Wednesday, 26 March 2014

I just wanted to make another post on here reminding everyone that I've changed my URL to, please update your readers!

Monday, 6 January 2014

upon the sea.

So, here's the big change I alluded to in my last post. Everyone say hello to

2014 is going to be the year my life takes a massive change in direction and I wanted my blog to come along for the ride with me. Already I feel the changes round here have awakened the enthusiasm I had for blogging when I first started out. Blogging for myself is what I really enjoy and it was so easy to get caught up in PR, stats, and collaborations... the politics of it began to suck all of the fun out of blogging for me, so here I am. New name, new layout, fresh start. I'm hoping to write about life, love and home-making here in our little spot on the Northern coast. I want to bring you new engaging content and share some of my skills in the process.

I hope everyone who has supported me so far will stick around for the ride, its going to be exciting I promise! If you want to continue reading please remember to update your reader to Gladrags & Handbags will continue to redirect here until the domain renewal is up, just to ease you all into the transition.

As a thank you for all of the support I'm going to be running a giveaway in the next couple of days, so stick around to hear more about it.

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Sunday, 5 January 2014

twenty fourteen.

Hi everyone, 

I'm sorry I've been so absent round this place recently. Since moving back up to Newcastle I feel like I've been busy non-stop reacquainting myself with living up North and back round my family again. Its a strange feeling after being away for 7 years! And just before Christmas we decided that it would be a good idea to sign for a flat so 5 months after we'd moved 200 miles up the country again we were packing up our life into boxes and shoving it all in a van. I'm absolutely in love with the place and I will get a home tour up soon, there's still a few finishing touches I want to do and some furniture that I need to update but it feels like home already. 

Way back at the beginning of the year I mentioned I was going to start keeping a memory jar, its one of very few 'long-term' projects I've seen through to the end and on New Years Day I opened it up, scattered all the bits of paper with happy thoughts written on them around me, and had half an hour or so of feeling really blessed whilst reading them. It really is the little things that make a year, I've had some pretty big experiences like getting to experience a holiday in New York, but memories like taking my nana out for lunch or chatting rubbish with Phil before bedtime have really reminded me to see the good in day-to-day life. I'm definitely doing it again this year but I think I'm going to make a small adjustment by including the date on the slip of paper as there were a few moments I just couldn't for the life of me remember. 

There's been a lot of re-invention in the blogging world for 2014 and I kind of want to jump on the bandwagon, I've not been feeling very inspired by being involved in the fashion side of blogging recently and I'm unsure whether I want to continue to define myself in that genre anymore. I much prefer to use this place as an online diary of life's adventures. I'm hoping 2014 is going to be the year I finally get my life on track and start to feel like I have a purpose. I hope all of my readers will join me for the ride. 

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Sunday, 10 November 2013

I had a blast.

Just wanted to post the quite frankly FREAKING AWESOME photos from the team at Blast Photography who's Photo Booth was a barrel of laughs at Plus London. You can get a good look at the skirt I made as well, the hem came down by the end of the night and the stitching wasn't great but I'm still pretty proud of it. I'm wearing it with the crop top from OneOneThree.

I just love having my photo taken, and if it includes props that's even better!!!

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Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Thoughts on fat.

I was a very bad blogger and took NO photos, this ones courtesy of Sam
So this weekend just gone by I journeyed down to the capital to attend this years Plus London event, I had a really awful start thanks to travel-induced anxieties so I wasn't in the best frame of mind when we eventually turned up at the venue, it was heaving which again sparked my socially-anxious personality but I loved seeing familiar faces and chatting with new fat babes. I particularly enjoyed getting to meet the stunning Charlotte: the brains behind Black Heart Creatives and the now well-known 'fat bitch' necklaces. After a quick zoom round I decided to head back to the hotel and get ready before the after-dark party started, I was super excited to get to show off the skirt I made for the  evening and despite it being not that well-made it seemed to get a good reception, thank you to everyone who complimented it! With Bets behind the decks bringing us a taste of her club night DOMO I got a little bit too drunk on the lethal chub-rub vodka shots and danced the night and the bad events of the day away. (I'm seriously considering another weekend in London sometime soon just so I can attend the actual DOMO.)

I woke up feeling a bit worse for wear but with a definite sense of well-being thanks to knowing that the day aheads events were going to be brilliant, after breakfast at The Diner me and Cynthia got a bit lost in Soho so had to hot-foot it to the venue just in time to catch the last half hour of the panel discussion on fat sexuality with Dr Charlotte Cooper, Dr Caroline Waters and Gina Warren of Fatfitfine. I wish I was there for all of it because discussions like that are super important. I didn't have the spoons to speak up on the actual day but a comment Dr Caroline made about the prevalence of the involvement of food in fat sex spoke to me, she made reference to the sploshing fetish of which I have been involved in with my partner, its not something I talk about openly very often as with a lot of fetishes anything but vanilla sex can be seen as 'weird'. I felt that even though it was a simple comment, the idea of it was misrepresented due to maybe a lack of knowledge on what some people in the fetish get out of it. I think the common representation is that its people who like to have sex with food, and that can be the case but that isn't sploshing, thats know as food play. In general people who engage in the activity don't consider the substances they are using as food, custard/cream/beans are very popular not for their tastes but the texture, look and general wet and messy-ness. In my experience the splosh community is actually a very inclusive space where all body types can be involved and being a fat splosher is no different to a thin splosher because ultimately its about appreciating a body getting covered in wet and messy substances. I struggle with the connotations it can throw out and unfortunately its observations like Dr Caroline's that often force me to keep quiet about our participation in the fetish. I agree that the representation of fat sexuality often has a tendency towards the outrageous, fat women chomping on cupcakes whilst riding their partner etc. and stuff like that can be damaging, but I disagreed with sploshing being the example in this case.

