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Here are all the posts in our Forum/Blog on the topic of Customers: forum/testimonials...

Kim P    Saturday 05 July 2014 at 16:16

 Post #401 

Subject: Brilliant Long Skirt

Just wanted to say I finally got around to wearing the navy long stretch Chalou skirt and Kim was spot on as usual, it was a joy to wear. Such an easy garment and so comfortable. The split is just right, enough so that you can walk freely but not so long that you are flashing something you don't want to flash. Best of all it can be worn all year round.


 Emma    Thursday 10 July 2014 at 13:24

Hi Kim,

Thanks for your message. ...so glad that the skirt works!

The long skirts are really in at the moment, & judging by what I have been seeing here in Berlin (yes, I'm doing my buying in Germany again), there's going to be more of them next season, too....


 Kim P    Thursday 10 July 2014 at 20:06

Great! Look forward to reading about your travels and what other goodies we can look forward to!


Emma    Saturday 18 May 2013 at 10:57

 Post #357 

Subject: The times they are a-changing...

The times have changed quite considerably since I first opened Emma Plus. In those days we tended to sell clothes to women in our own immediate area. No-one spent more than, say, half-an-hourís travelling time to buy clothes. We sold to women in and around Brighton, with the odd person coming from the rest of Sussex.

This localised selling happened in all regions of the country, and had two detrimental effects on plus-size designer fashion. The first was that the shops that existed in those days were kept artificially small. ĎBonsaií shops, I call them. Because we didnít have very many customers, we could only buy a small amount of stock. Because we only had quite a small and limited range, it really wasnít worth a woman investing her time and effort travelling some distance to get here (in fact, when someone who lived far away from us telephoned, asking whether it would be worth her while travelling, we would usually advise her not to do so; it wasnít that we didnít believe in our stock; it was just that, after taking half the day to get here, a customer would generally prefer to have a choice of, say, more than two bottom halves, three tops, one dress and a coat in her size!). This, as you can imagine, was a vicious circle.

The other detrimental effect on plus-size fashion was a lot worse. Twenty years ago there really was very little product available in the size range that we cater for. Buying online had not been invented, catalogue selling tended to be quite abysmal, and many werenít lucky enough to live in the catchment area of a designer plus-size store. The high street just had a tiny selection, mainly from one particular chain, whose offer was very unimaginative. The result was that most plus-size women, unless they were gifted designer/seamstresses in their own right, looked under-par most of the time. People donít remember this now, but it was an accepted fact that plus-size women looked a lot older than their real age, less stylish, and almost completely sexless. If the plus-size woman of today could see the kind of offer that we were presented with in those days, there would be a riot. I think that even those of us who lived through that time hardly believe it now.

Clearly, how you present yourself has a great impact on your social standing and personal confidence. When it was difficult to find clothing that accurately represented how you felt about yourself, and how you perceived your social standing, it was very detrimental. For example, I was told this story by one of my customers that illustrates my point... She was a highly successful businesswoman and mother of young children. Her work was brilliant, and her company had reached the stage where it was going to be floated on the Stock Exchange. Unfortunately, as a busy woman with a family, she had very little time to travel the country trying to find the clothing that she really wanted. Instead, she bought everything on the high street, which created a look she didnít feel happy with, but she tried to convince herself that it wasnít important. Surely, it was her professionalism and knowledge that was most significant in the boardroom, not the way she presented herself?

One day she had to go to the City to discuss the floatation. She walked into a room to meet with several Ďmen in suitsí for the first time. As she entered, and approached the table, several of them looked up and, assuming that she was the cleaner, asked her to tidy up part of the room Ďbefore the client arrivedí. She was humiliated, and understandably felt very undermined. Itís very difficult, even for a confident person, to come back from that kind of start to a meeting! She vowed that, no matter how much effort it took, she was going to present herself in the way she felt comfortable with in future.

To say that the impact of the internet has had unexpected consequences in almost every walk of life is something of an understatement. I, for one, never really anticipated how it was going to affect my industry. For the first time we can now get national recognition for what we do, and encourage more and more women to come into our store to buy from us. Today, if a customer telephones and asks whether it is worthwhile travelling to get to us, no matter how far they were contemplating, I wouldnít hesitate to say yes. Occasionally, women ask if it would be worth their while undertaking a two-hour trip, and these days I am quite bewildered... Two hours? Why, of course, thatís no distance!

This has meant that our stockholding has increased exponentially, and we find that we have more beautiful clothes in a wider variety of sizes and in greater quantity than ever before. And what is being offered to us by the designers is getting ever more exciting and gorgeous. For about 10 years I found myself saying Ďwow... this is the best season everí, with a tone of surprise every season. Now I understand the mechanism of how our industry works I take this situation as a given. Of course itís the best season ever, every time! It would be a bit of a let-down if it wasnít, considering the reasons why the industry should be improving year on year.

The next aspect of the internet revolution has also got into swing... the empowerment of the customer. Nowadays, bloggers and reviewers are trying to take some of the bother out of all this travelling. They are aiming to find out everything they can about the plus-size shops out there, and to give recommendations, warnings, and general feedback - not only to the store owners, but to the customers who can then have an informed choice as to whether they wish to get into their car or on to the train, and trek to a shop that may be some distance away.

This is a democratic development; hopefully we will now see the real power of the consumer. The shops that are worth visiting will get more popular, and those offering a disappointing product or service will either have to shape up, or will go. I strongly believe we should welcome the ĎTrip Advisorsí of this world, and encourage the bloggers and reviewers out there. We canít blindly accept what they are saying, but I do think they will have a vital part to play in the future.

This is why I was so delighted to see that one of the most popular plus-size bloggers, Boombands Em (pictured, above right, with Anna Scholz and me), had written such a generous and enthusiastic review of our recent ASD (http://boombands.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/emma-plus-at-brighton.html) on her blog, and Tweeted about us, too.

Iím very grateful; I donít think many folk realise just what a hugely positive influence on our industry people like Em have, and how much we can all benefit from it.


Kim P    Tuesday 01 January 2013 at 16:12

 Post #328 

Subject: What a great shop Emma Plus is!

What a fantastic sale, I was so pleased to come into the shop on Friday and pick up some wonderful bargains! I know other customers loved their purchases as well judging by the smiling faces all around the shop. The discounts were generous and on top quality current season clothes. I like being able to wear beautiful clothes that flatter me at a price I can run too and that I know I will get many years of wear from. Although I was not feeling 100% it was a pleasure to shop in a bright, relaxed environment with plenty of comfy seating and an offer of complimentary tea or coffee never far away.
I was looking for smart dresses for work and as usual the ladies were able to pick out dresses that fitted and suited me perfectly. It really takes the hassle out of clothes shopping! I used to dread being approached by sales assistants before finding Emma Plus because more often than not they were not offering real help; they just wanted to know what you were going to buy. It's only when you have had the pleasure of being assisted by ladies who are experts in their field that you appreciate how good service is meant to be.
I went into a shop that was part of a higher end plus size chain in central London recently. It was a part of the city that I am not usually in and didn't realise it was there until I was passing so thought I'd pop in. The difference with Emma Plus was very noticeable. The displays were quite different with loads of clothes folded on tables and shelves which I hate! Who wants to have to unfold clothes in order to see anything, I want to be able to visualize them straight away. All in all I felt the shop was a bit of a throwback and reinforced my view that Emma's shop and the ladies there are very special indeed!


 Emma    Wednesday 02 January 2013 at 13:40

Hi Kim

High praise indeed... people will think you are on the payroll! Seriously, though, thank you so much for taking the time and trouble to send such wonderful sentiments.

We are very lucky; it isn't difficult to serve the customers that we have in the the store. I can honestly say that, in all my years in retail, I have never known such a lovely group of people as those who frequent this shop. Actually, I have spent a long time trying to formulate a theory as to why such wonderful women come in here, and I am still guessing! It's like a club.

I agree with you about displays. I do feel that you can tell quite a lot about the philosphy of a company by looking at how easily they make their merchandise available to their customers. When items are stacked in a pristine 'Don't you dare touch me' manner, I think the firm is sending out a subliminal message that their items are more important than their customers' convenience.

Further research has lead me to find that this approach doesn't usually stop there. If there is one thing that - as a retailer - gets my goat, it is trying to ask for help over the shoulder of a sales assistant whilst they are busily tidying their display. Surely, they should drop everything and simply assist their customer? Isn't that precisely what they and we are there for?


Dorothy    Monday 23 April 2012 at 14:07

 Post #283 

Subject: My Wedding Day

Hi there, I promised to send you guys a picture of me on my wedding day wearing the dress I bought from your shop. We had a wonderful day. Thanks to everyone for helping me get the right choice. Kind regards Dorothy


 Emma    Monday 23 April 2012 at 14:11

Hi Dorothy!

thank you for your lovely message. I'm so glad to see that the day went of so beautifully....you look gorgeous (I've taken the liberty of posting a close-up of you looking respelndent in your lovely Jennifer Lumer silk devorre jacket).

Good luck for the future, and I hope you have a wonderful married life!

Nicola    Tuesday 17 April 2012 at 20:28

 Post #281 

Subject: Spoilt for Choice

Hi Emma

Just a quick message to say thank you. Yesterday I received 2 packages through the post with all the items you altered for me. Last night I didn't know which one to try first!

The black Marina Rinaldi is the nicest linen shirt I have had in years and goes fantastically with the taupe Marina Rinaldi waistcoat - your recommendation couldn't have been more perfect.

