Where did the journey begin?

A short ‘blog’story of were it all begun for me

I may look like a newcomer to the plus size blogging community, but alas I’m not. This journey all began back for me in 2013 with a blog titled ‘Tabitha Stitch It’, I just got married to my now hubby, moved out of the city to the outskirts of Southampton and lived with my two cats. I know, it was a crap name, but stick with me, actually the name was supposed to be a play on words of the Beatrix Potter character Tabitha Twitchit. I thought, at the time, it reflected my love for recycling and redesigning clothes, but actually sounds more like a gang member from the Peaky Blinders. One of my first re-vamps in those days was a leather jacket that I covered in studding, and to be fair I still own that jacket today. I didn’t do large projects, mainly customisation and hemming but it gave me the freedom at the time to adapt shapeless and boring plus wear into something more young, I was only 25 here.

Like a stupid arse, I completely deleted that blog and all my posts when I re-branded myself in 2014, what a stupid decision. Luckily for you lot, the Facebook archive still has some of my original blog shots, so please enjoy. Apparently at this stage I was unaware that photographs could be taken outside of the home…..

Small disclaimer here, at this point in my life I was 3 years post gastric bypass surgery and had just started to put back on the weight. And the joke is now, I thought I was fat in most of these pictures. I think my own self doubt had even sent me back to a slimming club, something I will never do again. I had my gastric bypass in August 2010, after being single for two years I thought no one was ever going to love me unless I was thin. I WAS WRONG! Two weeks after this major, life changing surgery I met my now husband on Plenty of Fish, now that shows my age kids, no Tinder back then. And guess what he loved me fat, I was still fat! And now I’m fat again, nearly 9 years later and he still loves me! Today I am very anti diet and actually happier then ever. The likes of @gabifresh opened a world to me in 2013 that you could be fat and still be successful, in love and fashionable. I was actually more self conscious here then I am now. I can truly say ‘I love me’ and am constantly strutting around feeling myself these days.

So what next, well 2014 appeared (and of course this happened in January) I felt the need to re-brand myself to ‘Tabitha Rose’. Much simpler, now just my first and middle name. I had to keep it low key and to an extent unidentifiable because I was working full time as a school teacher in a local secondary school and did not want any pupils finding my page, so wasn’t even able to publicise it really. What I also did not know at this point is that by the end of the year my first little one would be joining us. I finally realised photographs could be taken outside, but still not much variety here sadly. Although my front door makes a big appearance! Another major life event in-between these two blogs, me and my husband bought a house. I was still having major self belief issues here with my weight but in a lot of these pictures I was pregnant, a time where I should have not given a care in the world.

So what happened next you ask? In December 2014 I gave birth to Jack Theodore. And sadly a lot of my hair fell out, true fact. Didn’t happen with my second babe, more on that later, but hence the awful Christmas novelty hat there!

And then before I knew it a new year and another January rolled around and so of course another re-brand. In 2015 ‘Rose and Bear’ was formed, made from mine and Jacks middle names. I thought now, not only will I focus on fashion but also parenting! And what did I do with that thinning hair post pregnancy of course I cut it off and had a pixie cut.

A lot was going on at this time, I had to go back to work this year after my first maternity leave, and I can tell you things were never the same again. My brother’s long term relationship had ended so he came to live with us and a newborn baby! And I had a quick learning curve on how lonely being an at home parent can be. But what of the outfits? Well I ventured to my back garden, sorry still not very creative yet…

Shortly after this time I started an Instagram page called ‘Tabitha Tells’ but had to keep it a private page as I was still working at a quite difficult local secondary school and needed my private life to be kept separate. Instagram opened my world to even more plus size bloggers like @daniellevanier @calliethorpe @felicityhayward, two of these I got to meet at the 2018 Curve Fashion Festival, I cried when I met Callie it was that overwhelming. I was such a fan girl! This is when my eyes were opened to self love, hundreds of other plus size babes rocking it and more and more brands making fashionable clothes for us curvy girls. In August 2017 I had my second mini monster, Norah Leonie. Another animal themed middle name, it means lioness, as she was born on the last day to be a Leo. And then in October 2018 in a car journey to Kent, having left my job at said local school I made Tabitha Tells a new public page and it is the best thing I ever did! My current employer, another school, even knows its existence and is supportive of it, even though it is public, I just have to be sensible if any of the young people I teach come across it. Hence why I still cant show all of myself, like I would love to a post about bra fittings etc, but its just too risky.

So skip to 2018 and here I am ‘Tabitha Tells’ another re-brand and hopefully the last! I based the logo on the text from Clarissa Explains it All, as I intend to tell you all. And you lovely lot on Instagram were asked which head shot I should use for the blog header and well the results are in, it was…..well a draw between photo 1, 2 and 7. So let my first born have the final choice on photo 1! No heavy makeup, no touch ups on editing apps, just me (the nearly 32) babe from Southampton.

I am still fat, still a mum, but, now to two babes (and one miscarriage), still married, still a successful teacher (actually with a new job under my belt), still in the same home, still a lot of the same amazing friends and some new ones, BUT I AM the most self confident, self loving and happy I have ever been! And well I intend to share all my life experiences and fashion with you as a plus size babe. Blogging about brands I love, experiences I have and people I meet. So come on register to get blog updates from me and come along for the ride.

Lots of love,

Tabitha Tells xx

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