Archive for the 'Beauty' Category

21
Dec
09

Last Minute Holiday Shopping and Coupon Code!

Yeah, I’m not usually one to wait till the week of Christmas to get shopping going, but when one works retail, it’s all one can do to remember to brush your teeth and take a shower in the morning before work.

Tis the season, y’all.

Anyhow, this year, I’ll be doing all my shopping online and shipping the stuff out, ’cause it’s all snowy and cold and if I decided to move back home, it’d be because of this weather.

Ok, I’m done whining.

I’ll probably be sporadically posting this week (heh! ok, most of my posts have been sporadic. sorry!) but since Jennifer from Eshakti emailed me a coupon code, I figured I’d share.

At checkout, enter AMFGC3 to take $20 off of your order. The beauty of this code is that there’s no minimum purchase to use it: if you pick a $20 item, you can still use your code! Also, if you’re a new customer and you register, you’ll get a $15 gift certificate. But, you cannot use them together: you gotta pick one or the other.

You’ve got till Christmas to use the Eshakti code (come on now. I know some of you still haven’t found yourselves a present.) Go forth and shop!

As for me? I’m going to have a cup of hot cocoa and start clicking away at some gifts. If I don’t post before Friday, have a Merry Christmas (or a happy holiday!)

13
Nov
09

Fashionable Friday—Thanksgiving Outfit

So, the holidays are upon us once again, and it’s all about visiting with friends and family. You want to look fabulous, naturally. As for me, the budget is too tight to make it home to Texas to see my mom, so BuddingStarlet and I are entertaining at our spot.

Now, this is my first Thanksgiving here in the Big Apple. And y’all know I have to look good, right? So when the good folks at Eshakti contacted me about reviewing a piece, I jumped all over it. I’ve spoken at length before about their service and their dresses, and I was looking forward to purchasing a fall frock for the shindig at the apartment.

So, I looked, and looked, and looked, and I finally settled on this beautiful piece:

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Purple! And gold!

Y’all, I fell in love when I saw it online, and when I got it in the mail earlier this week, I fell in love again. The dress is a beautiful aubergine color, and the embroidery isn’t metallic. It’s a golden tan. It has the sash to cinch it, and for those of us who are not a fan of the trapeze dress, you’re gonna need that sash. The fit is amazing. Now, my boobs are not on Rack of doom status, so whenever I get a wrap dress or some trapeze dresses, they never fit in the boob area. It’s usually a sad, flat area. But now when you order, you can provide your bra size (and height, and other measurements too; it’s a bit extra to get that done) to get a great fit. This dress fits my boobs perfectly, and when it’s perfectly cinched, it looks gorgeous. I even had them shorten it a bit, so that it hits right at the knee instead of the standard below the knee length. Now, I may not actually use the sash. I love the embroidery so much, I think I may get myself a bronze belt instead, and some cute little bronze flats like this from Target:

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Bronzed slippers

I love a heel, but since my job is the cooking (BuddingStarlet is decorating) I don’t need my feet screaming for mercy before the guests arrive. I’ll do simple, natural makeup. In fact, if y’all are up for some luxe makeup, head over to Urban Decay (y’all know how I feel about Urban Decay). They’re currently having their friends and family promotion; 30% off your order from November 9-20. Enter code FNFW1 at checkout. Luxe not in the budget? I understand. Y’all know how I love me some Eyes Lips Face, right? Oh, and Payless has their BOGO going on, so stop in and grab yourself some cute flats, or heels…or slippers. Y’all know I love to spread the sales around!

Next week, stay tuned for the Thanksgiving spread I’ll prepare (and hopefully not mangle). Enjoy the weekend!

25
Mar
09

Does our body dictate what kind of person we are?

Tonight, I was walking out of my cultural theory class and I had a conversation with one of my classmates that went something like this:

Classmate: My legs hurt.

Me: Why?

Classmate: I’ve been working with this personal trainer. I’m trying to become a better person.

Me: Through working out?

Classmate: Well, I can’t treat other people right before I learn how to treat myself. 

My first thought, as I suppose you can tell from my immediate reaction, was that going to the gym is not the way that I would love my body. This is because gyms contain 2 things that I dislike most in life: (1) exercise machinery and (2) large groups of women in spandex. 

Secondly, I don’t think there is anything wrong with working out or attaching a certain level of pleasure to it (although I don’t understand it). But, it seems to me that there is something very dangerous about employing it in this context. If we gauge our own ethics by the way we “treat” our bodies, do we then make external judgments about the bodies of others?

