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Infection Prevention And Control Nurse Gabriella D'Amato Talks About Her Experiences As A Plus Size Vintage Fashion Enthusiast

During these challenging times, I wanted to take time to recognize and thank the amazing men and women on the front lines who risk their lives everyday for us. So, I interviewed Gabriella D'Amato; she's an Infection prevention and control nurse from the UK with a passion for vintage fashion. I asked her questions concerning her job, style, and the advice she had for women of a lager size who want to start dressing in vintage/pinup fashion.

During these challenging times, I wanted to take time to recognize and thank the amazing men and women on the front lines who risk their lives everyday for us. So, I interviewed Gabriella D'Amato: An Infection prevention and control nurse from the UK with a passion for vintage fashion. I asked hr question concerning her job, style, and the advice she had for women of a lager size who want to start dressing in vintage/pinup fashion.     Q: Can you tell me a bit about your life and how it led you to start wearing vintage style fashion?  A: “I am 27 and I am an Infection Prevention and Control nurse. I first dabbled in vintage fashion during my Nurse training. I had bought a few pieces and loved it! During my time in college, I felt incredibly self-conscious; I was a bit bigger than most of the people around me. And dressing up to go out always felt like a chore. I always looked in the mirror in my clothes and felt so negative about myself.  I was trying to dress like everyone else to "fit in" and ended up a few times bailing on going out. Making up excuses and saying 'I was not feeling well' because I felt so uncomfortable in my own skin. Especially as going out clubbing, was never really my thing. I love to dance and have a few cocktails don't get me wrong; but never really enjoyed the 'uni life' so much. When I finished uni, and I had my own wage, I began to dress vintage more often and collected more pieces.   I started off more 1950's style and enjoyed experimenting. My friends would like pictures and make the effort to compliment me which was lovely. As time went on around 2017 I experimented further and found 1940s was my go to style. I have never felt more glamorous and more me in my life and from then on it just became something that was for me and made me feel good about myself. Also wearing a nurses uniform majority of the time, there is nothing better than on my day off to transform myself. It's very therapeutic and a way to unwind and remove myself from work life.”  Q: How does it make you feel that many plus size women don’t dress up because they don’t want to draw attention to their size?  A: “I really sympathize with that idea because I used to be the same, before I started dressing vintage, I had comments about my weight whilst being out. By strangers and some so-called friends and blending in was something that I wanted more than ever. When I started to experiment, and people would look at me in the street, I used to think they were looking at me because of my weight. That they thought I looked ridiculous and huge.     As time went on, and I was dressing in clothes that just feel so glamorous. With a red lip on I felt like I had heaps more confidence! If people looked at me in the street, I would think they were looking at me because they don't see this often and as I started to feel more confident and held my head up I started noticing people were smiling at me, then people stopping to talk, complimenting me and this really gave me such a lift. I started to do the same to other people too because sometimes people have no idea how much a compliment and a smile to someone can make their day!  It makes me sad that plus size women are made to feel like that can't stand out and the underrepresentation in the media of these wonderful women is very frustrating. All bodies and people are valid and beautiful and standing out is something that people shouldn't be afraid of?”    Q: I had interviewed other plus side pin-ups in the past. They found that finding vintage style fashion in their sizes was very difficult.  Where do you usually find vintage style clothing in your size?   A: “In the beginning, it was easy. Because 1950s style I found quite readily available in my size, Collectif, Lindy bop, and Hell Bunny were wonders but as I started to develop more into '40s it was difficult. I love trawling through Etsy and seeing real vintage but then seeing size 8 and 10s everywhere I had to accept its nice to look at but maybe looking for real vintage accessories, shoes, jewelry bags, etc. They don't have size limits and then trying to find more reproduction sites.     I read a lot of blogs, followed some amazing women on Instagram and came across a few sites and now I do tend to use them ALOT! I think reading reviews helps as they gives you a sizing idea. For instance, some places I know I can wear 16 find in their dresses but in their blouses I may be an 18. I've gotten to know the brands over the years and they are always wonderful!    If you were in a shop, you could try things on and I know shopping online is harder, but don't feel bad from trying things and seeing how the fabric is and the style and experimenting to what suits your body shape and returning if it doesn't fit or suit you. Seamstress of Bloomsbury is fantastic! Their wrap dresses are skirts really do feel authentic and wonderful. Freddies of pinewood for blouses and jackets, House of foxy for a lot of my dresses, skirts, trousers and Vivienne of Holloway too, They are all great places to look, all my wardrobe is basically those brands! But experiment and if it doesn't work try something else!”  Q: How did you decide that you wanted to become a nurse? A: “I have always wanted to be a nurse but I didn't initially I had no idea what I wanted to do. When I turned 18, I wanted a job but was bored of waitressing and answering a phone in a pizza shop. I became a carer for a gentleman who lived by my grandma's house.  I used to get him up and ready in the morning and the same in the evening then went to Sixthform in the day. It was a lovely job. And it really encouraged me to become a nurse. I trained in Oxford and gained a lot of experience as a nurse and in 2017 I went on to specialize in Infection prevention and control which is absolutely fantastic, Understanding how infections are transmitted, preventing them, educating other nurse, doctors and all health professionals is something that I thoroughly enjoy.   Working in Oxford, I am amongst some of the most intelligent and innovative people in the world. From Nurses, to Microbiology Doctors and consultants. A lot of those are strong women too!  I have begun my masters in Public Health and have a postgraduate certificate in communicable diseases. Just like my developing vintage style, education is lifelong and we can grow and adapt. Learning new things about myself and the world is motivational and inspiring.  Q: How do people generally react to your style?    A: “Really well! I have had a few negative comments over the years, but it’s a drop in the ocean compared to the good comments! People smile, they nod. I have had people cross the street to say hi and ask me questions. My Boyfriend is really supportive and although he doesn't dress vintage, he’s supportive of me wearing it. My family too! I have had some people ask if I am doing a play, or a WW2 enactment and people saying I always dress up to go places. But sometimes it’s literally just a dress and some red lips! I think it goes back to the standing out question. I didn't initially want to stand out but I do more than ever but not because of my weight because people are genuinely intrigued or enjoy what I am wearing. It’s almost saying this is me and here I am and I don't need to apologise for that, the way I dress or my size! “   Q: What are some of your tips for plus size women who want to dress in vintage style fashion?   A: “DO IT! try it at least. It may sound cliché but I cannot express how much I feel like I can express myself and be who I want when I am dressing in my clothes. It started off just now and then but my whole wardrobe is vintage now, I may own a pair of skinny jeans from before but it is my style now and these are my 'normal'. There is never any right or wrong way to dress vintage. It’s how you feel and I do find when I feel good on the inside that shines on the outside. There is a vintage style for everyone and a red lipstick shade for everyone. I definitely recommend everyone try it. I have only been to one vintage event planning on more when Covid is gone! But I have never felt more comfortable and accepted and happy as I did there. There are so many like minded and wonderful people and not just at events. On Instagram, get following some of them and try it out.”  Q: Any up and coming projects we can look forward to? A: “I am afraid not, I would love too. If anyone was interested. I have never done any projects really. I have always just dressed up and it wasn't a thing as it was just my clothes and way of expressing myself. But definitely would be interesting in doing some photoshoots with other plus size women.“   Thank you for your service Gabriella!

