I know I’ve already shared a lot of photos from the “Beach Body Ready” collaboration with cutie Megan from Vent Threads and the amazing photographer Ciara, but I just wanted to say a short bit about what a great day it was (and to have an excuse to share a bunch of photos again). Megan approached me a few weeks ago, asking if I would join in as she’d seen my posts about body positivity, and I was so excited to say yes. OBVIOUSLY. I was even more excited to hear that two of our friends, Helen and Colette would be joining us.
The location was perfect for the shoot – an empty Victorian pool in Templemore, Belfast. I felt like a real life model, and I remembered all the lessons Tyra Banks taught me (I’ve recently binge-watched about 12 seasons of America’s Next Top Model, so if anything I’m over-qualified). Also, there’s a lot to be said for standing in your room and taking photos of yourself in your knickers and how empowering it is, but it’s nothing compared to doing it with a group of fun, intelligent and positive friends. I love playing with my lingerie in my room and doing silly poses in front of my iPhone on selfie mode, but there’s just something about being with a group of like-minded women that really puts you in a good mood for the rest of the day! Surrounding yourself with positivity really does help you feel more positive about yourself.
Anyway, here are a load of photos that I love looking at. There is a mixture of Megan’s, Ciara’s and my photos (mine are the rubbish quality iPhone shots!) Maybe you’ll love looking at them too and feel confident enough to rock your own beach body!
As some of you may already know from my Facebook and Instagram, I have been chosen by Leyah Shanks to be an official ambassador for the Body Confidence Revolution. There are so many reasons why this is an exciting development for me, one being that Leyah has been a personal role model for me for quite a while now. She was also one of the major inspirations for starting this blog. A few months ago she posted a photo of herself wearing the Lottie set from Cleo by Panache, and I suddenly thought “hey! I could do that!” I took a couple of photos of myself in some of my bras, thought I looked pretty good, sent one to a friend who agreed, and my mind was made up!
Look at us being twins! (Leyah – we both have such good taste in lingere, I think we need to do a matching lingerie shoot some time!)
I try to make my feelings on body positivity very clear. For one, I’ve decided to share photos of myself and my body, a body which many others would deem unattractive according to the unrealistic beauty ideals which are drilled into us from all angles everyday. I have addressed it more blatantly in my older post Am I still fat? (let me be clear here: I do not mean “fat” to be anything other than a descriptor, but unfortunately we are supposed to think of it as a negative attribute and that if we are fat, we are worth less). While it’s always been implied on my blog and Instagram, I didn’t think I was doing enough and thought I needed to be more vocal about it. I posted a clear photo of my belly, where the after effects of weight loss are most evident. Although I have generally not tried to hide much about my body, some of the photos I’ve posted may have been too thought out, and I’ve angled myself in certain ways until I’m completely happy with how I look. This didn’t seem honest enough. If I’m describing myself as a “body positivity enthusiast” I need to do more than just saying “all bodies are good bodies”. Of course, that message is true and something I’ve believed in for a long time, but I felt like I needed to give something back to the community which helped me so much, and hopefully in turn inspire others to find the courage to love themselves too.
In that weird way that life seems to go sometimes, an opportunity slapped me right in the face when Leyah posted about looking for ambassadors. It just struck me as the absolutely, perfectly right thing at the right time. I applied and didn’t really think much else of it, but was of course delighted when Leyah got back to me saying I’d been chosen as an ambassador. Clearly she could see something in me, some inspiring little light that could do some good in the world. When one of your own personal role models can see something similar to what you see in them, it feels freaking fantastic! Also, seeing the flipping AMAZING people I’ve been chosen to join just blows my mind. For real, when I saw the other beautiful ambassadors Leyah had chosen, I got a little emotional. Check them out here.
What it all comes down to is this: I am beautiful, no matter what bra size, dress size, weight, sexuality. Whether I have long hair or short. If I’m feeling low, and anxious and sad, or if I’m confident and happy and dancing in my unda-pants, I’m beautiful. The body love journey is not an easy journey to embark upon. There are set backs, and hurdles, and millions of people trying to tell you you’re wrong. But honestly? Fuck them. You are the most important person in your life, and if I can inspire just ONE more person to realise that about themselves, I’ll be happy.
Joining the lingerie blogging world has opened my eyes up to so many different brands and styles of lingerie. Something I’ve seen a lot of for the smaller bust on the high street is the erotic and bondage style of lingerie which has slowly been gaining popularity, especially after Fifty Shades of Grey (not my thing). Because the majority of lingerie available on the high street is only available in the A-D cup category, I never thought this trend would be possible to find in the fuller bust market. But then, I stumbled upon Curvy Kate’s erotic collection, Scantilly. Oh Scantilly, be still my beating heart!
The Scantilly range offers DD-HH women the chance to express their cheekier, racier and more sensual side, while still getting that great support Curvy Kate is famous for. Currently, there are four styles on offer with different options within those. I have three incomplete sets from the line, but I fully intend on adding to my Scantilly collection.
Peek-A-Boo is MY NEW FAVOURITE THING EVER. The sheer cups and deliciously soft satin wrap around the lower half of the cup, paired with a sneaky little keyhole cut out just make me feel like a queen. It’s a style I could only have dreamed of wearing. I have the full crimson set and the bra and suspender belt from the black set. The full briefs sold out in my size but if I ever come across them I will definitely snap them up. The Peek-A-Boo set also comes with a bare back brief, and the only reason I wouldn’t go for this style is that I always have a cold bum and lower back, for some reason, so I generally like to keep it covered as much as possible! I am so in love with this set. The fit is completely perfect, and although it looks like a complicated cut, the comfort is not compromised. I will buy this set in every colour that ever comes out (like the green I showed you in my Moda post in February).
All Wrapped Up
This padded plunge comes with a soft, sheer tie which attaches to the top of the centre wires and can be removed for an everyday look. This is another exciting style for me, as it was something I only thought existed for the smaller bust. The tie can be used in lots of different ways, for example just tied in a simple bow around the neck, or criss-crossed between the straps for a more interesting and sultry look.
The Surrender bra and basque comes with delicate feather embroidery and cute little straps which sit at the top of your bust, drawing the eye to your fabulous cleavage. The basque is high on my wishlist. And to be honest, so is the bra…
This racy, padded half-cup creates such crazy cleavage, and the cut-outs on the briefs match the edgy look. This is the only style I’m unsure of trying, as I never get on well with half cups. But I do admire it from afar, and am looking forward to seeing the new colour in Autumn.
I’m so excited to see where Curvy Kate go with this range, and I’m excited to continue to add to my own Scantilly collection!