It is hard to believe this is my fourth post about plus-size fashion, and they are quickly becoming a favorite of mine to write. We have already looked at sweater dresses, bold linear patterns like plaid, and workout clothes. This month Dr. MC went on location at the most adorable spot in Newburyport, Massachusetts, called the “Ladyfinger Lounge.” Located in the Garrison Inn, this little gem of a space was just perfect for my latest shoot. This post highlights plus-size fashion looks for going out, getting glamourous, and feeling good…maybe for afternoon tea, a night at the theatre, or a date night.
Before we start looking at the outfits and talking style, I wanted to share a little history. This is a HUGE step for me in my healing journey to share full-body, unedited pictures as I have been doing since launching this series. It can be a bit of a head-game when we put ourselves out there for the world to see. I will admit that when I first saw these pictures, I did not like any of them. I thought to myself, “oh my god, what a waste of time that was.” All I could see was the larger body women, and I did not like it.
Luckily, it was only a fleeting feeling, but it was real, and it was valid. I thought maybe I should edit them…you know, trim a little here and there, but I realized that would not be helpful to ANYONE. And if I am going to continue to share my journey to genuinely help others, then I must not shy away from showing myself, my body, and my vulnerability without attempts to alter it. I did play around with some lighting effects, and I love the vignette feature that darkens the edges and frames the images nicely, but I vow never to be fake. So many “experts” out there are peddling a lie, but I digress.
When you are healing from an eating disorder, it really messes with you, and society does not help. Everywhere you look, messaging tells us what is and is not beautiful or healthy or acceptable. There’s a grieving process for your body that very few people talk about. The rational side of me knows that dieting is a setup to fail. And a sure-fire way to cause weight gain is the attempt at intentional weight loss. There, I said it. And I can prove it to you too, not only with my own experience but with scientific studies, but that is not the focus of this post.
Sometimes, even after working on this for years, it still stings. Granted far less than it used to. Earlier in my healing, I would not let any pictures be taken of me, but now I am speaking up and helping others make peace with food and feel good in their bodies too! What a pivot. It’s been a week or two since these pictures were taken, and now I LOVE them. I don’t know what my issue was at first, except that it was old patterns, thoughts, and ideas trying to kill my vibe. Glad I was able to see the beauty in my amazing body. And truth be told, I am WAY healthier now than I was when I was deep in my “dis-ease.” Thin does not equal healthy.
So now, let’s talk about getting glam, going out, and feeling good in your body!
When we arrived at the Garrison Inn, we wanted to get the lay of the land before trying on the dresses, and we found this neat area downstairs tucked away with what I dubbed the “Game of Thrones” chair for a few quick pics. I was hesitant about this outfit at first, but it is very cute. I am wearing my Core 10 leggings from Amazon with lace cutouts (see previous fashion blog post) highlighting this brand. The top is from City Chic. I love their clothes. The jacket is from Eloquii. I affectionately refer to this as my Mahna Mahna jacket. I apologize in advance for those of you now singing that song as you read the rest of this post.
This jacket is super cute in its bold color. Secretly I’m not too fond of jackets. I know, an odd thing to not like, but I have always been that way. Maybe because they block my cute outfits? Maybe because they restrict my movement? Who knows, but a cute little fur number like this, I enjoy.
For shoes, these are my favorite Kristen flats by Dansko, which come in various colors. I am more concerned with comfortable footwear these days than during my Louboutin days of spiked stilettos (sigh). These flats are awesome.
Dresses with Bling Accents
I can’t stress enough how much I enjoy added bling to just about anything, and these two dresses by MSK from Macy’s certainly don’t disappoint. This first dress with the simple top, slit sleeves, and the added gems, pearls at the bottom is so flattering. Sometimes a solid design at the bottom can create an unflattering line, but this style with how it fades from more jewels at the bottom to less as it rises is just perfect. I love how it looks on my body.
For shoes, believe it or not, these are Dansko’s too. This style is called Marlene, and it is comfy and stylish. Yes, I know; Dansko has branched WAY beyond just making clogs for nurses. These also come in a lovely wine color.
