I am Oyama Botha a Miss Curvy from South Africa, who is passionate about empowering women first and men to love themselves radically, whether big or small .Furthermore, advocating that societal opinions about yourself shouldn't hinder on your progress in life towards achieving the BEST YOU.
I am often known for breaking society's "rules" on what should be perceived as the normative yardstick of how a beautiful woman should be like.
#RadicalSelfLove is thee hash tag.
This is a
platform I use to write about #RadicalSelfLove and the amazing things you reach
when you are able to radically love yourself. This is also where I empower
women, first and then men to love themselves radically, whether big or small. Furthermore,
advocating that societal opinions about yourself should never hinder your
progress in life, towards achieving the BEST YOU. I am often known for breaking
society's "rules" on what should be perceived as the normative
yardstick of how a beautiful woman should be like.
As a fully figured woman, I am aware of the struggle of
finding the perfectly fitting pieces of clothing. As a result, the fashionista
in me is always looking for amazing items to wear, then sharing outfit details
with the world, so that we can all SLAY together!
Top 6 tips for dressing for your body
I have received acknowledgements regarding my dress sense
and how I am able to incorporate the latest trends and make them to fit my
personality, style and body. What I have found very alarming is that people normally
look at an item of clothing from someone and immediately, ask where it is
purchased, without considering how it would fit their body type.
Therefore, these are the top size
tips you should always consider when dressing yourself:
type awareness is a THING:
Knowing what your
body type is allows you to easily look up for clothing items that will best
suit your body type. My body, for example is an hour glass figure, which
implies my top and bottom are proportionately heavy. Therefore, when I look for
clothing items, I know I will not look for items that will not be flattering to
an hour glass body type. For example, tulle/tutu skirts, for me, are usually
very unflattering, while they always look great on pear shaped body types, who
are heavy either on top or on the bottom parts of their bodies.
Comfortable clothing is BOMB!
There is nothing
more painful than watching someone being very uncomfortable in the clothes that
they are wearing. The right fit and cut is always essential, not only will comfortable
clothing stop people from starring and feeling sorry for you, but it will make
a huge difference in your self-confidence because when something fits right,
you automatically feel good and it will definitely show.
Jumpsuit: Ruff Tung
Shoes: The Fix
3.Recreating and challenging trends is
This point should
have probably been number one, simply because the act of following trends is
always easily done, however, most of the times people are not mindful that
trends not only come and go, but not every trend is aimed at every body type.
This means some body types would need to recreate and challenge trends to suit
their body types. For example, being the fully figured woman that I am, with an
hour glass body type; wearing bold stripes as a trend is totally acceptable,
but in order to ensure the stripes look flattering on my body, I normally go
for vertical stripes, as they blend in nicely with my body type. Whereas, a
pear shaped body type, that is heavy only on the bottom can simply get away
with wearing horizontal stripes tops, as this will stretch out the top area to
give the body an equally proportionate look. Not only will this be flattering because
you would have recreated a trend that accentuates the best parts of your
specific body type but you would have also made sure that it will never go out
matters, A LOT:
Wearing the right
undergarments can do so much for your self-confidence, comfortability and
change the entire look to an outfit. For example, wearing an embroidered bra on
a tight cotton t-shirt, is not a great idea, as the bra can show through the
t-shirt, in a not so flattering way. Always find tricks to work with your
undergarments. For example, I have found some tricks on turning a normal bra to
be able to be wearable with my strapless clothing items, without the bra
showing. Lastly, always be mindful of how a simple thing like the colour of the
bra you wear can make a drastic change to your outfit.
be afraid to mix and match, PLEASE:
Get into shops
that you would not normally purchase from, whether it be shops that have cheap
items, second hand clothing or shops that you think would not normally have
your size. You would be surprised at the versatile items you will find and be
able to mix and match to complete your outfits.
Confidence, Confidence, Confidence…like I MEAN!
is my driving force for every outfit I wear. I have found that there would be
days where I would wear the exact same outfit thinking it would look exactly
like the previous time I have worn it and for some odd reason, I would not like
how it sits and I have found that in most cases, it was because I wasn’t
feeling so confident wearing it the second time around. When you’re confident when
putting your clothes on, you automatically feel good and your outfit will
totally vibe with you!
