Hooking You Up: Awesome and Affordable Lingerie

I love lingerie. I really, really love lingerie. I love all types of lingerie from the classy to the trashy. I think lingerie is the single easiest thing a woman can change in her wardrobe and completely change her mood. And you ladies that are single and not even interested in finding someone special? You are not exempt from this! Lingerie isn’t about your significant other, it’s about you.

With Halloween, the holidays, and New Year’s Eve, there’s no better time to really revamp your lingerie wardrobe and even try something new. So a while back, when I was determined to own a steel boned corset, I found the most amazing lingerie site ever– Oh Cheri. Before I say another word, I want to say something– Oh Cheri didn’t reach out to me about writing for you guys. I love them and wanted to recommend them to you guys.

This store has three key features to an awesome online shopping experience– huge selection across a huge array of sizes, cheap prices (often the cheapest anywhere), and FREE shipping in the US with no minimum purchase.

Can we take a moment and “window” shop? Don’t be freaked out or anything, I’ll keep it tame. Oh and all of these items are under $20.

And ok this is definitely not under $20 but it’s one of my favorite things on their site and I covet it deeply. Come covet with me.

Yeah. Sooooooo pretty.

By the way, I reached out to Oh Cheri and let them know I was going to blog about them because of how much I love their site. And you know what? They offered a discount for you guys– my readers. So go online and do some sexy shopping for you, your friends, and hey even family. Or pass this along to someone who may be shopping for you! Just make sure when it’s time to checkout, you enter the code MUTANT and get 10% off your order.

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REALLY good Julep deal & Shopping Spree Total

For everyone curious to know how much I spent at my 12 item Express shopping spree…

$244.80

That means on average, I spent $20.40 per item. I don’t think that’s pretty shabby considering the kinds of clothes I got. And now I’ll just wear them until death does us part.

Speaking of deals, I’ve got a good one for you. Julep is offering the introductory box for their Maven Subscription program for one penny and that comes with free shipping. This month’s intro box comes with two polishes and a pedicure cream.

How do you get it? Easy peasy.

Step One: GO HERE

Step Two: Take the fun and frivolous Style Quiz, enter you email to find out your Style Personality, and see the box they’d send you. You can also go ahead and check out the boxes of the other styles and if you like one of those better, you can grab that one instead. In my case, it pegged me as an American Beauty but I was all about the Bombshell. So I added Bombshell to my cart and removed American Beauty.

Step Three: Sign up and check out.

When you’re done, you are now a part of the Julep Maven Subscription Program. And honestly? It’s a pretty good one. The way it works is like this.

On the 20th of every month they send you an email showing you your next box. By default they show you the style of the intro box you ended up with. If you love it, you do nothing. They charge your credit card on file $19.99 and send you your box.

If you don’t LOVE it,  you can log in and see the other styles. They even link you to a post on their blog that shows the colors for each box on nails. Next month includes a lip gloss and they took pictures of a girl wearing each color too. I really appreciate this because I feel like it’s full-disclosure and they’re not trying to pull a fast one.

So once you’ve checked out the other styles you can:

1. Choose a different style to send your way. This style will be your default next month.

2. Choose any of the styles and send it to a friend or family member as a gift. I love this for birthdays or other special occasions.

3. Skip the month. That’s right, you don’t have to buy the box every month. You don’t like it, you don’t have a friend who deserves it, or you’re just plain broke that month, you skip.

Of course you can always cancel the subscription and stay happy with your one cent intro box but if you like treating yourself now and then, I think it’s worth keeping it. Occasionally, they throw in a free polish. They also offer subscribers a chance to get mystery boxes– $60 or more worth of products for $19.99. I mentioned I had purchased one of these boxes and I received it the other day.

My Pretty Julep June Mystery Box Packaging

My Julep June Mystery Box Contents

My Mystery Box came with:

Julep Elixir Organic Oil, $24

Facial for Hands Glycolic Hand Scrub, $32

Glow on Age Defying Hand Brightener, $32

Megan, $14

Brooke, $14

And a free Julep.com nail file. Retail value of my $19.99 box? $116.

Not too bad huh?

