January 2016 | Natalie in the City - A Chicago Plus Size Fashion Blog, by Natalie Craig
Natalie in the City - A Chicago Plus Size Fashion Blog, by Natalie Craig

A PLUS SIZE LIFE + STYLE BLOG

January 25, 2016

LEATHER PLEATS

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Skirts that flare out toward the bottom and cinch at the waist usually never work for my figure. However, during a business trip back in November, I found this pleated leather midi skirt at a boutique in St. Petersburg, Florida. I thought I would try it on to entertain myself, but then, I fell in love with sleek look it gave my figure.

However, the showstopper of this outfit isn't my skirt, but this beautiful, burgundy, striped, long sleeve, crop top—try saying that five times fast. This outfit was actually recommended by my boyfriend. Yes, the same one you read about in my last post who did not like my cape dress. While we certainly can't agree on everything, most girls could never rely on their boyfriends for fashion advice, but mine can't wait to chime in—good or bad.

My last touching point of this post is my hair! I have been working to achieve a look that I am not even quite sure what the end result looks like—it changes every month—but I knew I had to find a one-of-a-kind hairstylist here in the city. Anastasia Amico styles at Mane Space in Chicago's Loop. She definitely took my hair from blah to shiny and colorful. Thanks, Anastasia! Check out her Instagram!

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January 16, 2016

MY BOYFRIEND DOESN'T LIKE MY CAPE DRESS

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Men and women, we're from different worlds, OBV. So it's inevitable that my boyfriend will not always agree with my fashion choices, nor is he going to like every trend I become obsessed with. Heck, he won't be the only one!

Before I get into the story behind the title of this post, can I just say that I love the cape trends that have gained footing over the past year? I loved the cape outterwear that was sported last winter, and I find the cape dress extremely elegant and chic. This dress in particular isn't just your average LBD, it has a cape, which makes it all the more special in my eyes.

I threw on this dress with excitement as soon as I got it. Thinking that my boyfriend would praise me for my bold choice, I couldn't wait to show him. Just as soon as I put it on, I could tell by the look on his face—which went from anticipation to confusion in less than a second—that he would not be looking forward to seeing this dress any time soon.

I couldn't wait to wear it. However, the truth is, I let his opinion sway the way I felt about the dress, as today was the first time I had worn it out since I bought it three weeks ago. Although it's not his favorite piece of clothing that I own, he still ventured out with me to take these photos and support my fashion decision.

Not everyone is going to agree with your life or style choices, which is why you have to do and wear what makes you the happiest. So before we left our apartment, I grabbed these Quay sunglasses—which he also said were a "little strange"—I swished my cape and joked with him, "Don't you love superheros?"

P.S. I still love him, and the dress. 

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Photography by: Ghaffar Gbenro

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January 13, 2016

A CURVY WOMAN'S GUIDE TO DRESS SHOPPING

Shopping may largely be considered as retail therapy, but for some women, the idea of hopping from store to store to try on clothes that don’t fit them quite as well as they do the mannequins can be a nightmare. In an article posted on Who What Wear, Miranda Lambert discussed her past hatred for shopping, but what she discovered that all of us should really take note of is that “Beauty, by way of fashion, has to do with confidence, with flattering silhouettes, with patterns, with proper fit for body type, and with an abundance of self-love!”

It may take a while for that to sink in as full-figured ladies try to gracefully put on a pair of denim jeans or even slip on a dress that doesn’t make you look like a potato sack. For those feeling a little insecure about the body hugging fabrics, not every dress out there will fit you like a bodycon. As Lyst describes, there are a countless number of silhouettes for you to choose from, from easy jersey maxis to fairytale gowns. But even knowing that there are a variety of styles out there that will compliment your figure, shopping can still be a little intimidating.

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Honestly, there are no guarantees when you’re shopping for your size, and this applies to all women, curvy or petite. Though the hope is that with the following tips, you’ll feel more comfortable in your own skin and actually enjoy the experience of finding the perfect dress.

