Sunday, 1 May 2016

Second Bloggerversary Giveaway!

April means my little blog has turned 2! It's become such a big part of my life and has introduced me to so many wonderful people. Last year I hosted a blog giveaway, so I decided to make it a yearly tradition! This giveaway will run for 2 weeks from today and I'll announce the winner on 15th May. Here's what you can win!

A beautiful ceramic 'Love' sign kindly donated by The Crafty Retreat of Scartho, Grimsby. Because this is ceramic you can paint it in any colour you like, or leave it as is.

A tote bag designed and donated by illustrator and generally awesome body positive artist MurderOfGoths! This jellyfish design came from MoG asking for ideas on twitter, and as I love fat merbabe designs, I suggested fat jellyfish and shark babes. And being the genius MoG is, this was the end result. It's so damn cute!

A matte pigment gloss in 'Secret' from L.A. Girl. I love their range of matte liquid lipsticks so snagged an extra red for the giveaway. You can see my review of this here.

Adorable 'Lucky 13' earrings I bought from Punky Pins. These are acrylic mounted on butterfly studs and really cute!

A copy of feminist zine 'Women Can Be : Volume One' kindly donated by Melly Em Clark, plus the fab illustration pictured above. You can read all about the zine in my blog post here.

And finally, this incredible necklace kindly donated by Celia Rose Jewellery. This is a stunning stirling silver piece and I wish I could keep it for myself to be quite honest. Celia is the genius making our wedding rings and I am so thrilled to have her involved in the giveaway.

Entries are made via the Rafflecopter box below.

Due to the nature of the prizes this giveaway is UK only, sorry! It will be sent via FedEx which is a delivery that will need to be signed for.

Enjoy and good lucky!

Much love,
Kitty xxxxx

Thursday, 28 April 2016

A Morris-Wood Wedding : My Hen Party Outfit : With LovedRobe*

Picking an outfit for my hen party has been so damn hard. Mostly because the two parts of my hen party are so juxtaposed that one outfit just wasn't going to work for them both! Afternoon tea, followed by a punk gig.... two outfits are needed. I finally have the afternoon tea outfit sorted thanks to the awesome folks at LovedRobe who have sent me a dress for the Miss British Beauty Curve Pageant, that I just can't resist wearing before hand.

It's probably the prettiest dress I've ever owned, and so different to anything I've owned before too!

Ladies and gents and everyone else.... I give you me, in a floral maxi dress.

Isn't it just so pretty?! It's the LovedRobe Floral Pleated Maxi Dress* and it retails for £79. Firstly, the thing that makes me most happy about this dress is the length. I'm 5ft 11, and it's long enough for me in flats! I never wear heels, so that's ideal for me. The fabric feels so luxurious, it's all lined and best of all, it doesn't crease! I hate ironing, so that's just brilliant.

It's a pale blue, which doesn't show up the best on camera, but that print is just wow. Pale blue with pink, yellow, reds, all in wonderful pastel tones. It has a cut out in the front and the back, and ties at the waist. I am aaaaaaall about the mega pleating in the skirt! It gives such great movement and looks incredible.

I feel like a floral fairy princess. I plan on rocking it with sandals for a more appropriate summery look if the weather allows it. It doesn't look it, but it was pretty cold when we took these photos!

I plan on swapping into something more rock and roll for the pink gig party of the hen party (Anti-Nowhere League just happen to be playing locally, so thrilled!) but this was all I could dream of for afternoon tea. I just adore it.

It's very different to what I usually wear, so do let me know what you think!

Much love,
Kitty xxxxx

*this item was gifted to me, but in no way does this impact upon my opinions which are entirely my own.

Check out my newest plus size clothing holiday haul here!