Honestly, at first I was sort of blank about it. I really didn’t know what to make of the box because three of the six items were totally alien to me. But now that I’ve had it a few days and have been using the products, I’m really happy with it. One of the things I’ve been discovering through my De-Frumpiness Project is how luxurious some really small little things can feel.

Do I feel completely fancy washing my hands with a glycolic hand scrub and then rubbing in an age defying hand brightener? Why yes, yes I do. And by the way, the hand brightener feels and smells so nice. Is there something slightly decadent about dropping oil into my hands from a glass bottle with a glass dropper? Um, yeah. Definitely. For me at least.

You have to understand, I’m the girl that recently rediscovered how yummy it is to apply good facial moisturizer ok?

I don’t have a complicated beauty regimen. I’m not even really sure that I have an actual regimen. But yes I am definitely enjoying the couple of minutes every day where I indulge in myself. My nails are chipped? Time to change the manicure! It’s summer, so I absolutely can’t leave without my facial moisturizer with SPF. Floss! Scrub my hands. Nourish my cuticles! Go into fitting rooms!

Slowing down. I’m actually slowing down. These little things are little pauses. Little only for me and only about me pauses. And they’re nice.

 

 

Beauty on a Budget

As much as I have tried to keep my De-Frumpiness Project from deeply impacting my wallet, not spending in this department has been impossible. And you know what? That’s the frickin point.

There are so many ways we put ourselves on the back-burner and spending on other things is definitely the easiest for many of us. In my case, I will justify the purchase of clothing and shoes for my kids when theirs shows wear or is ill-fitting or I just find a really good deal. Not so much for me.

I have found great deals on all sorts of things this year, and even with the De-Frumpiness Project, I have more often than not left the item on the shelf or rack muttering something about not having money right now and then spending the money I don’t have on something else for someone else.

The past couple of months I’ve been forcing that to change. It doesn’t always feel as great as it sounds like it would. Yes, you would think I’d be all excited by the idea of giving myself permission to spend on myself but I just don’t. I stress and moan, “But what about the children?”

Lately I’ve been a bit tough on that whiny part of me and have rebuked her with a sharp, “The children have more than plenty and they don’t even take care of it properly!” Which is kind of true. Ok fine, it’s a lot true. My kids are really lucky because they are part of a very big family that lives in the same city as they do. The very big family is of Cuban heritage mostly and is therefore quite fond of gifts for children. We’re the type of culture that firmly believes if you can’t afford gifts for everyone, at least make sure you get the children gifts. Always, the children.

So my children are inundated. They get clothes and toys and toys and more toys and clothes. Do they get all the clothes they need? No. They don’t get shoes for instance or underwear or socks. But they get a lot of the other stuff– shirts and shorts and skirts and dresses and on and on.

The point is, the kids get a lot more gifts than I do. And that is awesome. That is totally fine. That is the way it should be. BUT that is also the fact I have to remind myself of when I’m talking myself out of buying something for myself that is 1) a great deal, 2) that I can afford at that moment in time and 3) that fills a gap in my diminishing wardrobe. Well, mentally it’s diminishing. I’m having a hard time physically purging my closet this year but that’s another roller coaster post waiting to happen.

Anyhow, here are a few things I have been spending on lately and how I’ve been doing just that.

Clothes: I keep trying Goodwill and keep getting mixed results. Ok, honestly? I don’t find much for me. First of all, the Goodwill by my house is huge in an overwhelming way. It attempts to be organized, but let’s face it, it’s Goodwill. It’s not organized. I just don’t have much shopping time and the past couple of months, I’ve had even less as the kids have been spending more and more Wednesdays and weekends with me instead of their dad (also another post). When I’ve gone and browsed, I’ve found a lot of things that look good until I pull them out and take a look at them. They are the wrong size, stained, faded, or just not what I thought they were when I saw them on the hanger. Repeatedly having this happen to me is insanely discouraging. And when I have found something that is the right size, is not faded, is a good brand, it’s about a couple dollars less than I’d pay for it at a store like Ross.

