Tag Archives: wrap dress

Pr0n Plus: Spring Basics Edition

La Canadienne Stella, $225.68

La Canadienne Stella, $225.68 at Zappos

Happy Spring, Northern Hemisphere!  I’m afraid this blog is a bit Northern-Hemisphere-centric.  I’m a day late with this week’s Pr0n Plus, but I think it’s a good one.  In today’s Shopping Pr0n, we’re going to look at spring wardrobe basics. 

I’ll be showing plus size styles, but these are items which should and can go in anyone’s closet: a spring coat, a cotton shirt, pants, sweater, a day dress, and some cute comfy shoes.

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The first thing everyone needs for spring is a raincoat.  You can sing “Rain rain go away” to your heart’s content, but it doesn’t seem to do much good. 

Standing Collar Trench, $54.99 at Target

Standing Collar Trench, $54.99 at Target

Pears/Hourglasses and apples have different needs for coats.  (How do you know if you’re a pear or an apple?  Do you have a defined waist?  No?  You’re an apple. 

Do you have Bette Davis eyes thighs?  You’re a pear.) When buying coats, a pear actually doesn’t necessarily want to define a waist. 

Look at this classic belted trenchcoat from Target.  Yes, Target.  For a pear or hourglass is that once you cinch the belt, it over-emphasizes what’s happening down below, and you look lumpy and heavier than you are.  

For an apple, this helps define what you don’t have much of.  Since there’s less inch difference beween chest, waist and butt, the belt will emphasize, not over-emphasize.

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Pears (for the rest of this post, just extend pear advice to hourglasses), try something like this fun “Rainy Day Mac” from Boden. 

Rainy Day Mac, $138 at Boden

Rainy Day Mac, $138 at Boden

Don’t worry about your waist – it’s not going anywhere.  The key is to deemphasize the “booty area” (it’s a technical term).

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 By wearing something that doesn’t chop you off in the middle, you look sleek and svelte.  Boden goes up to a UK size 20 (US 18ish), and they have this style in a few other patterns. 

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What I love about Boden’s website is that they show you how much stock they have left for each color and size.
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Working from the outside in, you’re going to want a day dress: something you can dress up for work, and dress down on the weekend.  I love this tie-back dress from Donna Ricco. 
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Donna Ricco Tie Back Dress, $168

Donna Ricco Tie Back Dress, $168

Big prints are great for plus-sizes; it’s a matter of proportion.  Also, this type of tie-back, or similar wrap-dress is going to flatter lots of body types. 

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Not everyone has a small waist, but the smallest part of every woman’s body is almost always under her bust.  Add an adjustable top to an empire waist and it’s genius. 
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Remember that you can always put a cami on underneath if there’s too much boobage (also a technical term).
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Every woman must must must (must) have in her closet a simple button down shirt, a pair of casual pants, and a colorful cardigan.

Gap Dobby Striped Roll-Up Shirt, $48

Gap Dobby Striped Roll-Up Shirt, $48

These three pieces can be mixed and matched with nearly everything else in your closet, will never go out of fashion, and can be bought nearly anywhere to suit your individual style.

Simply Be Combat Pants, 32p

Simply Be Combat Pants, 32p

I’ve chosen a white cotton roll-up shirt from the Gap, a pair of pants from Simply Be, and a cardigan from Pink Marzipan. 

The Gap has practically made its name on basics like this; their XXL is a size 18 or 20.  J. Crew goes up to a 16 on many products, as does Banana Republic. 

PAS Knitted Cardigan In China Blue- Poro, 64p

PAS Knitted Cardigan In China Blue- Poro, 64p

For a lower price point, try Macy’s or Target or H&M.  Oh!  This summer (I think), Forever21 is coming out with a plus size line.  Yay!  Hopefully it will be the same kind of “knock-off trendy” as the original.

One point about this style of cardigan/sweater: it has the potential to be very cute on both apples and pears, but pears have to be careful.

