Hi loves! Last month I spent a few days in Portland, Oregon with Catherines and the lovely Nicole from Curves on a Budget and Maddy Jones, Editor-in-Chief of Plus Model Magazine. In true Catherines fashion, they don’t tell us where we’re going or what we’re doing until it’s about to happen. That element of surprise, on top of everything I’m about to share with you, made this one of the best trips of my life. Let me tell you more about it. Our Pacific Northwest adventure began with cocktails in the lobby of the The Nines Hotel, followed by dinner on the rooftop at Departure. I wore the Moonlight Stripe Dress (3X). This dress is made for a girls night out! The black and white stripes and flowy movement around the hem made me feel oh so chic and pulled together without trying too hard. Day two started off with great heights. Like, literally. We rode the Portland Aerial Tram to get a sky high view of the city. The tram itself is a futuristic-looking silver bubble and the views are breathtaking.The views kept getting better as we explored the Portland Japanese Garden. The garden is a place of peace and tranquility. It offers an escape to slow down and connect with nature without leaving the city. I looove denim, so I was living for my denim-on-denim outfit. I wore the Joliet Denim Shirt (3XP) and Knit Jean (2XP). High five to Catherine’s for thinking of petites! I layered the New Timeless Tank (3X) under the chambray to breakup the blue tones. All of these pieces offered breathability, flexibility, and casual-chic vibes for exploring the city.
After lunch at a local spot, we experienced another gorgeous part of Portland - the International Rose Test Garden. This place is incredible. There are 7,000 rose bushes on-site. Wearing my fave red lipstick, the Knit Jean (2XP), and Pattern Play Top (3X), this slightly edgy outfit helped me stop and smell the roses. This top was a fun way for me to play with pattern, something I normally don’t do, while sticking to colors I love and wear often.
Just when we thought our views couldn't get any better, Catherines took us to Sauvie Island. Located ten miles north of Portland, this island is home to wildlife and farmland. Our first stop on the island: a lavender farm! Envision the smell of your favorite lavender oil and multiply that by infinity. That's what it is like to be on a lavender farm. Surrounded by the country stillness, we picked lavender from the many rows of plants with the biggest smiles on our faces. Amazing, heavenly, surreal — no words can do justice to the happiness we felt on the farm.We ended the extraordinary day with dinner in a meadow at The Croft Farm. Sounds like a dream, right? It really was! Danielle Firle created a vintage-inspired table setting and spectacular food and drinks made from local ingredients. This spot will always be special because it’s where all of us connected and formed an IRL friendship. Sitting at that table, with the sun setting behind us, I had to stop myself from crying as I felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude. Ugh. My eyes are getting watery right now just thinking about it. During that dinner I felt tremendous thanks and joy for my life, this trip, and the company of these women. My foundation for almost every look was the Underwire Perfect T-Shirt Bra (48D). With help from the adjustable straps and band, the cups kept “the girls” lifted and supported all day long. I love the plunging cut, too, as most things I wear have a v-neck or scoop neckline. Here I’m also wearing the Cotton Hi-Cut Brief (3X) and Lingerie Collection Robe (3X). I’ve never taken photos in intimates before, but strangely enough I wasn’t nervous to do so. I felt confident and beautiful in my own skin. I’m happy I took them and I’m even happier to share them with you. It’s important for them to be seen because people on the larger side of plus are not represented enough in plus size fashion. For my big girls and guys, especially my apple shapes, I see you and I hope you see some part of yourself in these photos. You are beautiful, enough, and worthy of all life has to offer. Day three was all about the stunning Oregon coast. We headed to Cannon Beach, home of Haystack Rock from The Goonies, to soak up the sun and twirl in wind. I’m glad I wore the Knit Jean (2XP) because it’s seriously so soft, high waisted, and easy to cuff if you want to get your feet in the water. I paired the jeans with the Folk Song Top (2X) because I love anything off the shoulder. The ruffle adds a romantic touch that makes it versatile for any occasion. After we were done chillin’ on the beach, we explored the nearby forest, then made our way to Ecola Point to get an awesome view of the ocean. To switch my look from day to night, I swapped the Knit Jean for the New Refined Pant (3X). The straight leg fit offers plenty of room in the legs and waist. These pants are also available in petite. Every night I would unwind in my Summer Vibes Sailboat Sleep Set. I’m actually wearing them right now as I write this post lol The shirt says, “Whatever floats your boat,” which has been one of my fave things to say since junior high. The relaxed fit tank and shorts are bright pink with little sailboats, making them cute and cozy for a good night’s sleep. Our last day in the City of Roses was bittersweet since we knew our time together was coming to an end. We spent the morning exploring downtown Portland. I wore the Soft Breeze Top (3X) with dark denim and gold accessories. This top has more of a sporty vibe thanks to the mesh overlay. The tassels are a cute touch, too. All afternoon and well into the night, we hung out at the coolest place ever. The Vintages Trailer Resort houses classic trailers from the 1940s - 1960s. After we settled in, I went for a walk around the resort in my Inspire Active Tee (3X) and Energy Active Leggings (3X). I love this activewear! I’ve worn it quite a few times since returning from the trip. The colorblock tee gives my upper body plenty of room to stretch and move. The capri leggings are great for walking or jogging because they don’t roll down my stomach. Plus, the pops of neon and cutouts are so fresh! Later that evening, we changed into something a little bit more glamorous to celebrate our last night together. I wore the Southwest Belted Dress (3X) for a classic fit and flare silhouette. There was laughter all around as we sat at the table drinking wine, snacking on a charcuterie platter, and playing an intense game of Jenga. People always say Portland is so cool, quirky, and hipster, but no one ever talks about its beauty. The City of Roses is filled with grace, charm, and warmth. I am so thankful I experienced PDX with the phenomenal Catherines team and Nicole and Maddy, two ladies I can call the best of friends. We will always have Catherines and Portland to thank for that.Photography by Christina Emilie.Thanks to Catherines for sponsoring this post. All thoughts and opinions are honest and my own. <3