That doesn’t mean I’ve been striking out in the clothes department completely. I’ve actually scored some major hits– at Ross and Marshalls. Surprisingly, moreso at Ross than Marshalls but I had a great haul last weekend so I can’t complain about Marshalls too much. Although I will complain a little bit. When did Marshalls get so expensive? I was strolling through their shoe section and OUCH. I couldn’t find a nice pair of shoes for under $40.

While Marshalls kills Ross in selection, organization, and brands it’s just not that great in the dollar aspect and that is way more important to me right now than anything else. Why? As much as I am mentally in a hurry to get my wardrobe revamped already, I’m not monetarily in a hurry to do so. I’m not even monetarily able actually. So I have time. I have time to go to the Ross by my house (closer than the nearest Marshalls too and with less nerve-wracking parking than the cramped garage the Marshalls is housed in). I have time to wander the clearance racks. I have time to wander the other racks. I have time to try things on. I have time to not take anything because none of it fits me right. And although that IS slightly depressing I am really tired of not looking quite right in my clothes.

This has actually been my savior. My shape has changed a lot in the past year and a half. While this has wreaked havoc on my wardrobe and my options at home, it has really slowed down my shopping. Before, I used to have the type of shape that was pretty standard for a size Small. Ok so not everything fit perfectly but more often than not things fit the way I expected them to.

Not so anymore. And so this means I force myself into the dressing room every single time no matter what the item is. I never used to use fitting rooms, that’s how standard I was. Fitting rooms slow me down. And fitting rooms make me really question and inspect my prospective purchases. So while my wardrobe overhaul is not going as smoothly or as quickly as I’d want it to, I’m more pleased with where it’s going.

Beauty Products: It is all about the drug store sales. Well, it’s mostly about the drug store sales. It’s almost entirely about the drug store sales. If you haven’t figured this out yet, and you really do enjoy the occasional new lipstick, nail polish, eye shadow, whatever, it’s high time you got on this.

For me, CVS is king. Their coupon policy is easy-peasy. Their ExtraCare Bucks are generous. Their Beauty Club makes it even more generous. The fact they’re all over the place makes them easy to access and you can even shop multiple ones in the same day. I learned all about CVS at Southern Savers. Yes, coupons make CVSing even more rewarding but you can get by without them. You’re just not going to save as much money.

This week alone you can score free facial care products, free deodorant, and free floss (perfect for June’s De-Frumpiness project). You can also get a pretty good deal on razors, face wash, and makeup.

The thing with CVS is patience. Stick to the sales and you’ll be a-ok. Also, don’t be afraid to use their return policy. I had a makeup shopping spree a couple of months ago during a particularly good sale week and bought a powder that was supposed to shimmer. I got home and realized what I got was not what was listed on the rack it was in. The packaging on the products was identical despite the fact they had four different finishes. More than a month later, I finally got the chance to go back to CVS with the product and receipt and was able to exchange it for the right one– even with the first product already being open and used. In other words, be unafraid to purchase makeup you can’t try. If, when you get home, the shade makes you look freshly dead, exchange it for a different shade. Easy!

Walgreens is also quite popular with the savings crowd. I can’t suggest them as strongly as I can CVS because they have so many stupid rules and restrictions with their Register Rewards and coupons it’s a true labor to get things done. My suggestion? Don’t put Walgreens on the list of places you regularly shop at but DO make sure you check out their ad if you find you have to go there for whatever reason (prescription, ATM, medicine, etc.). I had to go to my Walgreens last night for their ATM (ING Direct-friendly!), checked their ad real quick and found they have a deal on Goody hair accessories this week– $2 in Register Rewards when you buy certain $2 hair accessories. That means free hair accessories– IF I have to buy something from Walgreens by June 21st. Turns out I do need some saline drops that never go on sale.So I’m wearing my cute little headband today and in the next few days I’ll go by and pick up the saline drops. Free hair stuff!

Of course, it’s also about keeping an eye out. I ventured into Sally Beauty Supply the other day in search of nail tip guides to find they are having a pretty big sale this month which includes a lot of Buy 1 Get 1 Free deals– even on nail art items (currently a thing). I’d honestly never been much of a Sally girl but rest assured I’ll be checking in on their ads more often now. They have lots of specialty items there you just can’t get at CVS and they’re not afraid to mark them down.

