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Monthly Archives: April 2018

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What You Need To Know About Amazon Prime Wardrobe – A Review Of My First Plus Size Order

Amazon Prime Wardrobe

Amazon Prime Wardrobe

I have been talking about Amazon Prime Wardrobe here on the blog since the news first came out this past fall. I knew this could mean something big for plus sizes, especially for those of you who live in areas where plus size clothing is just not that accessible. I know from personal experience that if you have a limited budget for clothing, it can cause a lot of anxiety when you want to try a new brand but have no way to try it on before buying.

So I wanted to make sure I shared my first experience with Amazon Prime Wardrobe so you can see exactly how it works and what I thought of the options available. So this will be part review and part explanation. I will also be sharing more in the future, but most likely those will just be strictly about the clothing and not as much about how it works.

How Prime Wardrobe Works

Prime Wardrobe works pretty simply, but you must have a credit card on file with Amazon to place an order. Unfortunately a debit card or prepaid debit card will not work, it must be an actual bank issued credit card.

First you can either search directly through Prime Wardrobe available items, or you can just look for the Prime Wardrobe badge on items as you shop. You need to add at least three items to your cart that are Prime Wardrobe eligible. And I believe eight items are the limit. There is actually a separate cart that your Prime Wardrobe items go into. So don’t be surprised when they don’t show up in the regular area that you check out in.

Once you have selected your items and checked out, they will be shipped to you. Some items may be shipped separately, but your try on period does not begin until you have all items in your possession. The try on period is seven days. Just be careful not to remove any of the tags. And this is just for try on. They are not meant to be worn.

During the seven day try on period you can decide what you want to keep and what you do not. Though you can absolutely send things back before the seven days is up. Once you decide what you want to keep, you wrap everything back up and put it in the easy seal reusable box it was sent in. Put the provided return label on the box. And then simply drop the box off at your local UPS or UPS Store.

 

What I Ordered

I want to share here what I ordered to try on. In this section I am sharing the pictures from Amazon, and I will share my own pictures a little later.

 

 

 

How Your Package Arrives

Your Prime Wardrobe order doesn’t come in the typical Amazon box or bubble mailer. All items come in a box like this:

Amazon Prime Wardrobe Boxes

Now you want to make sure you open these the way Amazon intended because you will be reusing these boxes and if you don’t open them the right way it could ruin it. There is actually a pull tab that you rip on one side. Then when you open it up you see there is a second sealable closure so the box can be reused for shipping items back.

Inside the box, here is how it is packed:

Packing materials inside the Amazon Prime Wardrobe box

You get the little booklet telling you what to do with the items and how to return anything. And inside is also return labels, so make sure you don’t toss this in the trash. And as you can see there is also plenty of the air packs included to keep items from shifting around too much during the shipping process.

You see that I received two boxes. My order was shipped in two parts. Now I don’t really have a problem with them shipping these items separately, but I do have a problem with what was shipped in the second box. In the second box was my necklace. That is all, just the necklace. The reason I have a problem with that is these are big boxes, and not just big but thicker than the average Amazon box. I really dislike being wasteful like this.

Trying Everything On

I have pictures of everything except for the Jessica Simpson dress, in this case I was sent the wrong item and in the wrong size. Most items I have pictures of it on me, but there is one pair of shoes I did not put on for pictures. If you have been following my All Dress April posts, then you may have already seen some of these pictures.

Amazon Prime Wardrobe Plus size dress

Here I have on the Tiana B dress paired with the Naturalizer Sandals. And here is a closer look at the Sandals:

Naturalizer Sandals from Prime Wardrobe

I did not keep either of these items. The shoes, while extremely comfortable were just a little too loose on me. I ordered them in 9W, and I think I would have needed a medium width in these. If they are still available when I get my next box I may try them in the medium width. The dress fit comfortably, but I felt it just wasn’t the best look for me. If it had been cut a little different I probably would have kept this.

Plus size dress and necklace available through Amazon Prime Wardrobe

Here I am wearing the Lark & Ro dress with the Panacea Necklace. And here is a closer look at the pendant on the necklace:

Panacea pendant necklace available in Amazon Prime Wardrobe

Again, the pictures are just not doing this justice. It is an unbelievably beautiful necklace. And I did end up buying the necklace. The dress I thought looked great on, but the fit just was not good for me. It wasn’t tight or anything, but because of the cut combined with the type of fabric used it didn’t work well with a larger bust. So if I raised my arm the whole dress raised up way too high. I think this would be perfect for someone with a smaller bust than me.