The first thing that you’ll need to do is determine your body type. Contrary to what a lot of labels demonstrate, plus size is not a body type. Whether you’re busty or have the apple shape, Refinery29 reveals that there are a variety of dress shapes that will flatter your figure.

Next, don’t be afraid to experiment with prints. Black will always be slimming, but that doesn’t mean you should only stick with a monochromatic wardrobe. It’s all about finding the right silhouette, says model Candice Huffine in an interview with Vogue, and pairing it with solid accessories so your outfit is not lost in a sea of patterns and colors.

Lastly, if the dress doesn’t fit quite right, don’t give up just yet. With simple alterations, such as a raised hemline or cinched waist, or even just a blazer, the dress can easily transform from drab to fab.

So ladies, embrace your figures, and never go shopping without your confidence.

[ affiliate post ]
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January 12, 2016

AMAZON GIFT CARD GIVEAWAY

Please tell me why I have been shopping on Amazon more than I go to the mall / grocery store / PetSmart—yes, even PetSmart. With free, two-day shipping and the new Prime delivery service, Amazon is just all the more convenient for a busy, working girl like me.

I wanted to bring this giveaway to all of my followers because you deserve to treat yourself and score everything on your Amazon wish list! Check out the details below on how you can enter. Good luck!

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January 6, 2016

JOJO RINGS: #KEYSFORCHANGE

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Just like no two keys are the same, neither are we. As a blogger trying to change the way we see beauty and conform to societal beauty ideals, I embrace my differences to inspire other women to do the same. This is why I especially love the mission behind JoJo Rings



JoJo Rings, LLC is a central New York-based company that produces and sells handcrafted, one-of-a-kind rings from 100% recycled keys. Founded with three pillars in mind: sustainability, social good, and individuality, the company goes by the tag line "Keys for Change,” to reflect their commitment to social good by making a contribution to local nonprofits with each sale. 


Because of the company's manufacturing process and use of recycled materials, no two JoJo Rings are identical. JoJo Rings are simply a celebration of individual style. "We believe that you deserve one-of-a-kind jewelry because you, yourself, are one-of-a-kind," Jordan Dudden, the brand's founder, told me in an email. 


When people realize that my unique looking rings are simply keys wrapped around my finger, they can't believe it. Rings have become an accessory that I try to work into my every day look, and I love how I can wear these rings with everything and that no one else in the world has one like mine. 

Honor your uniqueness and order a JoJo Ring for yourself or someone close to you and join the #KeysForChange movement. Also, you can learn all about how Jordan came up with the idea for JoJo Rings in the video at the bottom of this post! 

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January 1, 2016

THE MONOCHROMATIC LOOK

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Happy New Year everyone! I hope you all had a fun and glamorous New Years Eve and are getting this year off to a good start so far! Although I haven't made many resolutions for 2016, I have decided to do things a little differently this year with my day-to-day style and the outfits I post on Natalie in the City. 

As a plus size woman, it's difficult to keep up with the latest trends, all the while finding clothes that actually fit. However, I want to push the boundaries of my outfits as much as possible and make whatever I have in my closet work in ways I never thought it could. Whether that means challenging the norms and rules of what plus size women "can/should" wear or simply challenging myself to dress to the nines every single day—lord be with me—I want to take my style and love for fashion more seriously. 

Beginning with this outfit: The monochromatic look (January 1, 2016)
After a night of ringing in the new year with my boyfriend on a yacht cruise overlooking the Chicago skyline, my best friend wanted to grab brunch the next morning. Considering that I was not only dancing and partying all night in heels and then walking through the city to catch a cab at nearly 2:00 a.m. after our yacht docked, I should have just thrown my hair up in a bun and put some leggings and UGG boots on. However, I decided to muster up the energy—pre-coffee—to put together this cute little ensemble. This sweater dress is so cozy, without being too bulky, and definitely looks great on my figure. I paired the dress with this dark grey cardigan and a pair of knee-high grey boots, topping the look off with a street level tote

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Photography by: Katherine Davis


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