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Hayley Joy

My Beautiful World.

Sunday hiking is my reboot for the week that lies ahead. I discovered the Modderfontein reserve in Johannesburg, South Africa, in December 2018, whilst scrolling on Facebook, and oh my word, what a find! It’s the old AECI explosives testing site, which now comprises 700 hectares of the most pristine and beautiful hiking, cycling and running trails.

My health has been an issue for many years, but in 2018, I decided to take it back. I got off all the meds that I’d been put on, because nobody knew what was really wrong with me. All I knew was that I was in pain from my brain to my toes. 13 months later and I hiked 10km’s today!

I stopped eating inflammatory, synthetic foods and I slowly started exercising. In the beginning I exercised through the pain, but as I lost each kilo, the pain diminished on it’s own, with no pain killers needed. I’ve lost 12 kilos and many more inches, and I feel human again. It’s a very special feeling to feel human after feeling like an alien in your own body, for so long.

Of course I could never do it without the support of my patient beautiful life partner Mr. C. Without him I know I would never get up at 5am on a Sunday, to go hiking at 6am.

Enjoy the beauty that nature gifts for free ❤️

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Sharing the beautiful women we dress on YouTube.

It’s been a long time in the making, and now that it’s a reality, I wonder what took me so long! Launching a Plus Size Youtube channel http://bit.ly/2AU1ZPN is my 2019 commitment… and my why is all about introducing Plus size women, far and wide, to the Hayley Joy brand, of respectful Plus size fashion.

The beautiful Reana and I talking about how to wear print if you’re a 6XL

For far to long I’ve heard the same story about the frustration around Plus Size shopping, and that frustration is 100% justified. I’m a Plus size myself, and I know how it feels to go into a store when they’ve advertised that they stock Plus sizes, and not one thing fits. It’s disrespectful and soul-destroying.

Dressing a variety of sizes and shapes is a very big part of our beautiful world at Hayley Joy.

My commitment at Hayley Joy is to honour my Plus size truth. The entire store is filled with fashion that fits, no matter your size or your shape. I’ve also realised that in order for you to have the confidence to walk through the door, you need to see the clothes on real Plus size women, and that’s why I’ve launched a YouTube channel, showcasing the beautiful REAL women we dress at Hayley Joy.

Arlene and I talking about embracing colour, no matter your size or your shape.

Feel free to subscribe to the Hayley Joy – Plus Size, Youtube channel http://bit.ly/2R51d7Q

Here’s a how to in case you’re new to YouTube:

How to subscribe if you’re new to YouTube:

1. Sign into your YouTube app on you phone/tablet or your google account in your internet browser on your computer.

2. Sign in by using your gmail account and password.

3. Search Hayley Joy Plus Size Fashion on Youtube.

4. Click on any one of my videos and click on the red subscribe button under the video.

5. Click on the 🔔 next to the subscribe button to be notified when I post new videos. I’m so excited to share my evolving journey with you.

❤️ Hayley

Me and Maths.

Today I put a post on Facebook about maths not being my strong point. Judging by the many supportive comments and private messages, I thought it a good opportunity to do some deeper explaining.

This is a story about “Me and Maths” (I averaged 16% until I was able to drop it as a subject. Maybe if I loved it, like I love iPhoneart, I would have nailed it. Definitely something in that, about the things I nail, and the things I don’t).

Designing for Plus sizes, has many challenges, the biggest one for me being the fact that I don’t upsize regular sizes. I have created an exclusive Plus size basic block range of patterns, based on my Plus size body. Every single style that we design and manufacture at Hayley Joy, must be able to be sized from a small to a 7XL…AND…it must be as flattering on both sides of the size spectrum.

There are designs that float around in my head constantly, that never make it into the range because there is to much “maths” involved. I do have a mental block when it comes to me having to look at measurements and style lines from a mathematical perspective. I see it in my head perfectly, and I can hand draw it onto pattern paper, but it doesn’t work that way when there are 10 sizes to be made in every design.

Today was the day to break the “fear of maths” shackle!

2019 is going to be the year that I stretch myself on many levels…AND…I have committed to myself, that I’m going to follow through on every single one of these mental block situations that I have. No more hiding behind “maths is not my strong point” scenarios.

Soooooooo, this new design is one of those that only I can take on, because my brain thinks in Plus sizes, and most importantly designs in Plus sizes. This particular design is the beginnings of a new jacket design, and that piece in the picture is going to form a very over the top, collar/lapel detail. How full, how wide, how long are all incredibly important considerations, because when you take that concept and project it onto regular sizes, you can be generous and get away with it, but when you’re projecting that detail onto a 5, 6 and 7XL, there are very, very different considerations.

