Happy Wednesday everyone, I hope you are all having a fantastic week. It’s a short week for me as I took a vacation day Monday but things have been quite hectic and it doesn’t look like it is going to slow down anytime soon! But I am super excited and as always beyond grateful to have the opportunity to do what I do.
Today’s post is very special for me for a couple of reasons. First, it features a Canadian brand, ADDITION ELLE and I love to promote a home grown brand whenever I can. But secondly and most importantly I am showcasing a dress that I saw walk down the runway at NYFW while I attended my very first NYFW runway show. As I sit here having just finished that sentence, its a bit surreal that I actually get to write it.
I have loved fashion since I was a little girl and I remember sketching dresses for my grade 8 graduation dress. But my fashion dreams were stifled by my family because I was overweight and the focus became on being thin and the constant cycle of dieting. But I had always dreamed of attending a runway show at NYFW and seeing beautiful clothes no matter the size up close and personal.
To see a straight size designer like Christian Siriano is still on my bucket list but having the opportunity to see something that came in my size go down the runway was a moment I will never forget. So thank you ADDITION ELLE for making that dream come true.
As a size 26/28 it can be difficult to feel included in the fashion industry and that includes the plus size industry. 2017 has been an amazing year for seeing straight size brands branch out into plus size and for new plus size lines being launched. But honestly except for a couple it has been one disappointment after another for myself personally as they typically stop at a size 22 or 24.
What is even more hurtful is the common use of phrases like “Every BODY” in their advertising because it’s like you are telling women that their bodies are not acceptable if they are larger than the size they offer. As a CPA who audits manufacturers and retail operations I understand the business and economic challenges behind offering larger size ranges or increasing your existing size range but I think if the right approach is taken it can be done.
Thankfully AE brought back size 26 and a lot more in a 4x to their offering this past year so I have had more opportunities to wear their clothes again. So I am grateful but AE if you could please offer a size 28 that would be my dream because then I could wear your bottoms! And I promise you there is a need and I know ladies who would love it.
What was also awesome about AE’s runway show was that it wasn’t a spring collection which is what you would normally see at NYFW’s fall shows, it was a collection that was ready to buy now. In fact it went on sale online, right after the runway show was done. And to make things even more interesting they opened their first pop-up shop in NYC so that you could shop the collection in person.
I had the opportunity to visit the pop-up and it was amazing to see the pieces in person and have the opportunity to try them on. I also loved seeing all my American blogger boos react to seeing everything in person because while you can shop collections from AE at various department stores in the US, this is actually a time where I can say we are lucky enough to have the stores to shop in here in Canada. It was also great to see Jordyn Woods acting as DJ and the AE team and their enthusiasm for the industry. They had brought in store associates from Canada to help customers which I also thought was a really nice touch.
But let’s talk about this amazing dress! When I saw this on the runway I was of course drawn to it because of the rich colour palette, bold print and the fact that it is in one of the trendiest fabrics for fall, velvet. I mean this blue is to die for. It is a kimono style dress with a fit and flare silhouette so it is a really easy breezy piece that can be dressed up or down. I love the deep v neckline with the cord trim and tassel detail. The sleeves are 3/4 in length which allows you to enjoy the full effect of the exaggerated kimono style.
The dress is 40 inches long so it is on the shorter side but I am learning to embrace wearing pieces that are a little shorter. And when the weather gets cold I would add a pair of tights. I am wearing the size 26 and I was thrilled with the fit. I will not forget the feeling I had when I walked out of the dressing room in this in NYC and all eyes were on me. When Roslyn, the VP of Marketing and the rest of the team told me how fabulous I looked I am not going to lie, I felt great. All clothes should give you that feeling!
I decided to pair the dress with some purple patent wedges from Simply Be to bring out this colour from the dress. It would also look really cute with a pair of booties for a more edgy look. I then went straight to the metallics with these fringe statement earrings from Lane Bryant and a cuff from my collection. Of course the final piece had to be my Furla bag, it provides just a hint of sparkle.
While another dream of mine is complete, I long for the day where you will see someone my size rock this on the runway. Because as you can see, it looks great on a size 14 and a size 26! We are only limited by what we tell ourselves we can and cannot do. Progress takes time and change is happening but we all have to be part of the fight and applaud the successes along the way. Because if I went back and told my 13 year old self who was sketching graduation dresses what I was doing now I know she would be damn proud. And that 13 year old voice is what keeps me inspired.