It is KCFW time again

It’s that time of the fall again, and Kansas City Fashion Week is just around the corner. I thought I would look back at my favorites from the fall/winter shows (from March), as we anticipate the next season of shows, from Sept. 23-29, 2018.

I attended my first KCFW back in fall 2013 (spring/summer collections), and I’ve gone nearly every season since. Each and every season the event grows and surprises me in the very best way. There are always some of my favorite designers that pop up, but more and more new-to-KCFW designers have been flooding the runways with beautiful clothes and jewelry.

The runway shows will be back at Union Station this fall, my favorite spot for them. I prefer the elevated catwalk used at Union Station (to the European-style runway featured below) to really get the best view of the designs. I might also just be partial because that was the first place I saw a show, and the first way I saw a show.

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My friend Ashley and I at KCFW, fall 2013. (Cameras on our phones have gotten much better since 2013.)

Me, Ashley, and Caitlin at KCFW Spring 2018

Lucia’s Sarto by Natalia Meyer

Lucia’s Sarto by Natalia Meyer is always one of my favorite collections, and I try to always make sure I’m there the night it shows! The structure, the designs, the construction! I just melt each and every time. This season was no different. Floral dresses followed up by some beautiful and original wedding dresses. I absolutely loved it all.

Ethel and Dean

Ethel and Dean always shows some awesome fashion-forward kids’ clothes, with a fairy-tale theme. I love watching the kids walk the runway, it just makes me happy. They are also some of the most talented models out there.

My Heirloom Bridal Design

I love the unique take on bridal looks My Heirloom presented on the runway. Jumpsuits. Ivory and black. Most of these are not things that scream WEDDING, but are all definitely wedding appropriate. Such an interesting way to mix things up.

TR Brown

I loved this collection from TR Brown, who was a designer I had never seen before. The way the outfits were put together and the collection flowed down the runway, I was hooked. There were so many pieces I would wear straight off the runway, and this collection included my favorite look of the night.

 

This was my favorite outfit of the night! I would wear each and every piece, head to toe!

 

Sara Kahrs

Sara Kahrs showed some amazing retro pieces for both men and women, these are a few of my favorites, but the whole collection was gorgeous and cohesive.

I loved how the fabrics, colors, and textures were carried throughout the collection.

HER by Georgina Herrera

Georgina Herrera showed some gorgeous jewelry, some of which doubled as clothing! She always has bold, show-stopping designs. It is exciting to see what she will send down the runway.

A caped sweater and a fashion show

KC Fashion Week is over and it was a blast.

The week kicked off with a garden party at the Von Noy mansion on Sunday. I finally got to wear my City Chic Fruit Salad dress and I was really excited about it. I’ve been in love with that dress since I purchased it, and it was the perfect non-date venue to break it out again. I had a great time, just hanging out and chatting with friends.

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Me, on the left, with Ashley from Le Stylo Rouge and Cait from SophistCAITed.

I don’t think you can tell, but I gave myself a nice corneal abrasion the morning of the garden party and spent the rest of the week in a bandage contact. It healed up just in time for the runways shows I was attending on Friday and Saturday.

On Friday there were quite a few new designers and a couple I had seen before, but let me tell you, they were all great. Curvy models on the runway, retro pieces, and a ton of beautiful, bright colors.

I opted for an all-black color scheme on Friday with a cape sweater from City Chic, Spanx faux leather leggings, and dv for Target booties.

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With Ashley before the shows

Gabriela International opened the night and I loved all of the bright colors she showed! I couldn’t choose a favorite, so these are three of my favorite looks.

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Next up was Cassandra P with some beautiful bridal wear, and there were so many plus size dresses. It was very exciting to see (and share)! There were figure-hugging dresses, flowy dresses, the third dress is a very soft, gorgeous gray.

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The rest of my Friday night favorites were rounded out by Jane of All, Amanda Casarez, LLC, and Michael Drummond (L to R).

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KCFW spring shows

I only have pictures of my outfit from one of the shows I went to in the spring, and I love to wait until before the next season to post anything about it. Prime promotion time.

I have never been more disgusted when looking at a picture of myself than when looking at these — just a fair warning. I don’t love these pictures. I gained all of my weight back (and then some). I’m so angry about it, so angry at myself and the doctors who suggested I STOP working out. I haven’t been able to get myself back into a routine. I feel like it was a permanent setback and that has been really hard to deal with.

I had a really bad 2016, and the beginning of 2017 wasn’t much better, but I decided to see if I could change it, and so far, so good.

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That is what I wore to the show — pants from H&M, shirt and jacket from Torrid.

My favorite things from the shows were these (some of which you’ve probably already seen on my Instagram, because I loved them so much).

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Everyone pray 2017 keeps moving in the right direction.

 

Well, I need new pants.

You know that feeling when everyone is asking you what you want for Christmas/your birthday/whatever holiday, and you don’t know what to tell them? It’s like, you want to give them SOMETHING as an idea, but all you can think is, “Well, I need new work pants, so a gift card would be good.” That is me this year. I know people tend to hate giving gift cards, they’re so impersonal (isn’t that the thing everyone always says?), but sometimes it is just what someone needs.

