Topic: Plus Size Fasyon Mudra

No to XL discrimination!

No to XL discrimination! -- Cotton On

Is it just me or does there seem to be a ban on XL-sized clothing among high-street retailers?

I fit a size L dress in Forever 21, but if I want to go up a couple of inches in the bust, I’m directed to the plus size section — where clothes seem to start at XXL (major fabric swimming!)

I went to the Cotton On at Bonifacio High Street and asked for a dress in XL. “We only carry up to size L,” says the sales associate, despite the fact that the tag clearly stated that sizes go up to XL. You could also say the same thing for the Uniqlo at SM Mall of Asia.

And last weekend — horror of horrors! — I wanted to pick up a sweet pair of khaki shorts from former favorite TerraNova, but suddenly no XL ones were to be found. I looked around the store: indeed, there seemed to be an XL sweep, because that size was suddenly gone.

What’s going on? Do the companies that bring in these retailers to the country believe that no Pinay is over US size 10, or that those who are don’t shop? Is it more cost-effective to stock XS-L items and neglect the next size? Do they think it’s a great marketing strategy to separate larger shoppers from the “normal” and give them a smaller selection?

Swimsuits for keeps

Marilyn - Anemone halter

Do you ever get swimsuit anxiety every time summer rolls around? I do — and not just finding suits that fit and flatter, but are stylish and will remain so even next summer!

Plus, every person has their own swimsuit issues: What parts do you want to cover? What do you want to show off? What needs support (cough cough)? All these conspire to make swimsuit shopping majorly stressful!

But maybe these tips can point you in the right direction:

  1. I consider swimsuits a “splurge” item. Spend a bit to get suit that provide good support and won’t go all loose and bacon-y after a few washes.

The Chunky Heel

the chunky heel

Unlike The Funky Chicken, The Chunky Heel is not an embarrassing dance step, but it does share the former’s groovy origins. Chunky-heeled sandals have come and gone in fashion but they had their heyday in the 70s and early 80s. A particularly popular style was called “the fisherman sandal“. Why, I have no idea, but any fisherman in these shoes was sure to be stylish!

Chunky heels aren’t confined to sandals, though — they look equally cool as brogues or pumps.

Senso Karalay booties, Christian Louboutin brogues, J. Crew pumps and Madewell fisherman sandals

Whichever style you choose, the chunky heel is such a classic item to have in your closet: that squat, blocky heel introduces such a tomboyish, tough appeal.

Trend alert: Blocky tops

color block tops

Despite it being the so-called Year of No Trends, it’s still possible to detect some mini-trends in the fashion world, and one that I’m particularly loving from the recent cold weather photos are block-sleeved jackets.

Christopher Kane, as worn by Elizabeth Olsen; Helmut Lang; and Derek Lam

But it’s summer, you say! Here’s how it’s done …

Valentine’s Day: Dark romance

Dark Romance

It seems like it’s always the cutesy side of romance that gets highlighted on Valentine’s Day — all that pink, all those flowers and hearts, all those stuffed toys. Not that there’s anything wrong with evoking high school fair kissing booths and all that attendant kilig, but sometimes you yearn for something … different. This Valentine’s Day, why not take a cue from the other side of romance: dark, twisted and Gothic.

It’s high time for goth to make a comeback, too. Although 2013 is called “the year of no trends“, the F/W13 collections in New York show a definite return to the dark side. Check out Nicole Miller, Herve Leger and the old-school, Theysken-esque Katarina Grey.

L-R: Nicole Miller, Herve Leger and Katarina Grey. Pictures from Chictopia

(And now for something even darker …)

An emerald green 2013

Color of 2013

Happy new year, lovelies! Let’s talk about color.

After 2012’s tangerine dream, Pantone has decided that the color of 2013 is emerald green. I think it’s a lovely choice. Tangerine is bright and poppy but too much is overwhelming; whereas emerald is lush and soothing and infinitely layer-able — or works just as well as a little highlight or accent.

Green - Color of 2013

You can easily incorporate emerald into your wardrobe by the use of attention-grabbing prints or breaking it up into solid pieces paired with neutrals. (Check out Zalora for some great finds). You could also carry a statement clutch or even a notebook in the color of the year.