Bella Vita shoes available on Amazon Prime Wardrobe

This is one of the two items I did not take pictures of on me. That is because even though I ordered a 9W, as I did with the other pair, it was extremely tight. The other item was the third dress ordered, but as I said earlier, they sent the wrong dress and wrong size.

Sending Things Back

The process of sending things back is really quite easy and does not cost you anything. You just pack everything back in the box provided. And if you got your items in multiple shipments you can totally put all of your items in one box, assuming they fit. You seal it up using the easy seal strip, simply peel off strip the plastic strip and then press the box lid down. Affix the label, and it is ready to go. You just have to drop it off at UPS. This part was super convenient for me since my mail box is at the UPS store.

Before your try on period ends, and before sending everything back I do recommend you log in and use the checkout. This is simply you letting them know what you are keeping and what you are sending back. If you do not do this you will be charged and then refunded when they receive the items back. But if you use the checkout you are only charged for the items you are keeping and don’t have to worry about waiting for a refund.

Final Thoughts

Before I tried Amazon Prime Wardrobe I thought this had the potential to be great. After trying it, I think it is currently a good service that still has the potential to be great. I think this works better for me than similar services out there right now.

I have tried a couple of clothing boxes where you try on and send back, but they all choose for you and charge $20 styling fees each time. After trying those multiple times I have yet to receive items I actually would purchase from either of the ones I tried. But with Prime Wardrobe you choose what you want to try yourself, and there is no additional fee beyond what you pay for a Prime Membership.

There are definitely areas Amazon could improve on. The plus size selection is slim, especially when it comes to the more affordable options. I have been told they are planning on increasing the selection, not just for plus size but all sizes. I would like to see them have an option for post office drop offs for anyone who may not have a UPS in their town. And I hope they work out a way that would make it possible to use a debit card for the transaction, that way it could be more accessible to everyone. But only time will tell what sort of improvements are actually going to happen with this service.

 

Let me know in the comments if you have tried Amazon Prime Wardrobe yet and what you thought.

 

 

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All Dress April 2018 – Week Three

All Dress April

All Dress April

This month is moving along so fast, I can’t believe it is almost over. Week three of All Dress April is already completed, and we have just a week and a half left.

If you missed previous weeks, don’t forget to check out week one and week two before you leave.

This week is unfortunately a little light on the outfits, as you may already know I missed a couple of days due to life circumstances. And I am unfortunately out of any backup photos.

Day 15

Plus size cold shoulder maxi dress from Torrid on day 15 of All Dress April

This is the Cold Shoulder Jersey Maxi Dress from Torrid. I am wearing it in gray, which I got last year. They no longer have this color, but I have linked to it in the black color they have this year. I also saw it in olive green earlier this, and was a little sad that I missed out. I keep hoping that Torrid will bring that one back.

My jewelry is from Earth Bound Trading Company, and the shoes are from Skechers.

Day 16

 

I missed this day due to illness

Day 17

vintage style lace dress from Kiyonna for day 17 of All Dress April

For day 17 I had on this Luna Lace Dress from Kiyonna. I don’t know why, maybe its the simple elegance of this dress, but I always feel the need to put my hair in some sort of updo when I wear it.

I have it paired with some basic black pumps that I have had forever. An I also had on a pair of Betsey Johnson Cat Ear Sunglasses.

Day 18

Off the shoulder plus size maxi dress from ASOS Curve

Day 18 had me wearing a dress from ASOS Curve, and I think this is my favorite out of the newer dresses that I have purchased. This is the ASOS DESIGN Curve Bardot midi dress in floral print. They call it a midi, but to me it is a little long to consider a midi, I think of it as a maxi. I ordered this dress at the beginning of April, and at that time they had this dress in every size. However, as I am writing this, they seem to only have a couple of sizes left.

I have it paired with some green peep toe wedge heels that I got on Zulily several years ago.

Day 19

Plus size wiggle dress from Unique Vintage for day 18 of All Dress April

The dress I wore on day 19 seems to be the overwhelming social media favorite. This is the Unique Vintage 1960s Style Yellow Floral Long Sleeve Mod Wiggle Dress.  I picked this up on one of Unique Vintage’s $25 sales, and the plus sizes are now sold out. But it does look like they have it in some misses sizes. But if you just like this style, then Unique Vintage has lots of patters in their Mod Wiggle Dress.

I have it paired with a pair of rounded toe heels from Steve Madden. I have actually had these heels almost 20 years. I keep hoping they will come back because they are amazingly comfortable.