Q: Can you tell me a bit about your life and how it led you to start wearing vintage style fashion?

A: “I am twenty seven. I am an Infection Prevention and Control nurse. I first dabbled in vintage fashion during my Nurse training. I had bought a few pieces and loved it! During my time in college, I felt incredibly self-conscious; I was a bit bigger than most of the people around me. And dressing up to go out always felt like a chore. I always looked in the mirror in my clothes and felt so negative about myself.

I was trying to dress like everyone else to "fit in" and ended up a few times bailing on going out. Making up excuses and saying 'I was not feeling well' because I felt so uncomfortable in my own skin. Especially as going out clubbing, was never really my thing. I love to dance and have a few cocktails don't get me wrong; but never really enjoyed the 'uni life' so much. When I finished uni, and I had my own wage, I began to dress vintage more often and collected more pieces. 

I started off more '50s style and enjoyed experimenting. My friends would like pictures and make the effort to compliment me which was lovely. As time went on around 2017 I experimented further and found '40s was my go to style. I have never felt more glamorous and more me in my life and from then on it just became something that was for me and made me feel good about myself. Also wearing a nurses uniform majority of the time, there is nothing better than on my day off to transform myself. It's very therapeutic and a way to unwind and remove myself from work life.”

Q: How does it make you feel that many plus size women don’t dress up because they don’t want to draw attention to their size?

A: “I really sympathize with that idea because I used to be the same. Before I started dressing vintage, I had comments about my weight whilst being out. By strangers and some so-called friends. Blending in was something that I wanted more than ever. When I started to experiment, and people would look at me in the street, I used to think they were looking at me because of my weight. That they thought I looked ridiculous and huge. 

During these challenging times, I wanted to take time to recognize and thank the amazing men and women on the front lines who risk their lives everyday for us. So, I interviewed Gabriella D'Amato: An Infection prevention and control nurse from the UK with a passion for vintage fashion. I asked hr question concerning her job, style, and the advice she had for women of a lager size who want to start dressing in vintage/pinup fashion.     Q: Can you tell me a bit about your life and how it led you to start wearing vintage style fashion?  A: “I am 27 and I am an Infection Prevention and Control nurse. I first dabbled in vintage fashion during my Nurse training. I had bought a few pieces and loved it! During my time in college, I felt incredibly self-conscious; I was a bit bigger than most of the people around me. And dressing up to go out always felt like a chore. I always looked in the mirror in my clothes and felt so negative about myself.  I was trying to dress like everyone else to "fit in" and ended up a few times bailing on going out. Making up excuses and saying 'I was not feeling well' because I felt so uncomfortable in my own skin. Especially as going out clubbing, was never really my thing. I love to dance and have a few cocktails don't get me wrong; but never really enjoyed the 'uni life' so much. When I finished uni, and I had my own wage, I began to dress vintage more often and collected more pieces.   I started off more 1950's style and enjoyed experimenting. My friends would like pictures and make the effort to compliment me which was lovely. As time went on around 2017 I experimented further and found 1940s was my go to style. I have never felt more glamorous and more me in my life and from then on it just became something that was for me and made me feel good about myself. Also wearing a nurses uniform majority of the time, there is nothing better than on my day off to transform myself. It's very therapeutic and a way to unwind and remove myself from work life.”  Q: How does it make you feel that many plus size women don’t dress up because they don’t want to draw attention to their size?  A: “I really sympathize with that idea because I used to be the same, before I started dressing vintage, I had comments about my weight whilst being out. By strangers and some so-called friends and blending in was something that I wanted more than ever. When I started to experiment, and people would look at me in the street, I used to think they were looking at me because of my weight. That they thought I looked ridiculous and huge.     As time went on, and I was dressing in clothes that just feel so glamorous. With a red lip on I felt like I had heaps more confidence! If people looked at me in the street, I would think they were looking at me because they don't see this often and as I started to feel more confident and held my head up I started noticing people were smiling at me, then people stopping to talk, complimenting me and this really gave me such a lift. I started to do the same to other people too because sometimes people have no idea how much a compliment and a smile to someone can make their day!  