The blue Anna Scholz dress looks great with all the tweaks to the length neckline and back, Steve has named it my Wedgewood dress.

The only thing that is now lacking is the weather in order to be able to wear it all (we have snow outside).

Thanks again!


 Emma    Monday 23 April 2012 at 14:36

Hi Nicola,

thanks for your lovely comments! I knew you would love the blouse: I think it's gorgeous. To be honest, I can take no credit for the fact that it went so well with the waistcoat, it was the one designed by Marina Rinaldi to do so. If you look at the tiny trim inside both garments, you will see it is the same. Ordinarily, this doesn't mean much to me: I much prefer to mix collections to create a unique look. However, certain ranges (Marina Rinaldi being one) needs no such intervention, because it's already creative and unique.

I love that dress, and I will be wearing it (weather permitting) to the Anna Scholz day. I've managed to find a pair of shoes that exact colour (I can't help it...I'm terrible!!).

I hope you enjoy wearing what you have, and do get in contact with us if you find you need anything else. I also hope the weather's warmer out there now!


Kim P    Monday 21 November 2011 at 21:47

 Post #254 

Subject: Wonderful alteration service

Hi ladies, my Verpass top and Marina Rinaldi dress arrived and the alterations made are fabulous. It's amazing what a huge diference even the smallest alteration can make. I would not have considered the Verpass top but your suggestions worked wonderfully and I know I'll get lots of wear out of it now. Thanks again!


 Emma    Wednesday 23 November 2011 at 11:37

Hi Kim!

So glad that you were happy with your alterations...Denisa is a genius with a sewing machine!

Having a garment fitted to you perfectly is the best thing ever, particularly for the plus-size woman. We all have different body shapes, and it is the failure of a garment to fit these that is often to blame for our clothes being unflattering. All of a sudden, we can look more stylish, fashionable, slimmer and more put-together, just by having a garment fitted to us.

It may be worth mentioning that, unlike some stores, we are more than happy to help with alterations to garments provided by other retailers. Denisa is her own boss, and can undertake private commissions,at what I understand to be very reasonable rates. I am more than happy to help with whatever pinning is necessary. We at Emma Plus do not make any charge for this....

Victoria Hollis    Saturday 12 November 2011 at 00:39

 Post #253 

Subject: 100percentpeople Plus Size Awards

Hi Em

Apologies for the shameless plug/posting here but I was hoping I could avail many of the gorgeous ladies who post and lurkers to go to


And pop in a vote (or two you can vote every 12 hours) for Anna Scholz. The reason I ask this is simply no other plus size designer has given us so many options and keeps evolving her ranges at a breath taking pace.

From her diffusion ranges for Debenhams and Simply Be through to Black and White labels she has given us curvy women so much and I think its time that she got the recognition she deserves.

I have no idea why she's been lsited as a retailer rather than designer but hey ho


 Emma    Saturday 12 November 2011 at 14:24

Hi Tory...

I have just voted for Anna Scholz!


 Anon    Saturday 12 November 2011 at 14:38

So have I!


 Kim P    Sunday 13 November 2011 at 15:40

I voted Emma Plus on that list and also in the independant plus size fashion retailer category!


 Emma    Monday 14 November 2011 at 15:43

Hi Kim!

Thanks for that....I didn't realise that Emma Plus was on the list. Did you put us there?

Anyway, I'm most gratified, and would be very grateful if anyone (who has the time and the inclination) would consider voting for us as well!!


 Kim P    Monday 14 November 2011 at 19:35

No, you were already on the lists!

Vote Emma Plus :-)


Nerys    Monday 22 August 2011 at 12:43

 Post #236 

Subject: your fab selves

To Emma and her team,
I would like to thank you very much from the bottom of my heart for everything you did for me and my friends on Friday 19th August.
From opening early for us as we only had the spare hour in the morning to your expertise, time, knowledge and most of all the Emma plus experience!!! Which believe me I will be telling everyone about! ( I'm sure if you could bottle it you will have yourself a best seller)
No pushy sales woman trying to sell us everything in the shop and having a genuine interest in us and not the sale.
I am so happy with my Anna Scholz dress and for once will be able to enjoy a wedding without having to worry about an ill fitting outfit.
The biggest shame is that we are so far away but believe as the saying goes I will be back!!!
Diolch yn fawr iawn (Welsh for Thank you very much)
Nerys Willams


 Emma    Wednesday 24 August 2011 at 16:52

Hi Nerys!

Thank you so much for your kind words, which really are appreciated! I have passed them on to Kim, who really was responsible for opening early!

I'm so glad you had the dress...it really is wonderful. From a retailer's point of view, it is a very frustrating dress because it is so beautiful and sold out almost immediately, and we can't get any more! There are going to be a lot of disappointed women out there! I'm so glad that this one went to someone who really suited it so beautifully! If you get the chance, we would love to see a picture of you at the event, wearing it.....


Sue Wooding    Friday 08 April 2011 at 12:06

 Post #206 

Subject: What an experience!

I wanted to say what a wonderful time my friend Julia and I had when we visited your shop on Wednesday.

Having found your website I had a hunch that it would be worth travelling to your shop from West Devon, in the search for something to wear to my son's wedding in July, and I wasn't wrong.

A veritable treasure trove of colours, fabrics and styles and all in plus sizes. The choice would have been bewildering if it hadn't been for your knowledge and advice in selecting pieces for me to try on. You certainly have a very good eye and I tried on things I would not have thought would have suited me.

In the end, I am completely excited about my chosen outfit although it is as far away from the colour I had envisaged wearing as it is possible to be.

Julia and I agreed that we have never had such a happy time buying clothes ( she succumbed and bought 2 pieces, too) and we couldn't believe that we were with you for 3 hours.

Heartfelt thanks to you both.


 Emma    Saturday 09 April 2011 at 10:43

Hi Sue!

Thank you so much for your kind words! It was a great pleasure to meet you both, and we were thrilled with what you picked out. I thought you looked incredibly classy in the Elena Grunert outfit.

Don't forget, if you are ever tempted, there is a pair of 'sensitive' trousers with you name on them, here in the shop....you only have to call!

I may see you before the 'big day', but, if I don't, I hope you have a lovely time!


Jennie Ferrigno    Monday 07 March 2011 at 15:13

 Post #199 

Subject: shopping

Hi there

I drove to Brighton on Saturday for the purpose of visiting your shop and what a pleasue it was. I found two perfect items to bring home and saw many more that are possibilities. It was also a real pleasure to meet you and your staff Emma and I enjoyed our conversation. When will you open another shop in our nearest town (Marlow):-)


 Emma    Tuesday 08 March 2011 at 14:02

Hi Jennie

Thank you for your kind words... it makes all the difference for us to have this feedback. Also, hopefully, your post will be read by other women who are considering 'hitting the road' to visit us here in sunny Brighton, and will encourage them that it will be worth the trip!

I really enjoyed meeting you, and was fascinated by your encyclopaedic knowledge of the plus-size designer fashion business. It is through meeting people like you that I learn so much, and I was very glad to be able to exchange views and experiences with you....


miss Bartoz    Monday 14 February 2011 at 15:14

 Post #195 

Subject: you at missbartoz.de

Dear Emma,

It was so nice to meet you at the cpd in DŁsseldorf.
I have uploaded the two gorgeous pictures on: www.missbartoz.de

Looking forward to you comment.



 Emma    Friday 18 February 2011 at 16:49

Hi Ulrike

Thank you so much for visiting our forum!

Jaq and I really enjoyed meeting you at CPD Duesseldorf - the major fashion show in Germany that we visit every season.

You looked in perfect happiness on the Anna Scholz stand, and I can see why... we thought her collection was fantastic, and I know you felt the same!

I am going to be writing in my blog about the show, and about Anna's collection. In the meantime I really laughed when I followed your link and saw a picture of me, resplendent in my Anna Scholz black and white striped dress (from the Fall 10 collection), and my special tights with bows all down the back! So girlie!!

Nicola Sutherland    Sunday 07 November 2010 at 18:01

 Post #175 

Subject: Compliments

Thanks for another great shopping experience on Saturday afternoon - my second visit to your shop, and the reason I influenced our shopping extravaganza day trip from Southampton to be in Brighton.

You didn't have the Anna dress I was looking for - serves me right for being late - but still had loads of gorgeous stuff and I came out as laden as my first visit in April.

The compliments came from my fellow shoppers - while they are not in the market for your range, both said what a lovely shop, amazing staff who clearly know their stuff, and give amazing service. Most importantly they both saw why I had brought them all the way Brighton!

Looking forward to getting my altered red dress - and the Anna fashion show.

Thanks for another great shopping experience.



 Emma    Monday 08 November 2010 at 17:57

Hi Nicola!

Thank you for your lovely comments... it was a real pleasure to see you on Saturday!

I'm glad you are as excited as we are about the Anna Scholz show. We've yet to finalise the date at which Anna and her team will be coming into our shop to show a wide selection of her range (including items not usually seen in stores). However, as you have given us your contact details, we will make sure you are notified in time.

Any customers wishing to be told when the Anna Scholz show is in town can phone 01273 327240 and be put into our 'little black book', so that we can contact you with the details once they have been settled...

Kim P    Wednesday 03 November 2010 at 23:13

 Post #173 

Subject: vote for emma plus!

The Daily Telegraph are running a competition for the best small retailer including womans fashion, so I voted for Emma Plus for their service and clothing. The link is here if anyione is interested.



 Emma    Wednesday 03 November 2010 at 23:42

Hi Kim!

