What ‘plus size’ looks like according to 5 retailers

So, there I was, fresh off the boat (and by boat I mean Qantas Airbus) from Australia, ready to sink my teeth into some good old British high street shopping (and by high street I mean not outside, not on a street, and definitely inside my bed).

“I’m back in the world of next day delivery”, I thought to myself gleefully. The sheer size of Australia means waiting 3-5 business days for something (on a good day)… AND there’s no post on Saturdays. It’s as though they think I plan my outfits in advance or something. Anyway, primed with my MasterCard and ready to plonk a hundy in my cart (£100 for those who need translation), I scrolled through the likes of Asos and Missguided with a grin from ear to ear. Until I saw this. APPARENTLY PLUS SIZE MODELS ARE SKINNIER THAN I AM.

Now this struck a nerve with me in particular as I spend most of 2014 on a treadmill shedding the lbs. Despite slowly but surely tronking my way through enough hamburgers to pile 11lbs back on in Australia, I was still proudly stomping about in a good dress size or two less than pre-treadmill love affair, so I still considered it a mild victory. That was, until I saw myself exposed to some slender little filly with a great big plus sign plastered across her face on a website. And not just ‘a’ website. The shock of the first exposure lead me to explore a few other similar sites, and I didn’t like what I saw.

‘Sizes 16-24’ they claim. Funny that, did you haul the clothing in at the back with a giant bulldog clip as you photographed it on this size 10 rack of ribs I see before me? Why are brands taking the credit for providing a plus size range, yet promoting the clothes on a girl who is far from the size range? Here’s what ‘plus size’ looks like in five different UK online retailers:

ASOS CURVE: Claiming to cater to the curvier lass, the Curve range comes in at a size 18-30. Which is why it obviously makes total sense popping this LBD on a girl no bigger than a size 12. Exhibit A. SHE PRACTICALLY HAS AN EFFIN’ THIGH GAP.

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MISSGUIDED PLUS: Probably the worst of the bunch, these cheeky little buggers have slipped this olive skinned stunner into a teal tea dress claimed to be for a size 16-24. As suspected, not a thunder thigh in sight. *crys into size 12 jeans*.

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BOOHOO PLUS: Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse, OH HELLO BOOHOO. This little chica is wearing a crop top (YES, A CROP TOP) and maxi skirt and claims to be a size 16-24. Well. Let me just crawl into a hole and weep, then, because if that’s a size 16, then I sir am Camilla Parker Bowles.

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NEW LOOK INSPIRE: New Look faired slightly better in my assessment of their choice of models for the Inspire range for women sized 18-32, but there of course was one or two stragglers. Presenting the furthest thing from a size 18, ladies and gents. Chunky knees? No. Bingo wings? No again. Yet here I am rocking both, thinking I’m a size 10. Well, more fool me. Here she comes:

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H&M+: Ah, the Swedes. Known not only for their tasty (if not somewhat horsey) meatballs and creative furniture naming skills, they also spat out our old fave H&M. Our go-to guys for a pair o’ leggings or a quickie outfit for a last minute night out, and oh, oh, YEAH YOU GOT IT IN ONE – an inconceivably slim ‘plus size’ model. Their selection of girls for their +18-28 range was commendable, but it what have we learned today? It wouldn’t be a plus size range without an absolute corker of a skinny bitch in there would it. As promised, here she is. Probably a creative who sips skinny capps while painting on her balcony WEARING SIZE 12 CLOTHING:

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Food for thought, women of the world. Before this post gets completely misconstrued and I get trolled for hating on plus size women, that’s totally not what this is about. It’s about retailers supposedly supporting positive body image by providing a plus size range, and then totally wrecking it by using models that fit a size that the range doesn’t even carry. Sort it out!

Love (and now probably doughnuts) always,

Coco x

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TOMB BRAIDER

Like the Lara Croft pun? Thought you might. To clarify, today I’m waffling on about BRAIDS! You remember, they frequented your dreams when you were counting down the sleeps until your holiday to Costa del Sol in the 90s, and were all you wanted for from your parents for the entire week (or ten days if you were an utterly posh and loaded middle class fuck).