If it doesn’t look right, it’ll wind up making you look pregnant.  If it does look right, it’ll look cute and flowy.  I’m a pear and I bought similar a few weeks ago, but the style rarely works on me.

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It is my sincere belief that every woman should own at least one pair of red shoes.  These Vaneli flats are very similar to a pair of Eccos I splurged on and have never regretted. 

Vaneli Indo Flat, $54.97 at Endless

Vaneli Indo Flat, $54.97 at Endless

They’ve got a slight heel (much better for you than plain flats), and cushy, flexible rubber soles.  You’ll get compliments on them nearly every time you wear them.  Dinsquared guaranteed.

These puppies are on clearance for $54 and change at Endless. com, and they’re still available in lots  of narrow and wide sizes up to a 10. 

You need a pair of shoes that aren’t sneakers that are still comfortable to walk around in: to a friend’s house, to lunch, to the mall.  I can wear my Eccos for hours.; these Vaneli’s look pretty comfy, too.

Jimmy Choo "Clue" at Nordstrom

Jimmy Choo "Clue" at Nordstrom

By the way, did you know that Jimmy Choo’s go up to a size 11.5/12?  I certainly didn’t. 
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Jimmy Choo’s really don’t have anything specific to do with spring, but they’re fabulous and come in a large size, so I’m showing them to you.  Aren’t they fabulous?
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That’s all the time we have together today my little pr0n popcorn.  I have more post ideas than I have time to do them all. 

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I hope to bring you a post on women’s suits, a series dressing for your body type, a series on how to make a wardrobe out of your closet, a post on coats…oy!  Please stay with me, won’t you?
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Until next time, it was good for me; tell me, was it good for you?

Budget Pr0n!

Hi pr0nsters.  If there’s anything your blogger loves more than a sale, it’s a challenge.  Today I will be combining the two.  In this (first) edition of Dirt Cheap Pr0n, I will be putting together three pr0nish looks for $100-150.  Everyone knows the Fifth Rule of Shopping Pr0n:  A true pr0nista doesn’t depend on price.  You rarely have to pay full price, loveys.

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A sale is a tricky thing; you want the best price, but you don’t want the item to sell out in your size, particularly if you’re in the 10-14 range, which generally sells first.  So choose wisely – decide what an item of clothing is worth to you, sign up for email lists at favorite stores so you’ll get advance notice of sales, and special discounts, and when the time is right – pounce!  Sometimes that time is right away.  But rarely.


Outfit #1 is a work/date/dinner outfit..

I’m going to start with this fuchsia silk cami on final sale over at J. Crew.  It’s a final sale, so you have to know how this particular brand fits you, but I like it because it’s versatile – wear it under a suit, or with jeans or a pencil skirt.  They have it available in most sizes, and it’s in ivory, too.

The cami is fully lined, with a side zipper and it’s machine washable.  So this gets a thumbs up for me for $29.99, originally $75.00.

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Right now I’m thinking that I don’t like final sales – scary.  So I’m going to pair this with a classic pencil skirt on sale at Martin & Osa .

Because the cami has a slight A-Line I want something more fitted on bottom to balance it out.  This pencil skirt can go from work to evening, I like the above the knee length, and the slight sheen.

The skirt has a little stretch in it, and it’s fully lined.  Martin & Osa has free shipping and returns, and the skirt is still available in sizes 6-18.  So this skirt is a winner for only $19.99 on clearance from $69.99, and I’ve only spent half my budget.  Whoo!

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I’m kind of flexible with how I can finish the outfit on top depending on how much money I have left, but I know I need shoes so that’s what I’m after next.  

Endless.com has free overnight shipping on regular priced shoes, but these are clearance, so it’s standard shipping, which is 3-5 business days.  Still – free! Loving these cute Bongo peep toe Thora pumps for$26.10.

