Manolo for the Big Girl Fashion, Lifestyle, and Humor for the Plus Sized Woman.

November 26, 2009

Yes, No, Maybe: Fashion Bug

Happy, happy Thanksgiving!

Today we are pricing down, to Fashion Bug, which  sells Misses and Plus size casual-wear and lingerie. At the top of the home page, you can opt to shop according to size, including 16-34, 16-32 short (they couldn’t call it petite? Whatever.), and 16-32 long. (Warning: Short and Long selections are limited.) (Misses sizes start at 6). Their sale page is here.

Today they are having the Thanksgiving Day sale, online only, on all their Fall clothing here.


Francesca had a hard time with the “Yesses” and “Maybes” because her personal idea of “casual” is “suede jacket with boot-cut jeans.” So let us get it out of the way: If you are looking for your basic turtlenecks (on sale today for $6 apiece), polo shirts, jeans, panties, and the like, this is a good place to go. It is a good value for the price.

And now for the slightly more Francesca-esque items. Click for outfit suggestions and/or purchase info:



Happy Thanksgiving and remember…

Filed under: Holidays — Miss Plumcake @ 8:00 am

Ethel Merman

Ethel Merman is judging your pie.

November 25, 2009

In Praise of a Solo Thanksgiving

Filed under: Uncategorized — Miss Plumcake @ 3:38 pm

When people ask me what I’m doing for Thanksgiving, I usually answer “not a damn thing. I’m going to watch movies in bed then I’m going to go to the Driskill, have a Manhattan, read some Tennyson and enjoy having the entire city to myself.”

The envy is palpable.

So here’s my question. If everyone’s so jealous of my Thanksgivings –which are admittedly awesome– then why am I the only one spending them the way I see fit?

See, I’m pretty meh on the whole Turkey Day thing and I’d certainly rather hopscotch Hell than partake in yet another episode of Disordered Eating Theatre.

Of Thanksgivings in the house where I grew up, I don’t honestly remember a single happy one.

What I DO remember were the eyes on my plate, silently –or not so silently– measuring how much I was taking of each thing. If I wanted second helpings or put too much of one thing on my plate, eyebrows would arch or my grandmother (Madame Food Issues herself) would ask “do you really need that extra roll?” while my naturally whip-thin brother pretty much had a feed bag attached to his ears.

Now, I’m not what you might call “naturally predisposed to shame” but that’ll do a number on a girl, even in the best of weather.

And you know, it’s not like it still keeps me up at night but at this point they’re not going to change and I’m Too Damn Old to put up with that nonsense. So I don’t go.

Sometimes I spend the day alone, just enjoying how quiet everything is. Sometimes I gather with my friends –collectively known as The Misfit Toys– and celebrate with them.

This year I’m going to dine with a couple at their snazzy little boîte -which serves the best pork confit this side of Les Deux Magots and the best Ruby Manhattans anywhere– and then waddle off to The Driskill where I will partake of a Gibson in honor of my beloved Grandfather, who would’ve turned 81 today.

The moral of the story is the filthy separatist heretics noble pilgrims blew that green and pleasant popsicle stand because they wanted to live life the way they saw fit, even though it probably upset their parents.

So why on earth –especially at Thanksgiving– shouldn’t we do the same thing?

Gobble gobble y’all. I’ll see you on Friday.

Big Girls in Art

Filed under: Art — Francesca @ 10:27 am

Pablo Picasso loved the Big Girls!

Picasso-Woman With Flowered Hat

This painting, Woman With Flowered Hat, brings new meaning to “her eyes are like black pools.”

November 24, 2009

What Miss Plumcake is…Everything’s Bigger Edition

Filed under: Books,Boots,Movies,Music,Perfume,What Miss Plumcake is — Miss Plumcake @ 1:22 pm

Yesterday marked the ten year anniversary of my move to Texas so I thought I’d celebrate by doing an All-Texan revue. It’s Tuesday so let’s fine out what Miss Plumcake is…

What Miss Plumcake is...Texas

Reading: O. Henry’s Short Stories.  William Sydney Porter was a Carolina boy by birth, but did a the best part of his writing and embezzling here in Austin, Texas.  My grandmother never read to me (unless by “read” you mean “accidentally putting her cigarette out on my arm, thereby fusing my horrible nylon sweater to the sweet delicate flesh of my forearm”) but she had a soft spot for The Ransom of Red Chief (I think she liked the torture scenes), which remains my favorite O. Henry short story.

Hearing: Lyle Lovett’s Natural Forces. I’ve had a one-sided love affair with Lyle Lovett and his Large Band for years, and it all started with this song.  He consistently puts on the best live shows I’ve seen. He’s funny, droll and is completely at home with his, uh, unusual looks. Last night’s concert went into my top five shows of all time. Even if you think you won’t like him, give Lyle a little Youtube action and let him change your mind.

Watching:Giant.  James Dean’s third and final film –it was released shortly after his death at 24– it is the definitive Texas Epic and worth a watch if only to see James Dean’s method acting play against Liz Taylor’s Tollywood traditional.

Smelling: Tauer Lonestar Memories. Swiss perfumer Andy Tauer isn’t Texan, but we might make him an honorary one after this. Lonestar Memories is a BIG scent –I have to put a teensy drop behind my knees the night before I want to wear it– but its bone-dry combination of wood smoke, brush fire and open skies make it a smart, untamed scent for men or women.

