Posts Categorized: ap contributors

Methuselah’s Hair

I find myself at a pretty interesting juncture in my life. I left my full time job early this year because the conditions were getting well on top of me, and I’ve been temping for a lovely little company ever since. The work is dull, but the people are nice and the pay is good. In a couple of weeks, however, my contract will end, and I’ll be out in the big wide world again.

run awayA beautiful quilt with a theme of “escape” from the talented quilters over at Textile Abstractions

Because I’ve had a couple of months to think it over, I’ve come up with SO MANY PLANS. I’m going to catch up on a bunch of medical appointments I should have gotten to ages ago; I’m going to rearrange my house; I’m going to start properly pitching my writing to as many outlets as possible; I’m going to start trying to make my Etsy store into a viable part time enterprise – but the thing I’m most keen to jump on the second this contract is over is my plan to shave my head. I’m gonna shave off the sides, then bleach it, then dye it ALL THE COLOURS. No matter what else I manage to get to during this little break, this plan is one I absolutely MUST get to.

46124d39499186502e2b7c5b98917f17I’m gonna shave it like this, and then make it red, then
make it blue, then make it purple, then…

You might wonder why my hair is the most important thing to me on that list. It seems like a relatively minor thing – and in the grand scheme of life, it absolutely is. But the thing is, I’ve never shaved off any of my hair, let alone two whole chunks of it. I’ve always WANTED to do it, but I always found an excuse not to. My boss will freak out, I don’t have the courage right now, blah blah etc etc. But now I’m 33, I feel like I need to do it RIGHT NOW because otherwise I’ll run out of time to do it. The other things on my list of plans don’t have a time limit as such – I feel like I can always come back to them if I need to. But when it comes to crazy hair, I’m scared if I continue to put it off and put it off,  eventually I’ll have missed my chance to do it at all.  I feel like the stars have aligned to allow me one last opportunity without an employer to worry about, before I get “too old” and  someone steps in to confiscate my bleach and clippers.

When does unusual hair become an awkward attempt to be “hip” and “down with the kids” instead of a fun experiment in style, exactly? Maybe there isn’t really such a thing as “too old.” If there is such a thing as “too old,” when is it? How much time do I have? No-one I’ve spoken to seems to be able to pinpoint a definite age, unfortunately. Everyone can point in the vague direction of, “You know, too old,” but that’s no help. “Old” is such a ridiculously nebulous word – when I was 21 being 33 seemed appallingly old. I expected to have a house and a sensible career and a professional wardrobe by now. Instead here I am, still shuffling around the house in my dressing gown with monkeys on it talking to my cat. Can I still be “too old,” even if I’m wildly immature? Does my immaturity raise or lower the age at which shaving my head and dying it pink gets weird? Whatever the specific age where “old enough” becomes “too old,” I fear this nebulous point might be closing in rapidly.


In terms of style experimentation, I largely wasted my 20′s. I know that’s when you’re supposed to do all this stuff, but I was always far too timid to do something as attention-getting as shaving off my hair. I dyed it black for a long time, and cut it quite short a couple of times, but that was as “wild” as I got. I expanded my wardrobe to include skirts that weren’t floor length at around 21, but only because my boss at the time kind of bullied me into it. I’ve been trying to go a whole week without wearing an all-black outfit to work for about six months now, and I still haven’t managed it. Hell, I’ve only just started figuring out how to do makeup beyond “lots of eyeliner” in the last year or so! Do I have to give up my glitter eyeshadow and bright purple dresses as well? Do I have to start dressing “like a grownup” already? I feel like I just got the hang of having fun with this whole style thing!

I know some of you are going to advise that I ignore other people’s opinions of what is and isn’t appropriate for someone of my age – and it’s not terrible advice.  But even if I don’t end up going back to office work, I’ll still need to be taken seriously in order to create an income for myself. As much as I love it, peacock blue hair doesn’t exactly scream “serious business lady” or “give me a massive loan,” you know? I wonder if it really has to be a deal-breaker, though, in this modern day and age. There are certainly people around far older than me with incredible colours in their hair who are also taken seriously.  Take Tish and Snooky, the ladies who founded the Manic Panic brand. They’ve been wearing and creating a veritable rainbow of hair colours since the 70′s, and show no sign of slowing down any time soon.


Sisters Tish and Snooky at the premiere of a movie celebrating legendary punk venue CBGB’s

I’m not sure I’ll ever have the je ne sais quoi to pull off pastel purple ringlets when I’m their age, but they certainly encourage me to get my kicks while I can. What do you think? Is there an age when it’s time to put away the glitter and the purple hair dye, to grow your mohawk back in and get a “sensible” haircut? Do you judge people past a certain age who still like to sport a thick streak of bright purple, or do you think everyone should be able to wear what they want for as long as they want?