You’d tire over deciding what colours would most impress your fellow year four groovy chicks, and which would most complement your Tammy Girl dress for the Valentines disco (where you were so totally going to dance to Titanic with your ‘crush’. – which obviously meant standing on the opposite side of the room to all the boys for the entire duration of the disco until your friends mum picked you up at the scandalous hour of 8.15pm).

You MIGHT have even been lucky enough to own one of these BAD BOYS:

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YES FOLKS THATS THE BABYLISS CRAZYBRAID – which didn’t produce the results quite as promised but you could usually manage to rustle up a half arsed plait with a few beads on the end to match your stick on earrings and body glitter, so all’s cool. Usually I’d link you to a purchase site, but unsurprisingly Amazon have dubbed it ‘currently unavailable’, which loosely translates as ‘caught up in a timewarp waiting for the world to be ready again’.

Anyway, if you’re nodding your head and snorting laughter at any of this (who am I kidding, I’m not THAT funny), you’ll be over the moon to hear that BRAIDS ARE BACK. Yes that’s right. Tommy Hilfiger is bringing sassy back with the hair braid – which is ironic really as Tommy Girl was likely the fragrance that you would spray on to complete your ‘stick-on-earringed-body-glittered-sass-pot’ look (if it wasn’t of course Glow by J-Lo, though that was mostly because of the totes gorge and classy necklace that came free).

At New York Fashion Week this week, Tommy Hilfiger hit the runway with its SS 2016 collection, rife with Caribbean colours and elaborate bikinis. But wait, wait, WHAT IS THAT WE SEE. Yes that’s right, hair braids. BRAIDS. THE MODELS ARE WEARING BRAIDS IN THEIR HAIR.

Tommy Hilfiger SS16 Braids. Credit Grazia UK

Image credit @GraziaUK on Instagram.

Life complete. The accessories have properly come full circle, what with flares and platforms being fully acceptable. By this logic, it’s basically 100% fine to wear that ever gorge skirt-over-trousers combo. Just sayin’, it’s sure worth a try.

Anyway, given Tommy boy’s permish, I’m off to find any random lady on the street with all colours of thread from god-knows-where and pay a moderately reasonable fee her to pull my hair – what has to be an unhealthy amount – and wrap as many colours round it as possible.

I’m pretty sure that BRAIDS is all you really need to know about the SS16 collection, but if for any reason you’re keen to see the rest of the show, head to Hollywood Life (as they have an awesome 43 image strong gallery of the all the looks).

Love always,

Coco xxx

Lets talk about…..DUNGAREES.

YES, THEY’RE BACK! We all had a pair when we were little. And probably wore them with some teeny tiny leggings in some form of velour, or floral print, and a pair of Doodles (you know, those canvas little shoes with the t-bar strap that came in loads of different prints?!). Thats right, I’m talking about DUNGAREES. Or overalls if you absolutely must (bf had no idea what dungarees were. Maverick.)

I had spotted a pair on Sabo Skirt, a site I was introduced to in Australia (see my post on it here), and considered buying a pair, but concluded the blonde tanned skinny model was probably the reason they looked so good, and waiting weeks on end for them to be shipped would probably end up in an evening of self loathing and throwing handfuls of chocolate at the mirror before stuffing my face and drowning in a chorus of fat slurs at myself. But when I spotted a pair in Primark for £12, I thought they were worth a shot. I won’t lie, it took me, NO JOKE, three trips into the store to actually get around to buying them. Each time, I picked them up, walked around with them, and then changed my mind. But tonight, I took the plunge! (Mainly because I panicked when I saw that stocks were depleting and I thought time might be running out!).

OKAY SO I ACTUALLY ADORE THEM. Do I wish my thighs were thinner? OF COURSE. But hey, that’s something I think I’ll always have to live with. Yet still, elephant thighs aside, I love these bad boys. They’ll be ideal for summer with a bandeau underneath, or a white or striped tee! I’ve definitely got my smug face on – the one where I get a complete bargain that I wasnt expecting to pull off.