Loving: The Lance Armstrong Foundation I can’t say I just love Lance Armstrong as a person and I think those yellow rubber bands are dopey, but the LAF does great work, especially with providing support for young men like my brother who are testicular cancer survivors. He (Lance not my brother) made a surprise visit on stage last night with Lyle Lovett. To his credit he didn’t try to sing.

Hating: Well, I mean, really.

Wanting: Big obnoxious custom cowboy boots. Texans never mind a bit of vulgarity it’s “a nice splash of paprika” as Diana Vreeland would say. I own one pair of Western boots and they’re the most unassuming things on the planet, just regulation-issued brown ropers with a low heel and almond toe. They’re dead useful without being showy but secretly I yearn for a pair of enormously over-the-top boots inlaid with all sorts of craziness. You can drop a good $4000 on custom boots, and they’re truly works of art, but I’d settle for these at a mere $1800.

Buying: Bluebonnet seeds. In the spring, a few weeks after the droves of South by Southwest revelers vacate my fair city, the wildflowers bloom. In the Texas Hill Country, the roadways are just carpeted with bluebonnets. Millions and millions of the Texas state flower pop up along any place left untended, and while it is illegal to pick them, it IS every Texas woman’s birthright to trample as many as she sees fit just so she can sit daintily in a field and get her picture taken surrounded by a could of blue blossoms.

So what’s shaking in YOUR state today?

From Francesca’s Inbox: Monday “Basic Black” Edition

Filed under: Boots,From Francesca's Inbox,Gift Ideas,Holidays,Perfume,Sales,Shoes — Francesca @ 9:51 am

Hello! Here we go in alphabetical order (mostly):

Avenue and Jessica London will give you free shipping on your purchase of $60 or more with code AV91140. This code is good through December 10. Shop both stores here.

Catherines is having a Buy Two, Get One Free sale in stores and online ending today. Buy any two items, and get any third (for equal or lesser value) for free. Francesca’s Picks: Buy the sleeved, accessorize-for-the-office black dressicon (pictured) and this taffeta ruched dressicon for the office party (pictured), get the border print dressicon (pictured) for free to wear on date night with your husband.

Designer Shoes (“for women who leave a larger footprint”)will give you 25% off any shoes today with code SALESHOESNOV. And, through Monday November 30, 20% off anything on the site with code CYBERMONDAY. Their apparel does run in plus sizes.

Just My Size sale on Playtex bras is still going on.

Old Navy will give you 15% off purchases of $75, or 25% off purchases of $100, ending today, with code ONSAVE15. Also, through December 15, free shipping on any purchase of $50 or more. Click here to go straight to plus sizes.

Perfumania has posted a holiday gift guide, which allows you to shop by price or by recipient. Francesca does not normally recommend buying frangrance for anyone whose favorite scents you do not know for sure, but it could be nice for a teenage girl or for the vague acquaintance who seems to have everything. Those who read this blog often know that Francesca personally wears Light Blue and Euphoria.

Shoe Mall is selling something attractive for the edgy or biker girl: Harley Davidson brand boots.  And, order any Harley footwear and enter code SMHARLEYD in the “promo code” to receive a little collectible Harley Davidson motorcycle, while supplies last (Francescais not telling you this because she loves the Harleys, but because some of you might). Francesca’s picks: the Tiff boot, the Carlin boot.

Silhouettes is having a jeans sweepstakes. Enter here before November 30 for a chance to win any pair of Blue Couture brand jeans of your choice.

Smart Bargains is having a liquidation sale on designer brandsicon, ending today. Click here to shop by sizeicon (see the nav bar on the left). Francesca says: These are good brands at very good prices.

Chico’s has completely renovated their style and are not nearly as matronly as they used to be. Through Thursday they will give you 50% off your most expensive item if you spend $100 or more and enter code 6693.

Happy shopping! xoxo

November 23, 2009

Big Happy Girl

Filed under: Superfantastic Fattitude,The Fat's in the Fire — Francesca @ 12:03 pm

Francesca loves the Dear Abby, who recently fielded this question (warning: Mother-related Triggers ahead):

* DEAR ABBY: I’m 32 and a “large girl.” I am also intelligent, witty and fun to be around. I make friends wherever I go. The problem is my mother — who is also big — keeps telling me that heavy women are not desirable and we must “settle” when it comes to choosing a mate.

My mother has had two long, unhappy marriages. She’s always saying I think too highly of myself and my standards for men are out of my reach.

Abby, I would rather remain single than marry someone I’m not happy with just to have a man. I’m not looking for a movie star; I just want to find someone I’m attracted to and who has the same values and ideals that I have.

Is Mother right? Am I setting my sights too high? — HAPPY BEING ME IN MASSACHUSETTS

Francesca, of course, answers: Keep looking for someone who makes you really happy, and if that never happens, then meanwhile be happy being with yourself. The mother’s self-loathing attitude of “fat people do not deserve to be happy” is poppycock, and anyway is based on the old-fashioned assumption that being married is necessary, that it is better to be married than to be happy. Poppycock, says the single Francesca once again.

What say you, dear readers? And just how badly do you wish to smack this mother into her senses, on a scale of 1-10?

*Image by

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