The Big Thrifty 2014 = awesomeness.

group of volunteers sitting on pile of bagged clothing donations

The Big Thrifty just gets better every year. This year, it moved to a much more spacious location, which was a huge improvement over the previous one. Not only was it bigger, air-conditioned, and so much more comfortable, but it had extra space for movement classes and hanging out. Being able to sit around, talk with my friends, and make new ones made the event so much more fun.

I volunteered to help set up the event the night before, which was a lot of fun although unexpectedly exhausting. I got to meet Deb Malkin, the founder of Re/Dress and co-founder of the Big Fat Flea, and a bunch of other cool people. We volunteers also got first crack at the clothes, and I found a few great pieces–including the sparkly bubble skirt that I wore to the event itself.

One of the new features this year was a photobooth, which means I have some fun pictures from the event to post! A bunch of them feature the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, a modern order of queer nuns. They were so nice and had some truly fabulous costumes.

three women and two drag nuns in rainbow photobooth

Me with Shannon, Emily, and two of the Sisters

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The Big Thrifty is tomorrow!

Hey fellow Bostonian fatshionistas, just a reminder that The Big Thrifty is tomorrow! The Thicky Chicky will have a pop-up shop, and there will be yoga, bellydancing, and burlesque classes, among other awesomeness–see the Facebook page for all the information. Which reminds me that I never got around to posting pictures from the fat-pos day of movement that the Big Thrifty hosted last year, so, here they are! The pictures are from the event’s Facebook page, used with permission.

The day included bellydance, yoga, self-defense, a cupcake break, and a mini-clothing swap. Also, I couldn’t help doing a few cartwheels when I saw the mats. 🙂

doing cartwheels on blue mats

group of women doing bellydance stretches

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Clothing swaps are the BEST.

Last weekend (no, not this past weekend, but the one before) was full of fat, fabulous clothing swapping.

On Saturday night, I hosted an informal swap at my apartment. I set up signs on the couches and chairs for different sizes ranges (12-16, 18-22, and 24+), and people piled clothing onto the furniture as they arrived.

We had a blast trying on clothing, passing things around, and generally enjoying each other’s company. I picked up some truly awesome stuff, and I was happy to see some of my old clothes go to good homes as well.

Then, on Sunday, I went to a more formally organized event: Sip & Swap: The Curvy Edition, hosted by Ty-Juana of Style Your Curves. It was in a bar downtown, which was nice and quiet in the afternoon, and the event had three signature drinks. And I wore an outfit made up mostly of things from the first swap!

Dress: Lane Bryant via swap, hat: Icing via swap, earrings: either So Good or Claire’s, leggings: Wet Seal Plus, shoes: Naot, pearls: So Good, fat necklace: Fancy Lady Industries

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OOTD: Pastel goth and fat thrifting day!

A month or two ago, I organized a fat thrifting day through the Boston-Area Fatties Meetup Group, and it was a success! We only ended up going to two stores, but we had a ton of fun browsing together, and we all found some great stuff.

One of my favorite finds was this ridiculous (or ridiculously awesome?) pleated purple top:

First I thought it was a skirt, then a poncho, and then I finally realized it had sleeves.

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Upcoming fat-tastic events in Boston

Do you, too, want to glam it up and connect with other fab Boston-area fatties? Then check out the following upcoming events:

1.) This Saturday, a bunch of us from the Boston Area Fatties Meetup Group will be going thrift-shop-hopping. I’ve never gone thrifting with fellow fats before, and I’m excited!

2.) Also this Saturday there will be a Curvaceous Night Out, a social networking celebrating curves. I probably won’t have the energy to go after hitting up thrift stores all day, but it sounds like fun–and The Thicky Chicky will be one of the vendors.

3.) Next Tuesday there will be Curves and Cocktails, a meet-and-greet for Curvy Boston.

I’m excited by how much fat/fatshion community-building is taking place here in Boston. I never would have imagined it back when my only fat-pos activity was reading Shapely Prose alone in my room (and not even commenting–for some reason, it took me years to feel like I had anything to say on the internet, and I regret missing the opportunity to be a real part of the SP community.). And it’s awesome.

The Thicky Chicky Launch party

Last week, after a year and a half of blogging, I finally attended my first honest-to-goodness glamorous fatshion event: the launch of a new online plus size boutique, The Thicky Chicky.

me wearing leopard coat and hot pink dress

On the way to the launch, and at it!

outfit details: dress: Domino Dollhouse, leggings and heart necklace: Wet Seal, shoes: Naot, sequined cardigan: Kohl’s (a long time ago), tiara: Kmart, giant bow: The Velvet Village, leopard coat: thrifted (for $12, by my mom, who has thrifting superpowers), Hello Kitty bag: present from a friend (I think she got it free with a purchase at Sephora), scarf: made by my mom, gloves: Best Deals U Can Find on Amazon, custom Tutus and Tiny Hats necklace: DiDepux, bangles: Torrid and Deb, bow ring, earrings, and rhinestone bracelet: So Good, flower necklace: eBay

Isabel Lopes, the founder of The Thicky Chicky, emphasized the importance of building women’s confidence in a world that tried to tell us our bodies are wrong. I love that she has such a strong commitment to body positivity, and I love how she illustrated it with the following anecdote about a magazine article she read. It advised women to suck in their stomachs, have good posture, and hold their heads high in order to appear slimmer. She agreed with the advice, but for different reasons: she felt that we should suck in our stomachs in order to support our voices, have good posture to demonstrate confidence, and hold our heads high to show that we bow to no one.