I can’t send my grandma/sister/best friend out to buy me new pants without me being there to try them on — especially in this size transition time for me. I have no idea what size I am from store to store, or pant to pant. I currently own and can wear jeans in a 12, a 14, a 16, and an 18 from different places. Okay, the 18s are starting to sag a bit after being worn more than 30 minutes, but still.

I’ve been holding off on buying work pants, because I spend more time in jeans and I was trying to wait until I absolutely had to have some before I purchased, so hopefully they can last me until my goal weight. (I might look baggy and sloppy by then, but I think it’ll be worth it in the long run, yeah?)
I think now is that time. I was standing at the copy machine at some point in November and one of my coworkers said something along the lines of, “whose pants are you wearing, because there is no way those are yours, they’re way too big.” It was really funny, but made me realize it was definitely time to donate those pants and start the search for some new ones. I have a few pair like that, I would wear them, and someone would make a comment about how baggy they were on me, and they’d go in the can’t wear pile.

It definitely feels great to pare down the wardrobe because things are too big – until I run out of things to wear. Then it gets stressful!

It’s that lovely time in the weight loss process where I feel frustrated because nothing fits, but I’m too cheap to go buy something new, and I can’t quite pinpoint my emotions about the whole thing. I’m happy I need smaller pants. I’m sad the new pants aren’t the size I want them to be yet. I’m stressed/irritated I have nothing to wear but jeans most days and have to do laundry more often. It’s a very emotional time for me.

Also, I might be a little crazy.

KCFW part 2?

It’s never too late to post about something, right? Especially when that something happens twice a year, and is about to come around again.

Kansas City Fashion Week rolls around in both the spring (coming up next month, March 16-19) and the fall. I always have a great time attending with my friends and seeing what everyone is wearing and showing for the new seasons.
I figured what better time to bring around this post from fall fashion week than right now as everything is just beginning to gear up for the many different fashion weeks around the world.

I never do anything too daring with my own outfits, as I’m still just getting comfortable with myself and really learning to enjoy clothes, but I try to find some things that show off the things I’ve worked hard on and I am proud of.

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I honestly don’t think I could tell how long it had been since I’d worn a pair of flare jeans before this outfit, but I forgot how flattering they are! Flares are one trend I was very excited to hear about coming back (though, now that I’m thinking about it, I haven’t worn those again since then, either). I felt really good in that outfit — I’m sure the fact the jeans were size 12s has something to do with it. 🙂

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I can’t wait to get dressed up and head out to KCFW again this spring.

Happy, holiday weight

It’s February and I’m still writing about holiday weight? Yeahhhh.
You know how you tend to gain a bit around the holiday season? And you tend to gain a bit when you’re just stupidly happy? Well, when those things happen at the same time, it’s no good on the scale.

It was (is) five pounds, so it’s really not THAT much, but when I look at the scale, it FEELS like 20 pounds. I know if I really buckle down, it’ll come off with no problem — but it’s been hanging around for the last month and after gaining back poundage you’ve lost, don’t you just feel like it is never going to go away again? I do.

I’m back to my normal eating routine, and I’ve seen a slight downward shift in the scale already, so I know my fears are irrational, but they live deep down in my brain in a very irrational place. That same place in my brain that also fears I won’t be able to, at the very least, maintain what I’ve accomplished so far, since I, again, I have to be out of the gym for a while. Luckily, history has proven those fears wrong, so I’ll worry, but won’t give up.

Now that all the pies are long gone, the holiday candy has been given away or eaten, and there aren’t any stuff-your-face-til-you-can’t-breathe meals on the horizon, I’m back to my regularly scheduled calorie counts. Can’t wait to kiss these extra pounds goodbye for Valentine’s Day.

Fashion Week, part 1

Last week and weekend marked the spring/summer shows for Kansas City Fashion Week. I went to a few events, as I have the last few season, and there was some really great stuff offered this time around. The designers showed some great stuff, and it’ll be fun to see similar items in the stores come spring.

I was able to wear some new (and smaller) clothes to the KCFW events, and it felt really good! I continue to lose, slowly but surely, and keep the weight off, so I know these clothes will eventually be too big as well, and I CAN’T WAIT!
I went a little out of my comfort zone with a bodycon dress on Wednesday night, for the Runway on the Rooftop show, at the rooftop pool for Kansas City’s One Light Apartments.
It definitely wasn’t something I would’ve worn, or felt like I could’ve worn, even a year ago. And definitely not in 2013 when I started.

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The KCFW shows have changed quite a bit since I started attending, and definitely for the better. They’ve always been good, but they’re so much better now. And the new twist of the rooftop runway show, with the runway set up in the pool. It added a really fun ambiance that made the night really relaxed and exciting.

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A few of the looks from Zafar Boutique in Kansas City

 

Some of the runway showings from The Garment District Kansas City.