Being a vegetarian I feel like I walk that fine line. Although, my commitment to vegetarianism has more to do with my impact on the world than that of my own body I have to be very careful about not making judgment about what other people choose to put into their bodies. 

My classmate, who is also my friend, derives her belief about exercise from a distinctly religious context. She, too, is a vegetarian, because her religion equates diet with the way she treats her body as well as the way she treats the world. She extends this tenet into a belief that working out has some sort of attachment to morality based on this relationship. 

Did I mention that I just got out of cultural theory class? Sorry if my academic brain took over there. The point it that this is certainly not the first time we have all heard this logic before. That looking good by this narrow, exclusionary standard of beauty makes one a better person. And when it is explicit in that way it is very easy to critique because it seems so transparent. But the subtle ways that these ideas permeate our culture at so many levels…That really scares me.I really believe that it is this subtlety that allows violence against people who don’t fit these arbitrary standards to not warrant the sort of reaction that those of use in the fatosphere would expect. 

And because I was not able to share my thoughts with my friend during our short goodbye, I am so grateful to be able to flesh out my thoughts here. So, with that I am going to attempt to recover from the worst flu and get some rest.

19
Mar
09

Taking a Bite of the Big Apple Part Two: Shopping

So, this post was supposed to have gone up yesterday, but I got caught up taking care of other things. Per usual. I need to work on my time management.

Anyway.

So, of course the biggest part of going to visit with my two best friends was going to shop. Now, BuddingStarlet and I did the clothes shopping thing before IntellectualFeminist made it to the city because, as she’s told y’all before, she hates clothes shopping. So, on an unseasonably warm Friday morning, we made a trip to the ATM and took a stroll down 125th street in Harlem.

Aside from the various shops, there were many people with their own tables set up selling everything from candles to elaborate blown-glass bongs (BuddingStarlet doesn’t know I really thought about buying one just to set on my dresser because it was so pretty.) I saw books, incense, “designer” handbags, a plethora of black art, Obama t-shirts…you name it, they had it. If they didn’t have it, they’d get it.

Of course, they had Ashley Stewart, Lane Bryant, and the Avenue for the usual plus size offerings. I actually ducked my head into the LB to see what I could see, and I found a beautiful cream, black, turquoise, and orange dress (cream background, black sash and hem at the bottom, turquoise and orange accents) which for some reason I cannot find online.  ETA: Thanks to Christie for putting a linky to a picture of the dress in comments! I still can’t find it online; but should you want to peruse the stores, this is what it looks like:

Let the spring dress shopping officially begin!

Let the spring dress shopping officially begin!

I was happy for the 30% off friends and family discount because let me tell you, I wasn’t excited to see the $69.50 price tag. But that discount, plus the added excitement of no sales tax on clothes in NY, brought it down to a reasonable $48. When I got home, I’d received some new coupons, so I’ll probably get this dress next time:

It's more beautiful in person.

It's more beautiful in person.

I also went to the MAC store to look at the purple eyeshadows, and I picked up two beautiful shimmery shades and a great pink creamsheen glass. And I managed to convince BuddingStarlet to try out some red lipstick…it looked amazing, just like I told her it would! (I wouldn’t be a friend if I didn’t rub it in! 🙂

The day before, BuddingStarlet, myself, and one of her gentleman friends (who I’ll introduce to y’all in the next post) walked around Times Square, looking at the lights, the sights, and of course, shopping. I got the opportunity to see the biggest damn Macy’s I’d ever seen before.

No, really. It’s MASSIVE. As in, we’re walking past, and I say, oh, this is the Macy’s you were telling me about! And then I look back across the street and realize WE’RE STILL WALKING PAST IT. I didn’t go in, because I was afraid I’d buy the whole world. Next trip, though, I’ll have to make a day of it.

We also went to H&M. Now, I’ve been to NYC before, when I was in high school, and I loved the accessories because they didn’t make any clothes in my size. Well, they still don’t make clothes in my size, but they still have amazing accessories. I picked up this beautiful white straw fedora (it’s a man’s hat, but whatever) with a blue striped ribbon trim for $7.90. I tried to find more hats because at that price, it’s totally a bargain, but no dice. It was ok though, because that hat will be in heavy rotation come this summer (BuddingStarlet picked one up too.)