Lastly, there’s the internet. Today I purchased the June Mystery Box from Julep. Julep is a nail care company and every now and then they offer mystery boxes for $60. Each mystery box includes anywhere from $60 to $200 worth of merchandise. This month, you can get a limited edition mystery nail color OR the entire collection of Julep nail polish. Um yeah that’s pretty amazing right? But $60? Ouch. Well, use the code JUNEMYSTERY and your box is $19.99 with free shipping. I indulged. It’s $19.99. I wouldn’t hesitate to spend $19.99 on my kids. Each of Julep’s nail polishes go for $14 each and the mystery boxes include at least three of them from what I’ve seen in previous month’s reveals. Julep is a beauty company to watch. They have a nail polish subscription as well and they occasionally offer the chance to try a box for a penny. I’ve always talked myself out of trying it but next time I won’t, especially if the Mystery Box doesn’t disappoint.

Beauty boxes are very popular right now. I keep seeing mentions of them all over the place. Julep’s the only one though that seems to be willing to offer great deals. I’ve heard great deals on Glossybox but a $21 monthly subscription is out of the question. I might buy myself one month’s box for my birthday in August to try it out and then, if it’s as good as I’ve been seeing I’ll probably use Tinsel’s guts towards the purchase of another one in December or January. The value of the box’s contents tend to be much higher than the $21 so it’s worth it if the money is set aside for it. Definitely a great Treat Yo Self type of purchase, eh Nikki?

So there you have it. Some of the ways I’ve been spending on myself this year. I wish I could say spending and not stressing but it’s just not true. I still have issues spending on myself and I wonder if in a way I always will. I didn’t have this problem when I was single (no kids, no nobody) but as soon as the loves of my life started making appearances, this went out the window and what was once a fun thing to do turned into a guilt-ridden experience.

What about you? Do you like spending on yourself? What about on things that are outside the Needs Zone but not in the Communal Wants Zone? Things only you want that no one else would really enjoy?

Mutant Supermodel gets Hair-larious

You should know that just now I was at my standing desk dancing to M.I.A.’s Paper Planes (Diplo Street Mix) and because I’m behind my desk I had kicked off my heels and because I was dancing I tripped on them and because my chair was directly behind me I collapsed straight into it. That’s totally chuckle-worthy right?

It’s Friday. It’s Friday and I had such a horribly stressed out day yesterday that I am forcing myself to let go and relax and be silly and lite and total fluff. I’m not even going to be mysterious. I’ll just come right out and tell you that yesterday sucked because the people I work with in Office #2 filled me with complete panic about my job security. The university’s medical school has been adversely affected by the calamity that has beset our city’s one and only public hospital with which we are closely affiliated with. This is of course trickling up and per the rumor mill the administrative jobs are under close scrutiny. Some people insist that doesn’t include mine and some people insist it does include mine and yesterday I was with the second group and though I’m not proud to admit it, they totally got to me.

Now after having several hours away from that atmosphere I’m not so panicked anymore and am more in my original attitude towards the whole thing– I do think I am safe because the project I work for is very lucrative, I am the only admin that is fully funded by the project, and I do have something to do with the project’s profitability although how much those in charge would be willing to acknowledge that is not something I can really guess at. If the opposite is true and I am not protected by my project’s profitability, then it’s true– I am the most likely to go because of lots and lots of reasons. And even though that sort of makes me sad, it’s not really fazing me. It’s just a sign that something in my logic, something in my plans, isn’t right and I have to fix it and this is one way of correcting that.

But back to fluff and stuff right?

On Monday I asked you guys what to De-Frump next and 50% of the voters chose Hair. I’m actually kind of happy about that. My kids go on spring break now so I actually have a week of mornings with more time. I also got a haircut last month and have been enjoying playing with it.

So bring out the hair products and the accessories and put away the scrunchies and banana clips (none of us actually have those right? Ha. Ha.). Let’s figure out how to use these bobby pin things. Let’s look at some hair tutorial videos on YouTube. You can be edgy. You can be feminine. You can be pop. You can be rock. You can curl. You can straighten. You can poof. You can smooth.

