Cult of California – A Review – Size 5x

Since the first moment I heard about Cult of California I knew I had to have some of their clothes, the question was, would it fit?  I bought tights, 2 jackets, 2 styles of sports bras and my very favorite, a sheer and opaque striped tank with a racer back.  I weigh 280 lbs., I wear a size 26-28 sometimes a 30 and carry a lot of weight in my torso. I have had very mixed results with the Cult of California sizing, but I am really glad I bought some because I love the pieces that have worked.

Black & Turquoise Sports Bra: 4X – Precious, fits well, not as much support as the Black racerback..

Black Racer-Back Sports Bra: Let me tell you how cute this bra is, although it will never be seen. It has beading on the cross straps in both the front and the back.  It fits well and I have been wearing it a lot.

Tights – Sheer/Opaque:  I love these but the 5X is too big and I have sold them, but I am going to buy them in a 4X.

Moto Jacket: 5X but the jacket will not zip because I have a large waist/hips.

Hooded Jacket: 5X fits, but of all the pieces this feels the least like me.  I have not actually worn it yet, so I don’t know whether I am going to keep it or sell it.

Sheer/Opaque Tank Top (Black Shadow Stripe): My very favorite item and it fits, I always get compliments when I wear it, and I am going to buy another one.  I am looking for a racer-back t-shirt to wear under it.

I would love to know if you have tried any Cult of California pieces and how they worked for you.  Ciao Bellas…affinity

Domino Dollhouse – After a Swim

I have been waiting for a chance to wear my sheer shirt from Domino Dollhouse as a cover up.  I am sure there are other uses for it but that has been my vision since it is cut very generously.  Sometimes I cannot wear their 4x because I have such a large waist and many of their clothes have more of an hourglass shape (which I love).

Well last weekend we went to a fabulous party in Healdsburg and it was 100°, so I waited for the shade to come over the pool (I hate the sun) and spent several hours in the water. It was fabulous.  And then I was able to make my exit in my coverup.  Ciao Bellas…affinity

Coverup: Domino Dollhouse – Size 4
Bathing Suit: Size 24 – 10 years old, my first ever Bedazzler project

Where can you find 4X Plus-Size Costumes? – 2012

I wear costumes.  In my community it is most appropriate to make your own, or there might even be a box of different fitting sizes and scarves and accoutrements at whatever party or event you are at, just in case you forgot, or did not know there was a theme. The photo above is a halloween party.  The ears & tail were some standard set I probably bought off Amazon for us, and I custom made the temporary tattoos on our faces.  The dress is something that I had had in my closet for 10 years that is a Lane Bryant/Venezia size 26, and bring out now and then to wear, it is short and I wore it with stockings.

Torrid is not really selling costumes this year.  More parts to costumes, which I actually like, but many people do not.

BigGals Lingerie will custom make your costume up to a size 12X.  They are also VERY expensive, but it is good to know what your options are.  I do not know how late you can order a costume to guarantee delivery before Halloween, I could not actually get them to give me a date on the phone, but I would say beyond October 10th you might be pushing.  They told me today that if I ordered a costume today it would arrive on October 20th.  They generally have a six week delivery time, but that seems to be compressed for Halloween.

Sanctuarie has costumes that run to a 9X that are very cute, and some of them are less than half-price, so if I were interested in one of their looks I would purchase it right away, I cannot imagine they will last very long.  They also have some Halloween t-shirts.

BIGcostumes also has a variety of custom made costumes at varying prices.  They even have a few bargains that are previously made.  Please read their BIGcostume Return Policies carefully.

Plus-Size Costume Shop carries handmade costumes up to a 7X.  They are having a sale through Friday the 22nd of September and they suggest that you place orders by October 10th.

Haloween Costumes carries a few 5X costumes.  It is worth the effort to check out what they are offering.

Etsy has lots of options.  A spiderweb shrug for $37 or a flirty hostess apron for around the same price.  At the upper price range there is a full Harlequin made-to-measure costume for over $200, that requires lead time to order.  Each seller will have a different policy so be sure check that out.

eBay of course has a variety of choices in both quality and fit.  This is what I came up with when I searched for Costume 5X.

If you are looking for costumes through a 1/2X 3/4X or 1X – 3X, there are many options.  Almost all of the plus size stores carry some costumes, i.e. LaneBryant, Sonsi and most Halloween Costume vendors, like Halloween Express often carry up to a 3X, the list is quite long and you only have to Google “plus size costumes” to see the list of choices.  I have Malefiecent and it runs VERY large for a 3X.