As ever, you have been so kind! All of us here at Emma Plus really do appreciate your comments, and wonderful support!

I would really love to get an honourable mention in the Daily Telegraph Small Shops Awards. I have never, ever heard of a plus-size store being mentioned in any national publication. And I have been looking out for such a thing for the past 20 years!

I have good reason to think that there are tens, perhaps hundreds of thousands of larger women in Britain who do not know that there are independent boutiques catering to plus-sizes in this country!

When you consider how the chain stores do not adequately provide for our market, this does mean that there are a lot of women out there who really could do with hearing about the existance of plus-size independent shops!

The Daily Telegraph is a paper that actually has a very good history in supporting interesting and innovative retail, and we are grateful to them for opening up this opportunity for us....The other force at work here is the wonderful Mary Portas (it may be worth checking out her website, which is very interesting) who helped instigate the awards.

As anyone who has either watched her very effective TV shows, or read her informative and entertaining columns about retail would doubtless agree, if there was an award for services to independent retail, it would surely be given to Mary Portas!

 sarah copson    Wednesday 17 November 2010 at 10:51

done, with pleasure!


Emma    Thursday 28 October 2010 at 17:26

 Post #172 

Subject: Special day news

Our thanks to Julie, who was kind enough to send us a lovely photograph of her wedding. Julie wrote:

Dear Emma Plus,

Thank you for making my wedding day special. I certainly felt like a radiant bride. My dress was gorgeous and everyone commented on it.

I even got to wear it again as we went to the Reids Hotel in Madeira for afternoon tea and champagne. Also my mum looked good in her outfit.

Thank you once again and that all your staff who took their time to look after us.


Julie xxx


Nellie    Thursday 23 September 2010 at 01:16

 Post #165 

Subject: your friends fr. L.A.

Hi Emma,

I am so fascinated by your fashion ideas...and you inspire me with your beautiful styles. I wish you are closer to warm and breezy Los Angeles, California, USA....where fantastic Hollywood is....where the fabulous starts really shine!

I'm sharing a picture of interest taken in the Philippines which you can put in your ''overseas'' picture gallery ( taken in a wonderful Eden Nature Resort in Davao during our visit there )...

Just hope you read a separate e-mail that I sent through my e-mail add..., hey, I don't mind modelling around one of your lovely apparels...hope we can meet in L.A. why not?

Cheers to you Emma!:-)

Your new fan and a fashion lover,
La Nelle


 Emma    Thursday 23 September 2010 at 20:03

Hi Nellie!

Thank you for your lovely positive comments, and fabulous picture. That peacock is the epitome of glamour!

It seems so unreal to be able to converse with someone over in tinseltown, via cyberspace! And very flattering that you would take an interest in our forum!

Thank you for admiring our styles, which sadly I can take no credit for. Because we don't design anything ourselves, all the admiration has to be reserved for the fantastic designers who are working in our industry now. We are very lucky to be living in a time when every year sees great improvements in what is available for us to buy.

If I do make it over the other side of 'the pond', I will be sure to look you up!


 Nellie    Thursday 23 September 2010 at 22:53

It's certainly a pleasure, Emma!

And yes, you're right, the cyberspace has allowed people, from perhaps, all over the universe, to connect to each other. Been reading the blogs of your friends in your forum...and true enough, it is simply amazing what you do for people who have the desire for fabulous fashion and still feel great about their looks in spite of the size....who cares about the size....? ha ha ha!

Here's a picture in one of my strolls at Universal Studio mall in Hollywood...one of the most visited spots by LA visitors...where you can find lots of stores and resto bars...and that's me, in my black/psychedelic tops (inspired with a gold-snake accessory) over denim pants which I bought from JCPenney of USA...

May your great ideas keep coming...thanks to UK-based fashion designers which I can connect with virtually through your website...I am a big fan of websites with great ideas...you really attract your success Emma because you are passionate about what you do...!

Warm regards,

La Nelle of L.A.

 Emma    Friday 24 September 2010 at 13:20

Hi Nellie!

It's wonderful to see you in what we (in a rather damp Britain) would regard as a very exotic environment!

I love your outfit choice of colour, pattern and accessories!

Caroline Abram    Tuesday 14 September 2010 at 15:33

 Post #162 

Subject: Shop Visit

Hi, I just wanted to mail you to say how wonderful it was stumbling across your shop on Saturday. Totally unexpected, and to find such a unique selection of plus size clothes,excellent customer service and what a great time my friends and i had with the banter! It makes a change for them to have to sit and wait for me to try items on, and very comfy there were to on your lovely sofa! I am very pleased with my Anna Scholz top, and in the sale, great! I am also very excited about the new designs we discussed in the shop and cant wait to try them on! When is the next fashion show? (my offer still stands if you need a model...!!) I have already recommended you to two of my lucky friends so i hope to see you again very soon.


 Emma    Tuesday 14 September 2010 at 19:01

Hi Caroline!

Thank you so much for your kind comments... I hope you will not mind that I have put them on to our 'Testimonials' page (accessible from the Homepage).

It really was so lovely to meet you on Saturday... a real piece of luck. Some people spend six hours on the road travelling after tracking us down online, yet you happened across us when you were passing!

We will tell you when we will be doing the next fashion show. I know you will enjoy it – they really do go down so well. It is just a chance to see some lovely clothes, have a laugh and a chat, some champers and some nibbles... really, a perfect way to spend a Saturday!

Sharon    Saturday 14 August 2010 at 15:24

 Post #152 

Subject: Thanks :-)

Hi Emma and your wonderful assistant (whose name I forgot to ask!). I am the lady who came in wearing the Anna Scholz parka on Friday.
I was so impressed with the service, selection and suggestions and help and pleased with the bargains I bagged.
As I mentioned there is a make that used to be stocked in Selfridges (I remembered its not Scnadinavian, but Belgian) who made superb wide legged linen trousers and very long matching tops - can anyone remember what this make was called as I'd love to see it stocked in Emma Plus?
Thanks again for a great shop and I'll definitely be back.


 Emma    Saturday 14 August 2010 at 17:29

Hi Sharon

Thank you so much for your post. I would be very interested to hear from any of our forum readers who may remember the range you mention. It sounds very good, and I would be interested in seeing if it is available for us to stock.

One of the functions of the forum (I hope) is for customers to have the ability to talk to one another about clothes, to recommend ranges and perhaps to help each other track down what they are looking for.

By the way, to me you are a real 'Anna Scholz' woman... you look gorgeous in the range!


Kim P    Friday 25 June 2010 at 14:45

 Post #142 

Subject: Hot weather!

Hi ladies
I guess the warm weather tends to bring out some of the worst fashion nightmares from the Great British Public!
I just wanted to let you know that the tops and trousers I have bought from Emma Plus lately have really come into their own now that it looks like Summer is finally here! It is such a relief to know that it is easy to look stylish and comfortable wearing well made clothes catering for woman at the higher end of the sizing spectrum. I imagine many of us pre Emma Plus discovery have in the hottest of weather worn shapeless and unflattering tops making us look like a ship under full sail! I'm glad to say for me those days are no more. It's also been a struggle to source smart yet care free and feminine summer trousers but the Nanso and Brand cut offs are a joy to wear and extremely flattering. I am thinking perhaps I should have bought another pair as Kim suggested! I look forward to my next visit.


 Emma    Friday 25 June 2010 at 18:00

Hi Kim

Thank you for your comments! Yes, I think that hot weather does present particular problems for the larger woman... we really feel the heat, and this is not helped by the dearth of lovely, cool clothes to be found in our size range. In the end there is a temptation to opt for something shapeless, as long as it is cool.

Even in the winter we are always trying to get cool clothes in natural fibres, or - even better - in the new 'functional' fabrics that are just being developed, which are now feeding into the designer-end of the clothing industry. I'm referring to fabrics like Coolmax, or developments like the 'Sensitive' trousers made by the German company, Brand, that are designed to wick moisture away from the body, thus creating a very cool feel.

We're lucky in our store because the new air-conditioning unit is fantastic. Today I had to tell Kim (our Kim!) that it had to be turned down because I had goose-bumps!

Perhaps you will venture into our icebox to snaffle up another pair of your favourite trousers...?

 Kim P    Saturday 26 June 2010 at 18:16

The aircon sounds great! Fingers crossed that you have some in-stock when I call in next.


 Emma    Sunday 27 June 2010 at 22:48

Hi Kim

Honestly, the air-conditioning is a complete godsend! We were joking with each other that we will be creeping back in on Sundays (when we are closed), just to get cool...


 Jenny Lee    Saturday 24 July 2010 at 14:00

Visited the shop last week for the first time in several years as I have moved away.I loved my visit-the service-the friendliness-not to mention the clothes-best shop I have ever found for variety and quality-I LOVE IT-would recommend it to anyone who wants good clothes and wonderfully helpful staff-makes me feel 10 years younger every time I walk through the door-no kidding I mean every word.Would live there if I could!!
All best wishes and thanks-Jenny


Emma Wakefield    Tuesday 13 April 2010 at 20:34

 Post #130 

Subject: Fab Saturday

Just wanted to say thanks again for all your help on Saturday. Not only do I have some FAB new clothes to look forward to, but all my re-vamped and re-shaped old favourites to discover all over again too. I really can't think of ANY other shop that would offer to alter clothes bought 2 years ago!! Meeting Anna was the icing on the cake. Looking forward to seeing you again on Friday (but please don't let me try anything else on!)