Now that I've got off that soap box I'll step back up onto another one, the rest of the day went amazing despite there being a distinct lack of the previous days attendance, something that Bethany has remarked on, also explaining why I think it was an awful shame that a lot of people missed out on the events of Sunday. I'm guilty of getting caught up in the brand collaboration part of blogging, when I check my inbox and see a few emails from people saying they like my blog and they'd like to offer me something free the natural peacock within me beams with pride and gushes all over the brand, but I'm trying my best now to learn to say no to things that just don't fit with my personal style or ethos. The first was declining my invitation to the evening with Gok Wan hosted by Simply Be, I dislike his 'TV Friendly' version of body acceptance which is too focused on control for my liking. Now I'll hold my hands up and say that I accepted some of the lingerie from his line a few months ago but also wrote about my objections to the idea of shape-wear within the post. I'm hoping to move towards combining the political and the fashion parts of the 'fatshion' blogger community, because the radical foundations of the community we are all a part of are ultimately what I think are most important. We've made great advancements in the fashion world and I have an enormous sense of pride to of been involved in helping normalise the idea that fat people can dress stylishly, but I'd love to try and entwine that back in with notions of body acceptance. The Yorkshire Rad Fat Collective is one of the best things I have gained out of getting into the plus-size blogosphere, the events that have been organised through that have been empowering because sitting down and talking about our journeys and our experiences is an excellent way to work towards a common goal, learning to love our bodies in a world that tells us we shouldn't. The weigh-in we had in Leeds a few weekends ago was amazing as was the clothes swaps, the swimming trips and the shopping trips we've participated in together and none of those involved sponsorships. Ultimately I'd like to see a shift towards everyone forming a more cohesive sense of community, instead of pitting ourselves against each other to get to that invitation to a champagne reception or that must-have dress. Lauren's chat about her blogging journey cemented the idea that every one of us has lived through similar experiences so why aren't we using that?

As a final note, I really want to thank the organisers of Plus London for putting on such a brilliant, varied event. I'm going to sign myself up to the yoga classes I'd been putting off for so long because after the session we had on Sunday I came away with a lot more faith in my body, and that's something I'd choose over a pretty dress any day.

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Thursday, 17 October 2013

Remarkable Without a Cause.

Modcloth Style Challenge

So the people over at Modcloth asked me to have a rummage through their offerings and style up an outfit around one key piece, they chose the beautiful Remarkable Without a Cause dress which I'm pleased to say is available all the way up to 4x which is equivalent to a UK 26. I decided to stay solely in the plus-size section to style my outfit as I wanted to feel like I could actually wear it. 

I really loved what I came up with I just wish I had a spare £200 laying around so I could actually buy it for myself haha! I decided I'd go for a kind of glamorous look that could also be worn throughout the day, the cute heart print flats dress the look down and I would wear just a smudge of the cheek tint. I'm really into layering and changing the look of one garment by adding another so I thought by wearing the polka dot shirt underneath it would add another interesting angle to the look. I went for rose gold accessories and then the super cute scalloped edge navy blue bag. I know some people say never mix red and blue but I think its a great colour combo!

I had loads of fun doing this even though it made me sad I can't actually wear it, its re-ignited my obsession with putting together outfits on Polyvore if anyone wants to check out what I've done so far my profile is here.

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Monday, 14 October 2013


In response to this horrible thing organised by "male rights activists" on Twitter last week (I'm not giving it any more lip service than it deserves on my blog) this week has been declared Body Confidence Week so I wanted to bring back my inspiration posts I was doing sometime last year. I've spent a lot of my morning tweeting in the hashtag all of the inspiring body acceptance things I have used to help me on my journey in the hopes that it will help others out there struggling on the path to body confidence too.

I find a lot of inspiration in slam poetry, I've previously shared my favourites by Kim Selling and Megan Falley. I came across Victory whilst searching on Youtube and this is her piece entitled 'Fat Poem.'

Two of my favourite lines:

"But I don't have to be small just to make you feel big, I get to be big."
"What makes no sense at all, is why should I have to fake small? When I can be grand, immense, voluptuous, rubenesque, PHAT, FAT."

So this Body Confidence Week I hope all of you are celebrating yourself, celebrating your body for what it is and all the amazing things it can help you do. Be loud and proud and don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

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