Most costumes tend to run a little smaller than standard sizes so be careful when you are ordering.

Making Your Own Costume: And last but not least, there is making your own costume.  Go through your closet and see if there is anything that would work as the base of the outfit. Is there a black outfit that could be witch-like, or something gauzy for a princess or large sleeved for a pirate wench, the list is endless.  There are a ton of tutorials out there on how to make a headband or accessory to fill out the illusion.  Or you can purchase some accessories, like our leopard ears (above).  The tattoos were more expensive than needed but sometimes my urge to try something outweighs my good sense.  A little eye make-up and a couple of spots drawn with eyeliner would have done just as well. In my experience everyone wants to believe in your costume and it only takes a little sleight of hand to make it fun and festive for Halloween. I hope you find this useful and as always if you have additional suggestions please comment.  In addition, I would love to see some photos if you do decide to dress up for Halloween, or any time.  Ciao Bellas…affinity

September 28, 2012:  A new addition, Lady Strange Erotic Lingerie (toward the bottom of the page) costumes to an 8X.

September 27, 2013: The 2013 update for 4X Plus Size Costumes is HERE.

Wide High Top Sneakers – T.U.K.

I love shoes and I love a little edge.  But I have a wide foot and as most of you know that is often limiting.  So I heard that someone with a widish foot was buying some T.U.K.s and I had to check it out.  And then I found these, purple and pink but with white zebra, but just TOO much white. They were on sale for $25 and the description said that they ran large and you should order a smaller size.  So I ordered a 9, I wear a 9.5 and they fit perfectly.  Plenty of room for my wide feet and lots of cushion.  And then I used a fabric ink pen to make the white zebra into lavender zebra.  I am thrilled.

They also have a mix tape version for $20 and a black version (but not in very many sizes). I do not know that other TUK sneakers would fit me. This may be an anomaly and that is why they are so cheap, but I am thrilled. Ciao Bellas…affinity

UPDATE: I wore these for the second time last night and I doubt I will buy high tops again.  The extra leather around my ankle just feels like too much. Lesson learned, next time regular sneakers, but with wild colors or print if possible.

UPDATE:  I looked on the inter webs and of course was rewarded with some suggestions with how to wear them so here are a couple of links:

Fashion Challenge: Style a Pair of High-Top Sneakers

MINI CELEB TREND: High-Top Sneakers!

Sequins and Fire

I bought this dress because I love the tiny sequins, they feel so much more secure than to larger ones.  But it does not really wow me when I wear it.  It is only a 3X and I really wear a 4X, but it is big in the shoulders or the neck, or maybe it is the sheath shape.  But since I was going to a funky-fun attire sort of evening at The Crucible I thought I would take it out for a spin, and I got a lot of compliments on it. I am 5’5″ and weigh exactly 275 lbs. (per the Doctor’s scale last Monday) and the leggings would not fit anyone larger than I am that is an apple shape. I wanted to show you  a close up of the bracelets since I am wearing them almost daily. Some of the bangle bracelets from Torrid do not fit over my big hands but these did and they amuse me. ( I did not wear the boots, at the last minute I changed into little black flats ;D)  Ciao Bellas…affinity

Dress: DKNYC Size 3X – Macys
Silver Leggings: Figuresque  – Queen Size up to 275 lbs
Bracelets: Torrid – Mashup of 2 sets
Boots: Avenue Size 9.5W
I thought you might like to see a little more about the event so I have added some photos.

And this last photo is part of the entertainment for the evening: This is a Tesla Coil and Omega Recoil, the man in the fireproof/electricproof suit is lighting a lightening bolt on fire. Quite Amazing

Twitter Togs

Since I am helping with various communications for the Burning Man Project, they suggested I go to a presentation at the David All Group (DAG).  This was the first of a series of events that will take place synchronously between the DAG Washington, DC and San Francisco teams.  I was live in the San Francisco office, which I loved. The event focused on “The Essentials of Twitter”.  I have not tweeted much either for myself nor for any of the entities that I run social media for, so I had a lot to learn and as usual I most enjoyed learning about metrics or the suggested frequency and timing for the optimization of your tweets.

Sometime yesterday (perhaps posted by the David All Group) I ran across this Twitter Outfit (below) from Social Media Inspired Outfits.  So of course I had to put together my darker version of the Twitter Inspired Outfit, including the Twitter Bird logo (see the photo above with David All). My outfit is not exactly a match but I thought the Twitter Outfit was a little corporate for my taste.