It makes me sad that plus size women are made to feel like that can't stand out and the underrepresentation in the media of these wonderful women is very frustrating. All bodies and people are valid and beautiful and standing out is something that people shouldn't be afraid of?”    Q: I had interviewed other plus side pin-ups in the past. They found that finding vintage style fashion in their sizes was very difficult.  Where do you usually find vintage style clothing in your size?   A: “In the beginning, it was easy. Because 1950s style I found quite readily available in my size, Collectif, Lindy bop, and Hell Bunny were wonders but as I started to develop more into '40s it was difficult. I love trawling through Etsy and seeing real vintage but then seeing size 8 and 10s everywhere I had to accept its nice to look at but maybe looking for real vintage accessories, shoes, jewelry bags, etc. They don't have size limits and then trying to find more reproduction sites.     I read a lot of blogs, followed some amazing women on Instagram and came across a few sites and now I do tend to use them ALOT! I think reading reviews helps as they gives you a sizing idea. For instance, some places I know I can wear 16 find in their dresses but in their blouses I may be an 18. I've gotten to know the brands over the years and they are always wonderful!    If you were in a shop, you could try things on and I know shopping online is harder, but don't feel bad from trying things and seeing how the fabric is and the style and experimenting to what suits your body shape and returning if it doesn't fit or suit you. Seamstress of Bloomsbury is fantastic! Their wrap dresses are skirts really do feel authentic and wonderful. Freddies of pinewood for blouses and jackets, House of foxy for a lot of my dresses, skirts, trousers and Vivienne of Holloway too, They are all great places to look, all my wardrobe is basically those brands! But experiment and if it doesn't work try something else!”  Q: How did you decide that you wanted to become a nurse? A: “I have always wanted to be a nurse but I didn't initially I had no idea what I wanted to do. When I turned 18, I wanted a job but was bored of waitressing and answering a phone in a pizza shop. I became a carer for a gentleman who lived by my grandma's house.  I used to get him up and ready in the morning and the same in the evening then went to Sixthform in the day. It was a lovely job. And it really encouraged me to become a nurse. I trained in Oxford and gained a lot of experience as a nurse and in 2017 I went on to specialize in Infection prevention and control which is absolutely fantastic, Understanding how infections are transmitted, preventing them, educating other nurse, doctors and all health professionals is something that I thoroughly enjoy.   Working in Oxford, I am amongst some of the most intelligent and innovative people in the world. From Nurses, to Microbiology Doctors and consultants. A lot of those are strong women too!  I have begun my masters in Public Health and have a postgraduate certificate in communicable diseases. Just like my developing vintage style, education is lifelong and we can grow and adapt. Learning new things about myself and the world is motivational and inspiring.  Q: How do people generally react to your style?    A: “Really well! I have had a few negative comments over the years, but it’s a drop in the ocean compared to the good comments! People smile, they nod. I have had people cross the street to say hi and ask me questions. My Boyfriend is really supportive and although he doesn't dress vintage, he’s supportive of me wearing it. My family too! I have had some people ask if I am doing a play, or a WW2 enactment and people saying I always dress up to go places. But sometimes it’s literally just a dress and some red lips! I think it goes back to the standing out question. I didn't initially want to stand out but I do more than ever but not because of my weight because people are genuinely intrigued or enjoy what I am wearing. It’s almost saying this is me and here I am and I don't need to apologise for that, the way I dress or my size! “   Q: What are some of your tips for plus size women who want to dress in vintage style fashion?   A: “DO IT! try it at least. It may sound cliché but I cannot express how much I feel like I can express myself and be who I want when I am dressing in my clothes. It started off just now and then but my whole wardrobe is vintage now, I may own a pair of skinny jeans from before but it is my style now and these are my 'normal'. There is never any right or wrong way to dress vintage. It’s how you feel and I do find when I feel good on the inside that shines on the outside. There is a vintage style for everyone and a red lipstick shade for everyone. I definitely recommend everyone try it. I have only been to one vintage event planning on more when Covid is gone! But I have never felt more comfortable and accepted and happy as I did there. There are so many like minded and wonderful people and not just at events. On Instagram, get following some of them and try it out.”  Q: Any up and coming projects we can look forward to? A: “I am afraid not, I would love too. If anyone was interested. I have never done any projects really. I have always just dressed up and it wasn't a thing as it was just my clothes and way of expressing myself. But definitely would be interesting in doing some photoshoots with other plus size women.“   Thank you for your service Gabriella!