If you’d like to play along this month, I’m going to encourage you to share photos. And I am going to give you LOTS of ways to do that ok? So if you do something with your hair you are happy with, send it my way via:

I know a lot of you are camera shy so I figure this might be fun because you can take lots of pictures of hair without showing your face. I know it sounds wrong, but trust me. Have fun with it this month, let’s go a little crazy. Send me photos of hair-related things that inspire you. Send me before and after photos. Send me links to hair tutorials. You know that fantasy that guys have of a bunch of girls at a slumber party doing each others hair in their underwear? Well it’s kind of like that except we’re all on the internet and I’m guessing most of us will be fully dressed but you totally don’t have to be if you don’t want to be.

I’ll kick it off by showing you the collage I put together and took with me to the hairdresser last month for my hair inspiration. That way you can see that before you see how my hairdresser actually did and how I’m wearing it.

Have fun!

What to De-Frump Next?

I have to admit, March was pretty fun for the De-Frumpiness Project. I discovered scarves in a really big way and now my eyes keep straying to the scarf section every time I walk into a store– especially at Target. Have you seen the scarves at Target? I bought my goddaughter a gorgeous sunny one for Easter. No, it’s not the one I wanted for myself (and did not get) but it was close! Notice these scarves aren’t the ones I could crochet or knit for myself so they are extra tempting.

I also rediscovered jewelry but I’m sort of stumped on a better way to organize it that doesn’t put my jewelry at-risk for theft. After my whole collection of jewelry was swiped a few years ago, nicely stored in my red jewelry box I might add, I have struggled to find a system that works well for storing my jewelry in a safe way but also encourages me to use the jewelry. Right now all the fake stuff is strewn in a dresser drawer plus tucked into various trinket boxes on my dresser and even shoved into a tea tin in my bathroom. Not to mention all of the little pieces piling up besides the bathroom sink. All the good jewelry is hidden of course.

But now it’s April and I’m once again beginning the month with no idea where to go with April. SO what do YOU guys want to de-frump this month?

De-Frumpiness Project: Nailing February and Accessorizing March

De-Frumpiness Project

Regular readers might be aware I am doing a year-long De-Frumpiness Project in an effort to get myself out of the rut that my personal style somehow careened into at some point in my life. Each month, I focus on a different aspect of myself that could use some freshening up or just plain attention.

In February, I decided to pay some attention to my fingers and toes. The big thing was I wanted to break an awful habit I had of tearing my cuticles, sometimes to the point of bleeding. I also wanted to try and make sure nail polish was kept neat.

Well, I was able to do pretty well with avoiding the picking. I think one thing that helped was that I was moisturizing my hands way more often. As a matter of fact, the first time I picked at a cuticle was on Leap Day, when all the stress from my grandmother’s death made it harder to remember to moisturize. Suddenly I had hang nails and dry annoying cuticles.

Lesson learned.

The nail polish was a wash. First of all, I’d always mess up putting polish on at least one nail right away, so putting on color polish became something annoying to do, not fun.
Second of all, it seems nail polish is just not very compatible with my life. Polish would begin chipping almost immediately, within a day. The only type of polish that could endure the insane amount of things I do daily, was good old fashioned clear coat. So most of the times, that’s what I stuck with. Not as cheery or fun, but at least my nails looked cared for and that was what I wanted.

Lesson learned.

The only downside I found to the nail polish not working out the way I’d envisioned it was a complete lack of photos. I mean, how many fascinating ways are there to photograph naked nails? This picture featuring one of the Valentine’s Day cards we did is the only one I have that shows off my pretty and healthy nails.

So, now it’s March– way into March actually. And the project for March is born from the recent death of one my Abuelas. Why?

Abuela was a classic lady. There was not one pair of jeans in that house. There was not one t-shirt to be found. She just was not that kind of lady. She was always put together, polished, complete. As a result, one thing my grandmother had a lot of was accessories.