(Read on for some emerald inspiration.)

Shop smart for the holidays

Human Nature gift packs

I have a confession to make: I’m not a Divisoria fan.

This is blasphemy for a Thrifty Mom to say. Everyone loves Divi! The deals! The crazy buys! The savings! I know. For three Christmas seasons I did my gift shopping there. We would go last week of November/ first week of December. It was brutal. You need to have the art of split-second decision-making down, because there’s no time to browse. (Once we were with a notoriously slow-shopper friend who wanted to go back for a skirt she’d seen that morning, which meant we had to go against the flow of the crowd and find that tiny stall amidst the crazy. It almost came to fisticuffs.) The crowds are insane and you are shunted along whether you want to or not. It’s filthy and dangerous too: my crossbody bag got slashed once, the umbrella I placed inside protecting my wallet from being stolen. Then there’s the exhaustion of hauling tons of stuff home in those plastic-coated banig bags. I don’t miss walking to the highway to hail a Pasay bus laden with two of these behemoths.

I get it though. Craziness is part of Divi’s charm and for other people, the whole Amazing Race-ness is what makes it so attractive. Not me. These days I’m all about online shopping. No dealing with crowds, infinite time to browse, hell, I don’t even have to get up from a chair.

So if you’re planning to shop online for your gift list, here are some websites to hit up:

Human Nature

Human Nature Christmas gift sets

Here’s why you should get Human Nature’s awesome products; but if you’re still not convinced, their Christmas gift sets should change your mind. Ranging from P99 to P729 and complete with sustainable packaging, ribbon and tag, they’ve got stuff that’ll cover your gaggle of inaanaks, officemates, kikay friends and impossible-to-shop-for brothers. You can also check out their “Gifts of Goodness” offerings — quirky, fun things like notebooks, bamboo bowties, dolls and drinks made by social enterprises, which means they benefit disadvantaged communities. Cool and socially conscious!

Check out other awesome gift ideas!

Trendcasting: 2013

2012 is winding down — finally! — so I thought it’d be fun to look around and check out the styles and trends that are going to be big in 2013. These are already making the waves abroad, so I’m sure we’ll start seeing these trickling down to a bazaar near you when the holiday shopping season starts. Keep your eyes peeled for:

Kindergarten prints

Kindergarten Prints
If 2011 was the year of the floral and ikat/tribal was all the rage for 2012, dainty childlike prints are going to rule in 2013. Cute, uniformly sized and deployed in neat rows, look for animal silhouettes (like this Shopbop “Hare” cardigan) or retro patterns, as Lena Dunham demonstrates in the cover of i-D magazine.

More fearless fashion forecasts after the cut!

The subtle art of kiddie party dressing (Momstyle)

Tunic and slim pants from

Come on moms. Come clean: dressing for kiddie parties stresses you out. More so when it’s your kid sitting behind the cartoon-themed birthday cake.

Whether we admit it or not, kiddie parties tend to become unconscious evaluations of mommy style. No one wants to be that woman who lost it all once she gestated; but no one wants to be the overdressed, made-up dragon lady who doesn’t look like she’s ever changed a diaper in her life either.

The key is balance: you want to be stylish but also comfortable — you’ll be chasing after kids, greeting guests, herding parlor games contestants and bugging the caterers after all. Ventilation at kiddie parties is not always optimal, so you’ll want something presko, cool and easy to move in too. I’ve got a couple of simple equations for you:

Tunic and slim pants from

More about this in the article.

The oversize button-down

The oversize button-down by Katrina Ramos Atienza

These days, when I’m too lazy or completely blocked to think of something to wear, I automatically reach for one of my oversized men’s button downs. I have a couple from my dad, and because of my wheedling, my husband caved and unearthed his Ye Olde Grunge era plaid flannels (which he did actually wear, briefly, when he was in a band!)

Oversize button-downs don’t have to look grungy and lazy, though. They can be businesslike and even polished. Mixed with the right accessories and unexpected items, the man’s polo can be chic. Like so:

Leandra Medine

More fun ways to wear a man’s shirt.