 Emma    Tuesday 13 April 2010 at 22:41

Hi Emma

It was great to see you on Saturday. Congratulations on the weight loss... you look fabulous!

It's honestly a pleasure to make your lovely clothes fit you again. I hope you will get a lot more use out of them.

I was thrilled to have Anna Scholz in the store (here is a pic of you both together!)- and she was thrilled to hear what you said about her collection. It's lovely for designers to get feedback from their customers...

Angela Brown    Saturday 06 March 2010 at 16:19

 Post #122 

Subject: Thank you

Thank you for the help today. As usual, I ended up with what I came in for and things I didn't know I couldn't live without!

I have also thanked my very generous, and patient, husband (who knows what suits me better than I do).

I love the fact that you can turn cropped trousers into shorts for me and a dress that almost fits properly in to a perfect fit.

I THINK I am set up for summer now so bring on the sun!


 Emma    Wednesday 10 March 2010 at 14:34

Hi Angela

It was so good to see you and your lovely husband again last week!

It may be of interest to you, and other Forum/Blog users, to hear that we have initiated a new page of 'Testimonials' (accessible via the main menu on the Homepage), comprising comments about shopping at Emma Plus posted by correspondents.

We will be adding further comments made through the Forum/Blog, so that new customers can see what people are saying about us.

Valerie Orton    Wednesday 27 January 2010 at 10:11

 Post #109 

Subject: Good luck

Hi Emma,
Just a brief note to wish you well in the revamped shop. I look forward to seeing it soon. And to thank you for selling me two what I can only describe as jumper dresses which I have lived in during this cold winter. Fantastic.



 Emma    Wednesday 27 January 2010 at 20:00

Hi Valerie

Thank you so much for your good wishes! Yes, we are now open, and (even though I shouldnít say so) it looks fabulous.

Iím going to put three photographs on (I have to put them into successive posts), with different views of the refit.

This first one shows a birdís-eye view of the shop floor - itís easy to see the new flooring, and improved dťcor...

Vivian    Monday 11 January 2010 at 08:51

 Post #104 

Subject: Is it just a DREAM ....?

Dear Emma,
Just when I find what I've been looking for, it's beyond my reach! I live across the pond in the US. Traveling to Brighton is not possible. What is a girl to do? Am I destined to live out my life in less flattering clothing, never reaching my full feminine potential? :) Or will Brighton share you with all of us, perhaps allowing you to travel and 'bring' some of your beautiful pieces to those of us less fortunate to live nearby? Doesn't the rest of the world deserve to be transformed? Or will we have to continue visiting your website and just DREAM?

P.S: The music on your website is beautiful. Who is the artist and what is the name of the song?


 Emma    Monday 11 January 2010 at 23:57

Hi Vivian!

Thank you for your lovely post. It's great that we can reach people from all over the world with our forum.

I can only make two observations about your predicament. The first one is that you sound like the kind of woman with the sense of style and imagination who could really make a go of starting up your own designer store....And the second is that if, as you say, there is nowhere near you that sells beautiful clothes-it would be bound to be a success!!

I've always said, if there is anyone out there in cyberspace who is thinking about starting a store, I will give what advice I can.

I love the photograph you have posted-a view from your back porch, I imagine? If it were, there would certainly be some compensations in living there-even if the local fashion left something to be desired!

I have had a chat with my IT supremo, and he is making enquiries about the music. Hopefully, we will be able to get back to you with details of the artist and song title.


 Vivian    Tuesday 12 January 2010 at 06:17

Dear Emma,
I wish the picture from my previous post was what I looked out on each day (It's a picture of French Polynesia, Tahiti I believe)... I was dreaming. The picture I've attached to this post is what I see here in Southwest Florida, just 15 minutes over the bridge and I'm on the beach! Our surroundings, can be compensation in a way ...Thank you for your 'positive perspective'...Just think if Cinderella didn't have a positive outlook, she couldn't have pulled it off at the Ball - beautiful clothes or not! You've got me thinking seriously about a few things .... A small business...hhmmmm. Emma, how would I start to create my own business in this economy?

 Emma    Wednesday 13 January 2010 at 01:22

Hi Vivian!

I was being tongue-in-cheek about the view from your back porch, but it turns out you really do have a beautiful ocean not far from where you live (thanks for the photo)!

It's not part of my job to encourage people to start up a fashion store...that's a very stressful, difficult and financially dangerous thing to do, and it really would have to be something you are 100% sure about from the outset.

However, you mention the problem of starting a business 'in this economy', by which I think you may mean the current economic downturn. If it is only the the ongoing recession that is holding you back, it's worth noting that I started my business during a serious recession. In fact I believe that I would never have been able to obtain the store that I have now, if there hadn't been an economic downturn when I started out.

Opening the store is positively the best thing I have ever done, and I still surprise myself when I think about how lucky I am. I really love the fashion industry-particularly the plus-size fashion business, which must be the most rewarding way of making a living known to womankind!


Kim P    Thursday 31 December 2009 at 17:08

 Post #103 

Subject: Super Sale!

Dear ladies at Emma Plus
Luckily I was able to come into the shop today to pick up the Nanso top I had already ordered. I walked in and saw a shop full of wonderful clothes well reduced in price. I was delighted to pick up bargains in Anna Scholz, Sallie Sahne and Verpass and the alteration service allowed me to choose lovely items I would not of otherwise been able to wear. I hope other ladies are able to go along between now and your refit as you still had plenty quality clothes at excellent prices. Have a great 2010 and I look forward to visiting your new improved Emmas Plus shop.


 Emma    Friday 01 January 2010 at 11:42

Hi Kim

Wow - what lovely reaction to our Sale! I think it was your first experience of the Emma Plus Sale? If so, you found us at the right season - just when we were planning a refit!

Actually, to tell the truth, it breaks my retailer's heart to make such big reductions on really lovely clothes - but having had refits before, I know that we just can't do the building and redecorating work with any stock left in the store!

I think you should be in the fashion business, Kim, because you are developing an encyclopaedic knowledge of all the ranges - it took me years to remember the names of all the collections we stock. I do think you are right to build-up your knowledge of what you like, because it was you that mentioned Sempre Pui to us (on this blog), which encouraged us to buy the Chalou brand. This shows the power of customer feedback!

One of the nicest things that keeps being said to us by customers at this time (which you said yourself, when you were here yesterday) was that people were really looking forward to seeing the new shop after the refit - as am I!

I like to think that I can run a fashion business (after all this time), and I really enjoy the selection and buying of our stock. However, I can't honestly say that I have any of the necessary skills for overseeing building and decorating work, so the end result will be as much a matter of surprise to me as it will be to our customers! I am completely out of my comfort zone! It really is a very exciting time...

I hope that 2010 progesses into a healthy, happy and peaceful year for all readers and contributors to our forum!


Kathy    Tuesday 22 December 2009 at 16:09

 Post #102 

Subject: A Big Thank You

I love verpass jacket, the trendy black top and the Anna Scholz jacket which you kindly sent ( Thanks Jaq)
Most of all I love shopping with you - and being friends through the years. You have all been important to me in so many ways... besides the wonderful clothes, the unflagging service -always with a smile and a coffee- you have been as all good friends should be- positive, encouraging, caring and making me feel and look great.
I wish all of you a merry Christmas and a fabulous New Year...see you soon. XX00


 Emma    Tuesday 22 December 2009 at 23:46

Hi Kathy

I can't tell you how sorry I was to have missed you when you came into the store - it's been ages! I'm glad you like your things.

In the New Year we are definitely going to 'Do Lunch'!

If you think you may be able to come, do tell me, and I will be there! Don't worry about telling us you are coming, then finding out that you can't at the last minute - that's the kind of thing that happens in retailing all the time! If you get here it would be fab, and if you can't make it, we know how busy you are! On the other hand, if it's a last-minute thing, I realise you won't be able to warn us first; it will be pot luck - but on the plus side - usually either Jaq or I will be in the store, so you are likely to see at least one of us...

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and a superb and prosperous New Year!

Lots of love...


Angela Brown    Monday 21 December 2009 at 14:24

 Post #101 

Subject: Thank you

Thank you so much for your help on Saturday when I came in for "just a top" and went out with 2 tops, a winter jacket and 2 pairs of trousers (being altered).
My friend said how much she liked the asymmetric Nanso top that I wore on on Saturday evening and even my sons (21 and 26) commented that they hadn't seen the top before.
I'm looking forward to seeing the new look shop when i came back for my trousers at the end of January.
I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


 Emma    Tuesday 22 December 2009 at 00:26

Hi Angela!

Thank you for your post, and congratulations on braving the weather to come in on Saturday!

To have had a reaction from twenty-something sons is quite a result! I think I will start to complile a list of responses our clothes have engendered - I think it will make good reading!

I hope you like the look of the new store at the end of January - it's an exciting time for us...

We wish you a very Happy Christmas, and a great New Year!


Kirsten James    Friday 11 December 2009 at 21:24

 Post #98 

Subject: Spring Collections

Emma, I wish I had a reason to visit England and your store, but in the meantime, I do check out your blog and love it! I just found your September post about Anna Scholz's Spring collection (I was googling just to see if I could find photos of a preview somewhere!) and am now waiting with baited breath.... When will it be out? My step-son is getting married in May and I am thinking that one of her Spring dresses just might be the ticket for me.

Oh and if you ever do open an online boutiques, please ship to the U.S.! We really do not have the selection you do in Europe. I live in Dallas, TX and sadly, we do not have an upscale plus boutique at all! In fact, I have been musing recently about opening one someday.....

