Thursday, September 15, 2016

Fashion, sealed with a kiss! My SWAK Designs Lookbook

They say summer has ended but its hanging on here in Michigan, we have been experiencing a rather warm start to September with the heat of the summer season continuing.  I can see touches of autumn all around me though, so change is in the wind.  The tips of the trees are turning red, apple cider is being pressed fresh at our local orchard and Halloween decorations have taken over our stores.  Fall is my favorite time of year.  I love the bright beautiful leaves and the earthy colors that overtake everything but I do get a little melancholy because I love wearing pretty dresses and the weather here in Michigan can be rather brutal.  Wardrobe is trickier in cooler weather but being stylish doesn't have to be a summer thing!

For today's blog, I am thrilled to be working with SWAK.  SWAK (sealed with a kiss) is one of my favorite plus size retailers, they make trendy and affordable plus size fashions for sizes 14-36.  I have been a huge fan of SWAK for many reasons, they provide a great fit for real plus size bodies, high quality material and the fab style of their designs make me reach for them again and again!  I have been wearing SWAK for several years, their dresses are among some of my favorite wardrobe pieces.  I am excited to be collaborating with SWAK to bring you this lookbook highlighting some of their new pieces, sharing how I styled them and talking a bit about how I plan to transition them into cooler weather fall fashion.

 I am smitten with this absolutely amazing dress!  The Eternity Convertible Maxi Dress can literally be worn any way you can imagine, an eternity of style.  The dress is a basic strapless maxi dress that has two long flowing panels of material attached at the top that can be wrapped in a multitude of different ways to create your own unique personal style.  I had a blast playing with this dress, watching videos on the SWAK website with instructions for some of the different styles to wrap the dress and have enjoyed how easy it is to change up the style.  I wrapped my Eternity Convertible Maxi Dress into a V-neck style that can be sleeveless or cap sleeved depending on how I move the shoulder material.  This dress is soft and flowing, it felt ethereal and lovely. I love how it moves in the wind, it is a very graceful dress.  Fit is generous and easy, I am wearing a size 1x/3x here and it feels perfect.  The dress is very long so as a shorter gal like myself you will want to wear heels or have it hemmed to fit.    I accessorized my Eternity Convertible Maxi Dress with nude heels, a homemade fall flower and leaf crown, the Acorn in the Meadow Necklace and pretty Amber Drop Earrings for a forest fairy fantasy.  This dress is a great wardrobe piece because it is wearable for every occasion and can be wrapped to fit any style, weather, or mood.
Outfit Details:
Dress: Eternity Convertible Maxi Dress in Forest size 1x/3x courtesy of  SWAK
Earrings: Amber Drops by Ceci Punch Designs
Necklace: Acorn in the Meadow C/O Summer Blue Jewelry
Hairpiece: Homemade Fall Leaf and Flower Crown

For my next choice I went completely outside the box.  I have been challenging myself to get outside my comfort zone this year and my next outfit really steps out of my norm.  First of all, since I have discovered pinup fashion I have worn dresses almost exclusively, I can actually only count three to four times I have worn jeans since I started this blog nearly two years ago.  Second, when I do wear pants, I ALWAYS wear a long top or if the top is shorter I wear a tank top underneath.  I have a bit of a belly flap that I am not comfortable with, this is one of the things I am working on being more accepting of in my journey to body love so its a big step for me to wear a shirt that doesn't come past my butt or nearly to my knees.  I am proud of myself for taking these chances and I could not have made a better partner than SWAK to dress me!