Here are the deets:
Bird Pendant: Designed by my good friend Laura Kimpton as gifts for Burning Man 2009
Cami: Very Old 2X Emme
Skirt: Tripp Size 5x from Torrid
You can’t see them but I also have capri leggings and boots of course as well as the bracelets I have been wearing everyday for a month.  I like to think of this outfit as the funky Twitter look. LOL

I am going to download DAG’s “Essentials of Pinterest” because I feel like I would love Pinterest but just have not taken the time to check it out, so you may see my version of that outfit too.  So thanks to the David All Group for having me come to their offices.  Hope to see you at Burning Man.

Ciao Bellas…affinity

Chic Star – A Review

On Facebook lately I have read about several women ordering from Chic Star, a Chinese on-line plus size clothing vendor. I did a review of their fun product line in May, and you can find it here. I am getting consistent information from buyers that the clothes run almost a full size smaller than the size chart might indicate. I still love their clothing, and I am not hearing any complaints about the quality, but since I am a size 26-28 myself, I probably will not try to order anything from them since their styles generally do not contain much knit or stretchy material and I am concerned about it fitting.   Just keeping my ear to the ground for us.  I would love it if you could share any information you might have about them.  Ciao Bellas…affinity

Chic Star Vintage – A Review

The vintage look is all the rage right now and one on-line store I have been looking at Chic Star hails from China.  One of my favorite aspects of Chic Star is that they solicit designs from the public and pay them a small fee if the design is used, thus the designs have quite a bit of breadth.  In addition, as lots of on-line stores are doing right now they encourage buyers to send in their photos.

Their size range includes a 4X with a bust size up to 56 inches,  but the waist is only 48 inches, seems like the designs might work better on an hourglass figure rather than an apple shaped size 26-28 like me. I am concerned that the waist will not fit, and that has kept me from buying one of these fun dresses.  I would love to hear about it if you have a Chic Star dress…affinity

Tripp NYC Plus Sizes – Review

A Tripp skirt might be the first piece of clothing I ever bought from Torrid, years ago. The skirt was a purple underskirt with tulle overlay and was a 4X, and always a bit small, but I loved it so I wore it anyway. At the time it seems to reflect Torrid’s edgy style. Then this fall I found this turquoise pleated skirt at Torrid in a 5X, and it is a perfect fit.   That drew me back to Tripp and I bought a couple of pairs of jeans (leopard which you will see later), which you can buy at  One Stop Plus or Torrid (as well as a bustier on sale) for about the same price. FYI, the short jeans are just a bit too short for me and I am 5′ 5″.  I look for Tripp pretty often on Ebay because I rarely find anything else that I like quite as much.

A few weeks ago, I found this 4X mini pleated skirt in a purple plaid and I just had to have it but as you can see below it is a little small and I will not be wearing it again.  So it seems to me that Tripp NYC runs just a tiny bit small but I love their fun style and I think it reflects who I am, so I will continue to buy it when I can find it in my size.

I purchased the belt on Ebay many years ago. If I were buying it today I would not buy rhinestones since I have lost a few over the years…affinity

Kmart Festival Dress – OMG – It Fits!

 This week there was a going away party at the Burning Man Headquarters because one of my favorite people ever and the Communications Manager and Regional Network Manager, Andie Grace is moving on.  She was my boss when I was the Wedding Coordinator for Burning Man for several years and I will miss her terribly. Although it was 68 degrees in San Francisco that day I knew it would be warm at the party so I wore my new sundress.

A couple of weeks ago I decided that I should check out kmart’s plus size clothes, just ’cause.  I ordered this Festival Dress in a Size 26-28 (my size)  for $18.74 with an extra 15% off, and it is 100% cotton, what a bargain.  I had no  hope of it fitting and then it came and when I tried it on it did not fit, but while I was putting it back in the bag and felt a drawstring which untied and then tried again – and OMG it fits and it is precious.  I cannot remember the last time I was so happy with a piece of clothing.  It was made for Burning Man or a hot day in the city.  It also comes in a print and if you wear this sort of thing it is a must have.  You might also want to check out the rest of the Love Your Style Love Your Size line.  I am pleasantly surprised by kmart plus sizes…affinity

Necklace: I made this is 2009, Precious Metal Clay and Colored Pencil
Bra: White strapless Goddess bra, fabric spray painted green for project
Bracelet: Handmade gift at Burning Man 2006
Earrings: Dichroic Glass from Etsy

Just for your amusement I have added a photo of the project that the bra was spray painted for, I made a life size paper mache of Tara: the Tibetian Goddess of Compassion.  I don’t paper mache anymore but I thought this might make you smile.
photo of me and Tara: Julian Cash

photo: George Post