With These Basics You Can Get Dressed in the Dark!

Hey everyone! When you stock your closet with great pieces that work well together, you can practically dress yourself in the dark! Like this outfit here. I wasn’t in the dark when picking this out (though the lighting is bad in my closet – hmmm need to add that to my honey-do list!) it was still easy to pull this stylish outfit together from some really basic items.

Basics for Plus Size Outfit!

First, the tall black boots. Such an easy basic to add instant style and one of the basics I encourage all of you to purchase. These are my flat, no-heel pair. I’m researching large calf/large leg options so I’ll post what I find for my larger leg sister’s out there who have requested options.

Basics for Plus Size Outfit!

Black leggings are the next basic. These are from Vera Wang from Kohls with a really wide elastic waist. Mine are from a couple of years ago but there are tons of options out there. Here is a wide waist version that’s more expensive and here it’s less expensive. When you are trying them on in the dressing room do some deep-knee squats with them on to see if the waist will slide down. So annoying having to keep pulling up stretchy leggings! They should stay in place and a wide waist means less chance of having that dreaded middle dent.

A basic striped top. This one is from White House Black Market and the fabric is thinner and clingier than I usually like but I fell in love with the cuffs! I just make sure when I wear this shirt I have on bottoms that don’t indent in my middle and I wear a lycra camisole underneath so the two fabrics glide across each other without getting hung up!

Basics for Plus Size Outfit!

The black vest. You’ve seen it before here and here. I love it because if I have a shirt with interesting sleeves I can top it with this vest and still have the coverage I like with a third piece but show off the cuffs and sleeves. It’s starting to show it’s age though because I wear it so often. I’m on the lookout for a replacement and this one here may be it!

Basics for Plus Size Outfit!

And then the scarf. I actually bought the striped shirt and scarf at the same time because I could see how well the black and tan colors in both would work together and this could be another way to mix patterns. This is also a pretty big and long scarf so I had several options of tying it and wearing it. It’s sold out but here is one I’m thinking seriously about!

So, when you have the basics in your wardrobe, like all of these pieces, it’s easy to get dressed in the dark!

This post contains affiliate links to items I own and love or wish I owned and love!

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Lookin’ Like A Boss!

Hey everyone! This outfit makes me feel like such a boss. Or bossy. Either way, I feel like this is one of the most formal business outfits I own. Between the black jacket and black skirt I feel like a CEO!

Big Bust and Apple Shape - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

As you know I mostly shop at J. Jill. However, I love White House Black Market’s clothing too when I can fit into it. WHBM has the cutest jackets. I wear their size 16 and sometimes it’s a hit or miss depending on the fabric and the cut. This jacket I bought about two years ago and the style still looks fresh

Big Bust and Apple Shape - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

The skirt is also from WHBM from about 3 years ago. I can actually zip it up! The waist has enough stretch to fit comfortably without having to keep pulling it up. WHBM does have some pants and skirts that have waists with stretch. I really find you have to try them on to see which ones will work for your shape.

Big Bust and Apple Shape - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

My original intention was to photograph with and without the belt, but I forgot. I think it would have looked nice without the belt, but perhaps a bit more casual. I also would have added a necklace if I didn’t have the belt to give it some sparkle.

Big Bust and Apple Shape - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

Similar jacket here in pink, denim and red. Similar skirt here. Similar top here. Similar purse here. Similar boots here.

And here is the complete mural image if the previous pictures have gotten your curiosity up. This is the last of our Detroit mural photoshoots as you have seen in the previous 4 posts. But don’t despair because we’ll probably be back photographing in Detroit and we (my husband Dave and I) are having fun picking out unique places to do these photo shoots.

Detroit Mural - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

Linking up with these lovely ladies at Not Dead Yet Style and Not Dressed As Lamb!

This post contains affiliate links for products I love and own or love and would like to own!

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A Tunic With the Perfect Cut for Apple Shapes!

Hey everyone! So, you all know I usually like to wear two tops. Usually one base layer and then a sweater or vest or something as the “third piece” over the top. I do this to look more polished, but also to do some covering of whatever lump or bump I decide that day to cover. Occasionally, I will find a top that has just the right cut so I don’t feel the need to wear the “third piece”. This top has the perfect cut.

A tunic with the perfect cut for apple shapes - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

If you’re a long-time reader, you’ve seen a similar top here. The reason this cut works for me is the fabric below the horizontal, midsection seam hangs perfectly. It skims my torso without clinging or billowing. The fabric is a bit heavier, as you can tell by the cowl neck, which stands up on it’s own. It also doesn’t assume I have a small bust and have the seam too high like so many shirts that have a similar cut.