Day 20Lace Mod Dress from Simply Be for day 20 of All Dress April

On day 20 I wore this Simply Be Lace Dress With Tipping. If you are following along on any of my social media, then you know this was not my favorite dress on me. I love the dress itself, but think it would look better on a different body type. I want to be clear though, this isn’t me saying there is anything wrong with the dress or my body. Don’t be surprised if there ends up being a blog post on this topic soon.

I have it paired with a pair of Soft Style by Hush Puppies Women’s Gianna Dress Pump. You can’t really see them well, but they are a vintage looking pair of Oxford heels.

Day 21

On day 21 I missed again. I was off gallivanting around a college campus with my niece all day on her first college tour. Too much fast paced walking and climbing stairs for me to comfortably wear a dress. I had plans on wearing one when I got home, but the day went on for a longer than expected and I went to bed immediately.

 

That wraps up week three. Tell me in the comments what your favorite dress from this week was.

 

Lane Bryant

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All Dress April 2018 – Week Two

All Dress April

All Dress April

I can barely believe it, but we are already two weeks into April. And that means its time for another recap. If you missed it, you can check out week one.

Week two was a bit of a whirlwind for me. I had a lot of work to do, but I also had a lot of days where I just wasn’t feeling well. But it looks like the tide is turning. Our weather has finally warmed up a bit with no precipitation. And I have had a few days in a row now that I actually felt well.

But you guys are here to find out about the clothes. As always I will link to anything that is still available, or alternatively if the item is not available but something extremely similar is available I will also link to that instead.

Day 8

Unique Vintage Plus Size 1950s Wine Purple Delores Swing Dress with Sleeves

This is the Unique Vintage Plus Size 1950s Delores Swing Dress with Sleeves in Wine Purple. Now this is no longer available in this color, however this dress is available in many different colors and patterns. It is available in both misses and plus sizes. Make sure that you check the sizing. Just like most vintage lines, their brand runs very small. I am in their largest size a 4X which they say is equal to a 20. That seems accurate, though there is extra room to stretch with the fabric.

I have it paired with some Bandolino peep toe pumps in a similar wine color.

 

Day 9

This is the Power Dress from Society Plus. It comes in five color options. If you are interested in getting this dress, act now. Society Plus is clearancing this style out. If you want more information on the fit check out my previous blog post about this dress.

I have paired with it some Madden Girl Peep Toe Pumps that I have had for a long time.

 

Day 10

This is a maxi length sweater dress that I got from Simply Be back in the fall. It is no longer available. But if you like the look of the dress, but don’t care if it is a sweater dress, then their T-Shirt Maxi Dress should give you a very similar look.

 

Day 11

This is a SWAK Designs maxi that I have had for the longest time. This particular style is no longer available, however the Lois Maxi Dress is very similar. The biggest difference is that the Lois Maxi had 3/4 length sleeves. If you are a maxi dress lover take the time to look around the SWAK website, they really have some great styles for all body types and they are very size inclusive.

 

Day 12

This was my fun outfit for the week. I think everyone needs some clothes that are just fun. Both pieces are from Forever 21. I have on their ETA Stripe Tiered High-Low Skirt (this is available in other colors as well)  and the Ruched Crop Top. The crop top is adjustable so you can show as much or as little skin as you like. And it definitely is one that works for larger busts. If you haven’t looked at Forever 21 in a while, then you should check them out. Their plus size selection has grown a lot and they are starting to include other brands on their site.

 

Day 13

As many of you know I ordered my first Amazon Prime Wardrobe box. And while I don’t want to get into a review here since there is one coming very soon, I did share some of the things I got in this week looks. This is the Lark & Ro Women’s Modern Stretch Cap-Sleeve Fit-and-Flare Dress.

I have it paired with the Panacea Jet Tassel Pendant Necklace that I also got on Prime Wardrobe along with a pair of Jelly Pop heels that I already owned.

 

Day 14

And on the final day of week two I wore a second dress from Prime Wardrobe. This is the Tiana B Women’s Split Sleeve Patchwork Print Dress.

I have paired with it the Naturalizer Women’s Neina Huarache Sandal, also available on Prime Wardrobe.

I will also be adding this and all the other items I got on Prime Wardrobe to my Amazon recommended list to make it easier for everyone to find at any time.

 

 

plus size valentine's day lingerie

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Product Review: Dr. Praeger’s Black Bean Chipotle Pollock Burgers

Choosing the Black Bean Chipotle Pollock Burgers from Dr. Praegers

I was recently sent a coupon for a free item of choice from Dr. Praeger’s new frozen seafood line to be redeemed at my local Krogers. Since I am always looking to try something new and this fits in perfectly with my Pescatarian Diet, I was excited to try something from their line.

