Size Means Nothing; Fit Means Everything

Let’s talk about the difference between size and fit.

All of us have a unique shape, size and fit. We’re all different and that’s a good thing.  Understandably we would all love to be able to see clothing we’re interested in on a body exactly like ours, whether it’s a smaller size or a plus size. Wouldn’t that make things so easy?? Take a look at the women around you right now. Every single one of them is a different size, shape, height and proportion. It’s impossible to show every body type without creating an entire encyclopedia of women’s bodies and show how a garment fits on every single one. One of our goals for this year is to show more sizes and bodies so that it’ll be easier for you to assess your perfect fit.

Cherry Velvet blogs about the difference between size and fit (left) Danielle Dress – Bird Bath (right) Danielle Dress – Hexi Dot

Show yourself some LOVE!

Society needs no help when it comes to damaging women’s self esteem regarding body image. But there’s a lot you can do to change this! Meet that woman in the mirror with a smile. Tell her she looks adorable, cute, sexy, and amazing! At the end of the day when it’s just you and the mirror, a choice is made about the words used to describe ourselves, to ourselves. Cut yourself some slack and give some words of encouragement and love to that amazing person looking back at you. It’s time to think about your clothing size like you think about your shoe size. It’s just a number that corresponds to the length of your feet. Why not?

Cherry Velvet blogs about the difference between size and fit

Veronica Dress – Blue Raspberry

Live it now!

When you put on your clothes and they fit right, you know it. It’s not just about having it go over your body or being able to do up a zipper or a button.  Armholes that don’t gap and the way a garment flows over your body is key. It’s that dress or skirt that hits that magic spot on you and makes your legs look amazing.  When your clothes fit properly you look and feel like you can take on the world. It’s not about waiting until you’re the size you want to be it’s about looking and feeling your best Right Now!

Give yourself that gift!

XOX Cherry Velvet

Addressing Your Bust; Bra Fit for Dresses

Fitting your bust in a great dress starts with a well fitting braWe must, we must, we must ad”dress” your bust!

An appropriate and well-fitting bra is really important for building the “foundation” of your shape under a dress. Make sure your bra straps are adjusted so that your bust is supported correctly (you know how the straps can stretch out!). When you put on one of our dresses, your bust should sit above the waistband. This will make the dresses look and fit better and should eliminate your breasts being cut in half by the waistband. Yes ladies, lean forward, adjust your breasts up and over the band and then complete the pulling up of the zipper. Much like when you put on a bra.

“When you go dress shopping please wear a great fitting bra! A sports bra or no bra just doesn’t cut it to get the best fit”

 

Under Where?

What you wear on the lower half of your body is totally your preference. Our Cherry Velvet dresses have extra room across the tummy to give you enough room that it’s not necessary to wear anything special on the bottom. It’s totally up to you! We are a big fan of being able to look great AND breathe!

Fitting your bust in a great dress starts with a well fitting bra

Online shopping

All our bra fitting tips are just as important for when you’re measuring yourself to find your best dress fit online as well. Put on a well-fitting bra before you take your measurements to find your size. We made a short video with some easy to follow instructions to help you take simple and accurate measurements. Check it out!

Once you have your measurements you can check out our comprehensive Sizing Chart to find your size. Or you can call or email with your measurements and we will always be happy to help you find your best fit.

When you wear your Cherry Velvet Dress…

Please make sure you’ve chosen a bra that fits well with good support. We know you want to look your best and feel totally gorgeous when you’re wearing one of our beautiful dresses.

XOX Cherry Velvet

Plus Size Girls CAN wear the same clothes as smaller girls!

Rebel, Rebel…

Maybe you’ve seen a popular video being circulating on Facebook called “Rebel Wilson has a problem with Plus Size Fashion”. She goes on to say that “Some brands just put out the same dress in a whole wide range of sizes and it’s not going to look as good”. Well, Rebel, we’d love to send you a dress to prove to you that it is totally possible and even desirable to have the same dress in all sizes. Us bigger girls want the same clothes the smaller girls can wear, right?

