Cherry Velvet Sneak Peek!

Here it is! This is the first sneak peak of the new Cherry Velvet dress The Barbara. (ahem)

How wicked is this dress? We’ve added a sweet little sleeve and a cross over, sexy neckline. We have kept the fabulous pockets too! Here’s a preview of one of the edgier prints. This Good Luck Tattoo print features swallows, broken hearts, roses, and stars all on a gorgeous turquoise background.

Keep checking back here as we tease you with some more fab prints.

xoBarb 

Summer time and the living is easy…

What is your idea of the perfect summer day? When you look back at your past life do you ever have the feeling that those special feelings of long, lazy summer days are gone forever? Sometimes it seems like we can only remember but not quite grasp that feeling. It’s hard to imagine how it would feel for me now, having the whole summer off to hang out at the lake or camp with my family or just running wild in the neighbourhood. Life has become more complicated and life is so full of responsibilities, work and duties that it feels like an impossible dream. As I grow older I realize it’s more important than ever to grant myself the peace and joy of a summer vacation, even if it’s just for a few days.

Here are a few things that I like to do to try and stay sane and recapture that endless summer feeling.

  • Get outside. I try to spend as much time outdoors as possible when the weather is good, especially those hot summer days when sitting in the shade, trying to catch a breeze, wearing a big floppy hat and reading a great book are the only things on the agenda.
  • Add water to the occasion. A brisk swim in the ocean or a lake is a summer necessity for me. Better yet if I can spend a long summer day sitting by a pool, lake or on my favourite beach. When it’s not possible to go to the water I have been known to stick my feet in a wading pool or run through a sprinkler. It’s all good.
  • Eat something juicy. I love summer fruit and living where we do we have access to so many amazing local fruits and vegetables it would be a shame not to indulge. Ripe, sweet cherries heavy with juice from the Okanagan, peaches, plums, watermelons, and berries all feel like summer to me. Fresh corn on the cob from the Fraser Valley takes me right back to my childhood when we would ride our bikes to the farmers house down the street and buy freshly picked corn from a table manned by the youngest of the farm folk. Could there be corn so sweet anywhere else in the world?
  • Share time and food with friends and family. Picnics, barbeques or cocktails and snacks on a restaurant patio are all great ways to wind down, relax and enjoy the warm weather and warm friendships.
  • Enjoy a refreshing cocktail or a yummy fruity drink. Whether you like to add alcohol or keep it “virgin” there’s nothing like a frosty glass of something icy cold on a hot summer day.
I know everybody has  different ideas and different realities to contend with, for example, I don’t have children so I can indulge in my own fun whenever I like but I reckon if I had kids it would be a blast to try to recreate some of my past summer joy for them.
What is your favourite summer memory?
What takes you right back to endless summer?
xoBarb

Bikini. Would you dare?

I have always loved to swim and started taking lessons before I was tall enough to touch the bottom of the pool and breathe at the same time. This involved a lot of hopping up and down and although I didn’t pass that first year because I could only manage to swim under water and not on top of it, it certainly didn’t discourage me from loving the pool. I took lessons and then I learned life saving and I even raced for one summer although I was never really built for speed. I have always felt comfortable around water and swimming pools and for most of my life I also felt comfortable in a swimsuit.

You might think that this is the part were I tell you that I don’t swim any more because I feel too fat to be seen in a swimsuit. Not so. In fact when I went to the Mayan Riviera a couple of years ago I packed a couple of tankini swim suits only to find myself green with envy when I saw other big girls in actual bikinis. Where the heck did they get them? I asked around and it turns out that most of them had shopped in large American department stores to find their plus size bikinis. It just so happened that the next day a swimsuit company came and put on a fashion show around the pool at the resort and then set up a table to sell their wares. Yes, I will admit I may have had a few cocktails when I went over to the table and defiantly asked if they had a bikini that would fit ME. The woman dug around the pile of bikinis and pulled out a cute brown patterned suit and held it up to me. She told me I could try it on in the pool changing room before I bought it so off I went. The suit did fit. I put it on and walked out to the pool to pay for it. I felt…shy, empowered, proud, nervous, exposed. I also felt like it really didn’t matter to me if other people thought I was way too fat to wear a bikini. I didn’t know any of those people and I would probably never see any of them again anyway. Besides, there were some other larger woman wearing 2 piece suits, but I was bigger than them.

I wore that suit for the whole 2 weeks I was in Mexico. I developed a beautiful golden tan, I almost lost both pieces to  rogue waves more than once and I had several interesting conversations with people I barely knew about body image. I had decided that it didn’t matter. I decided it was none of my business what other people thought of me. I decided to wear a bikini in public. It was awesome!

xoBarb

All women have the right to BARE ARMS!