This is the ideal autumn outfit for a cool day enjoying a color tour, at your local orchard picking apples or searching the patch for that perfect pumpkin.  I love fall colors so I could not resist this bright coral top with its pretty leaf print and feminine lace hem.  The big flowing belled sleeves are one of my favorite styles to wear and the cold shoulder is trendy as well as flattering.  The Autumn Chiffon Top is light and sheer so I wore a plain brown tank underneath for modesty sake.  Fit is fabulous, I chose a size 3x so I could be sure that the bottom of the top would fit well over my butt/hip area, I generally wear a 1X in most tops but as I have a very extreme hourglass figure the hip measurement was the key to getting proper fit here.  I felt like a fall flower child in this top.  I added Amber Drop Earrings, contrasting teal peep toe wedges and a sunflower in my hair to give a cute autumn touch.
Outfit Details:
Top: Autumn Chiffon Top in Coral Leaves size 3x c/o SWAK
Pants: Holly High Waist Jeans in Dark Wash size 3x c/o SWAK
Earrings: Amber Drops by Ceci Punch Designs
Shoes: Bow Front Peep Toe Wedges in Teal by Qupid
The Holly High Waist Jeans are a dream!!  I have such a hard time fitting jeans on my figure.  My waist measurement is 38, my hips at the largest point are 56, with an 18 inch difference pants that will fit in the waist never make it around my butt or if they fit my butt they hang from my waist by a belt.  These were the reasons ]why I gave up on pants.  The Holly High Waist Jeans have saved me, I now have a pair of flattering jeans that fit great for those days when a dress or skirt is absolutely not practical.  They are a high waist style with a ton of stretch.  I am wearing a size 3x here, measurements on the site stated that they fit up to a 46 inch hip but the amount of stretch that this material has is phenomenal because they fit me perfectly, not to tight, just like a glove.  They are soft and comfortable, easy to move in, not stiff in the knees at all like some stretch jeans tend to be.  The high waist style will work with my vintage style wardrobe as well, I can't wait to pair these with a peasant top and ankle boots for a fun retro twist!
My first jeans in two years and exposing the self hated belly flap, I FEEL FREE!!!

The Farrah Maxi Dress in Black and White.

The Farrah Maxi Dress is a gorgeous wrap top maxi in fun bold prints that features adjustable waist and straps for the perfect fit.  The Farrah Maxi Dress features a bold black and white print that is a rarity in my wardrobe, I tend towards brights, florals, novelty prints, all things retro themed.  The Farrah Maxi Dress has a modern feel my wardrobe is lacking.  I felt like bold colored accessories would be perfect, a Red Mum in my hair, a chunky red necklace and sky high red platform heels gave the Farrah Maxi Dress the sophisticated feel I was looking for.  Fit is fabulous, the bust area is generous, the waist tie makes it easy to get a flattering fit and the skirt is generous.  The dress is very long, I had to have it hemmed because it was about 7-8 inches to long for me, at 5'3" it is not common for maxi dresses to be too long.  The Farrah Dress is perfect for a day spent shopping or date night out with your special someone.  I can easily transition this dress into the cooler months by adding a cardigan and ballet flats- or- a jacket, scarf and boots.
Outfit Details:
Dress: Farrah Maxi Dress in Black and White size 3x c/o SWAK
Earrings: Rose Drop Chain Earrings from Gigi's Traveling Boutique, our local fashion store
Necklace: Vintage Red Beaded Necklace
Shoes: Vintage Style Red Platform Heels by Madden Girl

I hope you have enjoyed my SWAK Lookbook as much as I loved putting it together for you!  What are your favorite pieces from SWAK?   Let me know in the comments!!!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Decadantly Draping!! My Kiyonna Divine Draped Maxi Dress Review

Affiliate Disclaimer: This blog contains links that when clicked on or purchased from may result in a small commission for this site.

Today I am reviewing the Kiyonna Divine Draped Maxi Dress in Emerald Bay.  I am continuing my year of taking wardrobe chances by stepping out of my pinup box.  Pinup styles of the 1940's and 1950's are my favorite to wear but I have an affinity for free flowing flower child fashion as well.  I have always loved Maxi Dresses,they always give me a pretty, hippie vibe.  The Divine Draped Maxi Dress from Kiyonna is a gorgeous style for summer festivals or a fall party.  This style features a fitted bodice with halter neck tie feature, elbow length sleeves that can be styled on or off shoulder, a gathered waist and draping hi-lo hem.
Outfit Details:
Dress: Divine Draped Maxi Dress in Emerald Bay, Size 1X, courtesy of Kiyonna
Earrings: F-ineapple Frosted Pineapple Earrings by Ceci Punch Designs.
Flower Crown: Wal-Mart.
 The Kiyonna Divine Draped Maxi Dress is luxurious and comfortable.  The halter tie around the neck is a feminine and unique accent that adds a fun flair.  I love how this dress flows around my body, I have to admit, I was a little worried about how it would fit around my mid-section but the gathering makes it so flattering it easily hides the tummy issues I am constantly camouflaging. The soft rayon spandex blend material is lovely and flowing with a nice bit of stretch to hug your curves.