Coupons and booklet about Dr. Praegers

I made my way over to one of my local Kroger’s stores to check out what was available. My options from the coupon were Black Bean Chipotle Pollock Burgers, Spinach Potato Pollock Burgers, Fish Taco Bites or Lightly Breaded Fishies. But when I found where the items were placed in the freezer section the Lightly Breaded Fishies were not available at the Kroger I went to.

Dr Praeger's in the freezer section.

I actually have been searching for a good alternative burger choice for a while, but haven’t been able to find something I really enjoyed enough to buy again. So I decided it would be an opportune time to try one of these burger alternative. I ultimately decided to try the Black Bean Chipotle Pollock Burger, but you probably already knew that from the title of this post. They are both gluten-free and made from certifiable sustainable seafood.

Choosing the Black Bean Chipotle Pollock Burgers from Dr. Praegers

Each box contains 4 patties, and they are all individually wrapped. I really liked this because there are times when I don’t want to fix a whole box of something, and then the part that is left over ends up getting frost bite in the freezer before I am ready to make the rest of it.

The directions on the box gives both options for baking or for frying. I decided to prepare mine in the oven. The preparation was really easy this way. It just took 20 minutes to cook, so it was relatively fast too.

As for toppings, neither my husband or I are fans of traditional hamburger toppings. We don’t like mayo, and I can’t have ketchup anymore because of my allergy. And don’t even get me started on my feelings about lettuce. So I decided that since it already has southwest/tex-mex kind of vibe going on with the ingredients I would use toppings that are similar to what they have pictured on the box. I used a fresh guacamole along with some pico de gallo. I just made old bay seasoned fries to serve with it.

my finished Dr. Praeger's burger.

But let’s get down to what everyone really wants to know, what the product taste like. It doesn’t taste like an actual burger, but I didn’t really expect it to. But, I am happy to say that it was pretty good. I think they did a good job of balancing the flavors and textures so you aren’t really overwhelmed by one thing. And this is the first burger alternative that I actually would willing eat a second time. I may even give their other burger option a try.

Tell me in the comments if there is a burger alternative that you really like.

 

 


 

 

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All Dress April 2018 – Week One

All Dress April

All Dress April

Week one of All Dress April has finally come to an end, so it must be time for a recap. These always seem to be some of my most popular posts, so I decided to make a couple of changes this year. Changes that I hope are for the better.

You all know that I live with a few chronic pain conditions, some of which are affected by the weather, especially in the winter and early spring. So in previous years this has left me not posting about one to two days a week. In an effort to not leave these spots open, and to be able to share more items with you, I will be sharing photos previously taken but not posted for one reason or another.

Day 1

Mod print dress from Tiana B on Day 1 of All Dress April

This is a Tiana B. dress in a mod 60’s style print. I really love this style, and this dress is so comfy and great for minimal effort days. I paired it with a pair of wide calf boot’s I got from Zulily’s Journey Collection. I have had both of these pieces for quite some time, so I don’t think either of these items are still currently available, but you can get the same style of dress from Tiana B. as well as dresses in similar prints.

Day 2

Foil Leaf print wiggle dress from Avenue

This was a bad pain day for me, and so this was the first case of using a previously taken photo.

This dress is from the Avenue. It is their Metallic Floral Scuba Dress. It is a recent purchase, but unfortunately it sold out fast. I guess everyone loved it. It is definitely in a bodycon/wiggle style, but like most of the dresses from Avenue it is made to be more forgiving of any extra curves and rolls you may have in the middle. While they no longer have this exact dress, they do still have a similar dress. It is their Scroll Flocked Scuba Dress (limited sizes left in this dress).

The shoes I have paired with it are the Bandolino Women’s Mylah Peep-Toe Pump. These were actually the shoes I wore for my wedding, and I was kind of surprised to even find limited sizes of these still hanging around.

Day 3

Plus size maxi dress bought on Amazon

This is the Roiii Boho Floral Sleeveless Maxi Dress I got for the Hidden Gems of Amazon series I do here on the blog. Many of you loved the way this dress looked, but at the time sizes were selling out. I am happy to say it looks like they are finally restocked now. Sizes go up to a 3XL. For information on the fit and sizing make sure to check out the original post this dress appeared in.

Day 4

Dress from Boohoo Plus and leggings from Simply Be paired with Booties from the Avenue

This is the Plus Megan Tartan Frill Sleeve Smock Dress from Boohoo. I have it paired with black lace leggings. I bought mine at Simply Be a few years ago, but very similar ones are available now on Amazon. The booties are a pair of Cloud Walkers from the Avenue that I got a few years ago.