Thora has a 3.5 inch heel with a .25 inch platform, peep toe, and is available in sizes 6 to 8.5.  I can still spend $24.00 or so on accessories or a jacket if I’m really lucky.

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Overstock.com has $1.00 shipping, so I’m going to take advantage of that.  For $9.89 this pink ring matches the pink top, and will give the outfit another splash of color.

Finally I’m going to brighten the whole thing with a Sterling Silver Polished Flex Bangle Bracelet for $15.29.

Grand total, including shipping with J. Crew equals $110.76. *beams*  Throw in your own handbag and black tights, pls.

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Outfit #2 is an outfit that can be casual, work or date.  Almost anywhere.

I don’t know why finding an affordable, pr0nish dress was so difficult, but trust me: it was.  I found the dress I chose in an unlikely place: The Greenloop.  This is an organic cotton wrap dress; you may have heard that wrap dresses are nearly universally flattering, and it’s true.  Whether you’ve got a tummy or hips, a wrap dress can camouflage.

Again, this is organic cotton, with a deep v-neck (throw a cami under if there’s too much cleavage), 3/4 length sleeves, and an a-line skirt that hits right above the knee (too long? the tailor is your friend).  It’s available up to an XL (16) in Black, Cranberry, Midnight Blue and Truffle (shown).

Diane was originally $95, it’s on sale for $75; use code sale25 and the final price is $61.75 (including $5.00 shipping). It’s a simple dress, but that just means you can do a lot with it.

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I love it with boots, but thinking outside the box, I went over to Payless.  They’re following Target’s lead and teaming up with high fashion designers to produce pr0nish Payless lines.

These gray flats are Lela Rose for Target. Your dear blogger is all over gray tights right now, too. They go with everything and are such a cute change from black.  The flats $34, so this outfit is going to be more than the last.

Speaking of Target, while we’re running errands, we’ll swing into there.  Hayden-Harnett has a limited edition line there, and I’ll be darned if I’m going to miss out on that!

The website seems to feel this is a rectangular clutch with no straps; I beg to differ.  This is a brown rectangular PVC bag, with a fold-over flap (don’t know if the interior zips or not), with a square gold-tone detail on the front and a skinny strap.

The interior has the Hayden Harnett signature.

You can have your own Hayden Harnett for $29.99 (the clutch is $19.99).  We’re up to $125, so let’s throw in one more thing and call it a wrap.

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In fact, that’s a great idea.  I’m going to throw on this purple ruffle-knit acrylic wrap.  It’ll keep me warm and give the outfit a little contrast color, which will go with any of the colors the dress is in, and give a little contrast texture.  It’s $14.99 on clearance.

Our grand total is about $140, and we got a dress, shoes, handbag and a wrap.  Not shabby!  If we’d used our own shoes, and bought the clutch, we’d come in right at $100.

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Outfit #3 is for men, and I’m anticipating this is going to be easy.

Men, I’m going to teach you a very valuable skill: it’s called layering.  A few years ago, Scowley’s hubby came down for the weekend and I cleaned him up but good.  This is the kind of outfit we’re going to put together.

Here’s what you do: you take a button down shirt with a little personality, like this Project E pale green distressed ‘Rivington’ button down shirt from Bluefly.com.  Retail price: $84.99, Bluefly price $50, reduced to $44.99, Presidents Day sale price: $35.99.

Now you pair it with a nice t-shirt underneath.  A nice t-shirt.  A new t-shirt.  With some color and personality.  I like this coffee colored graphic-tee, also from Pr0ject E.  Yes, the top is green and the bottom is brown.  You can do that.  When in doubt, buy a color wheel.

(Okay, I’m being stereotypical here.  My guy friends are actually pretty hot and dress well.)  The t-shirt was blah blah, it’s now $16.79 when all is said and done.

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Whee.  We’re only up to about 5o bucks.  We need jeans.  I have to impress on both men and women that jeans shopping sucks.  You may have to try on more than one pair.  You may have to try on lots of pairs.  Suck it up.