When IntellectualFeminist made it to the city, we had one more shopping trip to go on. She wanted to go to the Old Navy. I, of course, was wary as all of the plus sizes have been taken out of the store. But you know, it’s like 4 or 5 floors of merchandise. Perhaps, just perhaps, this massive flagship store would have something there.

Not. A. Damn. Thing. It’s hard to sour my mood when it comes to shopping, mainly because I am so desensitized to not being able to find my size in stores, but this just pissed me off. All these floors, all of these pieces, not ONE thing for me? WTF? I simply leaned against a railing as BuddingStarlet and IntellectualFeminist looked at jeans. My co-blogger looks at my face and says: “Ah, we’re in protest mode, huh? I understand.” I’d tell the Old Navy to go to hell, but I know that there is stuff on that website RIGHT NOW that I want because on my salary, I can afford it. Bastards. Ugh.

Anyway.

My mood perked up pretty quickly by the time we made it to the bookstore. Not the Barnes and Noble or Borders, but the Strand Bookstore. It is this awesome store full of used books at amazing prices. I picked up a baking cookbook by Dorie Greenspan for HALF the price I would have gotten it in the BN. When BuddingStarlet first told me about the store, I told her I was pretty familiar with them because I think (and I’m pretty sure about this) they also sell books on Amazon too. I’ve gotten many a textbook from them at an amazing price.

So really, as much damage as I thought I’d do, I didn’t do so bad. A hat, a dress, a book, two eyeshadows, and a lip gloss. And I had a ton of fun exploring the city.

Coming up: the serious part of my trip. And y’all know that if serious doesn’t mean the shopping, it’s got to be deep. Stay tuned.

02
Feb
09

Travel Swag!

Well, folks, on my long list of resolutions was to travel and see friends more often. So, I’ll be flying to the cold, snowy North next month to visit BuddingStarlet, and IntellectualFeminist will be there too!

Did I mention I haven’t seen IntellectualFeminist since I graduated in 2007? Yeah. About that.

Naturally, this was as good an excuse as any to go shopping.

Being a Southern girl, weather down here is…well, spaztastic at best. Last Tuesday, for example, it got so cold there was ice everywhere, schools closed, whole nine. Yesterday? It made it to 75 degrees. I was wearing flip flops and sitting on the front steps with a lemonade.

Texas weather is the best, y’all.

Anyhow, I’m going to New York next month, and to Florida in June, and well, I need clothes since I cleaned out my closet and all. So, I’m introducing y’all to my latest additions, and giving some reviews.

First up: SWAK Designs.

Lesley over at Fatshionista reviewed three dresses for them.  They contacted me and asked me to review some pieces for them as well. Some time ago I told y’all about a dress I wanted to pick up, but sadly, they no longer had my size. So I was stoked to be able to try out some of their clothes.

So Pretty!

So Pretty!

The Desi dress  is the same that Lesley reviewed, and seriously? That dress is made for summery vacations, y’all. I mean, I can’t say it much better than this:

Frankly, this dress makes me stare bleakly out at the frozen heaps of old snow outside my windows and wish I had a beach vacation coming up. It’s that kind of dress. The kind you want to wear stretched out in the sun with an alcohol-laden frozen drink in your hand.

I have the 3x in black and the fit is so great. Plenty of stretch in the arm–I have a hell of a time finding sleeves that fit my arms properly. I cannot wait for the weather to stabilize so I can wear it. June can’t get here fast enough!

Work comfort at its best.

Work comfort at its best.

The Gaucho pant was my responsible pick. I say responsible because these are intended for work. I say intended because they’re so comfortable I want to wear them everywhere. I work retail, so there is a lot of move box, open box, sit in dusty floor, restock, take out garbage, help customer…so on and so forth. When I purchase work clothes, they have to look nice enough for me to not look too bedraggled in front of customers, but be stretchy and comfy enough for me to move around quickly. These pants…are AMAZING. Now, I’ve told y’all before my waist is smaller than my hips, and so have to go up a size in order to accommodate them. I got a 3x, but I could have easily gotten a 2x and still have had a flattering fit (I kept the larger size because I prefer my work gear to be a bit loose.) The best thing? They dress up so easily with just a simple heel and a shirt change. I actually lounged in them yesterday while I watched the Super Bowl. (And no, I wasn’t at work first.) This is a great multi-purpose pant.

Now, I read about eShakti in the Fatosphere, but had never been to the site. One day, bored, I surfed on over there to see what they had, and OMG. OMG! I love dresses, and they have dresses as far and wide as the eye could see. So, after much contemplation, I ordered this dress:

Gorgeous, but they didn't have my size!