Similarly, this second dress by MSK features trumpet sleeves and a neckline trimmed with bling. So fun! And of course, anyone who knows me understands my obsession with Tiffany’s, so of course, I would pose for this pic with my favorite. As Tiffany & Co. proclaims, “joy comes out of the blue.” This exact dress does not appear to be available at Macy’s any longer, but this style would also look fabulous.
There is a lovely third option from MSK that I like, and it is this plain black dress with the bling added to the sleeves. A great look.
The Power of Accessories
Do not underestimate the power of a perfect fitting plain dress and a patterned scarf. I LOVE to embellish my outfits with a lot of bright colors and patterns. You can see this in my previous fashion posts too. And, of course, leopard print is often my go-to. I seriously can’t get enough. Like this luxurious red fur-trimmed leopard scarf I am pictured in from Saks Off 5th. You can notice the black dress has a little accent to it as well. It is laced up one side, which adds a little va-va-voom.
This particular dress is part of Rebel Wilson’s clothing line, which I am truthfully not sure exists anymore, but I enjoyed it for a while. Any black dress will do, however, when we are talking about accessorizing. Oh, and this little sequin purse is from COACH and is also one of my go-to items for a night out. This is from several years ago at this point, but I adore it. It is called the “baby cinch.” I don’t mind investing in higher-end products as they tend to last longer.
This Kate Spade pink, black, and white scarf/wrap was perfect for a softer look! It is just beautiful in this pink room! The props set up for the shoot were just exquisite too. I could not resist playing. As I was taking this picture, my husband commented, “Why on earth are you picking up the sugar?” To which, I started laughing, as you can see in the picture. I don’t know why I wanted to play with sugar, but I still like this picture. And I had to grab a picture with my beautiful and talented mom too (see below)! She is a huge supporter of all things Dr. MC. She recently designed my logo and is my photographer for these shoots. Thanks, Mom. <3
Polka Dots for Days
I am all about polka dots these days too! It’s fun, playful, and flattering. This first look from City Chic boasts a sophisticated style of a slip dress underneath, with a sheer black overlay of color on color polka dots. This dress also features a high-low hemline. The pink feather boa is optional. The Broadway star in me can’t resist a boa! Truth be told, unless I am belting out “All that Jazz” on Karaoke night, I don’t typically rock a feather boa. Maybe I should wear one more often.
For the “pics or it didn’t happen” crowd, here is a throwback Dr. MC photo from 2008 on stage singing my signature song. God bless that youthful metabolism.
This next option from Eloquii is very trendy right now with the puffed sleeves! Are any Seinfeld fans reading this? I always think of the pirate episode when I see sleeves like this.
Anyway, I was unsure how I would feel about these puffy sleeves, but I really like them. At least on this dress. This dress is flattering and straightforward with a bold, fun pattern. Read this previous post for more on rocking bold patterns. It is all about the fit for your body. These red shoes are also Dansko. The style is called Lina.
I would be remiss to skip over floral partners in this gorgeous space. This Ralph Lauren A-line dress with brightly colored flowers was perfect for this shoot. This exact dress is not currently available, but Ralph Lauren tends to recycle styles that work in different patterns, so you may be able to find something similar. I wear a smaller size in Ralph Lauren dresses as they tend to have generous sizing (my husband who spent time in the trenches in Filene’s notes that their men’s shirts tend to be sized generously too). Pair this with a glittery shawl to complete the look. This shawl is from Amazon and comes in a variety of colors.
And I even managed to incorporate flowers, leopard print, and tiffany blue into one outfit! This dress was made for me. This is another gem by Connected from Macy’s. I paired it with a classic black signature C’s COACH scarf.
In case anyone is wondering what I wear for shapewear, the truth is, I wear bike shorts. I am not a fan of intense shapewear. I mean, the body has to go somewhere, right? Some expensive brands are so tight; I think my head is going to explode, and I can’t breathe. However, I do like the smoothing feature that these shorts provide and protection against thigh friction. My faves come from Amazon.
I would love to hear from my readers about their fave outfits for going out? Any great finds recently? Comment below and let me know.
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