Melissa, me, Isabel, and Jesse

The event included a fashion show of some of TTC’s designs, including this gold sequin dress designed by Izzy herself. It’s in production now and should be available next month:

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Sunday links, 11/17/13

Glamming it up with my friend Jesse at The Thicky Chicky‘s launch party, which I’ll be posting about soon! (source: Hill Zhou Photography)

So, it’s official: I’m switching my weekly links post to Sundays. Here’s what I’ve been reading this week; feel free to share what you’ve been reading or writing in the comments.

-I so want to bring back half of these forgotten early 2000s trends.
-Through Danimezza’s outfit post from a horse race (how amazing is that entire outfit?!), I found Locopa Designs, whose Facebook page is pure fascinator porn.
-Plus size designer Elizabeth Denneau writes a love letter to Betsey Johnson, whom she met at Tucson Fashion Week. I’m glad she had such a positive experience, but that doesn’t change the fact that Betsey Johnson designs only straight size clothes (with the exception of a plus size lingerie/sleepwear line a while back), and I’m not ok with that.
-This handmade 18th century princess costume for a 3 1/2-year old girl is amazing.
-If you’ve been eyeing something at Domino Dollhouse but waiting for sale, they currently have 20% off to celebrate their third birthday.
-Mel rounds up black and gold dresses, Sally rounds up ballgowns, and Naomi rounds up all things velvet.
The mistakes plus size designers often make, and how they could do better.
-Two great responses to Lululemon’s latest asshattery: I’m a size 18 yogi, and Lululemon can kiss my fat ass, and Bodies are NOT a problem (despite some yoga pants’ attempts to make us think otherwise).
-These Miss Universe 2013 costumes may have been posted to make fun of them, but I think they’re amazing.
-Leah talks about sizism within the plus-size fashion world.

Fat Acceptance
Two posts about the community day at Plus London 2013.
I’ve been eating bacon and Doritos all day, and that doesn’t make me “bad.”
Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign is helping bullies.
Today in accessing healthcare while fat…
Public health missteps.
-Melbourne fatties, check out the Va Va Boombah Fat Burlesque performer showcase!

Climate and Sustainability
“I find my reassurance that we’re going to win from the steel-strong piece in my heart that is awake and wanting to live quietly among good people, growing things, and wildness. That is my revolution.”
-Tree porn: Singapore’s urban greenery and a Fibonacci-inspired treehouse.
Decolonizing minds and lands: how we stand with indigenous nations.
In the wake of Haiyan, we must divest from fossil fuels.

Jobs and the Economy
-Two NYTimes articles that show the human cost of the economic crisis: Young and educated in Europe, but desperate for jobs and Caught in a revolving door of unemployment. (And yes, they both made me cry.)
A great interview with Sarah Kendzior on unpaid internships, the prestige economy, and the importance of empathy.
-This story about how Sweden increased gender equality by offering men use-it-or-lose-it paternity leave is fascinating, and it’s an important reminder of how much economics can affect behavior–and why we can’t separate economic and social justice.
-The 40-year slump, a great historical economic analysis from the American Prospect (which, ironically enough, pays its interns below minimum wage).
Why I make terrible decisions, or, poverty thoughts.
-On a similar note, these two responses to a post judging poor people for occasionally having nice possessions is important: “Every time someone yelled at us because poor people shouldn’t have nice things, we all died a little inside, and I clutched my horses even harder.  I needed something bright and beautiful in the world, to make up for the roaches in the walls and the mold growing on the butter.”
Occupy Wall Street activists buy $15 million of Americans’ personal debt.

Everything Else
A love letter to the ‘hood.
The racism in healthy food: why we need to stop telling others what to eat.
-On a related note, Kit writes about how healthy lifestyle advice can cause so much stress and anxiety that it becomes counterproductive.
New study shows that individuals with autism don’t lack empathy – if anything, they empathize too much. This isn’t actually anything new–I’ve heard as much from people with autism and Asperger’s for a long time–but it’s always good to get the word out.
What Joss Whedon gets wrong about the word “feminist.”
There’s an adorable Tumblr devoted to queer men of color in love.
-Aoife analyzes what’s wrong with the saying, “Every time you spend money you cast a vote for the kind of society you want.”
-I love Lily Allen’s music, and was disappointed to hear about her latest racist bullshit. These three posts explain exactly what’s wrong with it.

Fat clothing swap, and new Boston fatties Facebook group!

Last weekend, my friends Elizabeth and Nicole held an amazing fat clothing swap. There must have been at least twenty people, and a fabulous variety of clothes. Just like at the Big Thrifty, there was a strong sense of community and encouragement. Everyone passed around dresses that didn’t fit them, hoping they’d work for someone else.

And everyone came away with some really, really cool stuff. This vintage dress–with a tag that says “Whirlaway Frocks!”–was my favorite find:

So wonderfully granny-chic.

There were also delicious snacks, including some incredible homemade donuts. And it was just such a wonderfully body-positive environment. Most of us were walking around in our bras for ease of clothing-trying-on, and it was wonderful to be surrounded by so many unapologetic fat bodies of all shapes and sizes.

Here’s a picture of a few of the attendees. Unfortunately, the lighting wasn’t great and my camera was not behaving, so it came out blurry, but you can still see how happy we were:

In the car on our way there, my friend Eve was talking about the Boston Fatties Meetup group that she used to run, and how she no longer had the money to pay the fees or the energy to organize events. Erica suggested starting a Facebook group instead, so that there would be no fees and anyone could organize events.

And thus the Boston Area Fatties Meetup Group was born. If you’re a Boston-area, Facebook-using fatty, you’re more than welcome to request admission into the group! So far, there’s talk of a craft day, a shopping trip, and a holiday party. It feels so good to finally have a space to connect with all the rad fatties I’ve met at various events.

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