Rebel Wilson would look great in a Cherry Velvet Plus Size dress don't you think?
Rebel Wilson photo credit: Getty Images

 

What we think Rebel was trying to say was that most brands don’t get the fit right in an extended size range. And we totally agree with her on that issue. That’s a problem with fit and grading (making the other sizes) not with design. She’s right when she says that there are a whole bunch of monkey arms out there and legs that are too long; not to mention sizing all over the place, weird armholes and gaping buttons over the bust.  The fit of plus size is a tricky thing, not easily mastered. But that doesn’t mean it’s not possible! I think our customers would agree we know how to fit a plus size body very well.

Confidence AND Curves!

Rebel goes on to say that there is no youthful, confident plus size fashion out there. We beg to differ! Plus Size fashion has been plagued by poor quality, poor fit and dowdy styling for too long. It doesn’t have to be that way! The more designers who “get it” the better off we all are. Confidence comes from wearing clothing that fits just right!

Try it on and see for yourself…

We’re going to send Rebel one of our great-fitting dresses in a youthful, confident print. How about a dress with skulls, donuts, lipstick or planets (yes, all coming to Cherry Velvet this Fall) that shows off a woman’s curves in a truly flattering way.

New novelty prints for Plus size dresses at Cherry Velvet

We think she’d look amazing in one of our dresses! What do ya’ll think??

Thanks for being awesome, Rebel! We love you!

XOX Cherry Velvet

 

 

How an armhole is supposed to fit!

CherryVelvet_ArmholeBlog_TitleNobody really likes to think about their armpits – or their arms for that matter.  But with arm-baring dress season upon us, we’d like to share our knowledge about how an armhole is supposed to fit. If you’re plus size, inbetweenie, or just larger in the chest, this is an area that you may want to pay close attention to. We want to show you exactly what to look for!

A proper fitting armhole should hug close to your body without gaping or cutting into you uncomfortably. It’s a common misconception that having bigger arms means that you need bigger armholes. Arms typically narrow toward the shoulder, so having a larger arms doesn’t dictate your armhole! While you should be able to run your finger around the opening, you definitely should not be able to fit your hand in there. A proper fitting armhole does not gape open; it should lie smoothly all around your armpit. It should be high enough under your arm to cover your bra but not so high that it’s digging in.

To get a really great fit in the armhole, the patternmaker must build “bust darts” into the pattern.  What you may not know is that darts are what shape flat fabric into the contours of the body. A basic dart is shaped like a long pointed triangle. It’s wide at one end and narrows at the other. On many modern designs, the ‘dart’ is often incorporated into a princess seam, gathers, or pleats instead to achieve the proper fit as well as a desirable dress design. Here are some examples of our dress patterns showing the front shaping and armhole area:

CherryVelvet_ArmholeBlog_PatternPieces

Here are a few examples of a proper fitting armhole. You’ll notice how there are no spaces or gaps:

CherryVelvet_ArmholeBlog_KateBrigitteDoris_Dresses

The thing is, it’s important to know the difference between something that fits properly and something that just doesn’t quite cut it. You’re worthy of this knowledge and it can only lead to you being seen as a snappy dresser that always looks pulled together because, among other things, your clothes fit properly.

Hopefully, we don’t need to tell you where to find amazing fitting dresses that fit your lovely curvaceous parts and delectable armpits……because we think you should love your body…yep, even your arms and your armpits!

XOX Cherry Velvet

 

Find your Best Fit; Cherry Velvet style

When you place an order with Cherry Velvet, we want you to be thrilled when you receive your dress because it fits like a dream! We care about this so much that we’re doing a series of blog posts filled with tips and short videos to teach you how to find your best fit. We’ve noticed that measuring and proper fit are often not talked about enough. Many of us are just so happy to find some pretty clothes in our size that we don’t give fit the consideration it deserves.

Unfortunately, there is no industry standardization when it comes to sizes. The dress you bought at another company could, and will likely, be a completely different size than the one(s) you buy from us.  You can ensure you get your correct Cherry velvet size by either trying on our dresses in person at one of our retail locations (all of our retailers are listed on our website and we certainly encourage you to support them if you have a store nearby) or by following a few simple steps when ordering online at cherryvelvetplus.com—it’s that easy, we promise!