Don’t overthink jeans.  Head over to Old Navy, and pick yourself up a pair of medium/dark rinse boot-cut jeans for $29.50.  (I know, I just contradicted myself, but for the sake of this post, my point is that jeans don’t need to cost $200.)

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We’re up to $80, and we need shoes.  I’m partial to a nice “sneaker” like this navy nylon “Kamikaze” from Gola at Bluefly.

As long as they’re not actual sneakers, and they’re neat and clean, you’re golden.

These are $39.99.  Bluefly shipping within the continental U.S. is a flat $7.95, bringing our fine gentleman’s grand total to $130.22.

Once you’ve got this type of dressing down, call your blogger! (Have I mentioned I’m single?)

There you have it!  Three complete outfits, which will stretch very far in your closet for under $150.  Yay!

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This was a pain in the butt, but the thing is that good sales are usually much easier to find in person.  Stores like Loehmann’s, TJMaxx, Marshalls and Filene’s Basement will save you money on good name brands right off the bat.  Sign up for their email lists, find out about sales, and get coupons via email and save even more!

Dress like a million bucks for just a hundred.  Now that’s pr0n. Thanks for reading, lumpkins.  I’m a bit under the weather, so I hope it was up to par.

As always, it was good for me; tell me, was it good for you?

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Inaugural Pr0n

Welcome to your Inaugural Shopping Pr0n (OIC what you did there.) As the saying goes, opinions are like belly buttons: everyone’s got one. Some of us have more than one. (Opinion, not belly button. That would just be weird.) As long as everyone else is talking about Obama fashion, my opinion is at least as good as anyone else’s.

Who needs a puppy when you have these two?

Starting with the highest high note: Malia and Sasha Obama in J. Crew. I can’t say enough about these outfits. So bright and colorful, coordinated without looking cloy and totally age appropriate. Malia gets royal blue, accented with black tights, gloves and scarf, while Sasha gets a cotton candy pink coat, accented with red tights and shoes, a coraly pink dress and orange scarf and gloves. LOVE orange and pink together. SO current. While the outfits were custom made, thumbs up to the Obamas for going with a mass-market designer; they looked comfortable and happy (and warm, hello?). I want to snuggle them. 10 out of 10.

Seriously, are there two more attractive people in this country?

Let’s start with the First Lady (whee!) getting it right, because when she gets it right she is just such an elegant woman. With her height and her figure, who wouldn’t want to dress her? At the Sunday Inaugural Concert, that honor went to Narcisso Rodriguez. Narcisso shares something with Mrs. Obama: when he gets it right, he gets it so so right (see Charlize Theron, Kate Moss, Salma Hayek). But when he get is wrong, as in that awful belted red thing Michelle wore after the election? *sigh*

Anyway, let’s examine this outfit: The coat is camel colored with a black lining, then there’s a matching camel colored pencil-skirt, black belt, black crew-neck sweater with a few sparkles, a black scarf, and black kitten heels from what I can see. The color combination is divine. If you want classic you just can’t do any better than camel and black, and both colors look really nice with Michelle’s skin. Loving the pencil skirt, I think it’s a fantastic sillouette for her, and don’t even get me started on that coat. *droooool*

I’m not crazy about the sweater. First, I don’t like crew necks on her – like me, I don’t think they’re flattering and she needs a slightly more open neckline. The beading…is kind of meh to me. It feels borderline like that crazy Quacker Factory lady. Also, I have to deduct points for the shoes. I’m really not sure what the deal is with Michelle and shoes, but she needs an intervention. I think I had those shoes in 7th grade (don’t throw things at me!). If you’re going to wear flats (and you really shouldn’t with a pencil skirt), wear flats. If you’re going to wear heels, wear heels. Okay, keeping everything in mind I’ll give the outfit a final grade of 7.5 out of 10. Change the shoes and the sweater and you’ve got a 9 or a 10 on your hands.

