I regularly have followers ask me on Instagram about how I developed my personal style. I absolutely love fashion now, but I didn’t always. I used to see fashion as just another reminder of all of the things that were “wrong” with my body. I saw it as something I could never be a part of. Fashion and trends were for thin bodies and thin people. Not for my body or me. But all of that has changed for me.
Developing my personal style has become one of the biggest joys in my life. Nowadays, I use fashion to tell the world who I am. Every outfit is a statement. What I put on my body says who I am and what I stand for; a fat girl who loves herself unconditionally.
Two years ago I used to look in the mirror and see something ugly, undesirable and disappointing. But today I see something different. Today I see someone brave, daring, interesting and admirable. I see a god damn QUEEN. And I know that every single one of you can see that in the mirror too.
So, of course I’d love to share some tips with you guys and help you to feel beautiful and powerful in the skin you’re in!
- Find Plus Size Fashion Bloggers
Everyone needs inspiration sometimes. Especially when it comes to stepping out of your comfort zone. Never is this more true than when you’re trying to be braver with fashion.
Plus size fashion bloggers are a great source of inspiration. By finding the right bloggers and following their social media platforms and blogs, it’s so much easier to figure out how to put outfits together, how to embrace bold new trends, how to style certain shapes and how to finally start having fun with fashion!
For me, it was really important to find bloggers who A) had bodies of similar shape to mine, and B) wore the kind of clothes that I had always wanted to wear. After a couple of days of searching the internet for just such a blogger, I stumbled across the Instagram profile of Grace Victory. And she’s been my personal style angel ever since.
- Experiment With Your Style
I know more than anyone how scary it can be stepping out of your fashion comfort zone. Unfortunately though, unless you do you’ll never be braver with fashion.
Taking small, intentional steps to experiment with your personal style can be unbelievably fun too. I remember the first time I ever tucked my t-shirt into my jeans. It freaked me out! But I’d always loved that look, and it was something I really wanted to have the courage to do myself.
So, one day in the spring of 2017 I decided to experiment. I was taking the bus into Dundalk to run a few errands. So I set myself a challenge. I decided to tuck my t-shirt into my jeans for both the bus ride there and back. I still remember making my way from the front of the bus to find my seat, and feeling as though every single person on the bus was staring at me.
But what I also remember is the sense of achievement I felt when I got home that evening. I had done what I’d set out to do. For both bus trips, I had sat there, in front of all of those people, with my t-shirt tucked into my jeans. When I got off the bus I had quickly pulled my t-shirt out so that I could go about my day without feeling too uncomfortable. But I had been braver with fashion on that day than I had ever been before, and I felt like a fucking QUEEEEEEEEN because of it.
These days, you won’t find me in a t-shirt and jeans without it being tucked in!
Pushing yourself to experiment in small ways like this will help you to step outside of your comfort zone and slowly but surely break down the barriers you’ve built up in your mind.
- Shop Around
You know what they say; variety is the spice of life. When I hated my body and thought of fashion as something for thinner people, I only ever shopped with one brand. This brand made lose fitting clothes in “flattering” cuts, specifically designed for women who wanted to hide their bodies, not flaunt them.
Sound familiar? The chances are, you’ve been that girl too.
But when my relationship with my body started to change, I began shopping elsewhere. I discovered and fell head over heels with Asos, Boohoo, Forever 21 and River Island to name just a few. I’m stil very much in this phase of developing my personal style and most recently I bought my first piece from Pretty Little Thing. Next on my list is In The Style Cuve. The possibilities are endless!
However, shopping around isn’t enough. In order to really be braver with fashion, you’ve got to open your mind to new shapes, new fabrics, new styles that you would never have considered wearing before. If you’ve always thought that bodycon dresses were only for thin people, it’s time to buy yourself a body con dress. If you never thought someone like you could “get away with” wearing dungarees, it’s time to buy some dungarees.
If you follow these three steps, you should experience the same kind of personal style journey as I did; one filled with excitement, nerves, joy and pride!
Remember, all bodies are beautiful. The fashion rules you’ve been taught all of your life are genuine horsehit. You can wear whatever the hell you like. And you damn well should!