To get your best fit in a Cherry Velvet dress, the first thing we recommend you do (after choosing your dress style) is to measure yourself. Here’s a short video on how to do it (below):

Once you have your measurements, you can compare them to the size chart on our website. If you’re still unsure, simply send your measurements to us at cherryvelvetplus@gmail(dot)com, along with your dress(es) selection. The Cherry Velvet team will then measure the dresses for you and compare those numbers to your measurements. We’ll then let you know if the dress(es) you selected will fit and recommend a size to order or, perhaps, make a suggestion on a dress style that will fit better. This method produces excellent results! We’ve had many happy customers receive a dress that fits great the first time—and we want that same experience for you, too!

Happiness is a dress that fits and makes you look and feel fabulous!

XOX Cherry Velvet

P.S. Our video shows you how to measure for the majority of our dresses like the Brigitte, Doris, Brooke, Chrissy, Danielle etc. Our next blog in this series is how to measure for the Angelina. (it fits a little differently)

 

Welcome Barb to the Cherry Velvet Team!

When you’ve been in business for 14 years, you get to meet and work with people from all walks of life. Sometimes they come, sometimes they go, and sometimes you get lucky and they come back around again. Flashback five years ago to the very beginning of Cherry Velvet and enter: Barb Wilkins, a key member of our original team.  Barb’s ideas and contributions are what helped conceptualize the Cherry Velvet brand, so we’re very excited to announce that she’s coming back to work with us! Long time Cherry Velvet aficionados might remember that the second dress we ever made was named Barbara. It came in some amazing iconic prints like Good Luck Tattoo, Sugar Skulls, and Party Dots. Barb rocked that dress literally and figuratively! 

Band Wichita Trip's lead singer Barb Wilkins rockin' her Cherry Velvet dress
Photo by Marc L’Esperance

If you’re from Vancouver, you may also remember Barb was the owner of the original Bodacious store on Main Street. Having been a plus size retailer for so many years, she has a keen understanding of women’s bodies and issues around buying clothes. She’s a plus size fit expert! 

If none of this rings a bell, you might have met Barb at our Pucker Up party. She was the lead singer of our guest band. When we said Barb rocks we really meant it!

But if you’ve somehow never crossed paths with Barb, perhaps you will be lucky enough to experience her warm and enthusiastic energy when you come by to shop. Or, possibly, Barb will be the one to help you when you need customer service. She’ll be at our shopping night on Friday from 5-7, so come by to meet her and check out all the amazing new dresses

Barb Wilkins wearing the Cherry Velvet Barbara dress named after her

Welcome back to our team, Barb! 

Shopping dates this week:

Friday, March 24 from 2-7 pm

Saturday, March 25 from 11-5

1635 Powell Street, Vancouver BC. Parking available on the street our front (please check the parking signs) or in the lot off Woodland Dr. beside the Flag shop.

XOX Cherry Velvet

4X Dresses now Available!

Cherry Velvet | Now Available in 4X!

 

Last year, for the first time ever, we offered size 4X. Later, the Plus Size community was buzzing about an article by Marcy Cruz of Plus Size Magazine, along with some prominent bloggers in the community, regarding size inclusivity (including sizes 22+).

At the same time, an avid Cherry Velvet Enthusiast and Plus Fashion blogger, Muffin Queen’s Closet, featured one of our 4X styles, the Brooke Tangerine Stardust.

Caught up in all this lovely press, we found ourselves in the rather (un)fortunate position of being sold out of 4X! It was wonderful that our 4X’s were a hit, but we felt terrible disappointing anyone who wanted a piece of Cherry Velvet for themselves.

Fast forward to a brand new year and we are delighted to announce that a new slew of gorgeous curvy dresses will be released, including the much sought after 4X!

When Cherry Velvet began, we were deeply committed to creating great fitting plus size dresses, originally offering sizes XL-3X. As we began to sell our dresses, we received feedback from our shops that Regular sizes were asking about our gorgeous dresses, too!

We soon made the decision to expand our size chart to include sizes small to large. Despite our commitment to Plus Sizing, it seemed like everyone wanted a little bit of Cherry Velvet. By the time we added XS, we were up to nine sizes!

After much feedback from admirers, we discovered that there were still women who wanted to be a Cherry Velvet girl, but were unable to! So we’ve decided to replace our XS option with 4X, to further refocus our shop’s mission to offer unique dresses and retro inspired prints to those who don’t have has much variety in their size.

This Spring, we’ll be offering 4X sizing in a few of our signature vintage inspired styles. All these dresses feature full skirts and pockets!

