Dressing Boldly In Ruby Lace With The IGIGI Plus-Size Regina Dress

Posted by on December 2, 2013

For a long, long time growing up, I dressed to hide. I was always on the heavy side and it seemed that fashion had no real place for me. I was an outcast because of my weight and so I wore ill-fitting jeans and hoodies and pretty much called it a day. It’s not that I didn’t love fashion (I really did! And still do), but I just had no idea how to become part of the fashion world.

Plus-size women can be every bit as fashionable as our straight-size sisters.

Plus-size women can be every bit as fashionable as our straight-size sisters.

It wasn’t until high school when I started to spend more time shopping online that I discovered that there were designers who actually make clothes that would fit my body and were still cute. I deeply hope that in the future young girls will not go through the same struggles that I did. Every single body deserves to be respected and part of that respect comes from designers not limiting their sizes and making clothes that can fit anyone and everyone.

I now have a wardrobe full of beautiful colors, patterns, fabrics, and silhouettes that even my straight-size friends envy, but it is still easy to feel like the odd, fat girl out when I’m searching for a very specific type of dress and I see hundreds of straight size options and only one or two plus-size options.

For a day out with friends, I paired the Regina dress with my trusty denim jacket, chunky brown heeled ankle boots and a strong red lip.

For a day out with friends, I paired the Regina dress with my trusty denim jacket, chunky brown heeled ankle boots and a strong red lip.

I decided a few months ago, that I wanted needed a red lace dress. There’s something so wonderfully decadent about a lace dress. It’s classic, sexy, and utterly feminine. Lace is probably my absolute favorite material and I’m really not alone in that. It’s been a sartorial staple since the 15th century. It’s easy enough to find a plus-size dress with lace since it is so common, but I really wanted red.

A deep, mysterious, sultry red shade with just the right amount of sexy. I thought that a deep red, more of a ruby shade, would transition from Fall to Winter very well, and I knew that that shade would be ideal for  the deluge of holiday parties that will soon be upon us. That’s where the IGIGI Regina Plus-Size Dress in Ruby Argentan Lace comes in.

The dress is cut in a shift style, so it fits close to the body without being body conscious (body-con) or too tight. It  shows off my curves in a very appropriate way. It also has a bit of a longer length, so I won’t have to worry about showing too much leg at any family gatherings or office holiday parties that I choose to wear it to. The Regina dress also comes with a belt, but I chose to wear it without, since I had my coat and I didn’t want to interrupt the front line of the dress.

The Regina dress is made from a poly/elastane material which has a good stiffness to it and provides a little extra structure for women who want more control over their figure.

The Regina dress is made from a poly/elastane material which has a good stiffness to it and provides a little extra structure for women who want more control over their figure.

The Regina has a universally flattering and very classic boat neckline and great below the elbow 3/4 sleeves. It’s also fully-lined like the majority of IGIGI dresses so you don’t have to worry about wearing any special undergarments to keep everything smooth and seamless.

I finally found my perfect red lace dress.

The Regina dress can be dressed up or dressed down.

The Regina dress can be dressed up or dressed down.

Do you readers have any specific clothing item that you’ve always lusted for and been unable to find? A white blazer? A lumpy and super comfortable Irish fisherman sweater? That perfect pair of bootcut jeans? Let me know in the comments.

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Solving Winter Coat Woes With the Gorgeous IGIGI Hanna Coat

Posted by on November 27, 2013

It’s a struggle finding a perfect winter coat. I spend my winters traveling between New York and Chicago, so having a warm coat is an absolute necessity. Especially since it’s not even officially winter yet, and it’s already only about 20 degrees outside (Fahrenheit that is)! My old trusty winter coat that I bought for a steal during a post-Christmas sale at Macy’s a few years ago officially retired last year. So, when I saw IGIGI’s Hanna Coat in Navy Blue pop up on the site, I had a feeling that this could be my new go-to for chic winter wear.

Hanna Coat

The notched lapels make a statement and frame the face, so your beauty is still the center of attention, even when you’re wearing your winter coat.

I was not disappointed. The Hanna Coat is also available in black for those who are interested. I really hate shapeless, oversized coats, especially on plus-size women. Unfortunately, those comforters with sleeves tend to make up 90 percent of the plus-size coat offerings that I come across when coat shopping. The Hanna Coat has a slim cut with a gorgeous printed lining and a tie belt, so you can give yourself a defined waist.