Gorgeous, but they didn't have my size!

This is the Climbing Rose Embroidered Dress (and now it comes in blue!); I  just fell in love with this. Unfortunately, they no longer had my size. The lovely people at eShakti promptly emailed me to let me know I couldn’t get that dress, and asked me to pick another I might like. If I couldn’t find anything, they would refund my money, no questions asked. Now, that’s some customer service I can believe in. After some deliberation, I ordered this dress instead:

This will be the go-to summer dress this year!

This will be the go-to summer dress this year!

This is the Embroidered Ruched Sundress (also available in a lighter blue). When I got this in the mail, I squealed with delight. Often, the colors on my computer are way more vibrant than the actual garment. Not so in this case. It is an amazing, vibrant royal blue with cerulean, dove grey, and white embroidery. I ordered a 3x, but with the stretchy (and non-pinchy) ruching on the top, I could have gone a size down and had plenty of room. I’m keeping it because it’ll give me a chance to wear a fabulous belt, , and I just don’t get to wear my belts often. I’ll definitely be buying from them again, because when a company makes me have to grab my Crayola box in order to properly label their colors, I know I’ve found a good thing (I’m SUCH a color junkie!)

Speaking of color, I’m now going to show y’all what I picked up for the NYC trip.

Even though it gets cold here in Texas, I usually don’t need a wool coat. Up yonder, however, I figure I might want a wool coat so as to not lose a nipple or other useful body part. I want to know why in the mauve hell wool coats (or a warm coat, really) cost so damn much. I went round and round and round trying to find a coat at a reasonable price. While this coat from Target isn’t as low as I’d wanted to go, the color won out:

Bright, Beautiful, and Warm (hopefully!)

Bright, Beautiful, and Warm (hopefully!)

I haven’t gotten it in the mail yet, so I can’t attest to fit and warmth, but I have my fingers crossed that it will work out. Otherwise…back to the drawing board, I guess.

Second purchase: Boots. Now, I’m aware I don’t have to buy boots solely for my one trip to NY. Heh. I’m actually buying boots because my other pair met with an unfortunate accident known as Cobalt the Weimaraner. He was a cute puppy, but shoes shuddered at the sight of him! Now, my not-practical purchase was this pair from Lane Bryant:

Just for dressy events, I promise!

Just for dressy events, I promise!

I ordered them in Cedar, and I’m still waiting on them to get here. But I’m sure they’ll work out ok, and will look fabulous with my dress I’ll be wearing to church.

On the more practical side, I’m considering getting this pair of boots from Woman Within:

I want the black pair.

I want the black pair.

I’m still thinking about it. But the more I do, the more I like them.

To round out this post, let’s talk about jewelry! I’ve often heard Etsy discussed around the ‘sphere, but hadn’t had the chance to really check it out. Friday (payday!) I took a look-see.

Love. It. I bought some adorable earrings! I got sundae (yep, as in the hot fudge kind) earrings from this seller (and I’m totally going back for the pink frosted donuts–unless y’all get there first, that is), and happy smiling tofu and happy smiling onigiri studs from this seller.

It’s been some good shopping around these parts, and I wanted to share it with y’all.

Any suggestions for other things I should get before my trip to the frosty North (I did get some sweaters from Old Navy)? Tips for not freezing? You love/hate my picks? Leave ’em in comments!

23
Sep
08

Diaries–A Retrospective

I’ve been rearranging my rapidly growing book collection. I’ve been tossing out things so old I can just no longer read them, making lists of books to buy, and, my favorite, creating a pile of books to donate. And I ran across some of my diaries from middle and high school.

As I am wont to do, I managed to get completely sidetracked. I began to flip through what was my FAVORITE diary at the time (a really cool Lisa Frank number with polar bears on it) and started to read. This diary was from high school, started right when I moved to Florida and I was just MISERABLE, y’all. I had no idea that I had an accent (and we’re talking full-on Southern lilt, y’all) and the kids just jumped all over it. Nelly’s Country Grammar was in heavy rotation on the airwaves, and for the first few months I was there, Country Grammar, or, perhaps even more affectionately, “Big Country”, was my nickname.

Charming, ain’t it?

Well, I continued to read, and I ran across an entry I must have written when I was having just an AWFUL day, because at the end of the entry, I’d written a prayer of sorts:

God, if you love me, why don’t you just take away this accent, and make me skinny? I’m tired of being picked on, I’m tired of people making jokes that aren’t funny. God, please, make me normal.

