Dress, Belt, Shoes: Lane Bryant
This is not exactly the birthday weekend I had planned for myself.
This weekend I was supposed to be enjoying a fantastic, decadent dinner with my girlfriend Lisa, spending a day at Paddington Market, finally meeting Danimezza in person, and celebrating the launch of the Voices 2013 campaign at a fancy cocktail party in Sydney, followed by brunch with my Dad who was planning to drive up from Canberra to spend my birthday with me.
Instead – as you well know if you follow me on Twitter – I’m ensconced in bed after having an unfortunate run-in with a cement floor followed by a trip to the ER.
To make matters worse, the doctors still aren’t quite sure why I passed out (I’m not pregnant, so just put that out of your mind), but apparently I’m very very lucky to have only done cosmetic damage to myself.
But WHAT cosmetic damage! Holy hell! my eye is a disaster zone, and I’m super self conscious about it, not to mention sore, so instead of my superfunbirthday weekend, I’m having a much more laid-back few days at home being looked after by my brother, my in-laws, and my best friend.
The bruising won’t pass for a few weeks, apparently, so you’re going to get a few wounded-looking outfit posts before things get back to normal, but fortunately I’ve got one or two outfit shots that were taken before The Great Fall.
Luckily for me, my entry for the Lane Bryant “Blog-Off” outfit competition was taken pre-black eye (though I suppose I could have played for sympathy votes!)
As one of the member of the Fashion Front for this year’s Full Figure Fashion Week (and again you guys, thank you so much for your donations!) I was invited to put together a complimentary outfit of top to toe Lane Bryant, to show off the range and versatility of the fashion coming out of one of the oldest and most familiar names in the plus-size fashion industry.
The whole outfit is a summery confection that will be great when I finally hit New York (I’ve been warned that it can get somewhat unbearably hot in summer).
The dress is made from a dense, vaguely geometric cotton lace, and is layered over a contrasting lining of stretch jersey in a bright orange. The dress comes with a grosgrain ribbon sash, which I’m actually wearing in my hair.
Do watch out for the sizes. I don’t have a lot of familiarity with the Lane Bryant brand as they’ve only been shipping internationally for a bit over a year, so I ordered according to size chart. I should sit pretty squarely between a 16 and an 18, but the dress in a size 16 was easily one or even two sizes too big for me. As ever, my recommendation for approaching online stores that you’re not familiar with is to go onto eBay and try to find a similar item from the same store in your size & see what the buyer has said about the measurements.
The larger size for this dress isn’t a big deal, I just hitched the waist a little higher and fastened the belt (which is perfect!) tight. I also pinned the bodice to avoid potential wardrobe malfunctions, and the extra length in the straps meant that I could tie them off at the shoulder, giving the dress a slightly more “sweetheart”-style neckline.
You just wind a little thread around the shoulder straps and tie it off – and if you wind it around your bra strap at the same time it means you won’t accidentally flash your lingerie with the narrower straps.
The belt fits perfectly and seems to be of a good durable quality. It’s nice to see such a big range of styles and colours on the Lane Bryant website.
I’m not a huge fan of sling backs, or of peeptoes, so the shoes were an odd choice for me, but I actually quite like them in person. They’re designed for a wide foot, and fit me perfectly. The patent finish means that they’re easy to dress up or down, and I think it’s nice to have shoes that are quite open for hot summer days. so I expect I’ll get a lot of wear out of these come the warmer months.
The earrings are Lane Bryant also, the braided rhinestone earrings, and are satisfactorily sparkly, adding just a touch of bling to a sunny summer’s day outfit!
Come June the Fashion Front will have the opportunity to meet with some of the Lane Bryant designers, try out the brand’s famous range of Cacique lingerie, and suss out the store’s new flagship NYC store. I’ll be interested to see what else Lane Bryant has on offer, and to get a better idea of my size.
In the meanwhile stay tuned to LB’s Facebook page for the launch of their style-off to see some of the outfits other bloggers have put together. I’ve had a sneak peek at a few of the other entries out there, and there’s some amazing ensembles on offer! (I’m kind of in love with fellow Australian Olivia’s look)