Sunday, July 31, 2011

From a Caterpillar to a Beautiful Butterfly

I used Paint to draw this, this morning. It really makes me wonder what I could do with a graphics tablet and photoshop.

I've decided that butterflies are my theme for this year, two of my birthday cards had them on it. Plus they fit well with the journey I'm undertaking, to become the person I'm supposed to be.

*Side note...every once in a while something like this pops out of my head and completely blows me away*

Thursday, July 28, 2011

I'm Braver Than I Believe

"Promise me you’ll always remember: you’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” ~ Christopher Robin

About a week ago I wrote a letter to someone who had meant an awful lot to me growing up, but because of circumstances and immaturity on both parts, we had lost touch. To my surprise a few days ago he wrote back, and actually answered a question I'd wanted to ask, but didn't, which was "why". I'd waited 18 years for that answer and I'd never have been able to read it, if I hadn't been brave enough to finally send the message. 

If there is anything that I've learned this past year, it's that you've got to listen to what the person inside you is saying, and that I'm my own best therapist. I've made more progress this year then I ever did seeing a"shrink", though I've had to face some uncomfortable truths along the way. 

Now I just have to motivate myself. Ah well, Rome wasn't built in a day!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Favorite online stores that cater to Plus Size women

Currently I live in the fashion barren wasteland called the Midwestern United States, so I've been desperately searching online for clothes that are fashionable and in my size. I've recently lost 30 lbs so have gone down as much as 2 sizes depending on the clothes. I'm finding this really, really exciting, especially since I wasn't actually trying to lose weight. My current goal is 180 lbs or a size 16/18 which might be an XL or 1X depending on the store. Here are the stores I love so far and a favorite piece from their collections:

Oh man I love this store! Beyond awesome clothing, from a lot of indie designers, in sizes up to 24. If you are looking to stand out from the crowd, and for something girly, this is the store for you. Not everything comes in plus sizes, but there are some real gems if you're willing to browse, and believe me you won't mind a bit. Lots of retro, hipster, and vintage galore and not just clothes either! They have some interesting stuff to decorate with too, including actual vintage pieces.

Like Sunday Morning Dress in A Snap

This store I really like, though you will have to translate it from Danish and remember to change the cart to whichever currency you use. It can be a bit pricier than some, but the style and fabrics are to die for and so are the sales. It is a very European style and there are not a lot of bright colors, but everything is designed to make you look fabulous. They carry sizes 12-22 (US)

Hotshot Black

They carry sizes 10-28 (US) and have some really cute clothes that won't make you look like a soccer mom. Not that I have anything against soccer moms, it's just that I'm not one and until I am, I don't want to resemble one. This store has everything you could possibly need to put together an outfit (including shoes if you wear a wide width), basically if they don't have it you probably don't need it. They also have plus size men's clothing which is not something you come across often and FREE Shipping on ALL orders! You've got to love that! I do wish that they used more natural fabrics though.

Joe Browns Tie Back Top

The main reason I like this store so much is their Retro Chic section which is so sexy. They also have a great selection of tops and graphic tees and an albeit small, but cute, selection of maternity clothes. They carry sizes 12 to 32 and their prices aren't bad either.

Lucky 13 - Hells Bells Black Satin Dress

Not so favorite online stores but mostly worth a peek at:

This store does have a nice selection and some very cute items, however the glaring absence of natural fabrics does not impress me. Of 51 dresses I could only find 8 that were made with natural fabrics. Prices tend to be a bit higher than you might be use to paying, but they do offer free shipping though and for that alone it's worth a try.

ASOS CURVE Off Shoulder Top

This store has obviously not gotten the memo that horizontal stripes and big prints really do NOT look flattering on plus size women. Basically it looks like they took clothes meant for smaller sizes and just made them bigger. The dresses are also very short, which I tend to think makes plus size women look cheap. However there are a few really cute woven tops, though very few made with natural fabrics.

Embellished Surplice Top

Well there's my list, though I don't expect everyone will agree with me. Perhaps though it will get you thinking about ways to improve your wardrobe and make yourself look just that much more fabulous, in which case I've done what I set out to do.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

New Pencils!

Woke up from a nap to a lovely prezzie, new colored pencils! ;-)
Now the dresses I’m designing can be in color! yay!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Brats N Beans

This is the most ridiculously easy recipe and quite yummy as well.

1 lb of brats (you can also use any other kind of brat like sausage you have on hand, polish sausage is excellent with this, though I cut it up into about 1/2 inch slices)
1 15 oz can of diced tomatoes (I prefer the petite diced ones myself)
1 28 oz can of country style beans (like Bush's Baked Beans)
2 tbsp of molasses

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Using a 2 quart baking dish layer the ingredients, brats on the bottom, then mix the tomatoes, beans, and molasses in a bowl, so the molasses gets incorporated and pour over brats. Put dish in oven and cook for 1 hour on 350 degrees F.

This is sooo me!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Finding My Future

I recently realized it was time to make some changes in my life. I've made too many life choices that were easy, now it's time to make some that are hard.

So the question is what do I want to do with the rest of my life and what am I supposed to do? I have considered studying costume design and/or set design and working in films and movies. If I do this I could go to quite a few schools and shouldn't have too much trouble getting into a good one.

However lately my muse has led me back to fashion design. I've sketched 15 dresses, 3 shirts, one ring, and one fascinator in the past 2 weeks. Sometimes as many as 6 things in one night, it's like a slide show playing in my head full color and everything. I'm almost wondering if I'm channeling someone, that wouldn't be unheard of for me, albeit a bit unusual. The biggest issue with this is the best schools are expensive and in big cities where I don't know anyone. The very best, Central Saint Martins, is part of the University of the Arts London, and costs about $21,000 a year just for tuition. I really wouldn't mind living in the UK, it's where I want to eventually move to anyway. I'm just not sure how I would ever get that kind of money to afford to do that. The really weird thing is that the best schools are mostly in Europe and are actually less expensive than the ones in the United States.

Even if I don't make it as a designer I could still become a stylist. Good ones make pretty good money, though they tend to do a lot of freelance work. So many possibilities, so many interesting, nearly impossible choices to make.  

I'm also worried that my age and disability could hinder my chances to do what I really want to do. Then again God never leads you to something if he doesn't have a plan for your success. I think I'm just soooo scared because it's a huge leap and I don't appear to have a net below me. I have to do it though, I should have done it 20 years ago and I didn't. It's exciting and scary and wonderful all at the same time.