Brigitte
Our best selling dress for a reason, our Brigitte features a flattering scoop neckline and a peek-a-boo back, finished with an adorable knot.

Brigitte 2017 Cherry Velvet 4X Prints

These 4X prints are available now! Regular (S-L) + Plus Sizes (XL-4X)

Doris
One of our most classic designs, our Doris features a fitted bodice with bra-cup seaming to emulate a retro corseted look!

Doris 2017 Cherry Velvet 4X Prints

Brooke
With a gorgeously full skirt, our Brooke features a sweetheart neckline and cute cap sleeves for even more added sweetness.

Brooke 2017 Cherry Velvet 4X Prints

Moving forward, we’re keen to continue expanding our 4X Styles with more selection and would love your feedback.  We’re always interested in hearing what your thoughts are.  Please e-mail us @ cherryvelvetplus @ gmail (dot) com

We want to make your dress dreams come true!

XOX Cherry Velvet

Looking for the dress Marcy Cruz featured in her blog? Find our Brooke Dress in Tangerine Stardust here!

Our newest prints, Brigitte in Luncheonette & Pocket o’ Posy can be found in our New Arrivals! More coming soon!

 

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Size Wise!

Vanessa is wearing Sally in Flamingo

Anyone familiar with Cherry Velvet Dresses knows how important it is that our dresses are accessible to everyone. When we first started, we had the intention of providing gorgeous dress options for Plus Sized women. As we did research on our target audience we discovered that, unsurprisingly, it’s common for women to shop in groups (of all sizes). Many would find themselves separated from their friends when shopping, as Regular & Plus Sizes often occupied completely separate areas, if not completely separate stores!

Size_0X_SizesAvailable
Find your Cherry Velvet size on our Fit Guide

We weren’t down with that.

So we decided shortly after our launch, that we would design our dresses and ensure they would properly fit a range of sizes, from XS-3X. In addition, we endeavour to include 4X in selected styles and make sure to include a size not very common to many retail stores, 0X.

 

 

 

 

Our newest dress, Sally, in 5 fresh looks! Available in sizes XS-3X.

 

We introduced Size 0X to provide a bridge between our regular and plus sizes. Traditionally non-stretch sizing increments must be smaller than for stretch to fit the maximum number of people properly. Many of our dresses are made from (non stretch) 100% cotton,  and subsequently, in order to properly lead into true plus sizing, we had to add an extra size.

 

Sally_CoralBorder_FrontBack_IG
Jennifer is wearing Sally in Coral Border

It is important to note that, ideally, the grading (sizing to other sizes) of a pattern does not exceed more than 3 sizes in either direction. Special attention must be given to exactly how much the pattern changes (and where) between each size. It is not uncommon to find many “Plus sized” options ill fitting, because the pattern grading was simply magnified and no other fine tuning done.

Despite being double the work, during our design process we make two patterns for every style of dress that we design. One pattern that fits regular sizes and another that fits plus sizes. Each different pattern is then fitted on a real person in each size range. This way, we ensure that not only are we providing every single size we can, but they are also truly graded properly.

Sally_RoseBorder_FrontBack_IG
Kaleigh is wearing Sally in Rose Border

 
That being said, Cherry Velvet’s fit is unique to many other fashion brands, in that our overall fit caters to the curvier woman. Our styles have also have a higher waist, which flatters many body types and heights. We also endeavor to design straps/necklines that will always accommodate a real bra (none of this silly “strapless” business!). That being said, we know not all plus size women have ample chests. Should this be the case, no worries! Our designs are forgiving enough that if you choose a style with a full skirt and go down a size, the bodice should fit like a dream. This works wonderfully for those that have a “Pear” shape!

We hope that all this info illustrates how much detail goes into properly sizing our dresses. Whether you’re an XS or a true plus size, it’s our goal to make sure you feel #stunningatanysize.

XOX Cherry Velvet

Welcoming Dawn in Cherry Velvet fashion

We recently made an addition to the Cherry Velvet Tree and we wanted her to get pumped about our dresses. What better way to do that, than to try them on! We spent the day giving her a little makeover and we think she looks STUNNING! Don’t you think so?

Thank you so much to Katie of Pout Beauty for doing such an amazing job on Hair & Make-Up.

