I'm Kerry,plus size northerner adjusting to life in the East Midlands living with my long haired chap and my short haired french bulldog.
I write about fat fashion, fat politics, and my daily life!
If you would like to contact me you can find me at: email@example.com
Sunday 4th of September saw the start of the 34th LondonEdge show back at the British Design Centre in Islington. For me, a much better venue than the previous Olympia. The event is huge, and the spacious centre with lots of light coming through, it made the experience much better. Though it was on two levels so would require use of lifts for wheelchairs. Not to mention an onsite cafe with comfortable seating and reasonable pricing was another bonus over the uncomfortable steel chairs and extortionate food at the previous event. A much welcome respite from the busy day!
My day started with a surprise appearance from Tanya boarding my carriage who it turned out was also attending.
She was meeting Becky at Kings Cross. I joined Tanya for breakfast at The Parcel Yard while waiting for Becky to arrive. We took seats outside and waited for our meals. I started feeling like a bit of a celeb as we had a few people stop to talk to us and compliment our outfits, and even had a woman approach us claiming to be an artist and could she take our photo! Our Eggs Benedicts arrived and there was this excellent moment as we both munched down at the same time letting out a little moan, turning to look at each other. God damn, those were some delicious eggs!
It didn't take long to get to Angel, another bonus for me. The venue location meant much easier access from St Pancras. As I said the events pretty huge and covering every stall would be nigh on impossible-ok not impossible but that's gonna get a bit boring and time consuming, so here's some highlights for me.
Upon arriving our first stop was Woody Ellen. She's an artist who makes her pieces into gorgeous handbag sets. A wonderfully warm woman, who looked stunning in a beautiful sky blue outfit. She also gifted us with a purse of our choice and I got to pick from my favourite collection ' Blossom'
One exhibitor I'd been dying to see was Isolated Heroes. LondonEdge shared a dress of theirs prior to the event that had me gasping. The folks on the stall were gorgeous and super friendly. They're an amazinf indie brand who's sizing comes up to a 24 but I was told that they were happy to take custom orders! My favourite piece by a country mile was this sequin jacket.
LOOK AT THAT MERMAID SHIT. Ahem. Yes. Sorry. It's just so perfect.
Expanding my online shopping list as I went along I came across the most adorable stall from Punky Pins who carry amazingly cute and super detailed pins and patches.
I am absolutely going to be placing an order with these guys for my battle jacket when I get a minute to myself.
Another stall I loved was Dolly and Dotty. I love their classic retro looks, at a competitive price, but another great thing is that many of their items come in different colour combinations. I'm the worst blogger because I was so busy chatting to the amazingly lovely staff I forgot to take any photos. *Jean Ralfio voice* the woooooorst.
However one of my favourite pieces of theirs was easily this gorgeous cape in red.
It's just so cute and oh so soft I couldn't stop touching it. It comes in different colours too so you can make it work with loads of different outfits. They also had some cute jersey tops which, again, super soft and also nice and stretchy. This cape is absolutely on my to-buy list! Also how amazing does their model, Isabella Bliss, look??
Image credit: Dolly and Dotty
Iron Fist were knocking it out of the ball park with their amazing mermaid shoes too.
Look at them!! So shiny!! Heaven.
One exhibitor that really surprised me this time was Demonia. I've always had a soft spot for them in my early, shoe gazing gothy years and I own a couple of pairs of their big ole clompers but it's interesting to see how the brand has developed over the years. One of my faves for sure.
I little hidden jem was an indie company called Koolies Kreations. We had stopped by but the stall holder was out to lunch. We'd headed over to the cafe and she actually came and found us! She bounded over with her big curls, big smile, and big sparkly boots. She was super passionate and really great to talk to.
It wouldn't be a trip to London Edge without stopping by the Pin Up Academy stall. They offer complimentary hair styling and even had a little studio set up if you wanted to pay for a photoshoot. The ladies all have a filthy sense of humour and there was much cackling, particularly with Sinderella's little merkin.