Dress: Khosi Nkosi
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I remember hitting puberty VERY hard that my first bra wasn’t one of those cotton sports bras but a proper wired nude bra....my boobs had grew so quickly that I got to a point where buying bras was such a hassle and struggle because at that young age the only thing I was concerned about was to still feel pretty in pretty bras...unfortunately even if I found pretty bras they came with huge tags!
BUT OF COURSE I jumped for joy when @donnagirlsa announced their new lingerie line that has literally almost every sizes up to 48E AND the best part of that the bras are soooo pretty and sexy, they feel so amazing, sexy and they have the most comfortable straps and while you expect them to be ridiculously priced...my heart jumped for joy knowing how affordable they are too!
I was fortunate enough to having been one of the models to model as a live mannequin at one of their lingerie launches in Cape Town...the event was a show stopper, where else have you ever seen fabulous big girls as mannequins?
The most humbling experience was when I was walking around the shop and having people admire the same boobs I was once teased about in my younger years...this has taught me that when you finally learn to love the parts that some may find not appealing..that this is when the magic happens. Two lovely ladies came into the shop and straight to pointing at my boobs and the first thing they said was "ooh my word! it fits so perfectly" and before you know it, we were having fat chats(pun intended ;) ) about the struggles of finding the perfect bras and I was so happy to have been the one to show them the amazing bras Donna Fashion had in stores and how their faces lit up from the experience of finding bright colourful bras that are sexy, comfy and could fit perectly!
Thank you DONNA FASHION for making me part of your lingerie launch it was everything AND MORE! Who knew being a live mannequin would be such a show stopping experience! I look forward to more GREAT THINGS together
Ps; they also have theee best denim jeans in ALLLL sizes!!
Thank you Donna Fashion for backing the big girls!
Age 12 puberty hits, thighs get bigger but the mind is still tiny. You start feeling embarrassed about wearing anything short because "fat people don't wear short things" while you walk around with skinny friends rocking the same shorts.
At age 15 you're degraded and your body is constantly sexualised because when the norm has always been "skinny girls in shorts" when you see a fat girl wearing shorts it becomes a shock as people's thinking is still very narrow and enforces societal's "ideal standards"
This very age was an age I remember being at Foschini picking out two pairs of shorts and going to to till point in excitement, that I finally found shorts that fitted me perfectly....and I was sadly confronted with the disappointment from my father who said "No Oyama can't be wearing such short things" luckily my mother took my side and explained I was merely a kid and this is the exact stuff I should have been wearing....
My goodness wearing shorts after that debate had never been the same.
So I'd constantly wear them when I'm at home and take them off when I needed to be somewhere.
I even remember wearing them in boarding school and taking pictures on the hallway and running back to my room every time I heard someone coming (Poor thing!)
Even at the age 17, I was called into the office by the hostel's superintendent's husband who literally told me I can't be wearing short things...based on a cute skirt I had just bought from legit to go play with(Picture Below) What is shocking to know is the exact skirt I had wasn't even as short as the every skinny girl in hostel who literally lived in booty shorts and never received these comments
Growing up you don't realize what their socialization does.However, I've always had a fighting spirit within me and always fought the "normative yardstick"
I remember my mother bought me a shorts jumpsuit(pictures below)and I had never gained the confidence to wear it until a time I was away at a friend's for a weekend and I wore it and asked the friend to take pictures of me...I couldn't believe how beautiful they looked and how good they made me felt to a point that I decided to go back to hotel wearing the jumpsuit and goodness me! The stares I received 😂
Anyway....this "fat girls cant wear shorts" situation became so lit that I was called again to the office based on a dress I wore for grade 11 dance(picture below)🙄😱 to a point that the teachers even called my parents to have a talk with me hehhe just imagine!
It's been real hard growing up constantly being told what you should and shouldn't wear because of people's own judgments and inability to change their mindsets and stop sexualising fat girls.
The shorts I wear are really NOT for your pleasure and fat girls rising and being in bikinis is not in anyway trying to prove a point....we have reached a point of celebrating ourselves and being comfortable enough to come at all the things they said we wouldn't do so STOP dictating our stories...you'll get uncomfortable until you're used to it!