The President looks effortlessly chic in a black suit, overcoat and gloves, with a cornflower blue tie. 10 out of 10. You can’t expect anything more out of that kind of an outfit…except bullet resistant clothing. So I have to say this one goes to 11.

Here’s where it starts to get dicey.

Really Michelle? Michelle, really?

I’ll start with the facts. The facts are that Michelle’s Inauguration Day outfit was made by Cuban born designer Isabel Toledo (To-LEY-do), who knew about when we all did that one of her creastions had been chosen by the new First Lady. Ms. Toldeo’s designs are characterized by the intricate designwork you can see on the coat and skirt if you look closely.

The color has been best described (IMO) as “lemongrass”. The coat is lined in silk and pashmina for warmth, and also has “arm sweaters” for extra warmth. It appears to be a just at or below the knee jewel-neck sheath, with a slightly darker toned empire waist cardigan that ties with a ribbon. The gloves are by J. Crew and the shoes are by Jimmy Choo. Those are the facts.

These are my opinions: I don’t like the color. Anyone who says it’s “sunny and optimistic” will be summarily smacked through the internet. It’s not. A sunny yellow would have been lovely. This is neither sunny nor optimistic. It’s bordering on the color of puke. The embellishment looks heavy and comes across as brocade, which is far too old for Mrs. Obama. It’s too long. She has a habit of wearing her dresses and skirts this length and it must stop.

Because she’s so tall, this length only makes her look disproportionately longer. Her skirts need to stop at the knee, please. The coat is even longer! Jumping Jesus on a pogo stick are we trying to make the woman into Barbara Bush? Even Nancy Reagan had a better sense of proportion. I’m sorry, I’m getting upset. *inhales*

The collar isn’t fantastic; it’s slightly better than a crew neck, but not by much. The shape of the dress is okay – we know Mrs. Obama likes sheaths, but she could have done better. It needs more definition at her true waist or just slightly higher.

The gloves and shoes do not go. Stacy and Clinton say, “You don’t have to match, you just have to go.” The problem is that the greens she’s wearing aren’t in the same tone family. A similar shoe in a much better color is these “Amaya” pumps by Lauren – Ralph Lauren.

If I was dressing Michelle (I’d be a very content woman), I’d put her in something like this coral RM by Roland Mouret Romy Dress, give it a higher neckline, jewel length sleeves and make it in wool. Then I’d coordinate it with a mushroomy colored coat. Or, I’d put her in something like this Lela Rose Yellow Sapphire Wrap Dress. Make it in a nice nubby wool crepe or gabardine, with jewel or 3/4 length sleeves and a slightly darker toned coat. Oh, and lower the hem just to the knee. Did. Done. *nods* Oh – final grade…6 out of 10.

Okay. Moving on to happier times, the BALL *dun dun dun*. Not only does the First Lady have the pressure of choosing The Gown, but The Gown gets donated to the Smithsonian. That’s pressure. So how did she do?

wow

A white one shoulder chiffon dress by designer Jason Wu, who again did not know his dress had been chosen until he saw it on TV. What’s good about this dress? The color. White is visually stunning against her skin, and I love the cleanness of it (and how the President matches her). The bodice. I love where the waistline hits her, I love how the bodice emphasises her top half and then just flowers up and over her bust. I like the skirt an awful lot. I think it’s what it should be for the dress, I think the detail on it (hand sewn) is beautiful, and I think overall it suits her personality, which is something I particularly appreciate. It’s very her. It’s modern and chic and young without being overdone. Her makeup was subduded and she looked radiant. I’m giving this a 8 out of 10.

I could quibble slightly with the President’s tux. I wouldn’t have minded seeing him in a more modern or European cut, which would have been slimmer, maybe a 3 button jacket. But his tuxedo was traditional and classic, and there’s nothing wrong with that. 8 out of 10.

There’s your pr0n for today. It was good for me; was it good for you?

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