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  • Loving Vintage With...Kate London-James

    I am definitely not complaining, but I have been swamped recently with pop up shops and lookbook shoots, denying y'all of this really great interview I did with the incredible Kate London-James a while back.  An (almost!) 25 year old recruitment coordinator from Barry Island, Wales, she is one of my all-time favourite bloggers, one of the sweetest women ever and a huge inspiration to me.  I will never get sick of looking at pictures of her and it is a dream of mine to hang out with her and her partner in the flesh. 
    Where do you like to shop for vintage? 
    You know what, where I live, vintage shops are very few and far between and the few there really do not cater to a plus size vintage lover, which is such a shame. So I tend to stick to eBay for the majority of my vintage thrifting! I am really new to the plus size vintage scene, but I definitely have the bug already. It is incredible the things you can find if you spend the time scrolling through endless pages haha. I do think the key to making incredible finds is patience! However, my parents live 3 hours away from me and there is a lovely little vintage shop in their town that is incredible for accessories (sadly, they don’t really carry clothing for the more rotund vintage lover!).
    What makes you pick out a piece and want to buy it?
    I do like to think that I don’t have a ‘specific image’ or style so for me, it really just depends on the piece. It has to catch my eye and keep me coming back to it! I have to feel as if, if I leave the shop without it, it will be the biggest mistake of my life haha! But generally, I do love anything with a pleated skirt, anything with faux fur or anything gold.
    What is your fave vintage item in your closet?
    My favorite vintage item is definitely the royal blue dress I found on eBay recently for 99p! It has an amazing pleated skirt, a really cool black etched pattern all over it and it also has the cutest bow detail on one of the shoulders. It isn’t designer or one of a kind (as far as I know haha) but I absolutely adore it, it makes me feel fabulous!
    Do you have a dream piece that you would die if you found?
    If we’re dreaming really big, I’m going to have to go with a Chanel Handbag. They aren’t especially hard to find, but they are big dollar haha! So in the future, I would love to save to afford one. Chanel (although don’t get me started on the fat hating views of Karl Lagerfeld!) are such a classic, elegant and irreplaceable vintage brand in my eyes! If we’re going for something a little more in my immediate price range haha, I would just love to find some more eye catching dresses! I don’t even own 1 pair of trousers, so dresses make up the entirety of my wardrobe and to be able to add a few more vintage finds would be amazing.
    Who are your “vintage” style icons?
    This is such a hard questions because there are so many women that are an incredible inspiration, including you! I have been following your Instagram account and blog for a few years now and you are always so positive and your style is to die for. I think a huge amount of style is how you carry it and there are a quite a few prominent plus size women that I find, frustratingly, seem to feel the need to constantly justify and emotionalize their styles when in fact, why can’t a woman, plus size and straight size, just wear what she likes because it makes her feel fabulous? Rather than wearing it to make a statement! This is part of why I love your blog and Instagram so much because there is none of that, just heaps of positivity and incredible vintage style! I also adore Beth Ditto, although she isn’t consistently in vintage, she makes bold fashion choices and wears whatever she wants, because she wants to! Through the power of Instagram I have had a few brief chats with Beth on various occasions and she is just as awesome as you would imagine. 
    If you could bring any trend back from the past, what would it be?
    I really love Civil War Button Boots! Sadly, as it stands, they seem to be limited to the ‘Steam Punk’ and ‘Goth’ scene! They are so adorable with the little, block heel and the side button detail – I would die to find a pair in black that I could wear with every day outfits. 
    What vintage look would we NEVER see you wearing?
    This question is super hard as I will pretty much give anything a go and put my own twist on it but I’m really not a massive fan of the neon 80’s look. I know it’s making a comeback this season but with my complexion and hair color, it just looks downright awful! Don’t get me wrong, it can look fabulous on the right girl but it is definitely not for me! Although I adore 99.9% of the other 80’s fashion trends! I love a cheeky fringed leather jacket and a sweet perm!
    Big thanks to Kate for her kind words and insight on her personal style (also super envious of your chats with Beth Ditto!!), and if you haven't already please check out her blog, How Kate Does Fashion. You can also follow her on Instagram and Twitter.  Kate recommended a bunch of great music but since since it's summer and all, I went with her choice of Iggy Azalea's Fancy.  Kate recommended a bunch of great music but since since it's summer and all, I went with her choice of Iggy Azalea's Fancy.  Stay tuned for more vintage chats with inspiring megababes! 
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  • #WomanCrushWednesday - @virgietovar

    Photo via @virgietovar

     

    My pick for #WomanCrushWednesday this week is activist, body image expert, and author Virgie Tovar. She has been one of the driving forces in fat and body activism, giving lectures on self-image and editing the book  HotandHeavyFierceFatGirlsonLifeLoveandFashion. Her new hashtag project #LoseHateNotWeight follows in the footsteps of Tess Munster’s #EffYourBeautyStandards and Honorine Curves’ #HonorMyCurves movements, focusing on loving and respecting your beautiful self.  

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  • #WomanCrushWednesday - @elizabethwest

    Image via @elizabethwest
    An update on what has been going on behind the scenes here at Ursa Major+: a few weeks ago I joined the Fat Girl Food Squad Fashion Team! In addition to creating style content for the site, I am expanding on my weekly #womancrushwednesday posts from the UM+ Instagram account and sharing them on the Fat Girl Food Squad site. I've been doing it for a few weeks now and am really loving publicly supporting creative, kickass women in a way that other babes might discover them as well.
    My #womancrushwednesday this week is Portland-based photographer Elizabeth West. I first came across her work on Tumblr and have since been loving up on her Instagram. Elizabeth’s subject matter is broad, but her ethereal landscapes and beautifully haunting portraits are my favourites; I always find myself in a state of dreamy yearning for West Coast roadtripping when I look at her photographs. You can find her lookbooks here, check them out!
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  • Instagram Catchup

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    Since I've been an unreliable blogger lately, I thought I would catch everyone up on the ugly faces I've been making, cat pictures I've been taking and various other moments from the last little while.

