Stars in her Eyes

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Dress: Vintage, via Style & Salvage 

Shoes: Shoebuy

I discovered this dress on Etsy months ago. Vintage, in my size, and in the most perfect star-print fabric that I’ve seen. It didn’t take me long to talk myself into buying it. I had to have it altered when it arrived, but since then it’s become a favourite part of my wardrobe.

Vintage dresses are nigh impossible to find in larger sizes. Possibly it’s because in thriftier times they’d be cut down for younger siblings or children, or because we’re simply larger these days, or possibly it’s because of all the unscrupulous scavengers who buy them up, lop the hems off, whack in an elasticised waist and add a zero to the price-tag before selling them on to knobble-kneed teenagers at hipster craft-markets.

None of the vintage clothing stores in Australia seem to have much on offer for larger sizes, apart from the specialist stores Bombshell Vintage, Hey Fatty, and the occasional lucky find at the A+ Markets.

Online I’ve found the best place to look for plus-size vintage is actually Etsy. Size is Just a Number is a good place to start, or Re/Dress Vintage.

If you see something you like you should snap it up straight away, because I can almost guarantee you won’t find it again anywhere. I’ve missed out on a few pieces because I hesitated, which is why I jumped on this dress almost immediately.

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It has a cunning speckled star print, mother of pearl buttons and a sailor-style collar.

I’ve been wearing it with the beautiful Andromeda Earrings that Sian Giplis, founder of The Jewel Collective sent to me in November, and which I’ve been wearing pretty much non-stop since then.

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Andromeda Earrings: The Jewel Collective

 These lovely earrings are made from rose gold and pink sapphires and are named for the Greek maiden who was transformed into a constellation of stars by Athena.

Sian told me that she left her PR this year to pursue her life-long passion for jewels and pearls and launch The Jewel Collective. She explained that “It was important to me that the jewellery we designed was high quality and beautiful yet still affordable for customers. I wanted to provide stylish women with another option for their accessories collection, other than just costume jewellery or expensive, unaffordable pieces.”

They arrived stunningly packaged in a felt pouch and keepsake box. This was also a deliberate choice from Sian, who understands that running an online business it’s incredibly important to create a good relationship with customers. She says “First impressions speak volumes about a company and we want people to say “WOW” when they open a package from us.”

I certainly did! The box sits on my dressing table, and I’ve taken the pouch with me on my last few interstate trips as it’s the perfect size to tuck a few pieces safely away in my suitcase for wearing later.

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 I’ve got my eye on the gorgeous Charis necklace now, and I think I’ll have to treat myself once my bank account has recovered from Christmas!

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Lust List: Asos Curved

Over the last couple of years Asos has become a huge player in the fashion world in Australia. The combination of on-trend styles, affordable prices, a massive range, and free international shipping is obviously compelling.

Throw a reasonable size range into the mix, and a strong and ever-evolving plus size range in the Asos Curve line, and Asos has become one of my favourite places to shop online. The sizing can be a bit funky – I’d love to see the ability for customers to review items onsite – but the ability to do local returns has eliminated a lot of the risk that comes with online shopping for clothes.

They’ve had a few good sales in the lead-up to Christmas, and I’ve placed an order or two (or three) but my wishlist is ever full. There’s a number of really great plus size dresses in the Asos Curve section of the website at the moment (including some knockout formal gowns if you’re planning to attend a really fancy event over the holiday period).

Here’s what on my Lust List right now.

Gowns:

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Sequin Kimono Maxi Dress

This navy blue gown is a show-stopper. The plunging neckline and kimono sleeves give the bodice an understated elegance, and the shimmering sequinned overlay makes it sparkle like the night sky. The back is open, which makes an amazing statement, but might require some imaginative bra wrangling for those of us who can’t do without. Make sure you watch the catwalk video for the full, glittery effect.