Quilt image from Textile Abstractions

Red haired model image from Easy Hair Models

Elderly lady and child with mohawk image from Locker Gnome

Image of Tish and Snooky Bellomo, from Zimbio

_ _ _ _ _

The author of Reluctant Femme, Cassie is a queer thirty-something Australian who thinks too much, reads too much, and has way too many pretty things. Her writing revolves around exploring concepts of femme and femininity, feminism, and just how much glitter you really can fit into a polish before it’s unusable. You can catch up with her in shorter bursts on Twitter , look at pictures of her favourite pretty things on her Tumblr, and browse her shiny accessory creations at her Etsy store

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Gracey Wears: Elevated Basics

I am not a t-shirt and jeans kind of girl.  I am, however, an elevated t-shirt and jeans kind of girl:

Gracey of Fashion for Giants wears coral Gap jeans, a blue linen LOFT tee & a LOFT statement necklace


Gracey from Fashion for Giants wears coral Gap jeans, a blue linen tee, a LOFT necklace & Old Navy metallic flatsSpecifically, I’m a coral jeans, linen tee & metallic flats kind of girl.  They’re basics, they’re just elevated basics.  Instead of standard blue jeans, I chose a bright coral.  And instead of a plain cotton tee, I chose a boxy linen tee.  And, instead of neutral flats or, tennis shoes *shudder*, I chose a metallic, ankle strap flat.

By wearing variations of basic pieces that fit my colorful personal style, I can make a “classic” look work for me.

Oh, and I added a big ol’ necklace too:

Gracey from Fashion for Giants wears a chambray linen LOFT tee & LOFT statement necklaceGracey from Fashion for Giants wears a chambray linen LOFT tee & LOFT statement necklace

Because I happen to like big ol’ necklaces.

Thanks for reading, All!

 Get the Look
Jeans: Gap (similar)
Tee: LOFT (similar here, here & here)
Flats: Old Navy (similar here, here & here)
Necklace: LOFT (similar here, here & here)


**Disclosure: Actions you take from the hyperlinks within this blog post may yield commissions for See Already Pretty’s disclosure statement for more details.

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My name is Luanne and I have fat arms

Weesha wear Forever 21 plus size maxi dress, New Look gladiator sandals, Forever 21 long necklace, Bershka statement necklaceWeesha wear Forever 21 plus size maxi dress, New Look gladiator sandals, Forever 21 long necklace, Bershka statement necklaceWeesha wears Topshop beetle bracelet, Forever21 bangles, h & m rings, Mizz Chatz eye ringWeesha wear Forever 21 plus size maxi dress, New Look gladiator sandals, Forever 21 long necklace, Bershka statement necklaceDress- Forever 21 Plus (out of stock, similar here)

Statement necklace- Bershka (out of stock, similar here)

Long pendant necklace- Forever 21

Rings- h & m, Eye ring- Miss Chatz (similar)

Beetle bracelet – Topshop (old)

Bangles- Forever 21

Gladiator sandals- New Look

Bag- Michael Kors

You’re looking at someone who has accomplished a major milestone in her journey of body positivity. Although it seems trivial to some, there are lots of plus size women who are insecure about showing their upper arms and I used to be one of them. It’s something I’ve tried to overcome for a while but I just couldn’t get myself to walk out the door without a cover up. It’s an insecurity I’ve had ever since I was a kid, and it’s been a source of frustration for me recently. There are so many plus size bloggers and women around me who rock sleeveless or strapless clothing, and look amazing. I wanted to be as inspirational as them. I didn’t want to be older and still hiding behind a cardigan or blazer, I was fed up of the control it had over me because it basically meant that I was letting other people’s opinions decide how I should dress.

To sum it up, it was the fear of letting myself be vulnerable that was holding me back. I might be a strong woman but what if it just took one rude comment to knock me down into a pile of negativity? I’m very protective of all the hard work I’ve put in to overcome my body issues.

So here’s how I did it – I’ve been building myself up for it for a while but instead of letting myself over think it as usual, I just walked out the door in a sleeveless dress. You know what’s the funny part? Nobody around me cared. Nobody stared at me or commented on my fat arms, it was no big deal. I’ve also had to deal with the fact that I personally felt like my fat arms were ugly and made me look bigger, but I keep forcing myself to wear something sleeveless everyday and instead of trying to ignore how big my arms are, I acknowledge that they are big and it’s OK. I remind myself to appreciate their functional value rather than dwell on their size.

It’s been working well so far, I’m really enjoying this feeling of accomplishment and I love how empowered I feel because I know I’m  not only defying the fashion “rules” but I’m also breaking my own. The fresh new perspective on my existing wardrobe is an added bonus too, every sleeveless dress I own feels new!

**Disclosure: Actions you take from the hyperlinks within this blog post may yield commissions for

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