As time went on, I was dressing in clothes that just felt so glamorous. With a red lip on, I felt like I had heaps more confidence! If people looked at me in the street, I would think they were looking at me because they don't see this often, and as I started to feel more confident, and held my head up, I started noticing people were smiling at me. Then people stopping to talk to me and complimenting me and this really gave me much more confidance! I started to do the same to other people too! Sometimes, people have no idea how much a compliment and a smile to someone can make their day! It makes me sad that plus size women are made to feel like that can't stand out and the underrepresentation in the media of these wonderful women is very frustrating. All bodies and people are valid and beautiful and standing out is something that people shouldn't be afraid of?”


Q: I had interviewed other plus size pin-ups in the past; they found that finding vintage style fashion in their sizes was very difficult.

Where do you usually find vintage style clothing in your size?


A: “In the beginning, it was easy. Because I found '50s style fashion quite readily available in my size: Collectif, Lindy bop, and Hell Bunny have my size. But as I started to develop more into '40s style fashion, it became more difficult to find my size. I love trawling through Etsy and seeing real vintage. But then seeing size 8 and 10s everywhere, I had to accept its nice to look at but maybe looking for real vintage accessories, shoes, jewelry bags, etc. They don't have size limits and then trying to find more reproduction sites. 

During these challenging times, I wanted to take time to recognize and thank the amazing men and women on the front lines who risk their lives everyday for us. So, I interviewed Gabriella D'Amato: An Infection prevention and control nurse from the UK with a passion for vintage fashion. I asked hr question concerning her job, style, and the advice she had for women of a lager size who want to start dressing in vintage/pinup fashion.     Q: Can you tell me a bit about your life and how it led you to start wearing vintage style fashion?  A: “I am 27 and I am an Infection Prevention and Control nurse. I first dabbled in vintage fashion during my Nurse training. I had bought a few pieces and loved it! During my time in college, I felt incredibly self-conscious; I was a bit bigger than most of the people around me. And dressing up to go out always felt like a chore. I always looked in the mirror in my clothes and felt so negative about myself.  I was trying to dress like everyone else to "fit in" and ended up a few times bailing on going out. Making up excuses and saying 'I was not feeling well' because I felt so uncomfortable in my own skin. Especially as going out clubbing, was never really my thing. I love to dance and have a few cocktails don't get me wrong; but never really enjoyed the 'uni life' so much. When I finished uni, and I had my own wage, I began to dress vintage more often and collected more pieces.   I started off more 1950's style and enjoyed experimenting. My friends would like pictures and make the effort to compliment me which was lovely. As time went on around 2017 I experimented further and found 1940s was my go to style. I have never felt more glamorous and more me in my life and from then on it just became something that was for me and made me feel good about myself. Also wearing a nurses uniform majority of the time, there is nothing better than on my day off to transform myself. It's very therapeutic and a way to unwind and remove myself from work life.”  Q: How does it make you feel that many plus size women don’t dress up because they don’t want to draw attention to their size?  A: “I really sympathize with that idea because I used to be the same, before I started dressing vintage, I had comments about my weight whilst being out. By strangers and some so-called friends and blending in was something that I wanted more than ever. When I started to experiment, and people would look at me in the street, I used to think they were looking at me because of my weight. That they thought I looked ridiculous and huge.     As time went on, and I was dressing in clothes that just feel so glamorous. With a red lip on I felt like I had heaps more confidence! If people looked at me in the street, I would think they were looking at me because they don't see this often and as I started to feel more confident and held my head up I started noticing people were smiling at me, then people stopping to talk, complimenting me and this really gave me such a lift. I started to do the same to other people too because sometimes people have no idea how much a compliment and a smile to someone can make their day!  It makes me sad that plus size women are made to feel like that can't stand out and the underrepresentation in the media of these wonderful women is very frustrating. All bodies and people are valid and beautiful and standing out is something that people shouldn't be afraid of?”    Q: I had interviewed other plus side pin-ups in the past. They found that finding vintage style fashion in their sizes was very difficult.  