Beyond A Belt

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I just have to say it – this outfit is all about the belt! I mean, is this gorgeous African designed belt from Rue 114 not everything???

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Its large, striking buckle is not only beautifully designed but, is also in the shape of “Gye Nyame”, a Ghanian, Adinkra symbol meaning ‘Except God (I fear none)’ or according to the Rue 114 website, ‘Accept God.’ I would assume (although I’m no expert) that its meaning is up for interpretation, based on the two spellings I’ve seen used, but regardless, this belt’s message is as beautiful as its design.

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I’ve layered the belt over a gorgeous Michel Studio blazer (Addition Elle) and delicate, printed Cynthia Rowley blouse to really showcase it the way it deserves. A simple pair of white Capri trousers, a fabulous nude, patent loafer and a bold, magenta tote from Kate Spade New York complete the ensemble, for a classic, chic look with both a symbolic and modern twist.

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Fat Shaming

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Now, I don’t like to bring negativity to my blog. I’m always trying to stay positive and keep fighting the fight to take back the word FAT; but I need to address something today.

I recently shared a Daily Mail article on my Facebook page, about how women are fat-shamed three times a day – a sad reality.

The outpouring of comments that I received truly touched me, because so many of you have dealt with being humiliated based on your sizes, just as I have in the past.

I was tormented by my peers in grade school. I endured teasing, name calling, cow noises… You name it. And when I look back, the saddest part of it all was the brave face I had to show till I got home and could cry into my pillow.

I thought the bullying of my school days was behind me, until coincidentally, last night I was publicly, and directly FAT SHAMED, while enjoying one of my favourite unhealthy treats, poutine; and for those of you who aren’t familiar, it’s a sinful Quebec specialty, consisting of French fries smothered in gravy, and curd cheese – definitely not waistline friendly, but it’s my weakness. That and an ice cold Coke.

I posted about it on Facebook almost as soon as it happened, because I was just so taken aback by it that I felt an overwhelming need to share it with all of you.

As many of you know, I recently shared an article on fat shaming, and your wonderful, and heartbreaking comments blew me away and really touched my heart. I haven’t been TRULY made fun of in many years, and just tonight, while eating out (poutine of all things) a drunk jerk made waddling and fat belly gestures at me and yelled out “oh yeah, eat that poutine” (in French). I thought I would have been less humiliated than I was, in all honesty, and while I’m not upset, I was really embarrassed, and felt like finishing my food in my car. I didn’t, but the fact that I thought about going to hide to finish my meal makes me realize I still have a lot of work to do.

Just thought I would share…

It felt like elementary school all over again. That feeling of being mortified doesn’t change. Same anxious ball of stress in the pit of my stomach, same feeling of fighting back tears, same anger. I had forgotten what it felt like to be coldly, and deliberately humiliated. I’ve been embarrassed in other life situations, due to my size, the mortifying airplane seatbelt check, for one; and people have made comments or assumptions that have bothered me. “You really shouldn’t eat that”, or servers in restaurants asking me if I want Diet, when I odered a Coke – like, would you ask a skinny person that if she ordered it? Maybe, but when you ask me, I can feel your judgement as I say “no, a regular Coke, please”. Is it so unbelievable that I would want to treat myself to something that I love?

Now, I know that the server could have just been checking, to make sure she got my order right. And yes, it’s possible that it had nothing to do with my weight; but here’s the problem – fat shaming has now become so ingrained in people’s minds, that they do it unknowingly, without even realizing that they’ve been programmed to see us as weak, undisciplined, incompetent, and unworthy.

Big words, I know. And I’m sure my server had no idea how she was making me feel, and probably never thought of herself as someone who humiliated fat people, because society as a whole had told her that viewing me that way was normal.

The @#$hole last night, was doing it on purpose, his buddies snickering along with him, and I’m ashamed to admit it, but all I could do was look down and pretend I didn’t hear them.

Like is said, I still WE STILL have a lot of work to do, because through years of humiliation, we’ve learned to just accept being laughed at; and I know we’ve probably all been the victims of our own imaginations before, but the double takes in the street for eating an ice cream cone, or when you can’t fit in the booth at a restaurant and the other patrons can’t help but steal a second glance at the fat girl trying to squeeze in, the walk of shame to a different table as people whisper amongst themselves, they’re real. That @#$hole in the street – he was real.

But we’re real too; and we deserve to be treated just like everybody else.

Although I’m disappointed in myself for not speaking up last night, I know that I’ve come a long way. The journey continues, and I’m so thankful to have all of you, my amazing followers, alongside me for the ride!

Transitioning In Style

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So as much as we don’t want to think about it, Fall is creeping up on us, little by little. (I know, I know, shut up, right!?)

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A great way to transition your wardrobe into Fall, without giving up your favourite Summer pieces is to find ways to incorporate them, rather than storing them away till next year. Swimsuits can become bodysuits, maxi dresses can be transformed with a nice blazer, and coverups can be repurposed into great layering pieces. The possibilities are endless!

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This stunning Mosaic duster from Zelie For She isn’t necessarily only a coverup, but definitely has all the characteristics of one. This long, flowy piece works beautifully over a bikini at the beach during the summer months, and can be given new life paired with a simple tank top (Forever 21+), leggings (Addition Elle) and pulled up into an amazing belt for Fall.

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Wear with a statement sandal, like these gladiators from Ashley Stewart, for the early transitional period, or if it’s later in the season, try a great chunky heeled pump, or boot!

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With great pieces like this, it only makes sense to keep reinventing them so you can enjoy them year round… Now if only I could figure out a way to make these sandals work during a Montreal winter!!!

