California Dreaming: Being Fearless in White

Thursday, May 25, 2017

A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality. ~ Yoko Ono

I am not a fan of wearing white. 

So when planning this trip with Alysse of Ready to Stare and we were discussing what we would wear, I was shocked when I found myself suggesting we do a white look.

Maybe the fashion gods possessed me in that moment?  Yikes.

I have been on this journey of venturing outside my comfort zone for the last few years and fashion is a big part of that. Every time I wear something that I have never worn before or thought I couldn't wear, I feel so empowered and free. My confidence continues to be more consistent when I make decisions for me and not for others.

But those choices are never easy. 

The day we decided to shoot our images, Alysse showed me this California Dreaming mural and she thought it would be perfect for our white looks. So thus began our journey to finding this mural and dealing with a fear that Alysse herself was trying to overcome.

Alysse admitted to me that she hated to drive, especially in big cities and in major traffic. Well, everyone knows LA traffic is crazy. She knew going in that this would be a major huddle for her to overcome as I don't drive. Yeah, I'm a true New Yorker. The subway is my car.

Watching Alysse spend 5 days driving in LA traffic, where we had so many places to visit and go, even venturing into Orange County, I was in awe. Just as I wore that two piece swimsuit in public at Venice Beach, she made the choice to drive in traffic despite her anxiety about it.

The best thing about our friendship is that we get each other and we support one another. That support becomes empowerment for both of us. We are not afraid to tell the other if we are freaking out or need a moment. We have that unconditional love for each other and give each other a safe space to not feel guilty or judged for our fears.

After watching her be fearless in her driving, Alysse empowered me to rock this white look and not stress about it. I don't like to get dirty and I was always told white makes you look fatter. I thought, well, if she can conquer her fear of driving in heavy traffic and big cities, I can wear white.

And you know what? The world did not come to an end. I didn't get dirty and I certainly didn't look bigger. I actually looked amazing!

Ironically, the pink bottom part of the wall was dirty and it bothered me at first. I didn't even want to shoot near the wall. And then I was thinking about me wearing white and not looking great. It was in that moment that I had to change that conversation with myself. 

I told myself that the dirty wall was actually cool because it represented the grittiness of LA against the prettiness of the mural -- LA is beautiful despite being gritty. And I told myself that I can look great in whatever I wear because I know how to dress my body lovingly and I know my style.

Once I changed how I was talking to myself, I became happy and so confident in my Burnout Floral Fit and Flare Dress from Lane Bryant. It did help that the dress was comfortable and had stretch. I paired the dress with Lane Bryant's Faux-Suede Mule in Taupe to give some color to the look. I added a necklace and purse I've had for years, to finish the look. I'm wearing a size 26/28 in the dress and a size 9W in the shoes.

I love a fit and flare dress because it shows off my waist and offers room for my hips. Those days of me hiding my upper arms are over too! My wings are free!

This was yet another moment during our LA trip where I lived fully and pushed through my anxiety and ventured out of my comfort zone. And it was because of Alysse, who conquered her own fear of driving in big cities. Our friendship continues to inspire me to live my best life NOW.

During our mission to find this mural, we ended up seeing so much street art in Los Angeles that it became a mini street mural tour too!

Alysse said best in her blog post about our California Dreaming adventure:

So what's the lesson? Travel. Wear white. Get lost. Face your fears. And never let anyone else tell you what you can do. 

You can shop my look below:

You can shop Alysse's look below:

Tie Front Fit and Flare Dress from Lane Bryant

Stay tuned to our blogs for more of our California adventures! And don't forget to follow us on Instagram and Facebook to see even more photos. @readytostare  @fearlesslyjustme

Click here to read about Alysse's California Dreaming experience and see what she wore from Lane Bryant.

*This post is in collaboration with Lane Bryant but all thoughts and opinions are my own. This post also contains some affiliate links and I'll earn a small commission if you shop through them.  This is one of the ways I can continue to bring you inspiring content. Thank you!

1 comment

  1. Rocking those dresses, ladies! :) Women with lipoedema (and other larger women too, obvs) also deserve nice clothing, but it can be tricky finding stuff that fits AND that looks good.