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

A Morning at The Crafty Retreat

Now that Stu's birthday is finally gone, and I've given him his present, I can share with you what I got him! With the wedding coming up we decided this year we would get each other silly presents and spend less money so all our funds could go on the wedding instead. I had no idea what to get him! Then thanks to my friend Rachel I got a stroke of genius. I popped to see her at her business The Crafty Retreat Ceramic Studio in Scartho, Grimsby, to pick up a prize she has kindly donated to my next blog giveaway (coming soon!) and I saw the perfect thing on the wall. A few days later I was back at The Crafty Retreat with my future step-sons to create.

What I saw on the wall was this incredible shark mount! I just had to come back and paint it for Stu for his birthday. We have a bunch of stag heads on the walls, and this would be a hilarious addition. 

And for the boys to paint, their own sharks to give to their Dad for his birthday.

At The Crafty Retreat you paint and decorate beautiful ceramic pieces, then are then put into a kiln for you to seal. There is everything from cute phrases, to dragons, owls, monsters, hearts and more. It doesn't cost any extra to sit in and paint, and you are provided with 23 different colours, paintbrushes and paint trays.

This tile is a particularly nifty table addition because it shows you what the paint colours will look like after they've been through the kiln. They are a lot more intense.

First up you take a sponge, slightly dampen it and rub over the whole piece. Then the painting can begin! You'll need a couple a layers to get a really solid clean look.

We all decided to go for totally different looks. Cameron went for a purple background and an Arsenal theme as they are Stu's fave, and Ciaran went for a rainbow!

Cam's finished look pre-the kiln. Thierry Henry wore a 14.

Rainbow with a moustache from Ciaran!

And because I'm super witty and hilarious, I painted a tiger shark....geddit! Stu loves a Dad joke. I couldn't resist the pun.

I took forever to paint my shark, and Rachel kindly gave the boys a tile each to paint on the proviso that she could keep them for her walls. Ciaran went for a cat in the fog, and Cam went for a Minecraft cube.

I forgot to take my actual camera with us on the day we did these, however once we'd given Stu the final products, which he loved, I had to photograph them properly!

Didn't the boy's sharks come out amazingly?! The high shine is brilliant.

And mine. I can't wait to get this mounted on the wall. I'm really quite proud of myself!

I totally recommend The Crafty Retreat as a brilliant day out. They host hen do's, birthday parties, painting lessons, or just anyone who fancies a day crafting! I totally plan on going back and creating more.

Much love,
Kitty xxxxxx

Don't forget to check out my most recent YouTube video! I just hit 100 subscribers.

Sunday, 24 April 2016

On The Importance of Getting Bra Measured

I've always had a bit of a complex about my boobs. I'm essentially convinced that they are almost non-existent, especially for a plus size gal. As a result, I've just worn whatever cheap bra I deemed adequate, and assumed it was a done deal that I couldn't get cute bras that had small enough cups in my larger back size.

As it turns out.... I was wrong. With the impending nuptials, a bra fitting was in order. I didn't think I could really wear an ill fitting one for my wedding, that was a step too far even for me. I looked up some of the plus size lingerie brands and came across Pretty Woman in Cleethorpes who stock Elomi. Getting your boobs out in front of a stranger is an interesting prospect. As a photographer, women get their boobs out for me without a moment's thought. Being plus sized and body positive, I think women feel comfortable around me. However, I will be the first to admit that I wasn't thrilled at the prospect of being topless in front of someone else.

And now here I am sharing photos of me in my bra on the internet..... well.

The lovely staff at Pretty Woman put me so at ease that I just ended up with my boobs out and not a second though. My Auntie and Nanny also got measured the same day, and my Mum had been the week before. A proper girly day out haha! The staff really made you feel comfortable with them and when it came to the actual bras I was so impressed.

I've been wearing a 42C for years. The last bra fitting I had the store had no bras in in my back size, and told me I was a B cup and to wear a C because no one makes a 42B. Well, Pretty Woman got me sorted! It turns out I'm a 42E. I was wearing a bra 3 cup sizes too small! Cup sizes look different on every back size is the thing. An E cup might look enormous on someone with a 30 back, but on me they look relatively small. I have a literal hand full and nothing more. I'd been squashing my poor boobs into the wrong size for a very long time.