 The Emerald Bay color is a lovely deep emerald green that is perfect for summertime but it is a shade that will transition easily into your fall wardrobe.  I paired my Divine Draped Maxi Dress with frosty pineapple earrings, a pretty contrasting pink flower crown and matching pink kitten heels for a free wheeling, hippie style.  I looked and felt like a summer fairy or an art nouveau goddess floating about in this dress!  I also envision wearing it with a ballet flats and pumpkin accessories this fall.

I always worry when buying a maxi dress because at 5'3" I am quite short so most maxi dresses have to be hemmed before I can wear them.  The Divine Draped Maxi Dress is a hi-lo hem, the front of the dress hit a few inches above my ankle and the back was just short of touching the ground without heels on.  I found the length to be just right for me but if you are shorter you may need to have the dress hemmed.

The Divine Draped Maxi Dress is so comfortable and beautiful I find myself reaching for it again and again.  I cannot say enough about Kiyonna, I am blown away at the quality, fit and beauty of every style I have tried!

Friday, September 9, 2016

Pretty, pretty petals! The Dolly and Dotty Petal Floral Swing Dress Review

Today, I am reviewing the lovely Petal Floral Swing Dress in Purple by Dolly & Dotty.  I love Dolly & Dotty, they offer vintage inspired garments in an amazing variety of prints and styles.  I reviewed their May Dress earlier this year and am delighted to be working with them once again!

Outfit Details:
Dress: Petal Floral Swing Dress in Purple Size UK 20 courtesy of Dolly & Dotty
Hair Flower: Delightfully Dainty in Pink by Daisy Jean Floral Designs
Earrings: Mystic Drops in Ivory by Ceci Punch Designs
Hair: Alyx Wiltse
Lipstick: Red Velvet (1946) by Besame Cosmetics
Shoes: Thrifted Vintage Floral Wedges
The Petal Floral Swing Dress is a gorgeous dress that features a figure flattering V-neckline tapering in at the waist with a full swing skirt.  The Petal Floral Swing Dress is made of a soft and comfortable Cotton blend material that has minimal stretch so be sure to measure well.  The dress is lined in a contrasting color cotton material which gives it a nice bit of structure and modesty.  The V-neckline is flattering without being too revealing.  The wide straps are gathered slightly which gives them a nice feminine touch.  This dress tapers in nicely at the waist and flares into a generous full skirt.  This is a dress made to flatter your figure to perfection!  I love dresses that are whirly-twirly and full so this dress is a delight!  The skirt has a lovely shape without a petticoat as I am wearing it here, but it is large enough to accommodate a petticoat easily.

The print is a lovely pattern of different colored roses twine along green vines on a solid background.  This is not a traditional purple but more between a burgundy or plum so its a bit darker than most florals I own which makes me reach for it even more, it really stands out!  I love how Dolly & Dotty send two fabric belts with each dress.  The Petal Floral Swing Dress came with a belt that matched and one that contrasted matching the peachy colored material the dress is lines with.  I chose to style without a belt in my photos, I love that Dolly & Dotty give the wearer lots of options if I want a belt and not having belt loops attached makes the dress look complete with or without.

The Petal Swing Dress comes in a huge variety of different shades and patterns, there is definitely something for every season and every wardrobe.  I love my Petal Floral Swing Dress and wear it often, I cannot wait to style it this winter with a cardigan and fun colored tights!  Which Dolly and Dotty Dress is your favorite?