Sophomore year was a booger, folks.

Well, I closed that diary and picked up a smaller white striped one with hearts. I remembered that diary as one I bought during the Scholastic Book Fair (remember those?) This one was from my last year of elementary school (6th grade for me) through freshman year of high school. I realized the FashionableNerd in the Lisa Frank diary was slightly less miserable than the FashionableNerd in the Scholastic diary. Oh, I chatted about my teachers and my friends, I wrote countless entries on the various diets I tried and how my family members tried to bribe me into losing weight, but the connective tissue was the plea for somebody, anybody, to make me NORMAL.

What strikes me about my diaries is that I just don’t remember being so sad. Oh, I might mention to friends, as we spoke of our childhoods, about being unhappy with my body, but I never went into depth about the hurt I was obviously experiencing as a child. Perhaps, with the blinders that hindsight can place on one’s eyes, I simply rewrote history a bit. I tweaked it to make it sound like I’d never been picked on, harassed, or ridiculed. Maybe I wanted folks to think the strong, no-nonsense persona I developed in college had always been there. Maybe I just didn’t want to remember it. I’m not sure. Goodness knows that as I read the entries I remembered each event, and I remembered and experienced the hurt with the 12 year old me. I wish I could give 13 year old me a hug and tell her that a boyfriend isn’t going to make her happy with herself. I’ve spoken at length before about what I’d say to 14 year old me.

The last diary I found was one I kept in college. In one of the entries, dated right before I graduated, I wrote:

As my graduation day rapidly approaches, I get ready to finish another chapter in my life. I’m sure I whined extensively in this diary, as I’m sure I did when I was younger. But, you know, I’ve realized something. In the future, everything I’ve considered to be serious or situations I’ve deemed make-or-break won’t even be important when I reread this.

Well, I have to disagree with myself. All the issues I’ve had, all the situations I’ve gone through have all been important. I realize how my past has shaped me. I realize how important every tear I shed during the writing was–it was my outlet; my coping mechanism. And every time I take the time to read through my old entries, I see just how far I’ve come in terms of mental strength. Because now, I finally understand that I AM normal. Everyone has different versions of normal, and this normal? My looks, my personality, all of it–is MY normal. And I’ve learned to own it.

So, I put the diaries in a Rubbermaid container and slid it under my bed. Sometimes the past is hard to remember, but even when it’s rough, it is not always something one should forget.

29
Aug
08

Mixed Bag

I have been very busy these past couple of weeks. I’ve finally decided on school (when I send the application, I’ll expand on that a bit more), I’ve been working extra hours (yay more money to live on and save!), and all in all, I’ve been having some major happy body days. It’s all been coming up lovely at FashionableNerd central, y’all. How have y’all been? Feels like I haven’t spoken to y’all in a month of Sundays!

Now, tomorrow, I go to finally buy my bridesmaid’s gown. I’ll be going to David’s Bridal, and hopefully I won’t have any problems, be it from the salespeople or my diet-mind. Something about trying on formal gowns just sends it into overdrive. But my mom will be there with me, so I’m sure I’ll be ok. Deep breaths.

Last night I witnessed history. I thought I’d have more to say about it than that, but I’m still kinda speechless and spellbound by the speech and the man who delivered it. I am so excited to be old enough to appreciate a Black man running for President, and excited that he is really and truly a viable candidate. And while I won’t be voting for her running mate, I’m excited that Sarah Palin, a woman (!) is running for VP on the Republican side. I’m being positive today, so the fact that I think that McCain is pandering? That’s gonna have to wait till next week, during the Republican National Convention.

Besides a wonderful bit of feminisim coming in that McCain post (and y’all know IntellectualFeminist will have PLENTY to say on that), I’ve got some other things in the works for y’all. Since things around here are settling into a more manageable rhythm, I’ll be able to post much, much more, especially about the election, racism, and of course, my raison d’etre, fat.

So, to end this rambly, disjointed update post: sales! In the States, it’s Labor Day Weekend, and that means sales for everybody. Lane Bryant has an awesome sale going on, as does Macy’s. Looking for an awesome makeup sale? Hard Candy has everything for 50% off. Need some sweet-smelling soaps and lotions? Head over to Bath and Body Works for their Labor Day sale.

Ok, that’s it from this end. If shopping goes well, y’all will probably see me Tuesday, if not, I’ll be back tomorrow. Have a great weekend!




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