After we schelpped around all the stalls we headed out for a quick bite to eat at Ed's Easy Diner. I must admit, as burgers go it was pretty awesome. I waved the ladies off as I hurried to check into my air bnb. I had enough time to freshen up and change before heading over to the Islington Metal Works for the after party!
The room looked amazing with the ambient lighting and the old tube train bar.
I got chatting to the ladies from the Pin Up Academy, who were still doing hair styling! After an hour or so October downed her brush and slipped into the most incredible sparkly dress. I got chatting to Sam, who took me under her wing for the night.
Then you had the opportunity to do some swing dancing yourself! I didn't brave it myself. I think I would have melted into a puddle in the London heat but kudos to those of you who did, you did amazing!
We were then treated to an incredible strip tease fromBanbury Cross. Partway into her routine she slunk over to the crowd to tease us and of course came over to me causing me to blush very hard! Quite impossible to take pictures when there's steam rising from your face. Utterly gorgeous and dangerously seductive. Amazing!
Soon it was time to crawl into my bed ready for another day at 'Edge. This one would be shorter but I really wanted to catch the seminar from the Sophie Lancaster Foundation. For those of you not familiar it was a charity set up in the name of a young girl who, alongside her boyfriend, were brutally assaulted simply for dressing alternatively. Sadly Sophie died from her injuries. Sylivia Lancaster, Sophie's mother, has worked tirelessly to end this kind of discrimination, earning herself an OBE, and garnering support from celebrities and people all over the world.
The seminar was, at times, haunting. Recounting the event, describing in detail the injuries sustained, and the the painful journey to justice for the family. But hearing how the charity began, and the incredible support it received was uplifting. They now work in schools, prisons, youth centres, and anywhere that education is needed with their resource packs and training. They have also worked to have Sophie's murder treated as a hate crime, and through this 11 police authorities now recognise subculture attacks as a hate crime.
Follow the link for more information on this amazing charity and ways you can support them.
As my time in London was drawing to an end I stopped by the Pin Up Academy stall one last time and treated myself to a photo session with the lovely Simon, being coached by the gorgeous Sam, who makes it all look so dang easy!
Body positivity seems to be the new media buzzword these
days. Gosh, that sounds cynical of me doesn’t it? Bear with me.
It’s no secret that our media promotes the insidious message
of thinness being the archetype of beauty, success, and worthiness. This
ultimate goal affects everyone who tries it: be it those who seek to attain it,
or those who fight to maintain it. Every which way there is a problem for
people to fix; trying to measure up to body types that, realistically, don’t
even actually exist thanks to the power of Photoshop.
Everyone out there is battling with this toxicity that
surrounds us. We’re all trying to come to terms with who we are and what we
want for ourselves. But here’s the thing: some of us experience vastly more
oppression and discrimination than others. That’s not to say that the
expectations thrown at women are not harmful and painful for many but the oppression
and discrimination levelled at fat people far outweighs that of thin people.
Body positivity, as a movement, is virtually unrecognisable
anymore. Where it was once a tool to create spaces for the marginalised; be it
fat people, disabled, POC, trans folks, and other groups, now it is a means for brands and media
to appear to be sympathetic without having to actually acknowledge or cater for
those marginalised groups.
Campaigns like #iamallwoman use the token call of body
positivity to appear to give the middle finger to body policing while
simultaneously upholding beauty ideals by using models who are typically
attractive and –you guessed it-all thin.
Any criticisms levelled at these campaigns us met with
disbelief, as though these meagre crumbs, that do not represent us are
supposed to satisfy us. Promises of more inclusions to come, as though the
radical inclusion couldn’t have just come in the first place.
This isn’t the fat community demanding that it be all about
us, or that thin woman can’t be involved, but rather they, for one minute, take
up the least proportion of representation. There are so many groups that can
and should be represented that simply never are. This is a movement for all but has now been
co-opted for those with greater privilege to hijack a movement that doesn’t
place them at the centre and call it unfair.
We are sick of being told that our turn is coming when it