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Green Tea, Gossip, And Glam

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So, I grabbed lunch and a coffee (by coffee, I mean iced green tea, loaded with sugar, cancelling out all possible health benefits) with my favourite ladies yesterday; and I decided to wear one of the newest additions to my closet – this sassy, blush coloured muscle tee from Forever 21+, with the words “eat your heart out” printed across the front.

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I am in love with this this top!!! I love a cute graphic tee, but this one is just so perfect, so tongue in cheek, and it works on so many levels!

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I paired it with a simple black pencil skirt with waist detail, but I wanted to glam my look up a bit, so I accessorized with this gorgeous iridescent necklace, which looks ridiculously like real opals (swoon), bracelets, as always, and these adorable round, nude framed sunnies which I just picked up on sale at Forever 21, and I absolutely adore!

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And finished the look off with my go to footwear this summer, my nude flats, which I will cry over the day they inevitably go to shoe heaven.

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It was a beautiful afternoon, filled with giggles, goodies and of course, a little gossip, (don’t judge, you know you do it too) and it was just what I needed this week!!!

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Cheers!

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Sexy Lips And A Fabulous Fatkini

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Well, I’ve been working up the courage to actually get out there and do a photo shoot in swimwear, and believe me, the struggle has been real! So real, that this amazing Sexy Lips midkini from swimsuitsforall.com has been sitting in a drawer since I purchased it at the beginning of the summer.

But I’ve been so inspired by bloggers like Garner Style, who rocked the hell out of a black and white bikini (and made me fall in love with round sunglasses & body chains and was totally the inspiration for my look today), as well as my amazing followers who are so confident and gorgeous, that it was about time that I face my fat girl fears, and do a photo shoot in my very own fatkini!!!

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I’ve paired it with two separate, but matching, black, sheer coverup pieces, which I love the idea of, because this way you can cover up less or more depending on the heat of the sun, or how cool the breeze is too. Also, it allows for a more modest option without sacrificing style, if, as was my experience at a beach resort in Haiti, you are required to cover up on top to go into a beachfront restaurant.

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No swimwear look would be complete without the right accessories, so I went with my favourite gold, metallic flip flops, big gold hoops, my bangles, (no surprise there) and this fantastic body chain from Forever 21 (note, this is not a plus size piece, so I removed the chain link that connected the two shoulder pieces in the back and replaced it with a longer chain for a better fit).

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It really took a lot for me to share these photos with all of you; and I only hope that I can inspire someone who, like me, felt that she wasn’t “perfect” enough to be seen this way. I hope to show that regardless of stretch marks, cellulite, and fat rolls, we can still be beautiful, confident, and enjoy a day at the beach, or an afternoon, poolside like me, in our own backyards, just as any other woman would.

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I’m truly am feeling fabulous and empowered in my fatkini and this definitely won’t be my last one!!!

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Thank you to all who’ve inspired me – this is something I never could have dreamed I would have been confident enough to share, and I feel AMAZING!!!

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Share your looks with me by tagging #flightofthefatgirl on your Instagram pics or email them to me at: flightofthefatgirl@gmail.com

Brights, And African Nights

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Life is sweet! It’s mid July, the weather has been hot, today we celebrated my middle son’s 8th birthday, and Festival season is taking over the streets of Montreal once more!

With the Jazz Fest having just wrapped up and Just For Laughs in full swing, one of my favourite festivals – Nuits D’Afrique (African Nights) is just getting started!

There is something magical and intoxicating about seeing busy city streets completely closed down to vehicles, just buzzing with people and activity (and plenty of booze)!!!

So tonight, as the hubby and I take in some of the best of what summer has to offer, I’ll be hitting the streets in this bright, vibrant, hot pink colour block dress (my favourite style, in case you haven’t noticed) from Posh Shoppe! I love its off the shoulder styling, and the black mesh inserts are everything!

I’ve paired this fabulous frock with my fave nude flats and neon yellow, beaded bib necklace (still available I’m neon coral) from Forever 21, for a fun, eye catching look that’s perfect for an evening downtown, taking in the wonderful sights and sounds of Africa right here in the beautiful, culture rich city of Montreal!!!

I’m a lucky girl!!!

What’s Black, White & Budget Friendly All Over?

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Oooufff! These past couple of weeks have had me so busy, I’ve barely had the time to put on a decent outfit worth taking pictures of, let alone write a blog post!

My husband and I have been slowly working on putting up one of those fancy wooden swing sets in our back yard, and it has not been going well. Let’s just say, I am not a handy person; and my hubby is less than patient… You get the picture… He may or may not have stormed off into his man cave once or twice, but it wasn’t anything that a little beer and and a dip in the pool couldn’t take care of.

We haven’t killed each other yet, despite the fact that our project has stalled at about 90% completion due to rain and total lack of motivation; but it may happen. Just letting you all know, in case you stop hearing from me. Ha.

So today, since I can’t find the strength to go out there and slave over a swing set that has been halfway assembled for so long that its novelty with the kids has already worn off despite not even being finished yet, I’ve decided to be fabulous.

Seeing as all of our money has gone into buying the new swing set, (and beer) there hasn’t been much room for my fashion budget lately; and that’s why I love fast fashion options like Great Glam, where I snagged this black & white, faux silhouette bodycon dress, with mesh sleeves, for a very budget friendly price!

I’ve paired it with a simple, yet standout gold chain necklace from Forever 21, faux leather, wrap bracelet from Addition Elle, and great black patent pumps from Payless, for a polished look that’s as fierce as it is budget friendly.

Tomorrow I’ll face reality (AKA the 50,000 bolts, screws, and washers we have left, that are somehow all supposed to have a place to go) and hopefully finish the job… But in the mean time, just for today, I’m pretending that my dress is expensive, and that I can afford to pay someone to do things for me, like assembling ridiculous wooden swing sets, and such.