A tunic with the perfect cut for apple shapes - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

This fabric has stretch and texture that I like because it helps to camouflage any indent from waistbands, bra straps or whatever. And, of course pockets! Yes, they pull down and stretch when I put my hands in them so I don’t do as often as I would wish!

A tunic with the perfect cut for apple shapes - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

You’ve seen these pants here before. I’ve shown the shoes before but didn’t talk about them. They are green suede and have a slight heel and slightly pointy toe. They are really comfortable. You can find them here. If you are looking to add some subtle color into an outfit a dark color like this green will add some definite sass!

A tunic with the perfect cut for apple shapes - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

Couple of Happenings!

I have started using affiliate links for items I mention in the posts. I have been linking the whole time to items, just not getting any credit for doing it! Now, I get either a few cents for anyone clicking on the item or a small commission (usually $1-2) if you buy something that I linked to. I promise all of you I will never link to something that I don’t own, have tried on, or think is a good item for an apple shape. I will always be 100% honest about my opinion and if I don’t like something it will not be on this blog.

I’ve also started as a contributing writer over at 40plusstyle.com. I will be writing the occasional article from the apple-shaped woman’s perspective and already wrote one here. I’m excited by this opportunity because it will make us apple shapes more visible. As you all know, apple-shaped women are never (ok, not never, but rarely) photographed for fashion, so if we’re not seen, we’re not thought of or designed for and I’m happy to be making us more visible. We’re a force to be reckoned with but they’ve got to hear us and see us.

If you’re in the U.S. then have a happy Thanksgiving and I hope you’re spending time with people you love and eating delicious food. If you’re not in the U.S. I hope you’re doing the same!

This post contains affiliate links for products I own or would like to own!

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A Buttoned-Up Sweater for a Big Bust!

Hey everyone! I’m back with a casual outfit for fall with a different type of sweater this time, one that’s buttoned-up. If you’re a regular reader, you know I rarely button up a jacket or sweater and usually prefer for them to hang open. Though that is a flattering look for me, sometimes I just want to wear something different.Buttoned up sweater for a big bust - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

This sweater buttons up with one button right in the middle of my bust. I actually call this my grandpa sweater because of the material and the deep pockets. It’s a couple of years old from J. Jill but here is a similar style.

Buttoned up sweater for a big bust - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

I paired it with a super soft dress made of bamboo. It’s considered a tunic but on my short frame I wear it as a dress! Here it is in a print and here in black.

Buttoned up sweater for a big bust - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

Finishing it off with leggings and booties. This is a “youngish” outfit for me so I wear it for casual outings. Between the soft dress/tunic and leggings it’s as close as you can get to comfort dressing!

Buttoned up sweater for a big bust - www.whenthegirlsrule.com

Where We Are:

My husband and I are photographing in Detroit’s Eastern Market which is a large, open-air farmer’s market that has been running for over 150 years and one of the many places where I have worked. It was such a little community inside a major city in the 90’s. Now, it’s hip, crowded, cleaner and getting popular…at least the graffiti is better!

This is a short post because my sister, her husband and three boys are about to descend on our house for the next week so I’ve got to prepare. I love having them though it gets pretty chaotic here! Happy weekend everyone!

This post contains affiliate links to items I love and own or love and wish I owned! 

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A Fun Dress for A Day Out!

Hey everyone! So, this is a fun dress that you saw as my “makeover” dress in my post about why I started this blog. I love wearing it with tall boots. In fact, I don’t wear it without the boots. The bottom of the skirt part reminds me of a go-go dress the way it swishes around. Plus, it’s so fun to wear!

fun dress for apple shapes | www.whenthegirlsrule.com

It is old so I can’t link to a specific dress but I can tell you the fabric is a cotton/spandex knit so it has stretch, plus it’s lined which makes a world of difference. I think that’s the reason between this dress and this one being less clingy. In fact, I’m willing to bet on it.

fun dress for apple shapes | www.whenthegirlsrule.com

Fabric is Key! You know as an apple shape there is a small space between being too clingy and being a tent. The key is to find fabric that fits the bust, goes a little bit under the bust (but not too much!) then skims over the torso and hangs straight down under the tummy. A rare find, but when you find the right one you should buy two! Or at least commit to memory the fabric content to arm you in your future shopping adventures!

fun dress for apple shapes | www.whenthegirlsrule.com

If you’re not an apple-shape and you’re reading this and rolling your eyes, let me tell you these are all real considerations when purchasing clothing. We apple-shapes are thinkers.

fun dress for apple shapes | www.whenthegirlsrule.com

I’ve styled the dress with a sweater and without. It was an unusually warm November day and with the boots and tights the sweater was unnecessary.

fun dress for apple shapes | www.whenthegirlsrule.com

Usually cap sleeves are unflattering and supposedly the edge of them points to your bust and makes it look bigger. However, I think when you get to a certain size, a little cap sleeve edge is not much of a consideration. And, as you can see here, the edge of the sleeve does not point to my bust. It definitely doesn’t do much for my arms, but gosh, sometimes I don’t care. I just want to wear a shorter sleeve to keep cool without any other consideration.

fun dress for apple shapes | www.whenthegirlsrule.com

I’m showing more than the usual four photos because I’ve styled it two ways and because we captured so many good photos with this background!

