was killing time in Sandton after a meeting, spotted the PERFECT dress for me on sale at City Chic. She got it for me and I snaffled it away, keeping it for the special date.

Mind the Curves rockabilly

 

A couple victory rolls, winged liner and red lips on the night, and I totally looked the part. Oh yeah, not to forget the amazing nails Roxy from Hallo Pragtig did for me to match my perty frock.

I mean, seriously. How incredible is that detail work?

Next important step was to choose the venue. My beau and I have long-loved On A Roll Dog Kitchen in Mowbray, not just for it’s mouthwateringly scrumptious gourmet nommies, but the festive atmosphere as well. The spot could not possible be more perfect for my vision. As my guestlist continued to grow to 80 people, I ended up booking out the entire venue, and it was such a spoil to have the space all to ourselves. They were also super tolerant of all our shenanigans, and service was amazing, so all in all hosting it there was a complete dream.

Source: dogkitchen.co.za
Source: dogkitchen.co.za

Next was planning the fun and games. After lots of deliberation, the Committee and I settled on a Rockabilly-themed scavenger hunt, which included a series of tasks and dares (and a strong injection of my weird sense of humour).

Screen Shot 2015-10-23 at 12.12.44 PM

I think the question I was asked that night the most was ‘what’s a foeff?’.

It was so great to see everyone rushing around to complete their tasks, and friends that didn’t know eachother at all finding a reason to strike up convo.

Some of my favourite tasks were the Pinup names (I assigned this to one of my more ‘creative friends’ and was very satisfied to see people wandering around with name tags reading ‘Rocky Powerthrust’ and so on.)

People loved getting their stick-on tattoos (an awesome assortment of dragons and butterflies from China Town – BOOYAH!)

Hot Rod racing consisted of people using straws to blow toy cars across a table, which was also good fun.

And then, of course, there was Fifi Foxtrot (my vivacious friend Fae) teaching her dance moves. In our heads, we all totally felt like the below clip (but no doubt in reality looked nothing the like).

As mentioned, the other important element for me was the food. What more perfect for a rockabilly party than hot dogs. And On A Roll’s hotdogs are like nothing on earth (Bockwurst Sausage topped with Roast Butternut, Crispy Bacon & Sage Cream; Bratwurst Sausage topped with Camembert Cheese, Caramelised Figs, Baby Leaves and a Balsamic Glaze). It was a slam dunk.

Source: dogkitchen.co.za
Source: dogkitchen.co.za

And what would a party be without cupcakes? I put my skills from my side business Custom Cupcakes to use, and with the help of Simone from Yellow Papaya, we created these babies, amongst others.


My night was totally made when my darling friend Caryn presented me with this cake she made for me. I mean, have you ever? Her little monster claws were even painted! She had a flower in her hair! (Any quips about the striking resemblance will be met with a scalding glare).

The other finishing touch that totally made the night for me was having Miss Hepburn Photography there running a photo booth. She really captured the fun spirit of the evening, and it was even cooler that she could print the pictures out on the spot for people to take home like polaroids.

 

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At the end of the night I was utterly overwhelmed and completely exhausted – frantic that I hadn’t had a chance to speak to all my dear friends that came to celebrate with me, but a very happy girl nonetheless. I had a blast, and no doubt will remember my big 3-0 bash until the end of my days.

Oh yah, and after all that work, I’m never throwing a themed-party again.

… well, not until next time anyway.

 

 

Plus size style file: Shannon from the Feminist Unicorn

It’s a Wednesday, and you know what that means, don’t you? PLUS SIZE STYLE FILE DAY! WOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOO!

Today’s juicy nugget of awesomness is Shannon from the Feminist Unicorn, another pinup-inspired fashionista I was introduced to via Instagram. Deeply in love with this gal’s funky, whimsical style – frocks and novelty prints all the way! I think if my fairy godmother magically granted me a wardrobe swap with anyone in the world, Shannon’s would be pretty high on the list.

 

Plus size style file Feminist Unicorn

 

Let’s go a little deeper, shall we?

 

About Shannon from Feminist Unicorn

I’m Shannon! I’m 24 and I’m the assistant manager of a Safehouse for survivors of Intimate Partner Violence. I’m also the owner of the sweetest little kitty you’ll ever meet, even though I’m a dog person to my core.

 

How do you define your style?

Hmm, I guess I’d define it as quirk retro-inspired that follows no fashion rules.

 

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Who inspires your style?

Oh gosh! So many people! I’m constantly being inspired by things and concepts on Instagram and Tumblr. I’m most inspired by colors! I’m constantly like looking for new ways to combine different colors together.

 

What are some things you can never leave the house without?

My phones (in my line of work I’m lucky if I only have two on me), my planner, and my photo remote. You never know when you’re gonna stumble into the perfect spot.

 

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What does the term ‘body positivity’ mean to you?

To me it means allowing all bodies to be good bodies and appreciating the varying spectrums that a body can be!

 

What are your ‘secrets’ for learning to love your body?

Surround yourself with other people who are positive supportive people who love their bodies.

 

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What do you do for fun?

I’m a workaholic as someone recently told me, so I spend most of my days at work. I haven’t been able to participate in theater and improv given my job, but that has typically been my fun outlet throughout my life. I also love reading and binge watching TV shows. Trips to the river when the weather cooperates and I have a lot of fun going on photo adventures.

 

If you were a character from a book, TV or the movies, who would you be and why?

I have always identified with Charlie from the novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower (so much so that I’ve got a tattoo from it) I think because we think and behave really similarly, or at least we did when I was in high school.

 

Who has been the most important person in your journey to body positivity?

 I haven’t always been plus size and before I was plus size I had THE WORST body confidence. Right around the time I became plus size, which actually helped me find and embrace my style, I started being a camp counselor at a summer camp for middle school girls that was all about teaching them self confidence. Up until that point I had always faked my confidence, but working there being surrounded by a whole bunch of body positive women and passing that message onto the girls taught me to love myself. I have also learned so much from Tumblr, which is odd to say, but true nonetheless.

 

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What wisdom would you pass on to someone at the beginning of their body positivity journey?

Find a body loving community in your town or on the Internet. I cannot stress how much being around positive people, instead of toxic people can completely turn your world around.

 

What is your favourite feature, and how did you discover it?

As a way to learn to love my thighs, I tattooed a giant magical unicorn on one. Now I think my magical thighs are the best.

 

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Please finish the sentence: ‘I love my body because…’

Because it allows me to change the world.

 

Where are your favourite places to shop?

I have been aaaaall about Pinup Girl Clothing lately, but Heart of Haute, Collectif, Eshakti, and Modcloth are still favorites.

 

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To keep up to date with Shannon’s fabulous outfits, follow her on Tumblr or Instagram.

To see past plus size style files, click here.

If you would like to be featured on my plus size Style File, please drop me an email on mindthecurvesza@gmail.com.

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