How do you feel about your arms? When it’s hot out and you see people wearing sleeveless tops and dresses what do you feel? Do you feel like you couldn’t possibly wear something sleeveless because your arms aren’t slim and trim? I used to feel that way too until one day I realized that I was denying myself the comfort and cuteness of sleeveless clothing because other people might be offended by my chubby upper arms. Really!

How did I change my way of thinking about this one body part? I guess I just realized that even if others thought my arms were too chunky to go sleeveless, their thoughts would be fleeting. The truth is, most people are too busy worrying about other things to give more than a passing thought to the circumference of your upper arms or even to notice that when you stopped waving goodbye to them your upper arms waved just a little longer.

Why do I go sleeveless?

Because it’s really none of my business what others think of me.

xoxBarb

Retro-style trims and fabric!

It’s been just over a week and we’re thrilled with the response we’ve had to our brand new vintage inspired dresses! Our debut style, called “The Charlotte” dress features retro trims such as guipere lace, crocheted lace and ric rac and an assortment of fabulous, premium 100% cotton prints!

 I can tell you we have already re-ordered more beautiful fabric! Lots more Polka dots and some brand new fabulous cheeky prints in our future shipment!  We’ll let you know as soon as they will be available!

XOX Cherry Velvet

Divas, Pin-Ups, and Hot Rods!

My-oh-my what a saucy Sunday we had!  This is Diva!, the lovely boutique of Rebecca and Michelle in Chilliwack, BC.  Michelle is wearing a Cherry Velvet dress in ‘Vintage Floral’ for the annual Village Classic Car Show (check out the gallery in this link, can you spot the CherryVelvet dress above?).  We got to oggle plentyof vintage beauties – both cars and pin-up pageant contestants!  

A big thank you to the girls of Diva!Boutique for inviting us to the show!

PS. The dresses above are available at Diva!Boutique in a great range of sizes, so show the girls some love!

xox CherryVelvet

The Dresses are Here!!

It was hard to contain the excitement in our office this morning as we waited for the very first batch of Cherry Velvet dresses.  And let me tell you, boy was it worth the wait! As soon as they came rolling in the ooohs and aaahs exploded as we all made a bee-line to see these beauties up close.  Favorites were soon proclaimed, and it wasn’t long before personal sizes were pulled off the rack and slipped over our heads.  (Well what did you think?! We were  going to torture ourselves all day just looking at them?)What happened next is every girl’s dream… The smooth sound of a zipper followed by the audible intake of breath as you see yourself in the mirror wearing a dress that fits like it was made especially for you.  And damn girl!  You look amazing. 

Oh, and we know we’ve created something really great when different sized women each find a perfect fit.  Whether you’re a pear, apple, hourglass, or rectangle, these are the dresses for you. So here they are in all their pretty glory.  We’re in love, what about you?

 

xoxo,

CherryVelvetPlus

Voluptous Vintage?

 There are so many styles I would love to wear but cannot find in my size. Why? I never understood why it was so hard to find good vintage styling in true plus sizing. Speaking of dresses specifically, there are so many styles out there that look amazing on the larger ladies but good luck fitting your curves into true vintage pieces, my theory is that the larger, fabulous vintage gear was worn a lot and didn’t necessarily survive to make it into vintage shops and retailers. It seems to me that most of the dresses in your local vintage shop are TINY and I wanted to know why. I called my good friend Natalie Kunow who owns Woo Vintage on Main Street in Vancouver and asked her what the deal is. She agreed with my theory and also had some ideas of her own.
– As we get older we get bigger and the cuteness factor of clothing back then went down as the sizing went up. Older means more conservative.
– People were smaller back in the day. The average size of women has increased considerably and it’s a well known fact that Marilyn Monroe was a dress size 14-16 but the truth is, in todays clothing she would be wearing a size 8. The numbers don’t mean the same as what they once did. That being said, I don’t think I’ve ever really seen a size 16 or 18 in a vintage clothing store and even if it was there it would fit much, much smaller.
– Up until the mid 60’s most women wore girdles. Iron clad foundation garments that would easily draw a woman’s waist in by 2-4 inches. Back then clothing was made with this in mind. A woman would conform her body to fit into the clothes and manufacturers would create clothing for the shape a woman should be.
Things have changed and in my fashion buying career I started looking into new garments with vintage styling. What I found was poorly graded sizing and tiny cuts that did not actually fit the sizes they were supposed to.  How dare they call something a size 3X only to have it fit no bigger than a standard size 14. What kind of message does that send to us curvy girls? The same message we have received again and again, we are not important enough to truly take our fit needs into consideration. I say nuts to that!
Cherry Velvet dresses fit all of you. From our ample behind to our stunning décolletage and everything in between. We want to look like vintage pin up girls too! We have so much to offer, now we have something to wear too…
 
Ready to debut! Our first Cherry Velvet Dress in the most adorable prints!