Thanks and best wishes for the holidays and your big renovation coming up!


 Emma    Sunday 13 December 2009 at 11:22

Hi Kirsten

Thank you for your post - itís always surprising to realise that people all over the world read our forum!

You are obviously very good at ferreting out information. As far as I know, our forum is the only place anywhere where you can find advance images of next seasonís Anna Scholz collection! Honestly, I think the only reason why Anna lets us display the pictures is because she likes us!

The collection starts to come into the stores after Christmas, usually some time during January/February. Please don't worry about obtaining what you want, when you want it, for next season... one of the main purposes of the Spring/Summer collections is to provide beautiful dresses for spring weddings! Next season Anna has really surpassed herself, and you will be thrilled!

I havenít checked with Anna, but I think that she may be able to advise you on how you will be able to buy her clothes in the US. It may be worth emailing her - her company is lovely and there may well be some way that they can help you. I would really recommend going the extra mile to get her items if you can - I donít know of any better designer in our size range.

Surely someone could start a really smart boutique in Dallas! It would certainly be a wonderful success. If you, or anyone out there wants to do it - I promise I will give what advice I can!


 Kirsten Brandt James    Sunday 13 December 2009 at 20:27

Thanks Emma! I have had great luck with online orders from Neiman's and La Grande Dame for Anna's styles and have ordered a couple of things directly from her site. You are right that her staff is great, Winnie has been very helpful! Anyway, I will look for new styles in January/February. Best wishes for a wonderful holiday seaon. One my favorite memories is the year my family spend Christmas in Canterbury and then had New Year's in London. Take care.


 Emma    Monday 14 December 2009 at 01:05

Hi Kirsten

You really are clued up - I doubt if there is anything I could tell you about sourcing our kind of fashion online!

And you appear to be a great Anglophile too - obviously a woman of impeccable taste! It must have been wonderfully Christmassy in Canterbury - what a great place to choose for the time of year.

I hope you have a lovely holiday season and a very happy New Year.

And may the fashion fairy smile on you... and bring you a gorgeous dress for your stepson's wedding!


Rita de Chadarevian    Tuesday 24 November 2009 at 13:31

 Post #94 

Subject: wow!!

Just happened on your site and what a wonderful surprise to see such unusual, stylish, and sharp fashion for the goddesses among us! I would love to know both the size and price range and whether you send out catalogues. Thank you.


 Jaq    Tuesday 24 November 2009 at 18:30

Hi Rita

Thanks for your enquiry. Yes we do have some wonderful clothes. As we all know it is so difficult to find unusual and beautiful clothes in larger sizes. I think we (larger women) are often forgotten or ignored in the marketplace. But you'll be pleased to know Emma and I strive to fill the store with fashionable good quality clothing. We start at a size 18 and move up to a generous size 32. We may not be the cheapest option, but our customers tell us that the quality and styling are really outstanding. And as the advert says ''we are worth it''.

I do hope you can get into the store as we don't do a catalogue. Emma Plus is all about personal service and honest, professional styling advice.



Marie O'Brien    Monday 23 November 2009 at 12:03

 Post #93 

Subject: Water in the dessert!

Dear All,
I came to Emma Plus in slight desperation for something fashionable and slightly larger than the shops generally stock, to wear. I'm not the worlds best shopper and had roped in my lovely friend to help me to find something to wear for a special occasion a week later - I do like to be prepared - NOT! I was giving her a bit of hard time because she was not able to find me something suitable that fitted but fortunately I had looked up Emma Plus on the internet before my visit to Brighton - which is not my neck of the woods.

The moment we came into the shop I felt supported and looked after by Jaq and Kim. They picked out things for so that I didn't even have to look at the rails and I picked an Anna Scholtz dress which I wouldn't normally have chosen with a lot of pattern. It didn't quite fit but every cat was pulled out of the bag, and Denisa altered the dress, with very little time to spare, and the dress has now arrived with me and fits to perfection.

The event is tomorrow and I am now really looking forward to it. I will send a pic so that you can all see the results of that fantastic support from everyone in the shop . Shopping is an emotional experience and for me and I am so glad that I walked into Emma Plus which is a haven of humour, inspiration and assistance to find what you want. A priceless experience. Thank you.


 Marie Gleeson    Wednesday 09 December 2009 at 10:16

Presenting the new Mr and Mrs Gleeson!
It was a secret wedding with only four of us there - only told the witnesses 30 minutes before!
The only people who new before were Jaq, Kim and Denisa at Emma Plus. Thank you so much for being lovely and for enabling me to have such a lovely day. I am sure that I will wear the dress so many more times.
Thank you again for helping my married life started so beautifully!

 Emma    Saturday 19 December 2009 at 13:11

Hi Marie

Thank you so much for posting your lovely picture on our forum! It was such a pleasure to meet both you and your (very knowledgeable!) friend.

You looked wonderful in the dress, and the picture is so joyful!

Lots of love and good wishes,

Emma, Jaq, Kim and Denisa


Angela Brown    Saturday 21 November 2009 at 21:35

 Post #92 

Subject: Nango top

I have the nango key hole top (black background with lilac, blue and brown print) pictured in your daywear collection but there are no instructions for washing, ironing or cleaning. Can you help? Thanks


 Kim P    Sunday 22 November 2009 at 15:49

I have the same top. The label (well hidden down the side) says 40 deg machine washable and the iron symbol has two dots. I washed mine yesterday on a 40 deg general wash cycle, hung it on a hanger and its dried with no need to iron at all.


 Jaq    Monday 23 November 2009 at 11:36

Thanks Kim for coming to our rescue and replying to one of our customers. I've got that top too; it's fab isn't it!



Gill Neal    Wednesday 18 November 2009 at 15:43

 Post #91 

Subject: Wedding

Way back in March (I think) I visited your shop at my wits end looking for an outfit for my son's wedding! As you can see the wedding took place on 18th July - this is my husband, son and daughter with me at the Church we had a wonderful day and everyone said how fantastic my outfit was and where did I get it - I only told the larger ladies I'm afraid!! If you remember I also got a wonderful mulitcoloured silk top and black trousers (which you altered to perfection!) and a plum coloured silk suit for my son's graduation in July 2010 - however this will also be used for my first grandchild's christening as they are expecting their first child in June 2010 ! Never been happier - thanks to all at Emma Plus - ps if you remember I was with my size 8 friend who is still VERY jealous of the choice I had. Thanks again - hope to see you soon


 Jaq    Saturday 21 November 2009 at 00:09

Hi Gill

Wow... what a lovely post. It's so rewarding to recieve such wonderful posts, and also to see the clothes being worn. You all look so happy... it's a great photograph. The Personal Choice wedding suit was just perfect for you. I do remember you and your friend - you were a breath of fresh air in the shop. You couldn't decide which outfit to buy (it was between the two Personal Choice suits) and then you remembered your other event, and your friend said to get both. That's a good friend you've got there; she truly wanted the best for you.

Thank you for showing us the fruits of our labours. You looked marvellous. Can't wait to see the next photo of the graduation in March.



Amand Richards    Friday 13 November 2009 at 21:25

 Post #89 

Subject: What more could a woman want!

I visited your shop today. As soon as i entered, lovely greeting from Jaq, let me just me mouch, offered a drink and sat down a spoke to another lovely customer, so impressed with the dog, was showing me all the tricks! Jac picked lots of beautiful clothes to try on and she is so honest about how i looked, I dread shopping normally buying frumpy or boring things,your shop has stlye. I love Anna scholz, she makes clothes for proper ladies, for the first time in ages i felt confident and sexy!


 Jaq    Saturday 14 November 2009 at 19:55

Hi Amanda

Thank you very much for your positive comments. It was so nice to see you in the store and I have to say you did the Anna Scholz dresses proud.

If you ever need that special sexy dress, Anna is the designer for you. Do enjoy your new clothes, and we hope to see you in the store again soon. Have fun.



Rosemary Milmine    Wednesday 04 November 2009 at 20:28

 Post #86 

Subject: Skinny Models

Why are all the models on your web pages skinny and young? Lets have some real women strutting their stuff! I am planning to come in and spend my £10 voucher soon..Thanks very much


 Emma    Thursday 05 November 2009 at 10:40

Hi Rosemary

I have a feeling this issue is going to run and run!

Actually, someone else has also posted a remark very similar to yours (see post 84), and I have to say, I heartily agree with it!

If you read my reply to that post, you will see why we put these images on our website.

However, I really feel that the more comments like yours the better - any kind of pressure on our suppliers to provide more realistic images has got to be a good thing! I would love to be able to get my suppliers to take one look at our forum and then try to explain why they continue to use small models!


Emma    Monday 26 October 2009 at 01:08

 Post #85 

Subject: The journey

As many women reading this will already know, you donít always go to a designer clothes shop just to buy some clothes. Thatís the main purpose, of course; even with recent improvements in the high street brands, the independent store still remains the prime source of fashion.

You can simply go into a shop, quietly select the clothing of your choice, try it on in a peaceful environment, make the purchase, then just go home. There are many women who choose to do exactly this, and are very happy.

Most women, however, whether they know it or not, are actually using another service provided by this kind of store... the service of a skilled stylist.

What does a stylist do? Most of us have seen a certain type of fashion stylist at work on television. This kind of stylist will normally take a woman who has avowedly no interest in fashion (and, often, shocking taste) and do a makeover on her - seemingly turning her into a completely different person.