    Follow me on Instagram!!!! @MAJORAMARINA

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    Experimenting with body chains - what do you think, ladies?

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    Ron and I decided to spend a weekend making  a stop-motion short about a cactus.  We spent most of the time doing weird faces at each other instead.

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    Salad jarring for life!

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    I am the luckiest girl in the world.

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    And some outfit posts too!

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  • The Love Yourself Event at Tabula Rasa

    store

    Just before Valentine's Day I collaborated on an event with one of the best boutiques in the east end, Tabula Rasa.  The "Love Yourself Event" featured my jewellery line Hibou and I was there customizing necklaces on the spot while TR was debuting some of the their new must-have spring pieces.  Here are some pics from the night!

    standing

    Here I am in my favourite shirt that I hand-shredded while watching too many episodes of my ultimate guilty pleasure, Star Trek: TNG. What am I looking at? Probably the delicious vegan cupcakes that are just in front of me.

    bracelets

    Vintage dead-stock chain and stone bracelets.

    Dancing kids

    My hubs and my bud dancing to (probably) the Supremes.

    tea break

    Tea tea tea tea tea tea tea tea tea!

    delish treats

    farm for andy

    pickyrstone

    One of the customizable Hibou pieces is the Mojo Bag.  Pick a stone that speaks to you, choose your re-purposed leather swatch, we prepare it, and you walk away feeling the positive vibes!

    mojo bags

    Some gorgeous babes wearing Hibou Mojo Bags.

    sellin

    spread

    My newest collection is a mix of semi-precious stones, vintage and new chain and some really special charms.  It is still available for sale in Tabula Rasa and will be online really soon!

    reppin

    Thanks to Tabula Rasa for a great night!!

    xoxo Amarina

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  • It's analog o'clock! Part deux

    Here's the second batch of shots from my Diana Mini, I hope you like them!

    xoxo Amarina

    Subway wall, Montreal

    Evergreen Brickworks, Toronto

    Brickworks

    Ron being a stud at the beach, Toronto

    Brickworks

    Santa Cruz, CA

    Montreal

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  • It's analog o'clock!

    I've been going through a bunch of old Lomo scans from my Diana Mini and getting really excited to have my next couple of rolls developed.  I brought it with me to Cuba and hopefully got some really cool shots of the gorgeous landscape...or I took a bunch of the ground and the inside of my purse. That's the beauty of analog photography right? Right?

    Well I found so many that I thought fondly of so I broke this post up into two, I'll be posting the rest of them tomorrow!

    Enjoy!

    xoxo Amarina

    Rock sculptures at the beach in Toronto.

    Ron in Carmel, California

    Cacti in L.A.

    Ron working mutton chops at our home base.

    Is it surprising that the most delightful squirrels live in one of the most beautiful places ever? (Big Sur, CA)

    Snowin' and bowlin'

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  • OOTD Summertime Velvet

    This weekend Ron and I kicked off our week-long concert marathon by seeing The XX at The Phoenix. They set the tone pre-show by filling up the theater with what seemed like record-breaking amounts of dry ice and gothic lighting. So feeling inspired in the midst of a pastel/floral/neon/sunshine-y summer, I busted out my black velvet skirt and my moon print tank from my first Ursa Major collection.

    As always, piled on the jewellery like there's no tomorrow. The necklace is vintage chain and crystal from the last Hibou Accessories collection that I did and the rest I've accumulated over my years of fashion hoarding.

    Used to be more self-conscious about showing my whole back but now I just say "fuck it, this is my body right now and it's awesome" and wear the shit out of see-through, low cut things. There's not enough time in my life for hate!

    I love these shoes! They were stupid cheap at Value Village and even though they destroy my feet, they are so legit 80's. Outfit details:

    Sunglasses/Glasses (stolen from my true love) - Zenni Optical
    Tank - Ursa Major+
    Skirt - Thrifted
    Shoes - Thrifted
    Jewellery - Hibou Accessories & various
    Nail Polish - OPI Charged up Cherry & Maybelline Porcelain Party

    Hope everyone is enjoying the summer!
    xoxo Amarina

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  • Final Collection Sneak Peek

    For my final collection at school (I'm all done now, woot!) I decided to create a collection of plus-size loungewear that could transition into a babe's everyday closet.  I used an 18 as my sample size and created this mood board which drew from a lot of pagan influences and my personal style icon, Kate Bush.

    It was interesting to see how few and far between the resources are out there for emerging plus-size designers.  My partner created amazing croquis for me that more represented the bodies I want to dress and I ran from there.  Check out a few sneak peek shots from my final presentation at school (I got an A+!) and I'll be doing a proper shoot soon.

    I found this vintage moon fabric at Value Village and immediately knew it would be the base for my little collection.  I couldn't love it more and I've been wearing this cape like crazy!

    So that's it for now, but I am already working on some new pieces that I can't wait to share with you fine people (neon and black mesh, anyone?).

    xoxo Amarina

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  • 2011 - The Lost Posts - Summah time

    I was looking through some old pictures and found some posts that I was too school-crazed to put up.   I'm really looking forward to this upcoming semester, I'll be doing an independent study that finally allows me to focus on making plus-size clothing.  As much as I love my program, the school only has the fit mannequins to support making (and being graded on) clothes that go up to a size twelve.  I can't wait to start my lingerie collection! Ahh! There will be leather.  Oh yes, there will be leather. So here I am in the early days...

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