Saturday night outfit shots: I bought this size 16 Karen Millen dress on ebay, knowing that Karen Millen sizes come up small and praying it would fit… It’s too big. But ideal for an evening during which food was the main event!
Yesterday early evening, Dapper and I curled up in front of the TV to find Gentlemen Prefer Blondes showing. In between synchronised sighing over those astonishingly wide hips, gravity-defying breasts and hand-span-tiny waists, we were inundated with adverts for weight-loss products and plans, low-fat alternatives and fitness regimes, to the point that I lost my temper, growled at the TV and stormed into the kitchen to rustle up a casserole in defiance.
The pressure put upon us all to skinny-up after Christmas is really starting to grate on me of late. I’m a girl who has had her fair share of body confidence issues, and am incredibly lucky to have reached a point this year that I can say I’m not only happy with my shape, but downright proud of my curves. Reading Cat’s blog, Tea and Feathers today reaffirmed that I’m not the only person who’s beginning to settle into their figure and accept the extra few lbs that creep on over the festive season – and it’s so refreshing to hear positive body image messages coming from the mouths of – and I use this phrase to mean normal, everyday, real-life women, of every shape and size – Real Women.
Birthday boy and I
This weekend was my old uni friend James’ 30th birthday party. He had booked us all into a beautiful luxury hotel in the Cotswolds, and the party element centred around food. Whether it was afternoon tea on arrival – hot buttered crumpets, scones with clotted cream, brownies and ginger cake – the evening meal – in my case hors d’oeuvres including delicious shell-on king prawns, battered calamari, olives, cured meats, houmous, followed by a beautiful venison with fondant potato and parsnip puree, treacle pudding with ice cream and cheese – or breakfast – help-yourself-to-continental followed by a full English fry-up – the food played a central role in the whole weekend. Which obviously works for me, being such a huge fan of eating as I am…
In past years I’ve been very self-conscious about what I’m seen to be eating. The old “if they see me eating this pie will they judge me?” question can completely ruin a meal out, in fact, an entire evening. One of the joys of finding comfort with your own shape is freedom from such thoughts – the freedom to tuck into treacle sponge without fear of anyone telling you pointedly that it’ll go straight to your hips or glancing deliberately towards your pot belly – and the freedom to approach afternoon tea determined to test one of everything on the table!
The end result of this change in attitude, aside from cultivating unreasonable reactions to run-of-the-mill January advertising campaigns, is that I was able to pass the entirety of my weekend away without a shred of self-consciousness or a thought spared for what passed my lips. I was able to extol the venison and the treacle pudding to my neighbours without even considering whether their eyes were checking out my bingo wings, and dig into the brie and grapes on the cheese board completely unashamedly, without even bothering to dress up my amorous advances with cream crackers or water biscuits. In short, I was able to really enjoy myself.
Four pink penguins, all dressed up to party!