Where do you usually find vintage style clothing in your size?   A: “In the beginning, it was easy. Because 1950s style I found quite readily available in my size, Collectif, Lindy bop, and Hell Bunny were wonders but as I started to develop more into '40s it was difficult. I love trawling through Etsy and seeing real vintage but then seeing size 8 and 10s everywhere I had to accept its nice to look at but maybe looking for real vintage accessories, shoes, jewelry bags, etc. They don't have size limits and then trying to find more reproduction sites.     I read a lot of blogs, followed some amazing women on Instagram and came across a few sites and now I do tend to use them ALOT! I think reading reviews helps as they gives you a sizing idea. For instance, some places I know I can wear 16 find in their dresses but in their blouses I may be an 18. I've gotten to know the brands over the years and they are always wonderful!    If you were in a shop, you could try things on and I know shopping online is harder, but don't feel bad from trying things and seeing how the fabric is and the style and experimenting to what suits your body shape and returning if it doesn't fit or suit you. Seamstress of Bloomsbury is fantastic! Their wrap dresses are skirts really do feel authentic and wonderful. Freddies of pinewood for blouses and jackets, House of foxy for a lot of my dresses, skirts, trousers and Vivienne of Holloway too, They are all great places to look, all my wardrobe is basically those brands! But experiment and if it doesn't work try something else!”  Q: How did you decide that you wanted to become a nurse? A: “I have always wanted to be a nurse but I didn't initially I had no idea what I wanted to do. When I turned 18, I wanted a job but was bored of waitressing and answering a phone in a pizza shop. I became a carer for a gentleman who lived by my grandma's house.  I used to get him up and ready in the morning and the same in the evening then went to Sixthform in the day. It was a lovely job. And it really encouraged me to become a nurse. I trained in Oxford and gained a lot of experience as a nurse and in 2017 I went on to specialize in Infection prevention and control which is absolutely fantastic, Understanding how infections are transmitted, preventing them, educating other nurse, doctors and all health professionals is something that I thoroughly enjoy.   Working in Oxford, I am amongst some of the most intelligent and innovative people in the world. From Nurses, to Microbiology Doctors and consultants. A lot of those are strong women too!  I have begun my masters in Public Health and have a postgraduate certificate in communicable diseases. Just like my developing vintage style, education is lifelong and we can grow and adapt. Learning new things about myself and the world is motivational and inspiring.  Q: How do people generally react to your style?    A: “Really well! I have had a few negative comments over the years, but it’s a drop in the ocean compared to the good comments! People smile, they nod. I have had people cross the street to say hi and ask me questions. My Boyfriend is really supportive and although he doesn't dress vintage, he’s supportive of me wearing it. My family too! I have had some people ask if I am doing a play, or a WW2 enactment and people saying I always dress up to go places. But sometimes it’s literally just a dress and some red lips! I think it goes back to the standing out question. I didn't initially want to stand out but I do more than ever but not because of my weight because people are genuinely intrigued or enjoy what I am wearing. It’s almost saying this is me and here I am and I don't need to apologise for that, the way I dress or my size! “   Q: What are some of your tips for plus size women who want to dress in vintage style fashion?   A: “DO IT! try it at least. It may sound cliché but I cannot express how much I feel like I can express myself and be who I want when I am dressing in my clothes. It started off just now and then but my whole wardrobe is vintage now, I may own a pair of skinny jeans from before but it is my style now and these are my 'normal'. There is never any right or wrong way to dress vintage. It’s how you feel and I do find when I feel good on the inside that shines on the outside. There is a vintage style for everyone and a red lipstick shade for everyone. I definitely recommend everyone try it. I have only been to one vintage event planning on more when Covid is gone! But I have never felt more comfortable and accepted and happy as I did there. There are so many like minded and wonderful people and not just at events. On Instagram, get following some of them and try it out.”  Q: Any up and coming projects we can look forward to? A: “I am afraid not, I would love too. If anyone was interested. I have never done any projects really. I have always just dressed up and it wasn't a thing as it was just my clothes and way of expressing myself. But definitely would be interesting in doing some photoshoots with other plus size women.“   Thank you for your service Gabriella!