I can’t seem to get the hang of accessories. It’s not that I don’t feel comfortable wearing them, it’s just that 1) It never occurs to me to actually spend money on them and 2) It rarely occurs to me to put on the few I own. I’ve been in survival mode. That means I throw on pants, a bra, a top, socks and shoes, and please god don’t let me forget to put on deodorant today (but I keep some at work just in case).

The thing about figuring out your own style is paying attention to what catches your eye in a positive way. You will find common themes. For me, I found myself drawn to sleek but complete looks. I liked hair that was obviously given more thought than a hairband, but wasn’t overdone. I liked jewelry as thoughtful accents– not piled on but not left in a drawer either. And I noticed I liked little accents like a simple brooch or a pretty scarf or a cozy shawl.

I sported none of these, but my Abuela did. And upon cleaning out her house, I got a lot of it. A couple of pashminas and shawls, a few simple scarves, two lovely brooches, and fun jewelry that ranged from classic and subtle to statement pieces for day time to beautiful treasures better saved for special occasions.

So, here we are in March and I am accessorizing. I am forcing myself to contemplate something other than the bare essentials. I am forcing myself to think about what I am putting on, to consider what I look like. I must stop and reflect, and then actually take in the reflection the mirror truly offers.

Funny how we take this sort of thing for granted and how quickly it disappears if you let it. But that’s the whole point of this project, bring myself under consideration, paying attention to me. If you’d like to join me, let me know! I most easily track this sort of thing on Google+ and I can add you to my De-Frumpiness Circle on there if you let me know. With enough urging, I might even get off my lazy social media butt and encourage this project through Twitter. Is that of interest to anyone? What do you all prefer?

More Than Words

Angelika on The Sartorialist

The photo above was taken by one of my all time favorite bloggers, The Sartorialist. I love to see the images he throws up on his blog and see how people wear clothes around the world. The photo above came with a post that generated a ridiculous amount of commentary, myself included. Why? Well, let me ask you to play a quick game. Pick up to ten words that describe this girl’s appearance. Go.

Got them all listed now? Ok here are the excerpts from The Sartorialist’s post that freaked people out:

“I loved that she’s a bigger, curvier girl than most of the other bloggers who you see in the press and tend to represent the genre. The subtle thing she achieves so successfully in these two looks is to complement the sturdy but beautiful shape of her legs with an equally strong shoe.”

You browse the comments and it’s clear a lot of us thought the exact same thing—Bigger? Curvier? Sturdy? For the love of god tell me you’re being sarcastic! Later he came back and updated his post. Here are some excerpts from that:

“A number of the commenters are upset by the word “curvy.” They feel I should have used the word “normal.” However, normal is relative. There is a young lady on my team who is 5’0″, and another who is 5’9″. Which would be “normal”?… This girl is taller than most, and has the bearing to match. Regarding the curves…just because you don’t see them does not mean they are not there. Is there a minimum degree of curviness to be considered “curvy”?… Remember, curvy is a body shape, not a weight. To be honest, you can’t really see in these photographs most of the curves – chest, stomach, hip – this woman has… What sucks is that when I try to put a photograph up to talk about these issues, the post is hijacked over the political correctness of the words… So help me understand; what is the modern way to speak about size? I’m not married to the word curvy… Help me describe this young lady without using the word “normal,” but in a way that addresses her body size and still references my point about the size of her legs relative to her shoes… I am proud to be a blog that is showing women of different sizes. I don’t want to lose the potential power of the post by being caught up in wordplay.”

Ok, here is my thing. It’s not about what words you use to describe her, it’s that you feel you must point out these differences at all and draw attention to the shape of her body in the first place as being different than the norm for the fashion world. Honestly, I wouldn’t have thought of her as different until he pointed it out—and even then, I swear to you I looked at the photos he had of her more than once until I finally saw her legs. If you want to talk about her shoes and her legs, there’s no need to throw in adjectives here. It’s simple. You simply state, “I love how her shoes go so well with her legs.” And the thing about that is if you feel you must make that sort of comment about a girl you perceive as curvier or whatever you want to call it, you should feel the need to make that sort of comment about a girl that’s a skeleton. Do you see my point? We know certain colors complement some better than others and it’s fine to point out how beautifully a particular color enhances the skin tone of a particular subject—but it shouldn’t be the exception because she’s not white for instance. That sort of observation should be universally made if you’re going to bother making it at all. Does this make sense?

