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About the design cooperation
I wanted to keep things firmly in the category of 'simple statement' - things you could wear every day, but which would still spark interest from the people you meet,” comments Bethany. “The bright shades are meant to be worn together with no fear of clashing or conventional wisdom around colours, but they're also easy to pair with neutrals if you want to keep things low-key.
Describing her vision for how to wear the collection, Bethany says:
This beautiful cobalt duster coat isn't so heavy that you have to save it for deepest winter, and is easy to throw on to give an outfit a pop of colour. I love wearing it with the green trousers because I'm a colour-rebel and I think blue and green should always be seen. As for the gingham shirt - I love pink, I love gingham and I love a ruffle detail. Utterly feminine, fresh and pretty, this was my one concession to print in this otherwise colour blocked collection. I always wear my shirts buttoned up to the neck for a smart, slightly boyish look, and this shirt would be no different. The flounces on the shoulders give it the little twist I need from my clothes.
navabi carries the world’s biggest selection of plus size brands and styles and is committed to ensuring that plus size women enjoy the same fashion choices as other women and can use fashion as a form of empowerment and expression. The collaboration is a reflection of this ethos and more collections with influencers will follow this year. As Bethany says:
Although we have more choice than ever in the world of plus size fashion, there are still some pieces I've always dreamed of wearing that I've never had access to in my size. Putting those pieces into my own wardrobe was the logic behind this collection, and hopefully those pieces will speak to you too.
Meet the influencerName, job Bethany Rutter, social editor at navabi
Career path / highlights I’ve been blogging since 2011 and had a career as a journalist before being offered the job at navabi. In the time since I started my blog, some highlights have been appearing in a national ad campaign for a plus size brand, having my blog featured in the New York Times, writing fashion features for national magazines and most of all, getting this job!
If I would be a piece of clothing, I would be ... A really great coat. I can’t get enough of outerwear.
What are you working on at the moment that's really inspiring you? I’ve really enjoyed running the navabi Blog Awards! It’s been so good to feel the love for all the plus size bloggers nominated.
Who would you most like to work with and why? Beth Ditto! She’s been my guiding light for so many years, she’s given me so much and I would just love to talk to her for my podcast.
What do you associate with the term plus size? It’s my identity! It’s a label I’ve based so much of my career around and I love it.
How would you describe your style? A bit rough around the edges and generally quite casual but always finished with perfect makeup.
If there was one thing you could change about the fashion industry what would it be? I think there’s still a lack of choice. I don’t think the plus size world has really, fully got on board with the idea that we should have the same kind of variety as thin women have.
How would your friends describe you? Charming, assertive, affectionate, strong-willed. I think, anyway.
Advice you would give your younger self? If you learn the Arabic alphabet in the first week of class you’ll be able to keep up, but you won’t, so don’t sweat it.
How would you describe your collection? Bold colour-blocking, everyday wearable statement pieces.
What is the look and feel of the collection? Everything is done in solid colours and I’ve tried to keep details structural rather than fussy.
Why did you design the pieces you did? Because they’re what I want to wear and haven’t been able to!
What are your favorite brands? Manon Baptiste- it’s where I’ve got all my most chic summer stuff from this year.
What is your favorite trend? Off-the-shoulder tops! So flirty.
About the collection
I'm an outerwear obsessive so it was natural that I was going to design a coat. This beautiful cobalt duster coat isn't so heavy that you have to save it for deepest winter, and is easy to throw on to give an outfit a pop of colour. I love wearing it with the green trousers because I'm a colour-rebel and I think blue and green should always be seen.
I never met a pink jacket I didn't like, but the one pink outerwear piece that's missing from my wardrobe is a blazer. This one's longline, ultra-wearable and blessed with red lining for some statement colour-clash. I would wear this with more red, or over a plain neutral outfit.
I naturally gravitate towards trousers when I get dressed, but I don't always want to wear jeans. I decided to design a super-bright pair of red trousers to pair with a breton top or a plain black tee when I want my trousers to do the talking rather than my top. I have big hips, and the way these have been designed with elasticated panels in the waistband will make it easier to get a good fit on the waist and hips.
Something I wanted to do with this collection was create wearable clothes with a statement twist, and these trousers with the bow-waist are exactly that. The colour packs a punch and the paperbag waist with the bow are perfect for people who, like me, love to tuck their tops into their trousers.
The bold, striking blue of this top makes enough of a statement that I wanted to keep the other details simple. This beautiful, peacock-inspired jewel tone will look standout on everyone. I designed a sleek, wearable long-sleeve top with subtle gathered sleeves that I would wear tucked into a high-waisted skirt or trousers.
I love pink, I love gingham and I love a ruffle detail. Utterly feminine, fresh and pretty, this was my one concession to print in this otherwise colourblocked collection. I always wear my shirts buttoned up to the neck for a smart, slightly boyish look, and this shirt would be no different. The flounces on the shoulders give it the little twist I need from my clothes. Being a pink fanatic, I would definitely wear it with more pink, like the bold hot pink skirt from this range, or maybe tucked into the red trousers.
Even though in recent times I've gravitated more towards navy, when I was little I was always drawn to clothes in bold, bright reds. This sleek but wearable shift dress with gathered sleeves makes a real statement with its colour which is sure to turn heads at every opportunity.
When I wear a dress, I always feel most comfortable in a shirt dress with a tie at the waist. I've always thought that my ideal dress would be a kelly green shirt dress with a bow around the waist, and now I've got one. This sumptuous, beautiful green will help you stand out from the crowd.
A shape that looks good on pretty much everyone and a colour that will brighten up your wardrobe, this A-line skirt in a cute midi length is a total outfit asset. Wear with heels or flats, it'll look totally elegant either way. Oh, and it comes complete with pockets- every woman's dream.
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