I read a lot of blogs, I followed some amazing women on Instagram and came across a few sites and now I do tend to use them very frequently! I think reading reviews helps: as they give you a sizing idea. For instance, some places I know I can wear 16 find in their dresses but in their blouses, I may be an 18. I've gotten to know the brands over the years and they are always wonderful!


If you were in a shop, you could try things on and I know shopping online is harder, but don't feel bad from trying things and seeing how the fabric is and the style and experimenting to what suits your body shape and returning if it doesn't fit or suit you. Seamstress of Bloomsbury is fantastic! Their wrap dresses are skirts really do feel authentic and wonderful. Freddies of pinewood for blouses and jackets, House of foxy for a lot of my dresses, skirts, trousers and Vivienne of Holloway too, They are all great places to look, all my wardrobe is basically those brands! But experiment and if it doesn't work try something else!”

Q: How did you decide that you wanted to become a nurse?
A: “I have always wanted to be a nurse. But I didn't initially I had no idea what I wanted to do. When I turned 18, I wanted a job but was bored of waitressing and answering a phone in a pizza shop. I became a carer for a gentleman who lived by my grandma's house.

I used to get him up and ready in the morning and the same in the evening then went to Sixthform in the day. It was a lovely job. And it really encouraged me to become a nurse. I trained in Oxford, and I gained a lot of experience as a nurse; In 2017, I went on to specialize in Infection prevention and control which is absolutely fantastic! Understanding how infections are transmitted, preventing them, educating other nurse, doctors and all health professionals is something that I thoroughly enjoy. 

Working in Oxford, I am amongst some of the most intelligent and innovative people in the world. From Nurses, to Microbiology Doctors and consultants. A lot of those are strong women too!  I have begun my masters in Public Health and have a postgraduate certificate in communicable diseases. Just like my developing vintage style, education is lifelong and we can grow and adapt. Learning new things about myself and the world is motivational and inspiring.