Often this changeling not only ends up looking different, but also Ďbenefitsí from a complete emotional overhaul, usually (apparently) against her will. She Ďgoes on a journeyí... No region of her body is held sacrosanct from prying eyes, cameras and often hands, and all areas of her psyche, no matter how private (or apparently irrelevant), are probed. The all-knowing stylist will brook no opposition, and by the end of the programme the transformation is complete. It has to be said that the participant usually looks younger and much more stylish as a result of the process - but often more than a little shell-shocked and browbeaten.

Itís not for the fainthearted - and thatís just the viewers! I do enjoy these programmes, and I feel they fulfil a purpose. They give ideas and advice that we women can put into practice in our own lives.

The enjoyment is a rather guilty one, however. Itís a kind of fashion blood sport; a modern take on throwing Christians to the lions for public entertainment. The original woman, shown in all her bad fashion and 'old hag' hair, with 'mad woman' makeup and gnarley teeth, is cruelly exhibited for our titillation and disgust. The stylist is seen as the all-powerful force for good. And the transformation is magical.

This could not be further removed from the work of the stylist in her everyday life in a fashion store. For a start, the women who call on her advice and help are far from being fashion-challenged. They are usually the most stylish women in any given population. This is, after all, one of the locations where all the most fashionable women buy their clothes, although by no means are these the only people that frequent the fashion store. Most customers have a less maintained look than the diehard fashionista (and are real women who actually have a life, after all), but they don't have hag hair. And their makeup does not scare small children.

The customers of a designer store emphatically do not need a makeover... so why do they require the services of a stylist? These are women who know what suits them and get a lot of joy out of dressing well. By and large, if they could not find a stylist to help them, they would still look great.

However, there is no denying that a really good fashion stylist is a very useful tool in the important task of looking fabulous. She is the 'go-to' person when you are looking for something particular that you really canít live without. (Need that little black dress for your pear-shaped figure? Or that pair of velvet trousers? Or the business suit for the important interview?) Even if it is not in stock anywhere, your friend in the store will move heaven and earth to obtain it for you.

Perhaps you just arenít sure about something... does your bum look big in this pencil skirt? You know that she will subtly steer you clear of fashion faux pas.

She makes her living by being your secret weapon in outshining the thin girls in the office at the Christmas do - just when you were about to feel a bit intimidated about finding the right thing to wear.

She will also tirelessly dig through all the tops to find the one that goes with the skirt you love. And she will magic-up a colour that goes perfectly - and is on trend.

She has no other agenda than to make you look good. After all, if you look good, she looks good. Your psyche is none of her concern, and she will keep her hands and eyes off your private areas. Sheís in your corner. She does not compete with you, judge you or browbeat you.

And the only journey she will expect you to go on is into the changing room for a jolly good trying on session...


 Liz Rylance    Monday 26 October 2009 at 09:18

Good morning Emma
I just had to respond to your comments on the 'stylist' Emma. Before I found your wonderful shop I wouldn't have been able to relate to this at all but for the last 15 or so years that has all changed. Whenever I come into Emma+ I KNOW that I am going to have a wonderful time both socially and as a shopping experience. You and Jaq find a fantastic selection of clothes for me to try on some of which are well outside my 'comfort zone' but thank goodness for that! Thanks to your knowledge I have worn so many more colours and styles - even - shock horror - a white linen long jacket (one of my absolute favourites)! Me? In white? Surely not? Oh yes, and it makes me feel fantastic :-)
So thank you both for opening up the world of fashion to me. Long may you reign!

 Emma    Monday 26 October 2009 at 09:36

Hi Liz

Thank you so much for your kind comments. When I referred to stylish women who get joy out of looking good you were just the kind of woman I was talking about!


 Lara in Melbourne    Friday 30 October 2009 at 15:13

Hi again from the antipodes.

Emma, Jaq; please consider a relocation. The weather's lovely :) Sitting in the lounge with the aircon charged, and it's only October. Time to get the lighter gear out for comfort.

Reading your discussions on stylists was intriguing; I'm bordering on a career change, and a land purchase (with a view to dropping a house on the block at some stage; all too scary to deal with :) )

It's makeover time. I need to drag myself out of the "special pieces are for special times" mindset that my current job, working from home, has allowed me to slip into (well, and that I've allowed myself to fall into), and get back to "I want to look fabulous every day!"

Odd how the prospect of additional money makes me want to present myself at my best, when at the moment I'm prepared to have only one or two "special" pieces which are brought out only for "good". Why should I not feel "good", every day?

To be honest, I have no idea why I've let myself bumble my way into only owning one or maybe, at a push, two outfits I'd be pleased to be seen in in public. The rest are "acceptable", or "not embarrassed" to be seen in. Not a great start. I need to be more brave, and ditch the stuff which makes me feel less than fabulous. I need to make the effort. For me.

I'm looking forward to the transformation my change in circumstances and responsibilities will bring. I've started with the basics: nails and hair. Next is a full rework of my makeup. After that, it's time for the "real world" clothes . And then I can adjust the hair, nails and makeup to match the package. I can't wait :)

Wishing I was in the UK, because I know exactly where I would be spending my next Saturday. Hell, I'd bring the bottle of bubbles for effect.

Best wishes, and hoping everything is running smoothly,


 Emma    Saturday 31 October 2009 at 15:53

Hi Lara

Thank you so much for your post. I donít know whether you realise this, but to the reader what you have written comes over as very inspirational!

All the time I see women in similar positions to the one you describe. This is often what brings a customer into our store for the first time.

There is sometimes a moment in life when things start to move forward and change, and you realise that you have the opportunity to shape the kind of person you are going to be in the years ahead. To use an Aussie analogy, itís a wave that has come along, and you can choose to catch it and ride it for a while.

These are really precious moments - and can be the source from which a lot of different opportunities spring. If your instinct is to develop an aspect of yourself, then I would definitely go for it.

Fifteen years ago I was made redundant from a job I loved. I had little money, and the economy was tanking. For some unknown reason, instead of being depressed I felt liberated. I took over the shop and reinvented myself into the kind of person that I am most happy with.

It was a scary time, but it was the best thing that ever happened to me.

I wish you the very best, and I hope that you move forward towards where you want to be. I only wish I was there to see it...


Kim P    Sunday 13 September 2009 at 16:09

 Post #77 

Subject: Nanso Tops

Hi ladies at Emma Plus

Thanks for your great assistance when I called into the shop recently. I'm still marvelling at the way you were able to pick out super items for me to try on that I hadn't even considered myself. It really takes a lot of the hassle out of clothes shopping and there is never any pressure to buy.

As you know I liked the look of the Nanso top you featured on 22nd August and was delighted to find you had one in stock that fits like a dream, so much so that I bought the green version too! The material is so soft, the cut of the top is great and the length is spot on. It really is a throw on and forget about it item but at the same time unusual and smart. I like the way the pockets are properly sewn in and don't stick out at the sides unlike so many mass produced garments that as a result make us look wider at the hips. It goes lovely with the augergine coloured Brand jeans that I had bought previously.

I'm also really pleased with the lilac tunic from NP which Emma picked out for me. It's another simple easy to wear top which I've already worn with the sale bargain black Sallie Sahne shrug. I'd never worn a shrug before but I can see now how versatile this sort of item can be.

The cut off trousers that Kim picked out for me have also been worn so it was a highly successful and enjoyable visit!

Anway, I look forward to receiving the super black Brand jeans when back from alteration. I can see me ending up with many pairs of these jeans, they are simply superb.


 Emma    Sunday 13 September 2009 at 19:47

Hi Kim

Thank you so much for your wonderful illustration of the benefits our lovely Nanso tops! I love the fact that - as narrow ĎAí lines - they donít cling, yet, at the same time, they are not too voluminous! I think you will be very happy with the way it will wash - it will always be lovely and smooth, and will never need ironing!

Iím really glad that the Brand casual trouser range is doing so well. We have reordered them for next season because they are already selling through for this one...

By the way, I do think you have taken modesty too far. Having met you, I happen to know you have a particularly attractive head, which would have enhanced the photograph considerably!

Seriously, though, I am glad that even women who like to maintain their anonymity (like the previous poster) or who, like yourself, prefer to be self-effacing, feel able to make comments on the blog - not everyone is a show-off like me!


 Kim P    Tuesday 29 September 2009 at 20:46

The black Brand jeans have arrived safely and the altered leg length is perfect, thank you. I'm also pleased to say the Nanso tops are as easy to wash and wear as you said. Thanks also for posting up pics of your new stock as it's so helpful to have a taster of what's coming in!


Anon    Sunday 13 September 2009 at 06:11

 Post #76 

Subject: professional women

This is just a note to say a big thank you to Emma for taking the stress out of purchasing outfits for professional women. Many of us have to have an image which conforms modestly and traditionally to the roles that we hold in society. Finding clean lines, correct colours and a confortable fit (all the c's) is almost impossible in a busy schedule.
Getting the outfit altered without charge is the greatest service ever offered.You and your team have big hearts. My thanks Emma.
Sorry to remain anonymous for security reasons.


 Emma    Sunday 13 September 2009 at 19:32

Hi Anon!

Thank you for your kind comments. It is very touching to hear these things - we really do try our best and we are so grateful to hear that weíve given satisfaction.

We have a lot of customers who are busy, professional women, who simply donít have the time to mess about when they are buying clothes, yet at the same time need to look totally Ďput togetherí when at work.