Day 5

Plus size Vintage inspired dress from Lindy Bop

For day five I went with something more to the roots of All Dress April, meaning something vintage style. This dress is from Lindy Bop. It is their Alanis Swing Dress in Black Polka Dots. (Just a note the link is to the UK site, but you change it to your country of preference. If you are in the USA, you can order from the US site or the UK site. I prefer the UK site because the sizing is easier. Don’t forget to change the currency as well.)

I have it paired with a basic black crinoline. and pair of kitten heels I bought on eBay a long time ago. The shoes are no longer available in the kitten heel size, but you can steel find the pump version from many different sellers on eBay still.

Day 6

Faux wrap dress from IGIGI plus size designer brand worn on day 6 of all dress april

This is the Truda Dress from IGIGI. It is a faux wrap dress. It is no longer available in this pattern, but the style is still available. If you follow me on my Instagram, then you already know that I don’t really care for the way this dress fits me. I love all of my other IGIGI dresses, but this one just doesn’t hang on me right, and I think it would suit a different body type better. It will most likely be going up on my Poshmark listings for sale relatively soon. So if you love this print and are also a size 20, make sure you are following me on there. If you are just joining Poshmark for the first time use my code KARENMSMITH77 and they will give you a $5 shopping credit.

The shoes are from Aerosoles, and I have had them for year. They are super comfortable as most Aerosoles are. But this particular style is not available any more.

Day 7

Trying out Fashion Nova Curve on day 7 of All Dress April

So if you didn’t know, skirts are also acceptable for All Dress April. So that left me able to also participate in my friend Jamie’s (aka retrocutie) style challenge Band Tee Saturday. Graphic tees are also totally acceptable for her challenge. Make sure you check out her blog No Delusions Of Grandeur too.

So since so many people had expressed interest in Fashion Nova over the last couple of months, I wanted to bring you a look from them. So both my skirt and top are from Fashion Nova. I have on the Kiss Me On The Lips Sequin Tee and the Charmer Bandage Skirt in Light Pink. I am sure that a lot of you would like me to go into my thoughts on Fashion Nova right now, but I don’t think I could put everything I need to say here. But don’t worry I promise there will be a blog post coming within the month about Fashion Nova.

The shoes I have on are a pair of velvet sneakers in light pink. The brand is Wanted and the style is called Valance. They are so comfy, and available in other color options.

 

If you didn’t see something like this week make sure to keep checking back, there are still 23 more days to go, and that means 23 more looks. Tell me in the comments below what you like, what you didn’t like. I still have some wiggle room on filling request if there is something you guys want to see this month, so make sure to let me know that as well.

 

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Welcome To April

April events

April events

Like it is every year, April will be a busy month for me. I will, first and foremost, be participating once again this year in All Dress April.

All Dress AprilAnd since you should be seeing this post on the third of April, that means the challenge is already under way. I will, as always, be posting weekly recaps of what I wore here on the blog. But if you would like to keep up with me on the daily, make sure you are following me on my Instagram. Or if you would like to see what everyone who is participating is wearing, make sure to follow the hashtag #AllDressApril. While you are at it, why not join in too.

I am also trying to simultaneously participate in my friend Jaime Moore’s (a.k.a. @retrocutie) Instagram style challenge Band Tee Saturday.

Band Tee Saturday

So don’t be surprised if at least a couple of Saturdays are some skirts mixed with graphic tees. Make sure to check out her Instagram feed. She shares a lot of great things for women and moms on a budget. And check out her blog, No Delusions of Grandeur, when you have a chance.

In addition I will also be returning to the International Steampunk Symposium in Cincinnati, Ohio this year.

Steampunk Symposium 2018

The theme this year is superheroes and villains. That will be taking place on April 27 – 29. So the last few days of All Dress April will be filled with steampunk looks (I also have my local group meeting earlier in the month, so there may be an additional look then). And if you are at the event, please feel free to say hi. Also, the location has changed yet again this year, so make sure you check their website for all of the info. If you do plan on going, you can save 10% off your weekend tickets with code: CADUCEUS

I am also really happy my niece is going to join me this year. I have been, and will be, spending extra time with her to help prep her with her costume and makeup. I love getting to spend some quality time with her. She only has one more year till she is in college, and while she isn’t moving away she will be much busier.

In amidst everything I will be doing for the actual month of April, I am actually already starting work on some things for May. I don’t want to say too much right now, but I am trying to put some things together that I think you all will really enjoy.

Tell me in the comments what you have going on for the month of April?

 

 

 

 

 

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