When I’m in the mood to keep things casual, I love a cheeky graphic tee! So, when Addition Elle hooked me up with this What The F* T-shirt, I knew I’d make good use of it!
The “F” in What The F* of course, stands for Fashion (yes, fashion, you potty mouthed fiends… just kidding I love you), but the ability to interpret that F* in any way you want is basically the whole point!
Paired with my fave distressed jeans, a thick gold chain and my Fenty Puma slides, this What The Fashion tee says it all.
Although I would love to see more size diversity in Addition Elle campaigns, I do love their concept of Fashion Democracy, and I agree with them, and this tee on the fact that fashion is something that is totally up for interpretation!
T-shirt, Addition Elle – here
Jeans, Penningtons – similar
Shoes, Foot Locker – here
When I look back upon my younger days, my angsty, early teenage years play in my head like old yearbook slideshow on a school projector screen. Images of dark lipstick, sticky eye makeup, and blonde hair with dark roots flip to a grungy 90s soundtrack of alternative rock, and I can’t help but feel nostalgic.
I’m not gonna lie, I don’t think I could pull off most of my nineties looks anymore even if I wanted to… Let’s just say, my days of greasy hair and beaten up skater shoes are behind me, but I have been finding myself drawing a lot of inspiration from the grunge trend that is in full force this fall!
Dark roots for example… Um, yeah— got that covered. Peeling nail polish, check! If there’s one thing about 90s style that I love, it’s how low maintenance you can be and still get away with looking trendy! Also, eyegloss is now a thing. That’s right! I no longer need to fight with my mom or get turned down by a boy (story of my 90s life) to get that trademark just-broken-up-with, been-crying-all-day look! If only I had known that I had to do was slap some gloss on my eyes, and finish up with a deep burgundy lip to look perfectly, gorgeously, existential.
I wore a lot of men’s clothes back then (mostly because I couldn’t fit into a lot of the women’s stuff that I liked), so my grandfather’s old Burberry trench and scarf (which incidentally, have lived through the 90s just like me) are a definite homage to that. Besides, they look freaking gorge over this stunning cutout dress from SmartGlamour!
Its silhouette is reminiscent of the 90s slip dresses that I never wore because they showed too much belly, and the cutouts are a shoutout to the bare midriff that never had the courage to show off when every girl and her BFF were rocking crop tops!
As much as a pair of Doc Martens would have worked with this outfit, I didn’t wanna go full grunge, so I slipped on a pretty pair of lace up flats to complete my 90s inspired look!
It makes me feel super old, but I love that the iconic style I grew up with is cool again. I also love how it’s been stripped down to its dirty, dingy core, and has come back minus the butterfly clips (not gonna pretend I’m not relieved). So give me all the 90s Gwen Stefani, Alanis Morrissette and Courtney Love vibes, because I think it’s about time that teenage me got a style do over!!!
Dress, SmartGlamour – here (use discount code CynthiaSG for 10% off any SmartGlamour purchase, plus free shipping)
Trench, scarf – vintage Burberry
Shoes, Aldo – similar
I’ve never had to worry about being accused of stealing because I lingered in a convenience store. I’ve never worried about finding an affordable place to live in the neighbourhood of my choosing, surrounded by folks who look like me. I’ve always been able to flag down a cab when I needed one, and I’ve never had to think twice about walking down the street with a hoodie on.
I’m white — and if anyone here thinks that this has nothing to do with that, then please, carefully take note and be open to feeling uncomfortable in your whiteness (should that be the case), or kindly excuse yourselves from this space.
Everyday I look through my newsfeed and I’m appalled. I’m appalled not only by the heinous, racially driven crimes being committed by civilians, but by those whose purpose it is to serve and protect. I’m also appalled by my fellow Caucasians’ shameful ignorance when denying their white privilege — taking offence when someone states that black lives matter, as if somehow this means that theirs don’t.
I have black friends. We’ve all heard that line — but I do, really, and it never made me think that deeply about racism. In fact, even having a black husband didn’t really open my eyes like one might imagine it would. I’m telling you this even though it makes me feel ashamed and embarrassed by my own personal ignorance.
I only realized it in the past few years — how easy my life had been. Sure, growing up fat came with its own set of difficulties, and I’ve felt sorry for myself on many occasions, but it’s nothing compared to the hurdles faced by those who are growing up black.
My epiphany came when I had my youngest son. See, I have four children, two of whom are white, two of whom are mixed. My 12 year-old daughter is 1/4 black, and although she is incredibly proud of her heritage, and does not hesitate to proclaim her blackness — with her pale skin, dirty blonde, wavy hair, and light blue eyes, she is not visibly black. My four-year-old son, however, is.
Before him, I never had any fears sending my white children off to their white school, in our white neighbourhood. I never had to go shop in that tiny, dusty “black products” section of Walmart to find something to untangle their natural hair. I never had to worry that, because of their skin colour, someone might try and hurt one of my babies.
I am speaking from underneath the veil of white privilege, this is without question, and my experiences will never be the same as those of a black mother, but I am terrified to even imagine the ache of seeing my child face discrimination, struggle to overcome prejudice, or the heartbreak I would feel to lose him because he was walking home from the store, while black.
Recently, I discussed exactly this, with good friend, and blogging beauty, Ramona, of Tall Tales by Ramona O. In fact, we talked about a whole lot of things concerning white privilege, racism, and unity. We decided that since we’d be meeting up in New York City last weekend, that we’d use our time there to put together a collab – something meaningful, about more than just fashion and plus size style.
As I rolled into New York, I turned on the news in my hotel room only to hear of the horrible Charleston Massacre the day before. It was a huge reminder of all my discussions with Ramona, and of how much we need change.
As a woman who was born with, as the brilliant activist and writer, Pia Schiavo-Campo states in her article for Ravishly, “the kind of unearned privilege that keeps you from being harassed or gunned down by police officers” — my role in fighting racism is important, and regardless of your skin tone, so is yours!!!
Show how you believe that Black Lives Matter! Silence is consent, so be vocal, get in people’s faces, and don’t stand for any racism, no matter how “innocent” it may seem. Get educated on black culture and racism if you’re not, and educate others if you are.
Be aware of your own attitudes, and if you’re white, don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone to show your support for unity — because I am willing to bet… there is no comfort zone for black Americans who are watching their brothers, sisters, sons & daughters, families, friends, and community members being racially profiled, discriminated against, beaten and shot down because they are “the wrong colour.”
And here are some great pieces to help you learn more on white privilege and racism:
5 Ways to Unpack White Privilege: The Tess Holliday Incident by Pia Schiavo-Campo
And you can also check out all of Pia’s blogging amazingness on MixedFatChick.com.
Mesh crop top, Penningtons – here
Lace bralette (under), Addition Elle – here
Skirt, Forever 21+ – old, similar
Shoes, Jessica Simpson from Addition Elle – old, love these