We also don't need anyone to stuff their own convictions in our journey to #RadicalSelfLove
There's more to is than your preconceived ideas of seeing a fat girl in shorts.
Faki'mali uzobona 😂jokes
I happen to be a UCT triple major graduate whose on her route to a second belt with 3+jobs....so maybe you can focus on that and let me flourish in my fat girl shorts ✊🏽#Zweeerh
I also think it is important to acknowledge that a person can be multifaceted: you are allowed to be smart, read books, hustle, be a believer and twerk...PLEASE ALLOW!!
Jacket Top: The Fix
Shorts: The Fix
Watch: Anne Klein
Hoop Earnings: Stylist's own
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I was reminded of a few reasons why I started the blog and the fundamental one that stood out the most was the hashtag #RadicalSelfLove and remembering what comes with it. I was reminded that the celebration of body positivity, self worth, self love and self respect all play a huge role in the hash tag.Thus, I needed a physical reminder to embrace that, hence I went forth to asked for ladies who wanted to be part of the campaign and to my surprise the response was very positive.
On the day of the campaign we faced so many hurdles(excuse me, this was my very first campaign). BUT it makes my heart smile knowing how beautiful the day ended.
We danced, jammed, laughed, shyed away, hyped each other, ate and took loads of pictures.....WAIT FOR IT; the day was so GREAT that we ended up at Sandy Bay (which is apparently a nude beach) and BOOOOOY did we take advantage, stripped and had loads of fun celebrating the differences in our bodies.
This was a perfect day where love was shared, women were empowered and the quote "celebrating another woman's beauty does not take away from yours' was manifested.
A huge thank you to Lwando for the amazing pictures and the amazing ladies that featured in the campaign; do follow them at @plussizebeast @peaceful_giftts @gigicrownedinhercurls and @tsholula__d
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MAXHOSA BY LADUMA was the theme for my night! Naturally of course: Intombi yom'Xhosa for Maxhosa
With the initial invitation from the man himself; I immediately got super stoked about attending the show. With the initial venue being in Camps Bay, that got me more excited. On the initial date when the shows were cancelled, I met with Laduma and the sister, Lihle whose also an absolute gem! I received the news from them that the show had been cancelled and that the organizers of Fashion Week would postpone the shows and set new dates.Although this came as a disappointment, I thought to myself: "perhaps the fashion Gods are with me" because Yammie did not have a clue on what she was going to wear that evening.
Anyway... fast forward to the 8th of April after the confirmed RSVPs and organizing outfit details; It was confirmed that the new venue was going to be at the Salt River Studios. On this day I had gone to the beach earlier on and naturally I was running late. However, once I got dressed in a rush and left with my girl, I got to the venue and luckily I was greeted by Lihle who informed us that the shows were running an hour later: 'shucks! I thought to myself! this is why I am always late!" surely I should have just calmed down and took a longer shower you know?
First things first in any fashion show...you HAVE to take a picture of yourself with the black printed background on the red carpet, while taking turns with others...because you know you have to go and show the world that you were also part of the show, and if you don't have THAT picture...were you really there?
NOW FOR THE JUICE?
PEOPLE AT FASHION WEEK ARE SO STUCK UP! my gosh! even celebrities are sour wanting to be recognized as being great, but because everyone else think they also great...the aura in the room just gets so tense with people trying to look like mannequins at an exclusive boutique! MY WORD! My bubbly self was ready to great everyone, take pictures and shower a lot of them with compliments... but DOLOLO! This aura is something that has been happening since I started attending the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cpt shows and it is really disappointing considering that I always expect it to be a space where designers can mingle with their people and everyone could network and utilize the space in a conducive manner
Nonetheless, I ended the night with a beautiful show by Maxhosa which made me forget about all the drama. The pieces were too die for. One day when I am able to afford an expensive lifestyle I'll surely get this beautiful dress which was also part of the show.
📸 by: @luciapetschnig
For now, I'll be rocking my Maxhosa sock game that I wore that evening and BE GREAT!
Noun. quaintrelle (plural quaintrelles) (obscure) A woman who emphasizes a life of passion expressed through personal style, leisurely pastimes, charm, and cultivation of life's pleasures.