The Hanna Coat is wool, so you don’t worry about any drafty winds whipping through your layers. It has deep pockets, which can easily fit a spare pair of gloves and earmuffs, and it has a long length. For reference, I am 5’7” and the coat hit me about 3 inches past my knee, which means that I could wear pretty much any dress with it, without having the material poke out.

The wind was blowing hard in Central Park and it was a chilly 34 degrees when I was taking these pictures, so I was extremely happy to be bundled up in this coat.

The wind was blowing hard in Central Park and it was a chilly 34 degrees when I was taking these pictures, so I was extremely happy to be bundled up in this coat.

It also has several large black buttons up the front of the coat, which provide even more security from cold winter winds. I think navy is a great option for a winter coat since it’s slightly more unusual than black or brown, but it’s not too out there or hard to match, like red. Personally, I’m not too much of a fan of red coats, since I always took that Nora Ephron quote to heart: “I wore my red coat. Exactly once. My mother was right: Never buy a red coat, she said. ‘Because people will see you, and they will say, ‘There she is, in her red coat.”” If the writing queen of New York City said it, I won’t be one to argue.

Now, I’m seen plenty of women rock red coats, but I usually go with a neutral for my outer layers so I don’t feel self-conscious about matching. I’m sick of seeing black everywhere and my last coat was black, so I thought that the navy would be a fresher update.

Hanna coat

The coat has a very classic cut and almost emulates a trench in terms of cut.

I sized up for the Hanna Coat, since I prefer my coats to be roomier in order to layer thick sweaters underneath, and the coat runs true to size. Since the Hanna coat is wool, it’s not too heavy, but it’s still very warm. I would recommend it for women who are living in both warm and cold climates, since it would be easy to dress up or down depending on the weather. Wool is amazing that way.

What is your favorite style of winter coat? Do you prefer puffer jackets? Are you still a Northface-o-phile? Or are you more into the chic winter coat look like the IGIGI Hanna Coat? Tell me in the comments!

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The Gorgeous Larimar Dress and the Beauty of Plus-Size Dresses With Sleeves

Posted by on November 25, 2013

If I could go back in time to any time period at all, I would have to pick 1960s California.  I came across this style nostalgia video on The Atlantic the other day, and I put together an outfit inspired from the colors and shapes of 1960s fashion.  I love a bright print and I’m trying to capitalize on the remaining sunny weather (it was actually in the 60s in New York the other day!) with some equally vibrant colors. The Larimar Plus-Size Dress in Amber was exactly what I was looking for. The stripes with the deconstructed chevron pattern has a great vintage feel and this dress will transition well into the Winter with some tights and ankle boots.

The Larimar Plus-Size Dress in Amber is made from a Poly/Elastane material, which has a good weight to it, with long sleeves and an asymmetrical, very flattering, contrast draped waistband.

The Larimar Plus-Size Dress in Amber is made from a Poly/Elastane material, which has a good weight to it, with long sleeves and an asymmetrical, very flattering, contrast draped waistband.

The long sleeves make this dress season appropriate, but I would add tights and a scarf to take it the rest of the way, and maybe add my trusty brown leather jacket for a little extra warmth.

Whenever I talk to my friends about dresses and dress details, I feel like the two things they love the most are sleeves and pockets, and those are consistently my favorite parts of dresses, as well. I usually won’t even buy a dress unless it has some kind of sleeve since, in my experience, they are way more versatile than strapless or tank dresses for everyday. Pockets are also so helpful and practical, because every now and then I would just like to slip my phone and wallet into my pocket and slip out the door without a handbag (blasphemy, I know).

The dress is fully-lined, which is wonderful since it keeps everything looking smooth without the need for any shape-wear.

The dress is fully-lined, which is wonderful since it keeps everything looking smooth without the need for any shape-wear.

However, many designers rarely offer these options and it’s even harder to find them in plus-size offerings. Actually, IGIGI is one of the few plus brands that to include sleeves in a majority of designs.

Many women, myself included, are self-conscious about their upper arms. Adding a sleeve to a dress and getting rid of the need for a cardigan or a jacket it such a simple detail, and yet it can make all the difference with self-confidence. For me, adding a jacket to a dress that already has sleeves is a choice and not a necessity. It enables you to be in control of your look without letting your clothes and personal insecurities dictate your style.