Until someone has had clothes altered to fit them perfectly, then they are unlikely to understand what a huge difference this makes. To have clothing adjusted by a skilled seamstress, is to truly experience how a garment is meant to perform.


Chrissi Gordon    Tuesday 25 August 2009 at 21:53

 Post #72 

Subject: Wedding Pic

Hi Emma and Jaq,
As promised here is a photo of me wearing my Anna Scholz dress that I bought for a family wedding, we had a lovely day with lots of sunshine. We stayed at a very nice hotel and I wore the other dress I bought from you the next day and felt very posh!
Thanks again for all your help and advice,
Best Wishes,


 Emma    Wednesday 26 August 2009 at 10:10

Hi Chrissi

Thank you so much for your post, and lovely photo. I am really digging the gold shoes and matching slouchy bag!

Iím so glad that you had a lovely day - you certainly look fab!


Liz Rylance    Friday 21 August 2009 at 18:34

 Post #71 

Subject: A huge thank you

Wonderful to talk to you both today. Finding Emma+ in the summer of 1994 (was it REALLY that long ago?) has changed my life in the clothing sense. My first purchase - the lovely turquoise swing jacket - is still going strong!
Visiting Emma+ is always fun - hours of trying on wonderful clothes with Emma and Jaq making me feel like a million dollars.
Liz x


 Emma    Saturday 22 August 2009 at 12:27

Hi Liz

Thank you so much for taking the time to post your lovely remarks! Actually, I was only thinking about your swing jacket yesterday, and wondering if you still had it, because the A-line style is totally a top look at the moment!

Itís having lovely women like you as our customers that makes this job the fantastic pleasure it is!

We are going to tell you the minute the fabulous Exelle trousers come into stock to make sure you donít miss out.

In the meantime, here is a piccie of some new swing-style tops that have just come in...

 Kim P    Monday 24 August 2009 at 00:03

The top on the right is fab, lovely shape.


 Emma    Monday 24 August 2009 at 15:29

It's lovely - a slim A-line shape in a soft jersey, by Nanso. I have to confess I had one myself!


 Liz Rylance    Saturday 05 September 2009 at 12:30

Hi Ladies just a quickie to thank you both for yesterday! I just love my new outfits - I hadn't expected to be so lucky! Tonight I'm going to wear the black trousers and top with the cerise jacket ... WOW!
The turquoise jacket is a Guissler btw ... I guess that means something to you ...
Please stay in touch and will see you again before Christmas.
L x

 Emma    Saturday 05 September 2009 at 18:07

Hi Liz

How lovely to see you yesterday! You looked absolutely fabulous in what you chose. The pink jacket was fantastic on you.

I hope you had a superb time wearing what you had bought. Iím very proud of our clothes - you wear them so well. When you are not looking I will have to stick a sign on your back saying Ďoutfit by Emma Plusí!

Kim P    Tuesday 04 August 2009 at 17:32

 Post #69 

Subject: Thank You

The aubergine Brand jeans were waiting for me on my return from holiday and they are an excellent fit, I wish I had found them years ago! I wore my blue pair of Brand jeans on a 12 hour long haul flight and they were so comfortable. I really recommend them for travel, you hardly notice you are wearing them! I also wore the elena miro outfit purchased last month and received several compliments, in the tropical heat the lightweight fabric was ideal and thanks to the cut didn't cling at all. I'll be keeping a close eye on your blog to read about all the new goodies arriving, especially Brand. Thanks again Emma Plus.


 Emma    Tuesday 04 August 2009 at 19:27

Hi Kim

Thank you for your post - Iím so glad you have been pleased with the Brand jeans. We have been getting very good feedback for them.

You may find itís good that, by opting to go for the aubergine colour, you went for a different look this time: it gives a bit of variety, without being too limiting.

I really look forward to seeing you again soon.


Angela Brown    Saturday 25 July 2009 at 16:46

 Post #65 

Subject: Thank you

I came to your shop at the end of April with the intention of just buying a pair of cropped trousers. Among the things I bought that day were a full length black dress and a matching 3/4 sleeve shrug/cardigan. I wore these together when were on a cruise recently and a gentleman I have never met before told me that he thought my dress was beautiful and that I looked lovely. I felt so good!

A complete stranger has never said anything like that to me before so thank you so much for spending the time with me earlier in the year to make sure I had the perfect combination.


 Emma    Tuesday 28 July 2009 at 20:57

Hi Angela

Thank you so much for your lovely post! Itís heartening to hear stories like this.

Over the years we have heard many of them, and itís so good now to have them on the forum so that other people can read them.

I think it does spread confidence in women - so many of my customers are beautiful and yet they donít seem to realise it!


Kerri    Sunday 19 July 2009 at 22:40

 Post #63 

Subject: Thank you


I just wanted to thank you all so much, for helping me find a stunning new frock!

I came into your lovely shop last week on a trip down to Brighton from Manchester and am so glad I did!

It was such a welcoming environment and the service was wonderful. Kim really helped me find a gorgeous dress, a beautiful Anna Scholz orange and black knot dress that I just feel wonderful in and will gorgeous at my friends wedding in September.

I know I'll be down in Brighton again visitng my family and will absolutely be popping in to say hello and have another little browse.

Thanks again ladies you were lovely.



 Emma    Monday 20 July 2009 at 11:31

Hi Kerri

Thank you for your post - I will pass on your kind words to Kim.

Iím so glad that you found a gorgeous Anna Scholz dress. I donít know whether you have seen her clothes before - she is the foremost designer in the large-size market at the moment. Her clothes are really celebratory, and are what everyone wants to wear. We get quite a lot of small people wanting them too. It must be a bit of an unexpected surprise for them to find that we donít stock them in their size!

Hope the wedding is fab - see you again soon.


Kim P    Thursday 16 July 2009 at 22:28

 Post #62 

Subject: Brand Jeans

Hi, I found you via the Anna Scholz website. I was in Brighton a couple of weeks ago so popped in for the first time and was made to feel very welcome. I was not looking for anything in particular, just anything that grabbed my eye and at Kim's suggestion tried on a pair of Brand jeans. They were devine, so comfortable and well styled, no more gaps at the waist! I called you this morning and I'm pleased to say the jeans had arrived safely when I got home. I'm wearing them now and very pleased with the altered leg length and I'm sure they will not be the last pair of jeans I buy from you. The alteration service is a great added bonus. I'm in Brighton tomorrow so I hope I have time to call and browse through your sale items but if not I will call in again later in the year as it's so nice to visit a retailer who offers the level of service you do.


 Emma    Thursday 16 July 2009 at 22:59

Hi Kim!

Thank you so much for your lovely post. Iím so glad you liked the Brand jeans. We havenít been doing this collection for very long, but it has already become a great hit.

We used to stock a lovely collection of trousers called BS Casuals, which sadly disappeared. They had a large following, and I was distraught. However, I have found that Brand has really come to the rescue, with many customers reporting that they actually prefer them to the BS trousers.

Since you were last in, we have had some gorgeous Brand jeans come in. They are a deep purple-aubergine colour. You may be interested in looking at them.

The other small point that you may be interested in is a certain little tradition that we have in the Emma Plus sale. That is, for the first two days of the sale (the date of which is not widely advertised, so generally is known only to either those on our mailing-list, or the followers of this blog) we offer 10% off all new stock. I have never known any other retailer do this. We do it as a thank you to our loyal customers.

So if you find a pair of Ďbrand newí Brand trousers on Friday or Saturday, you will get them at a 10% reductionÖÖ.


 Kim P    Sunday 19 July 2009 at 14:27

I'm so pleased I was able to visit late Friday afternoon, the aubergine Brand jeans were fab and will go well with several tops I already own, including the one I was wearing on the day! It was meant to be. I am really delighted with the elana miro top and skirt, thank you so much for drawing my attention to the top. I wouldn't have tried it on otherwise and would have missed having a complete outfit. I will take it on holiday with me next week. I am not familiar with the elana miro label, but the cut of the garments are very flattering. Loved the service and very welcome cup of coffee. Thank you all again!


 Emma    Monday 20 July 2009 at 11:23

Hi Kim

Thank you so much for your post! Arenít the trousers lovely? Itís always difficult to describe a colour in words - if they had been a stronger purple colour they would have been more limiting, but this deep aubergine will go with anything. Sorry you nearly missed out on the 10% discount - that would never do!

I think you will like the Elena Miro range, which, being Italian, is very feminine - with a fit that will suit your figure. That set is incredibly cool, so I hope you get good weather.

Hope you have a fab holiday, and that we see you again soon...


clare    Friday 19 June 2009 at 16:31

 Post #58 

Subject: So happy with the alterations!

Hi Emma and ladies at Emma Plus

Just wanted to say thank you for the cream top that I received last week. What a difference alterations make. It is now like it was made for me. I have already received two compliments this morning on my outfit. I am wearing it with my cobalt blue trousers also from Emma Plus.

Looking forward to my next trip down to Emma Plus.



 Emma    Friday 19 June 2009 at 16:56

Hi Clare

Thanks so much for your comments - I'm glad you were happy with your alterations!

The only thing missing from your post is a lovely photo of you wearing the items...!