Q: How do people generally react to your style?

During these challenging times, I wanted to take time to recognize and thank the amazing men and women on the front lines who risk their lives everyday for us. So, I interviewed Gabriella D'Amato: An Infection prevention and control nurse from the UK with a passion for vintage fashion. I asked hr question concerning her job, style, and the advice she had for women of a lager size who want to start dressing in vintage/pinup fashion.     Q: Can you tell me a bit about your life and how it led you to start wearing vintage style fashion?  A: “I am 27 and I am an Infection Prevention and Control nurse. I first dabbled in vintage fashion during my Nurse training. I had bought a few pieces and loved it! During my time in college, I felt incredibly self-conscious; I was a bit bigger than most of the people around me. And dressing up to go out always felt like a chore. I always looked in the mirror in my clothes and felt so negative about myself.  I was trying to dress like everyone else to "fit in" and ended up a few times bailing on going out. Making up excuses and saying 'I was not feeling well' because I felt so uncomfortable in my own skin. Especially as going out clubbing, was never really my thing. I love to dance and have a few cocktails don't get me wrong; but never really enjoyed the 'uni life' so much. When I finished uni, and I had my own wage, I began to dress vintage more often and collected more pieces.   I started off more 1950's style and enjoyed experimenting. My friends would like pictures and make the effort to compliment me which was lovely. As time went on around 2017 I experimented further and found 1940s was my go to style. I have never felt more glamorous and more me in my life and from then on it just became something that was for me and made me feel good about myself. Also wearing a nurses uniform majority of the time, there is nothing better than on my day off to transform myself. It's very therapeutic and a way to unwind and remove myself from work life.”  Q: How does it make you feel that many plus size women don’t dress up because they don’t want to draw attention to their size?  A: “I really sympathize with that idea because I used to be the same, before I started dressing vintage, I had comments about my weight whilst being out. By strangers and some so-called friends and blending in was something that I wanted more than ever. When I started to experiment, and people would look at me in the street, I used to think they were looking at me because of my weight. That they thought I looked ridiculous and huge.     As time went on, and I was dressing in clothes that just feel so glamorous. With a red lip on I felt like I had heaps more confidence! If people looked at me in the street, I would think they were looking at me because they don't see this often and as I started to feel more confident and held my head up I started noticing people were smiling at me, then people stopping to talk, complimenting me and this really gave me such a lift. I started to do the same to other people too because sometimes people have no idea how much a compliment and a smile to someone can make their day!  It makes me sad that plus size women are made to feel like that can't stand out and the underrepresentation in the media of these wonderful women is very frustrating. All bodies and people are valid and beautiful and standing out is something that people shouldn't be afraid of?”    Q: I had interviewed other plus side pin-ups in the past. They found that finding vintage style fashion in their sizes was very difficult.  Where do you usually find vintage style clothing in your size?   A: “In the beginning, it was easy. Because 1950s style I found quite readily available in my size, Collectif, Lindy bop, and Hell Bunny were wonders but as I started to develop more into '40s it was difficult. I love trawling through Etsy and seeing real vintage but then seeing size 8 and 10s everywhere I had to accept its nice to look at but maybe looking for real vintage accessories, shoes, jewelry bags, etc. They don't have size limits and then trying to find more reproduction sites.     I read a lot of blogs, followed some amazing women on Instagram and came across a few sites and now I do tend to use them ALOT! I think reading reviews helps as they gives you a sizing idea. For instance, some places I know I can wear 16 find in their dresses but in their blouses I may be an 18. I've gotten to know the brands over the years and they are always wonderful!    If you were in a shop, you could try things on and I know shopping online is harder, but don't feel bad from trying things and seeing how the fabric is and the style and experimenting to what suits your body shape and returning if it doesn't fit or suit you. Seamstress of Bloomsbury is fantastic! Their wrap dresses are skirts really do feel authentic and wonderful. Freddies of pinewood for blouses and jackets, House of foxy for a lot of my dresses, skirts, trousers and Vivienne of Holloway too, They are all great places to look, all my wardrobe is basically those brands! But experiment and if it doesn't work try something else!”  Q: How did you decide that you wanted to become a nurse? A: “I have always wanted to be a nurse but I didn't initially I had no idea what I wanted to do. When I turned 18, I wanted a job but was bored of waitressing and answering a phone in a pizza shop. I became a carer for a gentleman who lived by my grandma's house.  I used to get him up and ready in the morning and the same in the evening then went to Sixthform in the day. It was a lovely job. And it really encouraged me to become a nurse. I trained in Oxford and gained a lot of experience as a nurse and in 2017 I went on to specialize in Infection prevention and control which is absolutely fantastic, Understanding how infections are transmitted, preventing them, educating other nurse, doctors and all health professionals is something that I thoroughly enjoy.   Working in Oxford, I am amongst some of the most intelligent and innovative people in the world. From Nurses, to Microbiology Doctors and consultants. A lot of those are strong women too!  I have begun my masters in Public Health and have a postgraduate certificate in communicable diseases. Just like my developing vintage style, education is lifelong and we can grow and adapt. Learning new things about myself and the world is motivational and inspiring.  Q: How do people generally react to your style?    A: “Really well! I have had a few negative comments over the years, but it’s a drop in the ocean compared to the good comments! People smile, they nod. I have had people cross the street to say hi and ask me questions. My Boyfriend is really supportive and although he doesn't dress vintage, he’s supportive of me wearing it. My family too! I have had some people ask if I am doing a play, or a WW2 enactment and people saying I always dress up to go places. But sometimes it’s literally just a dress and some red lips! I think it goes back to the standing out question. I didn't initially want to stand out but I do more than ever but not because of my weight because people are genuinely intrigued or enjoy what I am wearing. It’s almost saying this is me and here I am and I don't need to apologise for that, the way I dress or my size! “   Q: What are some of your tips for plus size women who want to dress in vintage style fashion?   A: “DO IT! try it at least. It may sound cliché but I cannot express how much I feel like I can express myself and be who I want when I am dressing in my clothes. It started off just now and then but my whole wardrobe is vintage now, I may own a pair of skinny jeans from before but it is my style now and these are my 'normal'. There is never any right or wrong way to dress vintage. It’s how you feel and I do find when I feel good on the inside that shines on the outside. There is a vintage style for everyone and a red lipstick shade for everyone. I definitely recommend everyone try it. I have only been to one vintage event planning on more when Covid is gone! But I have never felt more comfortable and accepted and happy as I did there. There are so many like minded and wonderful people and not just at events. On Instagram, get following some of them and try it out.”  Q: Any up and coming projects we can look forward to? A: “I am afraid not, I would love too. If anyone was interested. I have never done any projects really. I have always just dressed up and it wasn't a thing as it was just my clothes and way of expressing myself. But definitely would be interesting in doing some photoshoots with other plus size women.“   Thank you for your service Gabriella!