I chose to style the Larimar Plus-Size Dress in Amber with simple black heels and minimal jewelry to keep the elaborate pattern the focus of my look.

I chose to style the Larimar Plus-Size Dress in Amber with simple black heels and minimal jewelry to keep the elaborate pattern the focus of my look.

Initially, I planned to wear some over-the-knee boots to keep my legs a little warmer, but since the pattern is so intense, the boots made the outfit feel a little too “costumey.” I definitely need to start looking for a new pair of ankle boots for the winter!

Putting together an outfit can be a test of patience, and you have to be willing to compromise and make changes even when you have a very specific plan in your head. Whenever I plan out my outfit the night before I rarely end up with the same look the next morning.

Plus-size women are frequently told to shy away from exaggerated patterns and to stick to strictly form-flattering, solid-colored, subdued frocks. While it is certainly true that a crazy pattern is going to make you stand out, it does not mean that the garment will be inherently unflattering.

If you’re looking for a different color palette, the Larimar dress also comes in topaz, for the women who crave a cooler color scheme.  How would you style the Larimar dress? Let me know in the comments.

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The Wrap Dress: The Most Flattering Plus-Size Dress Style

Posted by on November 21, 2013

I feel like everyone occasionally has a morning when they walk into their closet, stare at all of their clothes, and just think, “Wow, I have absolutely nothing to wear.” On mornings like that, I usually gravitate towards fun, flirty patterns to try to break up the monotony. I stumbled across the IGIGI Neve Plus Size Wrap Dress in Multi while browsing the Internet and it was a complete impulse decision since I thought that the pattern might be too bold, even for me.

A dress with 3/4 sleeves, maybe a light cardigan, and flats tends to be my work uniform on most days, so whenever I can make it a bit more interesting with a fun print, I’ll jump at the chance. The abstract pattern on the dress and wrap-style are great details and the shape of the dress is perfect, since the empire waist and a-line skirt are flattering for almost every body type. The color palette adds a great 70s-inspired feel and is so on-trend for the winter.

Spoiler alert: I ended up loving the pattern once it was on.

Spoiler alert: I ended up loving the pattern once it was on.

A true wrap dress is universally flattering on every body-type. The adjustable waist allows you to put the emphasis on the smallest part of your body, which for me, is directly underneath my bust. I chose to leave the tie in the back of the dress and just tie it in a bow, but the tie on this dress can be wrapped around multiple times to give a more belted look.

Personally, 3/4 length sleeves are my absolute favorite when it comes to dresses and tops. I don’t mind going sleeveless, but I very much prefer to have some sort of sleeve, especially in the winter, so I can have a little more coverage and not feel too self-conscious about showing a lot of skin at the office.

The IGIGI Neve Plus Size Wrap Dress in Multi runs on the longer side, so be prepared to rock some heels with it, or just lean into the longer length and make a statement. I opted for flats.

The IGIGI Neve Plus Size Wrap Dress in Multi runs on the longer side, so be prepared to rock some heels with it, or just lean into the longer length and make a statement. I opted for flats.

While it never hurts to go shopping a try on a bunch of different sizes, there is something utterly satisfying and relaxing about finding a great plus-size brand that you can buy without worrying about stretch or fit. Whenever I really need some good old-fashioned retail therapy I usually look over at IGIGI’s offerings to check out their newest collection.

Some of my other favorite a-line dresses that IGIGI is currently offering are the Sovana dress, the Elisha Dress and the Tiffany dress.

The IGIGI Neve Plus Size Wrap Dress in Multi is a Poly/Elastane, which glides over your body and hides any bumps or lumps that you don't want to showcase. It's so flattering and SO comfortable.

The IGIGI Neve Plus Size Wrap Dress in Multi is a Poly/Elastane, which glides over your body and hides any bumps or lumps that you don’t want to showcase. It’s so flattering and SO comfortable.