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The dress is from White House Black Market so perhaps they will have similar dresses. The sweater is old from J. Jill and I’m sure they have similar sweaters. Primary colors work so well with black and white so let that be a little bit of knowledge I can give you with this post.

fun dress for apple shapes | www.whenthegirlsrule.com

I have to say, my husband and I are having so much fun finding places to do these photoshoots. We usually do these on a weekend morning about every other week. Then we go out for lunch. So, now we have a scheduled date thanks to this blog! Hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoy making them!

I do not have any affiliation with any of the brands or stores nor do I receive any compensation. I’m just sharing what I’ve learned.

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Spread the Knowledge. Wield Mighty Love.

Hey everyone! What a week. It probably comes as no surprise that I was a Hillary supporter. However, let me quickly say, I know many people who voted for Trump and I understand where they’re coming from economically and that they wanted someone different. I believe most people did not vote based on hate. Yes, some did. Hate is based in fear and fear can be overcome by knowledge. I think we can all get behind the idea of less hate and more knowledge in this wold. So, to help this along, we can commit ourselves to spreading our knowledge. Everyone has some sort of knowledge, some sort of insight, some sort of experience to share. I’m committed to making this little corner of the internet a welcoming place where women come together to share knowledge. Yes, it’s knowledge about clothing, but really, we all know it’s more than that. The knowledge here is not just from me. If you read the comments you learn as much from the commenters as you do from my words. Let’s commit ourselves to spreading our knowledge to lessen fear and to minimize hate. So world, get ready. There are some confident women with heads full of knowledge bearing mighty love coming your way!

Mighty Love in a casual sweater outfit!

Ok, now onto spreading knowledge!

I find casual dressing to be the hardest for our shape. Usually there are less layers and less structure even though they’re usually the most comfortable outfits that we really want to wear. Nothing gets more comfortable than a cozy sweater, leggings and sneakers.

Mighty Love in a casual sweater outfit!

I like this sweater because it has a bit of ribbing for texture without being bulky and chunky. Chunky sweaters make me look bigger than necessary (and hotter!) and fine knit sweaters are too clingy and wispy. I found this knit to be perfect. Not too chunky. Not too fine. It also hangs nicely with the hem dipping lower in the back than the front. The thing with sweaters, and this sweater for sure, is all your curves are going to be outlined. So as I said in the last post, wear it with attitude!

Mighty Love in a casual sweater outfit!

If you haven’t tried leggings yet then I highly recommend that you go out and get a pair. You will not regret it! It’s like wearing your pajamas in public and it being ok! Think of them as thick tights or thin skinny jeans. I see the younger women wearing them with short tops but I prefer to keep the buns covered. Don’t look too closely at the shoes. They’re old and worn but so easy to slip on and comfortable that I still wear them a lot.

Mighty Love in a casual sweater outfit!

So ladies, put on your comfy shoes and get out there and make your little corner of the world better by spreading knowledge, minimizing fear, wielding mighty love and lookin’ fine!

Linking up with Patti at Not Dead Yet Style and Debonita at Elegantly Fashionable!

I do not have any affiliation with any of the brands or stores nor do I receive any compensation. I’m just sharing what I’ve learned.

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Sometimes It’s All Just Attitude!

Hey everyone! As you know, if you’ve been a regular reader, that I am a bit sassy and opinionated. Yay for me! So, even if  you’re not naturally sassy, sometimes you need a little bit to rock an outfit. I say if you’re over 40, you’ve earned some right to sass.It's all attitude!

Case in point:

For some reason older women aren’t supposed to wear skinny jeans. I feel if you got it, rock it. Enter attitude. So much of carrying off an outfit is attitude. If you’re pulling and tugging at your outfit trying to cover areas it sends a subtle signal that you aren’t feeling confident and comfortable in your outfit. Supposedly us apple shapes have great legs. I think that is a dumb assumption but if you’ve got great legs then wear those skinny jeans. Even if you’ve got bigger legs (like I do) if they look slimmer compared to your torso and bust then you can rock skinny jeans. I also have slim hips so if you have slim hips, show them off. We do so much coverage over our tummies and bust that when we have something we like showing off then show it off!

