Shopping mblm by Tess Holliday

(Photo from Penningtons)

(Photo from Penningtons)

Body positivity and fashion, these are tricky things. 

Mostly because sometimes what you’re feeling on the inside doesn’t match up with what you see in the mirror, and that can especially be the case when shopping.

By now we all know of my love for Penningtons and how that store has helped me accept being plus-sized and taught me a thing or two about fashion.

But I had the chance to meet the woman who, and this is a bold but true statement, single-handedly helped me embrace what I look like.  

At the meet & greet!

At the meet & greet!

If you haven’t at least heard the name Tess Holliday then you might live under a rock (no judgement, that’s usually where I’m at) or at least don’t spend a lot of time on social media. I’ve written about her before for sweat magazine buuuut in case you still don’t know her she’s a plus-sized model (in London & LA and well, everywhere) and she also happens to have designed one of my favourite collections at Penningtons – mblm. 

In 2013, plus-size model she started the positive body movement #effyourbeautystandards as a way for people of all shapes to embrace what they look like. Naturally it took off (wooo!) and it’s now used worldwide and contains more than a million posts. 

Pretty impressive isn’t it? 

So it’s safe to say when I heard she was coming to Toronto I jumped at the chance to meet her. I’ve been admiring her summer collection while at work and her fall collection is no different. It’s edgy, something that’s different from the rest of the Penningtons’ clothes, and really it’s sexy.  

See sexy and plus-sized don’t usually go hand-in-hand, which I think is such a drag. Sure, there are very few times I would consider anything I own ‘sexy’ but that doesn’t mean the women larger than size 12 don’t want the chance to feel sexy!

And I think that’s what Tess has taught me the most: you’re allowed to dress sexy if you’re plus-sized. And of course you’re allowed to dress less sexy too but what I’m saying is that size shouldn’t affect what you’re putting on as long as you’re comfortable! 

If you would have told me a year ago to try on a body suit I would have laughed and walked quickly in the other direction.

If you would have told me a year ago that that I would be buying a body suit? Well I would have had some selective words and be reaching for a glass of wine, purely because I would already think you’ve had too much wine to say such a thing. 

And what was my favourite purchase from that shopping trip? Yep, a body suit. 

It may look like nothing special but once I put it on (after convincing from Tess and her hubby Nick and a fashion associate) I was in loooove!

Something about it made me feel great (and a little bit like a Kardashian) and I had to have it. It might even make an appearance as my birthday suit (get it?) but that’s still a bit away. 

The jeans are also from her collection and they were a little snug (I blame the endless sushi I’ve been having) but I do love a good distressed jean.  

I bought a few other pieces while shopping around from different collections including the cutest kimono I have ever tried on and a black dress that has perfect seams and pockets. 

But meeting Tess was the best part, even though I kind of rambled and made little sense…

If you have the chance to check out her line you should it’s being carried by macy’s and Nordstrom as well! But of course Penningtons is a little easier to get to. 

Check out the line here and let me know what you love!


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