CherryVelvet_Dawn_Doris_BlackCherries
Dawn is wearing Doris Dress in Black Cherries

Dawn is wearing Doris in Black Cherry Dot

While we were shooting, we tossed a few questions her way and she handled them like a pro. Without further ado, let’s get to know Dawn!

Tell us a little about yourself. Outside of the office, what definitively makes you Dawn?

Up until fairly recently, I’ve been a student for most of my life, while juggling a full time position as an aspiring author. I like words! I like books! I also spend a lot of time on the computer, gaming and learning stuff off the internet.

What are you looking for in a dress? What’s your favourite dress so far?

I don’t wear dresses very often, but when I do, I’m always looking for something that will make a statement and keep me comfortable at the same time. My favourite dresses so far are Brigitte & Brooke. At 5’1, I love that the hemline on the Brigitte is just a touch shorter, so it hits me perfectly at the knee. As for the Brooke, I absolutely love the full skirt. Nothing makes you feel more pretty than twirling around in such a lovely dress.

CherryVelvet_Dawn_Brooke_ScottyToss
Brooke Dress in Scotty Toss

 

Dawn is wearing Brooke in Scotty Toss

What’s your favourite part of working for Cherry Velvet? If you weren’t working here, what would you be doing?

Having worked in the Automotive Industry for 6.5 years, it is SO refreshing to work in a creative environment in the women’s fashion industry. The best days at work are when I get to be a fly on the wall during photoshoots in our studio. It was neat to show off my Cherry Velvet in front of the camera for once! If I wasn’t loving it here, I think would be writing fiction or learning how to draw! Something creative, for sure.

CherryVelvet_Dawn_Robin_SillyString
Robin Dress in Silly String

 

Dawn is wearing Robin in Silly String 

Tell us a fun fact about yourself!

I’m a gamer geek! I love spending time gaming online. I could easily spend my vacation days exploring the World of Warcraft, casting healing spells and vanquishing ogres with my guild.

We had so much dressing Dawn up. Thanks to Logan, our Media director, for taking such amazing shots!

CherryVelvet_DawnAndLogan
Elly Dress in Ivory Pearlized Jacquard

Dawn is wearing Elly in Ivory Pearlized Jacquard. Logan is wearing whatever was clean at the time. 

Welcome to the team, Dawn!

XOX Cherry Velvet

Very Cherry Updates!

We’re well into 2016 and we’ve hit the ground running here at Cherry Velvet HQ. We wanted to give a quick update on what’s going on in the coming weeks!

CherryVelvet_StudioShop

It’s the first open Showroom Shop of the year! While we’re usually open by appointment only, we periodically like to open our showroom to those who are unable to make an appointment during our usual Monday-Friday (10am-4pm) office hours.

We are pleased to be opening up our showroom at the end of January! Feel free to drop in for a visit on:

Friday, January 29: 2pm-7pm
Saturday, January 30: 11am-5pm

For those unable to visit our showroom, don’t fret! We’ll be offering some specials online, just for you 🙂 Stay tuned and keep updated by liking our Facebook page.

WWIN_LOGO

The last couple of years, Cherry Velvet has had a delightful time participating in the WWIN Show and are excited to be participating in our 5th show. Held at The Rio in Las Vegas, this is a week- long show for buyers to have access to a full selection of Womenswear collections from retailers all over Canada & the US. It’s an amazing event and we’ve met some fantastic stores who love carrying our dresses. Our designer, Diane, will be busy as a bee unveiling some early pieces from our Spring Collection. We’re excited to introduce our dresses to a whole new audience!

Cherry Velvet Spring 2016

For Spring, we’re releasing some of our favourite dresses in a variety of smashing prints.  Look forward to dresses like Brooke & Doris (with more to come!) in charming animal designs like Aqua Cat faces and Deer Butterfly along with some fetchingly bold geometric prints like Tangerine Stardust and Silly String. We’ve also found a beautiful floral border print in two gorgeous colours.

Cherry Velvet

Wait ’til you see these prints on our dresses!

New Crinolines available!

If you missed our announcement, we recently stocked our Crinoline section with new Chiffon crinolines in Black as well as a sugar rush of colours!

CherryVelvet_VintageCrinolineColours

We are currently offering these new deluxe crinolines at an introductory price of $99.
Due to limited quantities currently, we will also be offering pre-orders at the same price until the end of January! Have a peek, let us know what you think! 🙂

XOX Cherry Velvet