It's all attitude!

I tried this outfit with the tunic long and then tucked it in because I remember the last time I wore this jacket I wished I had a shorter shirt underneath. I think I like it tucked in better though it outlines my tummy more. Hmmmm, dilemmas.

It's all attitude!

I’m also wearing my sexy professor booties today. I call them that because my friend gave them to me and, you guessed it, she is a college professor.

It's all attitude!

So, ladies, what I’m saying is I can give you advice on what to wear and how to wear it but, girl, you need to have some sassy attitude when wearing it. Trust me, try it once for a short time. Go out to dinner in a sassy outfit. Next, try it on a longer outing. Then, it will get easier and easier to put some attitude into your step!

I do not have any affiliation with any of the brands or stores nor do I receive any compensation. I’m just sharing what I’ve learned.

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Whoa! Look at this Pattern-Mixing!

Hey everyone! A couple of posts ago I was talking about how I’m tip-toeing into pattern mixing. It’s a fun trend right now of mixing different patterns in one outfit (remember when that was a no-no?). There are lots of “tips” on how to mix but really it’s just about trying different combinations until you find what you like. I find it’s easier to mix a pattern in a shirt with a pattern in a scarf as a first step, but when I pulled this dress out, I knew I wanted to try to match a pattern to this dress.

Serious pattern mixing!

I love this dress but don’t wear it very often. I don’t know why because I love the design of the watercolor paint and the black panels on the side are super flattering. It’s also got a really straight structure to it, especially in the skirt, which I find works well for my shape. This dress is a couple of years old but I’ve seen similar ones with the black panels on the sides and I definitely recommend trying one on.

Serious pattern mixing!

This fun jacket you’ve seen before here. It’s a shorter sleeve length that I don’t usually wear but supposedly 3/4 length sleeves are flattering.

Serious pattern mixing!

One thing about being an apple shape is recognizing that dresses may be my new best friend. I’m finding since dresses don’t have that whole annoying waistband thing they are easier to wear. Plus, it means I only need a dress then some sort of third piece over the dress and my outfit is complete.

Serious pattern mixing!

Where am I?

We did these photos at the Henry Ford Estate in Dearborn, Michigan. It’s a beautiful home with beautiful gardens so you probably will be seeing it again. Thanks for stopping by!

Linking up with these lovely ladies at Shelbee on the Edge and Sheela Writes!

I do not have any affiliation with any of the brands or stores nor do I receive any compensation. I’m just sharing what I’ve learned.

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Add Just a Little Sass

Hey everyone! This is a very basic outfit, one I would have worn before I figured out this fashion thing. In fact, these pants are the ones I wore on my first interview when the female interviewer looked me up and down disapproving and I knew I was definitely not getting the job. You can read about that here. I never wear these pants now, but I know lots of women who wear similar pants to work every single day. So, in an effort to show everyone that you don’t have to change up your whole wardrobe, change your personality and spend lots of money to add some style, I am wearing these pants again.

Adding just a little sass!

So, it is basic grayish-black pants with a basic black turtleneck. Probably everyone out there already has black pants and a black shirt. Great! Now add a faux leather jacket. This one I bought over 2 years ago for less than $100 (I can’t actually remember the price but I’m thinking about $75). There are lots of color options out there right now in a variety of styles. Look for the jackets with the fabric on the sides under the arms for more stretch if you find you need it. Instant style!

Adding just a little sass!

Next, add some fun shoes. These are my second pair of leopard print and they add so much sass to this outfit. With shoes you can add that little spark without scaring your family and coworkers. You can let the shoes do the talking that a much more stylish you is emerging!
Adding just a little sass!

Adding Some Sass!

So, since we’re over 40 and some of us are closing in on 50, I think now is the most appropriate time to get our sass back. We know who we are and what we like and don’t like and it’s time to start voicing our opinions. For many of us, we’ve tried the dutiful daughter and daughter-in-law role. We’ve been the responsible mother. We’ve spent many years being the supportive spouse. We’ve been the hard-working, dependable employee. We’ve all been on the fool’s errand to try to please everyone around us. Now, it’s our turn. We get to dress how we want and say what we’ve been wanting to say for years. Sass is wasted on teenagers. We’re bringing sassy back!

Adding just a little sass!

And just a parting shot of a sassy woman enjoying a beautiful fall day!

I do not have any affiliation with any of the brands or stores nor do I receive any compensation. I’m just sharing what I’ve learned.

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