I chose to accessorize the IGIGI Neve Plus Size Wrap Dress in Multi with simple, pointy-toe black flats, a bold red lip, and (since it’s been raining so much in NYC) my trusty umbrella. Since the pattern is funky, I didn’t want to go too crazy with the accessories. I felt that the dress worked really well as a stand-alone piece. However, I would also style this dress with a long black cardigan, black ankle boots, a chunky watch, and my favorite, multi-layered silver chain necklace for a different look. The black cardigan would be enough of a distractor that I would feel inspired to throw on some more bling.

I’m not much of a heels person, especially for the office, since I have to catch the subway to work, but this dress would also be absolutely perfect for a pair of chunky, vintage 70s heels to really go all out with the retro vibe.

How would you style the IGIGI Neve Plus Size Wrap Dress in Multi? What is your favorite dress style to wear? Tell me in the comments.

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The Miwa Top and the Importance of Wardrobe Basics

Posted by on October 29, 2013

We all have those special little checklists that we make when we’re looking for a new outfit. Does it have sleeves? Is it fully-lined? Can I belt it? This can certainly be limiting and I definitely have shied away from wearing more adventurous pieces because it violates too many of my personal outfit requirements, but on the whole, women tend to know what looks best on them and what they will be most comfortable in even before trying it on. We often have a closet full of wardrobe basics that meet these requirements.

So when I saw the Miwa Top in Black, I knew that this top would be perfect for me since it hit almost every single item on my checklist: it has  loose, bell-style, three-quarter sleeves (which are my personal favorite), it has an empire waist, is fully lined, is made of wrinkle-free jersey material, and it even comes with a great fabric belt. The Miwa Top can be worn with or without the belt so you can customize this wonderfully basic, black jersey top for anything.

A good black top is my go-to for almost every outfit.

A good black top is my go-to for almost every outfit.

As a so-called “plus-size fashionista,” I feel a certain amount of pressure to always push myself with outfits, and as a result, I get a little stressed out when I’m wearing a “basic” item like a black top or a gray sweater. I think this anxiety comes from the sense that, as a plus-size woman who cares deeply about fashion and who is incredibly invested in style, if I wear a pair of sweats, even to the grocery store, then I am betraying myself. I’m trying to get over this self-imposed mental block and rock anything that I wear from ratty t-shirts to formal dresses, but it takes a certain amount of practice.

The Miwa Top, at its core, is a basic piece. Without the belt, it is a simple, flattering black top. It is even made out of a cotton jersey, which is essentially the most basic material you can wear. However, the cut on this top makes it special. And that is really what I’ve been looking for in my wardrobe – “special basics.”

I paired my staple, black Miwa Top with black jeans and yellow flats. The great belt kept me from being monochromatic and kept the focus on the tiniest part of me - my waist.

I paired my staple, black Miwa Top with black jeans and yellow flats. The great belt kept me from being monochromatic and kept the focus on the tiniest part of me – my waist.

Maybe it’s just because the word “basic” seems to have negative connotations to me, but I really struggle with it. As a result, here’s a list of five staple pieces that every plus-size woman should have in their wardrobe.

1. Structured black top: This can be a t-shirt or you can even do something a little more elaborate (like the Miwa Top), but it’s important that there is some good seaming and structure. This top should be a wear-alone piece meaning that you shouldn’t feel the need to pair it with a jacket or a cardigan. Although, of course, you can.

2. Comfortable pair of jeans: Yeah, I value comfortable jeans over stylish jeans. If you can hit both, that’s great, but in my experience, if you aren’t completely comfortable in your clothes, you probably just won’t wear them. Who wants to feel self-conscious all day?

3. Blazer: Blazers can go with everything and anything, from jeans to dresses and everything in between. They immediately add a sense of presence to any outfit, and so they’re perfect for dressing up a casual look for work or a nice dinner out.

4. Boots: Good boots can be hard to find. Especially if you need wide-calf boots. However, they really are one of the most universally flattering and convertible shoes if you need something to transition seasons.

5. Simple Jewelry: Statement necklaces and earrings are wonderful. They really, really are. However, on those days when you either don’t feel like over-the-top sparkle, or when it wouldn’t be appropriate to wear an oversized, sparkly floral collar, make sure you have your minimal jewelry pieces picked out. For me, it’s a pair of gold heart studs and a few simple rings – just enough so I have a little bling without it being overwhelming.

How would you wear this top?

How would you wear this top?

If you have your own list of staples or if you want some shopping tips, you can always hit me up on Twitter or Instagram.

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