Topshop has some similar pairs too, in faded wash denim, and I’ve seen them in Forever 21 as well, I think, but to be honest I’d recommend grabbing a pair of Primark’s finest. They have them in loads of colours, not just denim. I’m almost considering snapping up a white pair. Who would have thought it!!

Please tell me someone else has jumped on the dungaree bandwagon like me!!!

Here they are!

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Anyway, late night blog posts must be short and sweet! I need sleeps!

Ciaooooo

Coco xxx

Want one? Of KORS you do! Michael Kors New Collection.

On Tuesday, the Selfridges email hit my inbox. I opened it up and plastered across the screen of my iPhone was one of the most beautiful handbags I’ve ever seen. The new Michael Kors collection. I had seen it about but was yet to fully check it out, as I’m on a complete spending ban, but I just had to have a look when the email came through. Michael has only gone and done it again, with a to-die-for range of his Selma and Jet Set tote bags. I have a black staple Jet Set and a tan Dressy Tote (which is quite hard to track down now as its been replaced by the Saffiano Leather Tote, but mine is soft leather. I like the contrast of having the Jet Set in Saffiano and the Dressy in softer leather). I actually earmarked MK several years ago, but in the past couple of years everyone seems to have gone mad for the label, which makes me so happy. Its so nice that a more affordable brand (well, in comparison to Mulberry’s price point) has gotten so popular, and I think the more well known the brand has got, the better and better the collections are getting.

Anyway, the new collection sees these classic designs released in a combination of black, tan and white (yes, all in one bag). Now, I know there’s that age old rule that you don’t mix black and brown, but I’m sorry, you totally can. These new prints are perfect for summer, and have the perfect balance of subtle elegance combined with a summery nautical feel. ABSOLUTELY DIVINE.

1. Jet Set Saffiano Leather Tote £310

2. Jet Set Tote £260

3. Selma Leather Tote £260

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Well thats my next save-up purchase decided!

Toodle pip

Coco x

That Weirdo With Five Colours In Her Hair

Oh hey! Hope everyone has survived the random storm that hit the UK earlier this afternoon! In classic British style we have gone from waking up in muggy, greenhouse-like conditions, to welcoming a thick black cloud of doom, which soon erupted in some of the most violent thunder, lightening and hailstones I have seen in quite some time. Now, like I said, we did this in our classic British way, so you can imagine what the weather is doing now two hours later? Yep, you got it. Glorious sunshine. What are you gonna do! Its a nightmare for fashion, this weather, I tell you. I left for work yesterday at 4pm, in a tshirt, jeans and runners. After a gruelling 7 hours I emerged just before midnight to be greeted by what first appeared to be the Grand Canyon. But it was in fact, Oxford Street after a rain storm. Considering my options on how to get home, canoe being a legitimate contender, I opted to paddle to the tube, my white tshirt now soaked through, and I looked like I belonged on Daytona Beach partaking in the yank tradition of “Spring Break woohoo”. Anyway, the point of that was just a weather moan. Its so temperamental this time of year!

But hey, enough of that. We have certainly had a very decent chunk of sun so far this year, so I really shouldn’t be complaining. It has prompted the high street to stack its shelves high with floral headbands and adorable accessories. I went into Topshop yesterday (though I had my head firmly in a no-spending mood, as my finances are still dealing with the post-Australia hangover), and came across their range of amazing flower garlands. You know the ones, that sort of sit on your head so you have to not move too much when wearing one. I tried one on, with a very sheepish look on my face as I felt I was being judged by onlookers (I have a confidence complex with things like that. I don’t dare to be daring all that often!), but I actually fell in love with it! Now, i’m not saying they’re ideal for every day wear, but with a maxi dress, or loose tee and denim hot pants on the beach or on holiday, they’re amazing! Yes, they’re hideously over the top, and probably too big for some people’s liking, but I’m seriously hoping these take off in the fashion stakes, and I want one BADLY! My birthday is coming up so, fingers crossed! (yes, my TWENTY THIRD birthday. Don’t. Just. Don’t.)

