Photo by Isaac Harrell
Fashion stylist Bella Styles aims to inspire a fashion-forward attitude in women of all shapes and sizes. "I get a lot of curvy women taking chances on fashion after reading my blog," the East End resident says of her plus-size fashion website bellastyles.com . After working as a plus-size runway model along the East Coast, the 36-year-old blogger, who goes by the moniker Bella Styles, started her website in May 2010.
A regular contributor to Lucky magazine's website , Styles keeps herself busy locally producing fashion shows at Ashley Stewart and hosting fashion workshops downtown. She updates her blog almost daily with fashion advice, makeup tips and plus-size designer sales. "It's really about confidence in any size," she says.
RM: Where are the best shops to find plus-size women's fashion in Richmond?
BS: Dots Fashion at Willow Lawn, Ashley Stewart at The Shops at White Oak Village, Ross Dress for Less, Rainbow, Macy's and Dillard's.
RM: What styles best complement a curvy figure?
BS: If you have a lot of stomach, wear something with ruching that diverts the attention away from the stomach area. The A-line skirt is great for a triangle shape. I suggest wearing a belt with almost anything. Belts can make you have a waistline you never knew was there.
RM: What is your No. 1 advice for plus-size women?
BS: Don't go by sizing. If you're shopping in a lower-end store, if you're a size 16, you may have to get a size 20 because it's not going to be the best materials. Don't be self-conscious about having to get a larger size. Get it and look good in it.