I booked time off, took a deep breath, and put myself to work on the pattern table, where I haven’t been for a long time, because to be honest, if I couldn’t get the design out of my brain, and onto the pattern paper, because it involved maths, then I procrastinated it to the point where it never happened. Well I’m done with procrastination and I’m most certainly done with holding myself back.

I nailed it and in doing so I’ve opened doors to other things that have been lurking in my “to-do” brain.

The aim of this blog post, is to inspire you to take on that self-inflicted hurdle, that limits a whole world that could open up for you.

Shared with love, always ❤️ Hayley

How my fabric print journey is teaching me patience!

This is a perfect example, of the patience that I’ve learnt, on my iPhone photo to fabric design journey.

A Lilac rose print.
Lilac Roses

Patience is something that eludes me in most areas of my life, because my mind races continuously with pattern, print and of course colour, and I want to see them all, now! The introduction to Photoshop for the final stage of the building of the fabric prints, has humbled me, and I now know that what I see in my design brain, requires many hours of patience, to achieve the final result. This rose print, that I created from a photo that I took with my iPhone, of a beautiful pink rose in my garden, and then put through some very interesting apps on my iPad, is an example of the patience that I’ve learnt on my photo to fabric design journey.

Rose photo edited in iPhone and iPad apps

I built this rose print from scratch, and out of interest I’m logging the hours for these prints. This one took 15 hours. It was intense because it’s the first time I’ve gone down this print road, but the result has been so incredibly rewarding. I’ve seen the samples on, and they do exactly what the plan is, fit and flatter, and offer the colour that my market so desperately want to wear.

Hayley Joy, Miracle Shape top, in Lilac Roses

I design for a hugely diverse market, and my objective when planning the prints, is to always take into account how much cover I can achieve, whilst still offering the maximum amount of colour. The lighter colours are a challenge because they tend to show every lump and bump, but when you choose a crazy colour like this vibrant lilac, and you cover it with roses, which just happen to be one of my favourite flowers, you fool the eyes of the beholder, because between the colour and the print, there is so much going on, that lumps and bumps don’t have a chance to feature.

Not sure how many of these marathon prints I can do, but I’ve dreamt of a print like this for so long, and knowing that I can create it myself, makes me a very happy fabric and fashion designer.

❤️ Hayley

Not because I’m clever, but because I’m soooooo damn determined!

Being able to share this print journey with you, from a photo taken by me on my iPhone, to a complete garment, is indeed a very special moment.

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Ordinary to Extraordinary.

This is a print journey that starts with an out of focus orange Gazania Daisy taken in my garden, and ends in a fabric print that I’m so incredibly proud of. I spent days figuring out a way to get to the final result, and I do think that I went to the moon and back…probably unnecessarily…but it was sooooo worth the result, considering I don’t really know very much about fabric design. What I do know though, is that you don’t have to be clever, you just have to be determined!

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Out of focus, Gazania daisy, about to embark on a very exciting editing journey.

So what to do with an out of focus photo? I’ve been incredibly lucky to be part of the iPhone Photography School, and have been introduced to so many amazing apps, that are available to us all via the App Store. As I was about to delete the photo, I changed my mind and converted the ‘bad photo’ to black and white. Violá, totally blown away, I loved that the sprinklings of pollen looked like glitter.

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Converted to black and white, now I’m sparkling.

Whilst playing around in numerous apps I tried a mosaic effect, but I realised that it’s very in your face, so I carried on experimenting, and then happened upon a grunge filter which was perfect.

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The journey to get to the mosaic print.

On my buying trips to Hong Kong, I used to see these kinds of prints, in these grunge colours, and I so yearned for somebody to import them into South Africa. I was just never able to get any of the importers to understand the need for these kinds of prints. Being able to design them myself, and print them, and then manufacture collections out of them, is down to pure determination.

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Grunge print.

I’m passionate about Roses and could quite happily put them on every future print. I took a photo of a beautiful pink rose in my garden, and put it through the same grunge process.

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Pink rose from my garden.

I then went on an editing journey that took a very long time, actually an insanely long time, because I’m such a perfectionist. I’ve come to realise though, that if I want perfection, I’m going to have to learn patience.

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From B&W to Grunge…because anything is possible.

Placing the roses perfectly in the lines of the mosaic was a mammoth undertaking, but I taught myself how to do it and this Grunge Rose print is the result.