The Anushka plunge bra, I love the bright colours!

I knew about the 'swoop and scoop' and how it works for migrated breast tissue thanks to Caroline of Curvy Wordy, you can read her bra fitting guide here. Essentially, because we aren't wearing the right bra size, your boobs try to escape, the swoop and scoop forces the breast tissue back where it is supposed to be, filling out the cups properly. If I don't do this, the E cup looks huge on me. Once I've done it, it fits wonderfully.

Pretty Woman actually stocked a variety of bras in my size which is awesome. They stock a huge range of sizes because they believe that if they don't stock the bra size, how can they fit it properly? Love them for that! I tried on several different bras and snagged some lush Elomi bras. I'm now all about ogling different brands online as I know their bras will actually fit me!

If you haven't been measured in a little while, please do go and get measured by a store that stocks your sizes if at all possible. I highly recommend Pretty Woman if you are at all local to me!

Who are your favourite lingerie brands? I need to know all of the brands now!

Much love,
Kitty xxxxx

Thursday, 21 April 2016

A Morris-Wood Wedding : Choosing Your Wedding Rings.

Your wedding rings are kind of a big deal. You and your loved one are going to wear them (hopefully) every day for the rest of your lives, so finding the right one for you is so important. Stu and I decided that we wanted to match, and as we have similar tastes in rings that worked out really well for us. We both prefer really chunky silver jewellery, and both wear a lot of rings, so our wedding rings had to fit in with our shared aesthetic.

We both plan to wear our rings every day, so comfy, silver and chunky were our major specifications. I prefer to use independent companies whenever possible, so an email to Celia Rose was the way to go! I went to school with Celia, so for someone we know to make our wedding rings is even more awesome. We're having chunky silver stamped rings, but haven't quite decided what phrase we want on them yet, we really should get that sorted!

Let's be honest, we're probably going to have a True Romance reference on them.

Traditionally a plain gold band is what most people opt for. Gold is hard wearing and considered a 'good' expensive metal. Silver is generally considered a lesser metal for wedding jewellery because it is cheaper. Well, screw that. Opt for the metal you both like the most. Hell, you don't even have to match. If you like rose gold and he likes silver, why not get a similar style to each other but in the different metals? You don't have to match. You can have different colour metals, different colour stones, totally different cuts and styles. It's fun to match, but also to totally contrast too! Don't feel you have to get traditional style wedding rings. Ours reflect our styles rather than being traditionally rounded smooth wedding rings, and I love that they'll be so 'us'.

Couple goals forever.

There are plenty of bad ass companies that will make you the custom rings of your dreams these days. Celia Rose is making ours, and BloodyMary Metal also offer a wedding ring service too. They are a company we both love, but with Celia being local it made more sense to us to have her make our rings. We can make sure the sizes are correct and it's putting money back into the local community, so all good stuff.

You can have any shape you like, any style you like. Stu loves the idea of our stamped rings and his will be chunkier than mine as he doesn't have an engagement ring. But if he wanted something really chunky, something like the Lemmy ring above would be very 'Stu', or something from The Great Frog London. He has that more biker style, so a chunky ring is perfect, but if your fella is more of the hipster or fashion type, a wooden ring would be amazing! Totally different and unique.

How cool are these? They make a great alternative to metals and are perfect for people who are more hippy-ish. And they are £45! You don't have to spend a fortune on your rings. Yes, they are forever, but who cares how much something cost? If you like it, go for it! We've had a few people ask why we aren't having white gold instead of silver because it's more expensive, and honestly, it's because we prefer silver and why spend more than you have to?

I think the important things to consider are the following - Comfort. Most people never take their rings off so you want them to be comfy. Style. You want them to reflect you. Practicality. Consider the details, something with little poking out sections is more liable to catch on clothing so is less wearable for every day.