Here are some of my favourites!

1. Rose and Lily Garland, £16

2. Lilac Garland, £16

3. Daisy Garland, £14

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I’m hoping I don’t get weird looks when I step out wearing mine! Reactions to follow 😉

Ciao

Coco xx

 

Bond Girl

Hey guys, hope everybody is enjoying the sunshine as much as I am! Life is just that little bit brighter when the sun is shining. The endless summer evenings make the days seem far longer, rather than waking up in darkness and leaving work in darkness, trudging home losing yourself in the sofa cushions until the end of time, aka the British winter.

Today I am hounding you with yet another plug of an Aussie brand that I fell in love with, called BONDS (and I expect you’re now nodding your head as you now understand the pun embedded in the title of this post). I was introduced to it for the first time when I saw the name sprawled across the waistline of my boyfriend’s boxers, and concluded that it was the laid back, Aussie surfer equivalent of having Calvin Klein peeping out the back of your jeans, rather than an advert for Australia’s investment yield prospects (the finance geeks reading this will appreciate). This was until my visit to Australia, when I spotted an entire store filled with underwear, sleepwear and sportswear, for men AND women. It has a Nike/Sweaty Betty/Victoria’s Secret Sports feel to it, and has uplifting summer prints and bright colours available, as well as more plain options. Cool workout gear is hot for 2014, and this brand is packed with ideas. I grabbed a bra (with the bonds logo not-so-subtly plastered around the underbust, an adorable palm print bandeau also sporting the logo, and some grey sweatpants that are so comfy I have had to actually talk myself into letting them go in the wash as I’ve been living in them. I’m already having withdrawals.

Anyway, as always, I’ve chosen some of my favourite bits from the site, and even better, they now deliver to the UK, AND its free deliver over $100AUD (thats only about £50, so go nuts!).

1. Wide waistband jungle line print briefs, $17.95AUD

2. Low rise shorts, $16.95AUD

3. Logo Sweatpants, $49.95AUD

4. Active leggings, $49.95AUD (I wanted these SO badly to wear with my pink Nike Free Runs…cry!)

5. Tube Bra, $39.95AUD

6. Neon print g-string, $14.95AUD

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Enjoy, Bond Girls!

As always,

Coco xx

 

Sabo Skirt

Hey all,

For those who read my recent post, you’ll know I recently returned from Australia. (Yes I still have post holiday blues, so I’m using this time to blog about it!) Now, as a true Brit, as much as I love travelling and seeing other countries, there are very few places in the world that can keep up with us in the fashion stakes. Even my favourite cities in the world, Barcelona and New York, just, to me, don’t quite do fashion the same as us. It always seems a bit dated or under staged, so visiting the land downunder, I had very low expectations in terms of what I would find in terms of new threads.

Now, in fairness, with their season being opposite to ours, it was coming into Autumn when I arrived, so their stores were laden with chunky scarves, boots and parkas (for the weather that they supposedly classify as ‘cold’. *laughs*). It was hardly the right thing I was looking for since I was returning to the UK in May, and looking at the prospect of lighter evenings, summer BBQs, beach days, flip flops and shorts. However, I was introduced to a site called Sabo Skirt << follow the link. At first I was sceptical, but I have fallen in love with just about every item on there. To be totally fair, the Aussies know their summers, and I think had I visited at peak season, I might have been woo’d more by their styles. Sabo Skirt has the most gorgeous range of summer clothes you’ve ever seen, and its all a bit different and unique – quite different to what you’d come across here in the UK. They do offer international shipping, so I’m torn between forking out for that or ordering it to my boyfriend’s house and having him bring it over to me when he visits in the summer!