Yes! From now on...that's my middle name!
I know what you're thinking🙈..."LOOK AT HER ACTING LIKE SHE HASN'T BEEN MIA FOR A WHOLE YEAR"
Oops! My bad...you know sometimes when you've been through the most, it's imperative that you recharge in order to gain the "after mgowisho glow glow"
Besides, I have been really encouraged by various peers and strangers coming up to me and asking about the blog, to my shock I was so humbled learning that males also read it!(Thank you ALL)
WITH THAT BEING SAID; I won't be deep for this post...I am just here to show you THE #RADICALSELFLOVE glow...The glow I attained while I decided I was enough and deserve so many great things in this life.... so I'll just leave you with these pictures and outfit details (I'll be adding outfit details for most of my blog posts this year as I have been getting a lot of question regarding my outfit details from my lovely ladies)
ps: I really shop at the most affordable places and just mix and match with any expensive items I have(if required).
Top: The Fix SA
Jeans: The Fix SA
Shoes: Mr Price SA
Hair: Darling One Million in Pink Ombre
Kisses from me!
The aim is to always go for something that will be able to style and looks flattering on your body...you really don't have to follow trends or go for just expensive items all the time
The dictionary defines self-worth as “the sense of one's own value or worth as a person. Google.... search results for "self worth":
"In sociology and psychology, self-esteem reflects a person's overall emotional evaluation of his or her own worth. It is a judgment of oneself as well as an attitude toward the self. Self-esteem encompasses beliefs (for example, "I am competent," "I am worthy") and emotions such as triumph, despair, pride and shame."
Mhmm.. I think to myself...
SO MUCH depth is in this definition and I will try and unpack it linking it to the growth I've experienced through experiences; since I last blogged.in June (hides)
Firstly, let me just add how important the value of one's attitude is towards themselves...you see myself for one, see so much significance in reminding myself of how great I am, honey even if you don't believe it: constantly wake up & face your imperfectly perfect mirror image as you shower your flaws with compliments and reminding yourself of your greatness in the skin and body that you're in...
One more thing I do is to treasure memories through images, as a result when ever I feel down I would go back to these as a reminder of the love that I am surrounded with and the fact that there is so much more in life than what I currently go through. (Now you know the real reason why I have so many images..lol there is actually more I have that are personal and I keep to myself for just reminders) What I do at times is takes pictures even during the most stressful time of my life and being able to look back at them when I am smiling again is such a beautiful feeling!
In all honesty, we all do feel lonely sometimes, therefore having reminders of your self-worth and that there are people out there to talk to becomes so important, especially in a world where you could be surrounded with the irony of being alone while there are so many people around you.
Personally; I believe in sharing my stories as a way not to only inspire but to let you know that you are not alone.
If anything that I grasped this year is that moments are temporary and you are responsible to select how you learn from them and which ones do you keep as treasured memories. Look: you WILL face disappointment even from your own family and the people you love, you WILL also fail, be saddened, be hurt, have happiness...BUT remember that YOU are responsible for these moments; you determine how long they last...so if you are going through the worse tribulation: it is HARD but it does get better especially when you talk things through and also remembering that the situation will never determine your worth; so PICK yourself up.
With happiness; It's easy...REALLY it is, the best advice this year that I received is: CONSTANTLY DO WHATEVER MAKES YOU HAPPY! and if there is toxic things standing in your way from attaining happiness-REMOVE!
Truth is: we all want to be happy and we will all strive to do what makes us happy(this can be at an expense of someone's happiness:make sure that is NOT you)
Recovering: CRY honey! throw yourself on the bathroom floor if need be, vent if you want to and let all the emotions out...if someone is doing you wrong: keeping it to yourself will only pain you harder...REALEASING HELPS! (like I said I am stating this from experience). However, like I always say; when you stand up from that floor; make sure that those tears are drained and that you never cry about the same thing again...remind yourself that the situation does not determine your worth and that you are a bad ass recovering warrior that will get through whatever it is STRONGER!.
Personally; I surround myself with reminders for instance I had my wallpaper to the image below:
Ps: There are smiles with hidden tales around you...always and forever be kind.