At the end of the day, your wedding rings are for the two of you and no one else, so go for whatever you like, and don't worry about anyone else!

Much love,
Kitty xxxxx

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

I started a YouTube channel!

I'm not sure if I've really mentioned it before on my blog, but I started a YouTube channel in late 2015! I vlog, film hauls, makeup swatches, all that good sort of stuff. I'm teaching myself video editing and having a lot of fun learning new things. At the moment I'm trying to post twice a week, so pretty consistently!

This is a recent plus size clothing haul with Yours Clothing and New Look goodies, getting ready for our (hopefully happening) honeymoon!

One of my favourite types of YouTube video to watch are monthly favourites, so I just had to film my own! I talk about any favourite bits and pieces I picked up during the last month and any cool adventures I've been on.

I also love a good YouTube tag! It's so fun finding more out about bloggers and Youtubers I admire, that maybe someone might like to learn more about me too. Maybe.

I LOVE watching good YouTube videos. I watch them most mornings while I get ready for work, so I also want to share some of my recent faves with you.

Fat Girl Flow is just everything. She is so inspiring, and so awesome, I just adore her! Seriously, if you don't follow Corissa you really need to sort that out.

I've been watching Helen Anderson for a few years and she's fab. I love her style, and she has the cutest pups. Her fiance is hilarious too. She does talk about dieting/weight loss, so if you find that triggering she might not be the best channel for you. I really like how she films her videos and she's really cute.

I've followed Kiera Rose for years, even when back when she was Scarlet Saint. I actually photographer her a long time ago! She's genuinely adorable and has the cutest ratty babies.

Steph of Nerd About Town is one of my favourite bloggers, a good friend, and a fab YouTuber too! She talks about diversity, being plus size and so much more, please check her out.

Now, who are your favourite YouTubers? I am always looking for more plus size YouTubers to follow in particular!

I also got Snapchat! I add to my story daily, add kittyrambles to see more of my daily life, which is mostly my furbabies, which is no bad thing!

Much love,
Kitty xxxx

Sunday, 17 April 2016

A Modcloth Stylish Surprise

I'm sure any long term reader of my blog will know by now that I have serious lust for Modcloth. They have some of the cutest and most adorable prints and I want all of their dresses. All of them. So when I saw they were doing their occasional 'stylish surprise' packages I just had to grab one! For $20 you can get a dress in your size, but you have absolutely no idea what dress you'll get. I've ummed and aahed a few times about doing it when I've gotten the newsletter emails about it, and finally decided to go for it this time. $20 keeps you under the limit for custom charges and isn't too huge of a risk if you get something you don't like. Plus, in the UK, Modcloth stuff is popular and in demand for selling second hand, so I went for it!

And this is the dress I got! Totally different to anything I would usually opt for because of the brown/tan colour tones, but actually, a really lovely piece. No sleeves, nipped in at the waist, cute pleats in the skirt, very me style. It's chiffon and fully lined, I think I snagged a real bargain here. I did a bit of googling of the print and found the original dress on Modcloth, it was originally $64.99, wow! It's the 'I Rest My Grace Dress in Feathers'.

The print is really fun, all feathers and random swirls in blues, oranges, greens, blacks and more. It almost has a hint of owl to it. I never wear brown, but because it has the touch of black in it I paired it with my trusty pleather jacket from Matalan and my favourite Demonia faux leather boots. I think it's going to be a good one for feeling a bit more dressed up in the summer because of the chiffon fabric.

While I lucked out and got something different and cute for my wardrobe, not everyone got so lucky. Several other plus size bloggers really didn't do so well! Becky of Very Hungry Faterpillar got sent a jumper instead of a dress which is a total no. Mookie hasn't blogged hers yet, but she got 2 and one was essentially a wedding dress, so keep an eye on her blog in case she shares. I would definitely give it another go because $20 isn't a huge risk and I love so much of what Modcloth do.

Have you given their stylish surprises a go? What did you get and what did you think?

Much love,
Kitty xxxx