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image1xxl-2Longsleeved Lace Bardot Midi Dress 

Holy moly, this dress! It’s only available in a size 24 at the moment (though the black and silver version is available 18-24) otherwise it would already be in my wardrobe. The bardot neckline over a sweetheart bodice, scalloped lace hem, illusion sleeves (this is a goodie if you’re shy about your arms), and can we talk about the colour? Phwoar.

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Embellished Frocks

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Heavily Embellished Mono Shift Dress

At AUD$270 this is one of the more expensive frocks in Asos’ Curve collection, but they don’t call it “Red Carpet” for nothing. On closer inspection the incredibly intricate detail on this frock is heavily beaded to absolutely devastating effect. The dress is fully lined, and has a perfectly simple silhouette to best showcase the beading. It’s not just on the front, either, the whole dress is embellished from cap sleeves to feature back.

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Premium Embroidered Dress

If the $270 price point’s just a bit too much for you there’s a similar dress available in the “Premium” range – black, with a white lace overlay – but personally I prefer the mint incarnation as seen above. The colour is so fresh, it’s perfect for a fancy summer ‘do in Australia. There’s a lovely scalloped trim on hem, cuff and neckline, and it’s a relaxed fit that’s perfect for “apples” to show off their pins.

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image1xxl-7V-Neck Dress with Sequin Skirt 

This is my favourite dress for New Year’s Eve right now, the deep-v neckline is super-sexy, and coupled with a sequin skirt that looks like glitter confetti, I am ALL OVER IT.

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Printed Dresses

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Mono Check Tunic Dress

I do like a good print, and this mod-style shift dress with a modern check print is pretty cute. I’m all shy and weird about my knees which makes this a smidgen too short, but I’d wear it with opaque tights in a heartbeat.

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Curve Midi Dress in Check Print

More checks, but how amazing is the colour? The ruching under the bust line means that this dress would be a great fit on someone busty, and there’s pockets (hell yeah!). It’s on sale at the moment, but it’s only available in a size 18, so if you like it you should snap it up quickly!.

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Bodycon Dress in Spot with Cross Back

Polkadots. Feature back. Bodycon. This dress is equal parts fun, and super sexy (though I’m a bit suspicious that the fabric looks a bit sheer in the product shots). These larger polkadots are great on fuller figures, and look smashingly defined, even from a distance.

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image1xxl-6Exclusive Midi Dress in Stripe

Confession: Today was the hottest day we’ve had in Melbourne for a long time – it seems like maybe summer’s decided to finally grace us with her presence – and everyone was walking around in boob tubes and spaghetti straps. I love the casual-strapless look that so many women seem to be able to pull off, but I’ve never managed to make strapless look laid-back. This dress looks like it could be a good option – the blouson style and beachy stripes make it look fresh and comfortable, and the straps look they’d be in the right position to mask your bra straps if you can’t bear the thought of a strapless.

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LBD

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Exclusive One Shoulder Dress

This dress is understated elegance personified. The draped tulip hemline plays up your curves, and the one-shoulder neckline is a really classy way of flashing some skin without being overt. I think this looks like a great New Year’s dress, too, and I’d play it up with some really blingy earrings, maybe a sparkly bangle or cuff, and some sky-high heels (so a New Year’s party with plenty of seating)

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Exclusive Skater Dress with Tutu Skirt

The frustrated ballerina in me loves this dress. Truly, madly, deeply. I’ve been lusting after a tutu for some time, but I’ve never really quite known how I’d wear it for day to day use. This is perfection. The strappy jersey singlet plays down the glam factor, the little pouf of fabric at the elastic waist saves it from being too balletic, and the skirt has just enough volume to be swooshy without being OTT. I want to wear it and sashay around in it with a messy bun and perky little boobs just like the model. I’m interested to know if it’d suit someone a little more… endowed. Interested enough to buy? Maybe. Probably.

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Is there anything on Asos that’s caught your eye lately? What’s on your wishlist right now?  Or are you like me, buying up big every time they give you a discount code?