“Be Daring, Be Different, Be Impractical”

One thing that getting back into vintage style clothing has helped me do is build my confidence.  Don’t get me wrong, there are still parts of body I really dislike and if I could wave a wand and fix a few things I would have a list, but I am learning to accept what I have.
A couple of years ago I was working away in Hull for 4 months in a place without a kitchen, and so months of eating whatever was convenient caught up with me pretty quickly.  In those four months, I managed to put on over two stone and I have tried to lose it in the years since but it hasn’t budged.  I refused to buy new clothes and so when I first moved back to my parents I lived in my pj’s because they were the only clothes that fit.  When I first started my new job, in an office for the first time, I bought the bare minimum to get by.  I hated my size, I had (and do still have) a wardrobe full of clothes that don’t fit.  All that changed when I went to London Edge last year.
Now years ago I was very heavily into vintage fashion, I always swore if I got a normal office job I would dress like that every day.  Having a manual labour job in a theatre meant I lived in shorts and black t-shirts with a head torch strapped to my noggin and rigging boots on my feet.  Not the most glam look!  I was still rocking my Hell Bunnies on my rare days off, but after my weight gain it was all but forgotten about.  I still loved the look but had convinced myself that I was too big for it – I felt lost.  Going to London edge and meeting Porcelina  and Carly as well as seeing other incredibly stylish vintage loving bloggers really inspired me.  Since then, through these blogs, I found out about shops I never knew existed and hints and tips that even this lazy blogger has managed to try out.  Slowly my wardrobe has been rebuilt and recently I stopped weighing myself.  As someone with a history of eating disorders that I still struggle with this is a HUGE deal.  Then this outfit happened:

Foxy Top in Red from Doll Me Up £15.56
Pretty Pleats Skirt in Red from Doll Me Up £19.45
Calvin Klein Sunglasses from Discounted Sunglasses £44*
Tan Brogues (from the teen section) New Look £24.99
Now my stomach isn’t my most hated part of myself, but it is not one I thought I would ever actively show off.  I was still nervous putting this outfit on, but once I got over it, it felt great.  I haven’t worn it out of the house yet as when I was gearing myself up to do this is started banging it down with rain (damn you English summer!).  Red used to be my favourite colour but it’s something that I have hid away from in recent years, and yet here I am wearing something in siren red.  
I got this two piece online from Doll Me Up when I was looking to buy a Vixen Vondetta top, which are super popular in the Pin Up community right now.  While I was on there I spotted this top and skirt and just thought it was such a cute combo.  I did initially have a lot more in my basket but unfortunately as always money was tight so this two piece and the top were the only things that made the cut.  
Even though it does show parts of me that are usually restricted to the beach, I still think because of where it lies it is rather flattering (even if there is a bit of squidge hanging out).  The top is really cute and can be worn with other things although the one issue I really had with it is getting a bra to fit.  It took me ages and a lot of help on social media to find something that worked. Thankfully Lucinda of Fashion Fictionary finally recommended the Ultimate Deep Plunge Wonderbra to me and it is perfect for this top.  A word of warning though it isn’t the most comfortable if you plan on doing a lot of sitting down due to the low centre but it is amazingly versatile.  
The actual 2 piece is really comfortable and the waistband of the skirt is elasticated so it isn’t restrictive, although I do sometimes have some issues with the elastic inside getting twisted.  It’s made of cotton and has a good weight to it and from what I can tell so far it is really well made.  The joy of this is because they are both so simple they can be worn separately.

On to the accessories – my usual weak point!  Shoes-wise I have just gone for my New Look brogues because they are my go-to at the moment – they aren’t necessary special, but they are comfy and go with everything.
This white flower hair clip is from Collectif, I picked it up in the sale along with a few other bits that might appear on the blog sometime soon.  I love this, it is a great size and goes with everything.
Lastly the Sunglasses*.  I was contacted by Discounted Sunglasses to see if I wanted to choose a pair from their Calvin Klein range, I’ve never had designer sunglasses so it was an offer I couldn’t turn down!  Their website is full of high-quality designer sunnies at heavily discounted prices.  I was a bit skeptical about how they would look on me as I have a bump on my nose which can make certain styles of glasses sit a little strangley on me and can leave a gap between the side of my face and the glasses.  Luckily, the placing of the bridge and the slightly curved shape of the frame meant this didn’t cause an issue.

My main reserve with this product was with the original pricing, new from Calvin Klein these frames cost a wopping £101 pounds.  As someone who who has never paid more then £5 for sunglasses and usually gets them from Primark, this just seems insane.  Sure they’ve got a designer name behind them but can there really be any difference?

Well, I was plesently suprised.  If I am honest I wasn’t expecting to see any noticeable difference and I thought the price tag just came from the name but there are some improvements from my usual picks.  The obvious one is the quality of the frames, despite them being thin they feel really study.  However the biggest thing for me was with the lenses; I first tested these out on a very sunny day in the Lake District and I realised almost instantly that there was no glare whatsoever.  With my usual glasses they just darken my vision but these must have something more science-y going on because it was so glare-free, I felt like I could look directly at the sun with them and not wince (don’t actually do that).  Also it made everything look really natural in a way I can’t really explain; it blocked out the sun without just making everything darker which made it a really comfortable (these are going to be a god-send in Disney World next year)!  Also the slightly curved design meant there was no sun sneaking in from the sides either.

These are all really good features but would I pay over £100?  I am not sure I would ever be able to justify that, however with the discount on Discounted Sunglasses they were just £44 and I think this is much more reasonable.   I think I have been really spoilt with sunglasses now!  I don’t think I’ll ever really splash out on sunnies short of a lottery-win but I think around the £40 mark I could stretch to, maybe more if they were Vivian Westwood *drools*.

What is your bravest outfit?

P.S. Just so you don’t think I take myself too seriously, check out my moves:

*sent as a PR sample for review, all opinions my own

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