The impression I got from the initial post, and even in the update, is what I think SO many of us non-waifs feel when we see these attempts at photographing and highlighting non-models. It’s the equivalent of, “That’s not bad—for a girl.” Except in the street fashion world it’s become “That’s not bad—for a non-model.” And that’s not fair.

The Sartorialist ended his update about how he is proud to be a blog showing women of different sizes (also ages but I didn’t include that part). The thing is, I disagree. He’s NOT showing women of different sizes. And ages? That’s not new at all. Vogue’s been giving us the giant Age issue for how long now? As a matter of fact, in this post The Sartorialist photographs three different instances where a flared jean is being worn. I swear to you they all look like they’re being worn by the same skinny pair of legs. Do you see a big ass in there? No way. Why? Big asses don’t work in flare jeans? Please. They probably work better than those twigs because they are more proportionate. As a matter of fact, in at least one of those instances I would even go so far as to say the flare is borderline ridiculous at the end of that type of body. Furthermore, here are March 2010, March 2009, and March 2008 posts. Tell me how many times you find a girl/woman that’s not a twig?

Exactly.

I think The Sartorialist is amazing at what he does. He captures some excellent stuff on the streets. I think his question is genuine insofar as it can be. But he’s been raised by fashion magazines and the influence is, sadly, obvious. These aren’t real street fashion photographs. They are fashion photographs on the street. The bottom line is, they can easily be taken as staged magazine editorials and while that’s definitely a compliment to his photographic ability, it’s not a compliment to his self-proclaimed diverse eye. The thing I find the most damning to this assertion is the amazing diversity you find in the photographs of men. I mean talk about ALL shapes, sizes, colors, and ages.

The bottom line is this—women who are not skinny are quite capable being pretty, sexy, and fashionable. I think on a surface level, we all know this. But clearly, it’s not ingrained deep enough that it is something natural. Most likely, The Sartorialist would have to re-train his eye to fully accept this view. I think this was why he was inclined to add adjectives to the woman’s body shape. She obviously struck him as out of the ordinary. While she’s very pretty, she’s not out of the ordinary—especially to people who are not caught up in the fashion world. That’s where The Sartorialist betrays himself and why so many people commented on the obvious confusing use of his words. So many women identified with her body shape and here she was being called out specifically because she was “different.” He tried spinning it in a positive way, and I get that, but the point he’s missing, I think, is that it should be the other way around. She shouldn’t be the one he perceives as different because she’s closer to the average (he’s right, there’s no such thing as “normal”) woman. As a matter of fact, research and history have shown women with hourglass or pear figures are generally held the most attractive. The fashion world does not put these shapes forth on the runway. By the way, the statistics for the average woman in the United States are as follows:

Measured average height, weight, and waist circumference for adults ages 20 years and over

  • Women:
    Height (inches):   63.8
    Weight (pounds):  164.7
    Waist circumference (inches):   37.0

I love the world of fashion. I love clothes and believe in the artistry that is to be found at many of the big designer houses. However, I do believe the fashion industry has done a major disservice to the women of the world in the past few decades. I think they truly have a huge responsibility to fix that. They aren’t and don’t even seem to understand the gravity of it. I have always maintained they are even doing themselves a disservice because every designer worth a lick will tell you they design for the every woman. Bullshit. It’s got to change. I feel people like The Sartorialist want to see that happen but are at the same time mired so deep in it themselves, they have a hard time doing what it takes to really fix things. I don’t want you showing me real people wearing runway clothes on a street. I want you to show me real people wearing real clothes on the street and are captivating. This is the true challenge street fashion bloggers need to rise up to. It’s a huge risk to go against the fashion world but it’s a necessary one. The fact street fashion bloggers are just capturing runway trends on the street show they’re doing nothing more than bowing to the big houses. They’re even invited to attend fashion shows now and crowd outside the shows afterwards. Why? This is not street fashion. Let it go. Dictate to the fashion world what is beautiful, don’t let them dictate to you.