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

Pears and Apples make great fruit salad!

One of the challenges inherent in writing a fashion blog for Big Girls is that not all Big Girls are Big in exactly the same places. As our internet friend g-dog wrote in the comments a few posts back, some of us are “succulent pears” and others are “delicious apples.” There are women with big shoulders and women with sloping shoulders; women with long necks and some with none; bustier women and tinier, perkier women; women whose bigness sits on their hips and those like me whose tummies pooch out in front. (Dare I call us Poochie Mamas?*)

And so no one article of clothing which Plumcake or I recommend can possibly make every single woman look superfantastic. Every woman is superfantastic in her own way, and trying on the clothes is often the only way to find out whether a particular blouse or skirt will make you, yourself, look and feel your best for the particular environment in which you plan to wear it.

If you want new ideas about what might look great on your own frame, my first advice is to click, right now, on the amazing myShape feature at igigi.com. Igigi is absolutely my favorite online source for plus-size clothing. Their wares are beautiful, feminine, and tasteful, without breaking the bank. And, at this myShape page, you can determine which “shape” comes closest to your own body type, and then shop by shape! I’m in love!

My second bit of advice is to experiment. Often we get stuck buying clothes in the same shapes and styles for years and years, not realizing that the passage of time and changes in our bodies, tastes, and shopping opportunities have opened new vistas. Perhaps it is time to try something new, like a belt – when was the last time you put on a belt? – or different necklines or shirts without darts. Are you sure you don’t look good in orange? Are you positive you “can’t” wear an empire waist? Perhaps that emerald-green blouse will look great even though it’s shiny, and you always thought that big girls “can’t” wear shiny fabrics?

Perhaps the “rules” you have created for yourself over the years are still correct for you. But perhaps not. So put on your adventure face and your adventure shoes, and happy shopping!

xoxo, Francesca

*PS We are Pucci Mamas!

Oy Vey!*

The sale at MonifC is ending today and Francesca has not told you about it yet! She offers her most sincere apologies!

MonifC is the designer of plus-size clothing for the woman with such flair that it is as if she says “hello world, here is my flair! And now here am I!” Many of their designs require an attitude of uber-superfantastic proportions – on the order of Queen Latifah – to carry off. However, they also have some designs which those of us who are merely self-confident can also wear with pride and style.

I like this silk blouse. Until the end of the day, it is marked down from $218 to less than $56! It is still available in Dusty Gold (shown here) in sizes 14/16 and 18/20.

Southwestern touch - pretty as a cactus in bloom!

What I, Francesca, particularly admire about this blouse is that it offers a feminine and sexy option for those of us with less-than-perfect upper arms. See how it shows off the silky-smooth skin of the forearm while hiding the luscious but private lumpy-squishies? And the flared sleeves and beading are pretty, too.

Happy shopping!

xoxo, Francesca

*or as the Manolo would say: Ayyyyy!

The Wonderful Wide World of Weitzmans

Oh my fellow fat-footed friends, do not think I have forsaken you. I hear your feet stomping out in the wilderness! They are calling out for the shoes deserving to cradle your superfantastic feets. Shoes that do not make you look like you spend your weekends playing the nickel-slots in Atlantic City with Doris and Edna, reminiscing about the good old days when Rosie was a riveter and trips to Canada were for pleasure, not prescriptions.

Never you fear! Plumcake will be your sasquatchy style sherpa, snorting around like a particularly glamorous truffle pig, searching high and low for the shoes of quality for the woman who has, as my podiatrist once said “a firm understanding with the ground.”

As the lovely and fragrant Francesca has already noted, Stuart Weitzman makes shoes for the superfantastic girl who, like Plumcake, happens to be more Fred Flintstone than Betty Rubble. These brown beauties are currently available up through 12W.

Here we have his handsome mid-heel “Portal” pump, pictured here in “mushroom.”
Portal by Stuart Weitzman

and for something completely different: the aptly-named “Sensual” tortoise-shell stiletto.
Sexy Stewies!

How sexy librarian are these?! They should come with fake glasses and a rip-away blouse.


A short note about high heels:

Plumcake knows that one woman’s kitten-heel is another woman’s stiletto. Indeed, the girl who walks around like an incontinent geisha in 3″ Blahnik d’orsay’s may very well be the same girl who can do windsprints in 5″ Kors espadrilles. For convenience’s sake, we will use Zappos’ definition of heel heights.

Low Heel: 5/8″ – 1 1/4″

Mid Heel: 1 1/2″ – 2 1/2″

High Heel: 2 3/4″ and up.

Simple elegance

As summer enters its final weeks, we thank Stuart Weitzman for making this simple and feminine sandal available in “wide,” through 12W.

Suspend by Stuart Weitzmanooh ahh gold

xoxo, Francesca

Hurry, hurry

If you happen to live near one of Avenue’s 500 U.S. locations, please be advised that they are in the midst of their semi-annual sale, with 70 percent off some items in the store, until August 1.

Avenue sells affordable clothing in sizes 14-32. Not all of the prints or styles are to Francesca’s taste, but every so often you find a gem, like this purrrrrfectly sexy black faux wrap dress.

(Miss Plumcake informs us this soft knit number hangs happily in her auxiliary closet reserved solely for LBD’s)

For an evening when you may wear this dress perhaps some extra-pretty lingerie will be called for. Avenue has that as well (15 percent off from their website, not just in the stores), and since this is a family website Francesca has chosen one of the more covering options to show as an example:

No, it is not made of real satin or silk, but then, it is not made for wearing very long.

Happy shopping!

xoxo, Francesca

Plumcake asks

Do you ever feel like you’re being watched?

Baker flats by Taryn Rose

They are not unlike the Mona Lisa in that way.

Happy, happy thoughts

Francesca wants to know: Which part of your body do you love the most?


PS Francesca is celebrating her eyes, her skin, her nose, her smile, and her calves.

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