Shopping for clothes has never been fun for me… I guessed that’s what I got for being fat.
I became conscious of this fact on Saturday January 29th, 1994. I was preparing for my first middle school dance and anticipating twirling the night away in some satin/sequin combo that was sure to transform me into a Disney princess. My hopes were quickly crushed after a day long shopping spree where I realized there were no youthful dresses in my size, and I had to settle on a frumpy mom frock from the Women’s department.
I have never been what the retailers say is an “average” size, and ever since I can remember I have left most shopping experiences with an empty hand and an even emptier heart. The PTSD I have had over the years has led to a lifetime of yoga pants and sweats – two staples in my wardrobe I knew I could count on. Then one day, my career got a boost, thrusting me into the national spotlight and requiring me to shed the comforts of all things spandex.
I found myself preparing for FAB Life, a nationally syndicated daytime talk show – where I would be sitting next to two of the worlds most beautiful Top Models. To say that I felt fashionably unprepared would be an understatement, and I wondered how I was going to pull off my curves in style. I found myself pouring over Pinterest page after Pinterest page seeking inspiration for my new found signature look, but I just couldn’t find a reputable resource for the clothes I wanted to wear.
One day, on a completely random Instagram search, kismet and destiny collided… and the answer to my prayers seemed to be found – Chic and Curvy Boutique! Now, I know what you’re saying: an Instagram shop? I know, I know – Ive got a collection of waist trainers, herbal teas and tooth whiteners as well. But there is something different… magical even, that makes this place my new found utopia — and I just had to share it with you too.
Because Im a skeptic of all things found online, I was super stoked that Chic and Curvy had a brick and mortar location located a quick drive from my house in Inglewood, Ca. I decided to go check it out – and from the moment I stepped inside, an indescribable magic happened… I completely forgot all of my past shopping traumas, and a shopaholic was born.
Never in my life had I seen wall to wall racks of clothes filled with the trendiest looks that would flatter my frame. Never had I been given the 5 star treatment (nor greeted by a tall, dark, and handsome man with a glass of champagne!) like the girls in the movies who shop on Rodeo drive. Never had I felt so good about myself, seeing other ladies of my stature enjoying themselves alongside me in the dressing rooms… and high fiving each other as we stepped out of them to share our looks.
That day, for the first time ever, I wasn’t a fat girl settling on something I could afford that fit. That day, I was a woman with options who felt empowered by my ability to select clothing I truly loved and felt confident in. You see, Chic and Curvy Boutique is more than just a popular social media page, or a brick and mortar location in Los Angeles. It’s a place of refuge for women who have felt left out, overlooked, and underrepresented. It’s a place of hope, of possibility, of understanding for women those of us misunderstood by a society that tells us that we should be ashamed of our bodies. It’s also a place where I’ve found some of the best pieces in my wardrobe to date, made with exceptional quality, attention to detail, and a variety of colors that compliment me.
I encourage every woman size 10-20 who’s ever felt left out of the joy of shopping to immediately check out the Chic and Curvy Boutique online at http://chicandcurvy.com, or through their Facebook https://www.facebook.com/chicandcurvy, Instagram https://www.instagram.com/chicandcurvyboutique/, or Twitter https://twitter.com/chicandcurvy accounts. If you’re in the LA area, make a point to change your narrative by experiencing a shopping excursion yourself at 206 South Market Street, Inglewood, CA 90301 – and with their incredible sales, be prepared to take the whole store home with you! And if you’re looking for information on how to dress your frame, then just watch this segment I did on Good Day LA for Fox 11 News featuring the hottest fashions that you can find right in the store!