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Dreamed by me, designed by me, printed by me…I love the sound of these words.

I’ve printed it in plain, and then I had some real fun with it in my numerous apps, and I came up with some fun prints by adding coloured hearts. Hearts and roses work really well for me, they make me happy.

Knowing that this process starts with a plain piece of white fabric, and in a couple of hours it’s printed fabric, and in another couple of hours, it’s a fabulous Plus size, Miracle shape top, makes me a very happy fabric designer, and an even happier fashion designer. I now have access to anything and everything I dream of, because if I dream it, I can now have it.

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Grunge print, Miracle shape top designed by Hayley Joy

 

❤ Hayley

Pretty in Pink

After a marathon fabric shopping excursion, I stopped to get some water, and there was a bunch of pink roses at the door of the shop.

There they were in an ugly bucket, on an ugly stand, in a dull concrete environment. I stood staring at them, thinking about how even in a really bland setting, a pretty bunch of pink roses, will always be pretty.

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Pretty Pink Roses

I suppose this philosophy can be applied to so many areas of our lives. Pretty is pretty, no matter the circumstances, and it’s up to us to take the time to smell the roses, and see the beauty.

In my line of work, I spend as much time selling Plus size fashion, as I do convincing my clients to see the good in themselves. A pretty heart is just as important as a pretty face, in actual fact I’d go so far as to say, that to have a pretty heart is so much more important than having just a pretty face. Body image is a very sensitive issue and that’s why I always design with the intention to make my clients feel amazing about themselves.

Spending the day in an outfit that gets loads of compliments, will automatically make you feel pretty.

I hope my photo (taken by me on my iPhone, and edited by me with my knowledge gained in an online iPhone photography course run by Emil Parkalis), brings some prettiness into your life.

❤️ Hayley

A commitment to all Shapes and Sizes.

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Veronica, my true inspiration.

Being able to dress any size, and any shape, in my Plus size collections, is the highlight of my design career. When I opened Hayley Joy, I was determined to create an environment, where every woman felt welcome and respected.

My brief to Hayley Joy production was that every style I designed and put into production, had to be able to be sized from a Small to a 7XL, so when we worked on the new Miracle Swing camisole, I held my thumbs that it would look amazing on all sizes.

This photo of Veronica who is one of my oldest and dearest customers, proves that we are absolutely on the right track. I’m loving every minute of pushing the design boundaries for Plus sizes…NOTHING.IS.IMPOSSIBLE, and Veronica is the perfect example of that philosophy.
❤️ Hayley

 

Miracle armholes for a Miracle camisole.

A recurring request is for a Plus size sleeveless garment that is respectful to odd and Plus size shapes.

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Pink floral, Viscose Lycra, Miracle swing camisole.

What is that requirement? Well it’s all in the armholes. I have patiently engineered the armholes on this garment. The secret is that all the bits need to be tucked away, so that we wear a sleeveless garment comfortably, without worrying about who can see what, hanging out.
I’m extremely proud of this Miracle camisole shape, that I’ve introduced to the Hayley Joy collection. It does everything it needs to do. I’ve kept the top semi fitted, and swung from the waist to allow for ease of wear.

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Aqua floral, Viscose Lycra, Miracle swing camisole.

Whilst working on this shape, I came to understand, that it is important to take into account, that there are many Plus size women whose arms are perfectly acceptable, and there are also those woman who have learnt to embrace their shapes, and are far more concerned about being cool, than what yours and my opinion of their arms are. It’s for this reason that I designed this respectful garment in two lengths. There is normal camisole length and then I’ve introduced a length that’s just on the knee, and works brilliantly as a costume cover, or is perfect over leggings. It’s a fun look, and one that I know you will enjoy wearing, from a comfort perspective.
❤️ Hayley

 

New Season, New Shape, New Collection…it’s called Ethereal.

Exciting times in Hayley Joy production…we’ve been developing a new shape, the Hayley Joy Miracle Flare Top, to add to our Plus size Miracle top collection.

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A Top called Ethereal.

With this style, my brief to my production team was ‘Ethereal’, I wanted something floaty but flattering. The challenge is always to be able to size from a Small to a 7XL without losing the aesthetic. My commitment is that every style must be able to be produced in all sizes. I also wanted a different sleeve design, I wanted a beautiful floaty sleeve, that would look feminine, be flattering, and above all else, be cool.

Huge advantage to being the in-house model…I get to try all new samples on. I’ve tried it on, and it’s a winner. I loved the feel of this top and I know you’re going to love it.

❤️ Hayley

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