A: “Really well! I have had a few negative comments over the years, but it’s a drop in the ocean compared to the good comments! People smile, they nod. I have had people cross the street to say hi and ask me questions. My Boyfriend is really supportive and although he doesn't dress vintage, he’s supportive of me wearing it. My family too! I have had some people ask if I am doing a play, or a WW2 enactment and people saying I always dress up to go places. But sometimes it’s literally just a dress and some red lips! I think it goes back to the standing out question. I didn't initially want to stand out but I do more than ever but not because of my weight because people are genuinely intrigued or enjoy what I am wearing. It’s almost saying this is me and here I am and I don't need to apologise for that, the way I dress or my size! “


Q: What are some of your tips for plus size women who want to dress in vintage style fashion?


A: “DO IT! try it at least. It may sound cliché but I cannot express how much I feel like I can express myself and be who I want when I am dressing in my clothes. It started off just now and then but my whole wardrobe is vintage now - I may own a pair of skinny jeans from before, but it is my style now and these are my 'normal'. There is never any right or wrong way to dress vintage. It’s how you feel and I do find when I feel good on the inside that shines on the outside. There is a vintage style for everyone and a red lipstick shade for everyone. I definitely recommend everyone try it. I have only been to one vintage event planning on more when Covid is gone! But I have never felt more comfortable and accepted and happy as I did there. There are so many like minded and wonderful people and not just at events. On Instagram, get following some of them and try it out.”

Q: Any up and coming projects we can look forward to?
A: “I am afraid not, I would love too. If anyone was interested. I have never done any projects really. I have always just dressed up and it wasn't a thing as it was just my clothes and way of expressing myself. But definitely would be interesting in doing some photoshoots with other plus size women.“ 

Thank you for your service Gabriella!

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