I’ve selected a few of my real favourite pieces, but definitely check the site out yourself, or follow them on Instagram – their stuff is to die for! I think its actually quite reasonably priced too, once you calculate the AUD exchange rate, which I have kindly done for you, for a bit of perspective 😉 Happy drooling!

1. Floral shorts, $42 AUD (about £21)

2. Bubblegum shorts, $45 AUD (about £22.50)

3. Crochet Dress, $68 AUD (about £34)

4. Sunflower Waistcoat, $29 AUD (about £14.50 – bargain!)

5. Pastel Bralet, $21 AUD (about £10.50)

6. Denim Dungarees, $62 (about £31)

7. White Maxi, $62 AUD (about £31)

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Its $10 for international shipping that takes 5-15 business days, which equates to about £5, so its really quite decent compared to UK shipping costs, but in my experience, give the Australian post extra time. If you thought Royal Mail was bad, you aint seen nothing, so don’t hold your breath for your parcel to arrive in an instant!

Hope you love the site as much as I do! Let me know if you snap anything up!

Love always,

Coco

 

 

Rock That Body

Okay, before I start, I know I am about a year too late on this hype, but I have recently purchased two bodies. You know. The ones with the poppers on the crotch that are kind of like the romper suits you wore when you were a baby. I know these have been out for ages, but I never truly trusted them until recently. I got them both at a bargain too – the motel printed one was £8 in the topshop sale, and the cloudy print one was £10 in the Asos sale, though I think its now been reduced to £6! Bargs!

In these pics I’ve just popped them on with jeans, but they’re great with shorts, even some skirts. Definitely don’t wear them to lunch or dinner though! There is very little room for food babies in these!

The Asos one is still available to buy. Click here.

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Hope you’re all enjoying the long weekend!

C xx

OOTD – £8 Tea Dress

This OOTD is basically a little round up of a few bargains I’ve snapped up in the past week! This super cute green patterned tea dress was £8 from Primark, so I thought I’d give it a try. Its quite small across the shoulders, and I generally find things big on me in that area as I’m not very broad, so definitely try on before you buy, but overall I’m really pleased with it. Its a great length, which is quite rare for dresses of this style for me, as I’m 5’8. The shoes I’m wearing were £9 from Tesco, and are surprisingly comfortable. I spotted them while doing a quick food shop, and couldn’t beleive it when there was a pair of size 6 heels in the sale! My size for everything is pretty much always one of the most popular ones – size 12 clothing is notoriously hard to find in sales, as are size 6 shoes, and 34DD bras are like gold dust to get bargains in – so I was most certainly smug about this find. The little shoulder bag was £10.50 in the Accessorize sale, and its a really great strap length – as you can see it sits just above my hip. Its a really nice light tan colour too, though you can’t see it much in this pic.

I’m looking forward to wearing this tea dress through whats left of summer, and then gradually layering it up and teaming with tights and boots as the winter comes. All in all, £8 well spent!

Enjoy

C

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OOTD – Power Bun and Blazer

Here’s another little OOTD for you. One of my favourite combos – the power bun and blazer. A sleek up do and a structured blazer with a sheer shirt and skinnies is simplicity at its finest. So easy to throw on, comfortable, and effortless. This is what I went for today. Just popping out for a quick latte on a lovely rainy Friday.

Here I’m wearing my fave pair of Topshop Leigh Jeans in a vivid blue wash, which I believe has sold out now, with another toppers classic – this sheer panelled shirt, which was only a tenner in the sale. Its great because it has an extra panel layer of fabric across the chest so you don’t have to wear a cami underneath to cover up.

The blazer was a recent impulse splurge from River Island. Click here to buy. If you look closely it has jaquard print on the fabric, but its subtly worked into this super soft and moveable cotton, so its structured but super comfy. The necklace was a recent sale steal from Accessorize, for £4, and I’ve got bargain £7.99 H&M pumps on my feet in fuschia/coral colour (which have just gone down to £4 online here!!!), which I love to throw on to brighten up outfits like this. Finally, my trusty Michael Kors Jet Set tote ❤

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Have a fab weekend!

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