Some of the runway showings from The Garment District Kansas City.

 

Measurements (-16.5)

Have I told you guys how bad I am at this blogging on a consistent basis thing before? Right.
I need to stay healthy, and I’d probably be better at it.

During the past year, I’ve had some crazy health issues, some that are chronic and won’t be going anywhere — ever — but I’d sure love to have managed sometime before the apocalypse, and some that were stupid and only temporary.
I’ve known I had some sort of inflammatory arthritis for a while now, but it has started escalating recently. The treatment, which has previously worked to maintain a manageable level of pain, is no longer enough. My doctor retired and the new one not only wanted to switch the treatment plan, but also the diagnosis. I’ve sought a second (err, third?) opinion, and gotten a different diagnosis still. All of the doctors agree there is something wrong, but none of them agree what is wrong — rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, psoriatic arthritis, something else. Who knows. It is annoying, and frustrating, and exhausting. I try to stay positive, but it gets to me sometimes.

I exercise, partly to lose weight and partly because it is proven to help with the day-to-day pain of all of these conditions. I don’t know which one I have, but I’m trying to do my part to help myself feel better.

I had my gallbladder removed in February. I think I talked about it briefly in a previous post, but after months and months of eating nothing but carbs, it was hard to retrain myself to eat correctly. I’m still not all the way back, but I’m still losing weight (just a little slower than I probably could be). I pushed through the pain and weakness a lot with the gallbladder and kept going to the gym, and even though I was stuffing my face with tons of carbs, I lost quite a bit of weight during the time the doctors were trying to figure out what was wrong, because I didn’t want to eat much.

Hips: 45 inches
Natural waist: 35 inches
Belly: 39 inches
R. Thigh: 25.5 inches
L. Thigh: 25.5 inches
R. Arm: 14.5 inches
L. Arm: 15.5 inches
Bust: 47 inches
Chest: 37.5 inches
Weight: 209 pounds

I haven’t posted measurements since last September, and I have lost 16.5 inches since then! I was amazed when I took those measurements. I didn’t expect to have lost that much, and I love it.

I have a couple recipes in mind to share, so I need to start cooking again.
I moved in April, and I have been just as bad at cooking for myself as I have at posting here.

Have a great Monday!

I’m alive!

Oh, hi.

I saw this BuzzFeed article that really hit home, and sort of inspired me to post, and I’ve clearly sucked at it since before my gallbladder surgery (I had it out in February), so today is as good a day as any, yes?

I was reading through the list of tips those 12 people had, and I was like, YES! Such good advice! Some of the things I’ve learned while I’ve been losing as well, and it felt worthy of sharing. Especially the part about starting slow. I have tried so many times to jump head-first into weight loss programs, and failed every single time. I know it is because I never actually changed my lifestyle, just my plans temporarily.
When I started this time, I knew I needed to introduce one thing at a time. I started with exercise. I got into that routine, got comfortable going to the gym, comfortable with the moves and with moving — then I added changes to my diet. It was frustrating because I didn’t see much difference on the scale for a long time, because I hadn’t changed my eating habits. I saw my body changing from the workouts, but the scale stayed about the same. Once I changed my diet though, I saw the weight come off.

I’m obviously still working, and there are still more changes to my diet I need to make (particularly when it comes to carbs). When my gallbladder went bad in November, I had to completely change my diet, involuntarily. I couldn’t eat much of anything, and didn’t, but what I did eat was pretty much strictly carbs. Prior to that I had done a pretty good job of cutting my carbs down, so now I’m re-addicted and am trying to teach myself how to eat correctly again. Definitely a big setback, but manageable.

The good news is, I lost about 20 pounds while on the “my stomach hurts so bad I think I’m dying” diet, and it has stayed off, even now that I am able to eat again, so, silver linings and all that!

Now that I’m completely healed, I need to get back into the full swing of things. I’ve been back in the gym, but only off and on (between crazy work deadlines and recovery, I have been slacking), I’m okay with things moving slowly, because I know I’ll get there eventually, and when I do, I’ll stay there.

Side note: I bought a plus size 0 swim suit yesterday. That is usually about a size 12. A 12!!!! That’s madness.

Writing Effectively

Something my friend Ashley put together for The Blogger Collective. I helped a bit too. A lot of it is good advice for most things you write, not only blog posts.

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writingeffectively

You’ve got a blog, a theme, and a general idea of what you’d like to do with your little corner of the web. But how are your writing skills? Just because the Internet is a wide open playground (and no one is grading your work), doesn’t mean you shouldn’t follow some writing guidelines + continually look for ways to improve.

You work on your photography + SEO skills, why not work on your writing?

I partnered up with my best pal and fellow English major, Sabrina of giggleCHAMP, to bring you a few tips necessary for writing effectively on the web (first hint: it’s not the same as writing for print).

Think about flow + structure.

When browsing the web, people tend to skim more than actually read. Those are the hard facts, folks. So that huge block of single-spaced text you just wrote, pouring your heart out about…

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