Sandra Fruen    Monday 08 June 2009 at 15:18

 Post #56 

Subject: Sam's 1st Holy Communion

Hi Ladies, as promised a picture of me in the lovely outfit you helped me chose for my son's very important day. You cannot see but I am wearing lovely cream trousers. I felt really good all day, no fiddling with straps, buttons etc - I just put my clothes on and sailed through the day knowing that I may be a larger lady - but I was a very well dressed larger lady!! My husband and son thought I look lovely , as did most of the 100 guests at the party in the afternoon. We all had a great day, the sun shone even though it was supposed to rain, and we all returned home very tired late into the evening (having been woken up at 4am by a very excited little boy). If I get a better picture I will upload it, or I will upload one from the wedding we are attending next month. Once again, many thanks for all you help with the outfit and my other bits, and for putting up with me changing my mind. I will defintely return to you again, especially if I need something for a special day so that I am guaranteed that no-one else will be wearing the same as me, and because I know that you will ensure that it fits me perfectly! See you all soon. Sandra


 Emma    Monday 08 June 2009 at 23:14

Hi Sandra

Thank you so much for your lovely post, and for taking the time to send us the picture - it really makes such a difference to us!

Iím so glad that you enjoyed your great day - you really look gorgeous, and your young gentleman looks very smart, too!

We all thought you were such a lovely family, and really enjoyed meeting you. Hope the wedding is wonderful, and that the weather is good for you again...


Chrissi Gordon    Sunday 31 May 2009 at 06:42

 Post #53 

Subject: Thank You!

Hi Emma and Jaq,
I wanted to say a big thank you for all of your help and advice yesterday. I was on my first visit to your shop after a tiring drive but felt like I had stepped into a friends home. It was such a pleasure to actually have a choice of outfits to try on instead of grabbing the only thing that fitted! I can't wait to wear my new dress to the wedding and it has helped me feel more confident knowing that I have a fabulous outfit to wear. Thanks again, will post a photo to you after the wedding. Keep up the good work, best wishes, Chrissi.


 Emma    Sunday 31 May 2009 at 13:00

Hi Chrissi

Thank you so much for your post! I hope the wedding goes wonderfully. You looked fabulous in your dress!

It was great to meet you, and I'm glad that you found the trip down worthwhile.

We really would be so grateful to have a photo of you wearing the dress... These are the kinds of things that really help bring our forum to life.

Hope to see you again soon.


Sharin    Friday 29 May 2009 at 17:02

 Post #52 

Subject: My Wonderful Day

Hi Emma

As promised, a picture from our son's wedding.

We all had a wonderful day and I have never been told so many times how wonderful I looked in my outfit. I felt absolutely fantastic in all of my finery.

Thank you all very much for you help (sorry I'm not more photogenic).

Kind Regards

Sharin Meharg


Arbhin Cioc    Tuesday 19 May 2009 at 08:30

 Post #46 

Subject: great

You do a great job Emma.
Keep it up.


 Kathy    Wednesday 20 May 2009 at 20:05

Let me share some experiences with my other voluptuous friends.... I am in the UK via New York - where the range of clothing for us curvier gals is extensive and on trend.
I found Emma and Jaq when I was working living in Brighton ( Hove actually) and it was like I stumbled upon Nirvana and my best mates all at the same time.
I love these women and I love their tastes and their honesty!
They are treasures- they understand that great looks need not be restricted to size 10s.
All my best stuff comes from them- and all are staples in my wardrobe.
The alteration service is a fab bonus... its like bespoke tailoring.
Whether its a business suit, a linen jacket or a fantasy evening coat... you will find it at Emma's and it will look great and you will look even better!
Keep it up ladies... the best is yet to come.


 Emma    Thursday 21 May 2009 at 09:57

Hi Kathy

Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a lovely post. People will think we are writing these ourselves!

We are so lucky to have such wonderful customers - and it has been fantastic to hear these comments, which I never dreamt anyone would be posting.

We are just incredibly lucky. We come into work every day, meet some lovely people, and deal with some lovely clothes - it really is that simple. I honestly donít think anyone should be complementing us. There are so many people out there that do incredibly difficult yet necessary jobs, thanklessly...


Angela    Monday 18 May 2009 at 08:59

 Post #44 

Subject: Website

I was very pleased with range of clothes and the excellent customer service I received when I visited you recently.

I also enjoy reading your blog.

However, it takes a while to get to the most recent post. Would it be possible for your webmaster/mistress to rearrange the posts on the blog so the most recent post is at the top, rather than the bottom?


 Emma    Monday 18 May 2009 at 11:52

Hi Angela

Thank you so much for your post. Yes, we are in the early days of this kind of thing and are going to have to develop it as we are going along!

There is a button at the top of the forum/blog marked 'end'. This will take you to the bottom of the page. And if you would like to return to the top again, you will find regular buttons marked 'top'.

Also, if you press the little button marked 'Subscribe to the RSS feed' at the bottom of this page, what you suggest (the latest blogs being at the top of the page) will come up when you click on that feed from your favourites!

However, although this works, I feel that I would also like another solution - something a bit more elaborate. With this feed, those who have already read most of the blog may find that the feed is enough to get the latest posts. But if they want to revisit old posts, or if they are new readers, they may still find it difficult to find posts on specific subjects.

I would be interested if anyone has any more suggestions. I was mulling over the idea of an index system - a menu that people could see at a glance. I suppose I have to own up to the fact that I'm not much of a blog reader, so I don't have much experience of how other people deal with it.

It may be worth mentioning that I am also on Twitter (see 'http://twitter.com/emmaplus'), where a brief description of recent blogs can be seen and accessed really quickly. Is this enough for readers...?


Diane Vernon    Wednesday 13 May 2009 at 00:39

 Post #43 

Subject: Fashion in Australia

Hello, I love your website, please bring your store to Australia. We don't have a lot of stores who cater for the fuller figure over here. Certainly not with a lot of lovely colour. They seem to have lots of black and no dresses. I have not been able to buy a dress that doesn't make me look like a sack in years!
Keep up the good work
Kind Regards
Diane Vernon
P.S. If anyone does know of a shop like yours in Australia, please let me know!


 Emma    Wednesday 13 May 2009 at 10:10

Hi Diane

That was a cry from the heart! I do feel for women who live too far away from the stores they would like to frequent, or find real difficulty in hearing about good shops in their own area.

Dressing yourself is a hugely important way of expressing your own personality, and you can feel stifled if you are not given access to clothes that gel with your desired image.

Itís not the first time I have heard from women in Australia bemoaning the availability of large-size designer fashion. When I was there myself, I didnít manage to make any headway in finding any interesting stores.

Perhaps the forum will throw up a gem. If it doesnít, perhaps you will consider opening one yourself!


Lara, Melbourne Australia    Tuesday 12 May 2009 at 15:36

 Post #41 

Subject: Still missing you!

Seven years ago I took on a work assignment in the UK; lived in Hayward's Heath, worked in Sayer's Common, explored the lanes and byways of Brighton on weekends. And one Saturday, there I found Emma and her staff as I stumbled out of the Church St carpark.

Coming from a mass-production-oriented, anything-in-black-is-what-they-deserve environment here in Australia; I was overjoyed to discover Emma's range. Actually, I think I was quietly prodded out the door at closing time after several hours on my first visit; thankyou in retrospect for your patience, ladies.

I'm still wearing two of the lovely pieces I found that first weekend - a beautiful faux-houndstooth swing jacket and an elegant heavy black tunic; although the tunic is showing signs of age at this stage. The wonderful aubergine coloured pure wool knitted coat I fell in love with at first sight the same weekend has - only recently - fallen into it's second life as my dressing gown; it is still appreciated and loved.

I'm saving for a return visit; my husband is slowly growing accustomed to the idea of a trip to the UK so I can shop properly again. Hope to see you soon; and if not, can I be your Australian agent? Please? *smile*


 Emma    Tuesday 12 May 2009 at 17:39

Hi Lara

So great to hear from you! And thank you for your lovely post. Iím pleased to say that the collection is getting better and better. I do think the designers are producing more for the larger woman each season.

Here is a piccie of Jaq and me, taken at Christmas, looking quite merry!

I envy you in Australia - Iíve got friends out there in Sydney, and Iím really looking forward to visiting them again. I went a few years ago and absolutely loved it. Maybe when I go next time, I could bring an extra bag of goodies for you!

Just tell me if you ever want to start your own shop over there - I promise to give all the help I can...

We all remember you, and are so glad that you have happy memories of us - weíre still missing you too!

Nicola    Monday 04 May 2009 at 13:45

 Post #36 

Subject: Take a Chance

Before I discovered Emma Plus (about 14 years ago now), I spent many years searching desperately for a shop which stocked beautiful clothes, in the latest designs for larger women. Back then I was in my mid 20s and found myself spending huge quantities of money in the likes of Selfridges and Harrods on things that weíre beautifully made but were designed for women in their 50s.

I ended up feeling as though the retail world believed that if you were under 50 you had to be one of 2 things:
1) Thin Ė therefore you could shop anywhere and choose anything
2) Fat Ė therefore you werenít interested in clothes and just bought whatever shapeless sack or poorly made garment you could find

By the time I came across a listing on the web for Emma Plus I was at the end of my tether. In work I was wearing suits from Elena Grunert (not really appropriate for someone under 30) and had about 3 items of casual wear that I liked and wore day-in day-out until they were falling to pieces. At the time there was very little content on the website, just the address details and a couple of photos which hinted that maybe, just maybe, Emma Plus wasnít the usual plus-size retailer that seemed to be out of step with fashion.

Walking into the shop for the 1st time marked a turning point in my relationship with clothes and clothes shopping. I had driven 70 miles in the hope of finding something which would make the trip worthwhile. Suddenly I found myself welcomed warmly into a shop and not judged for my size or pressured into buying something that didnít suit me. Next came the choice of things which I actually liked, for once I was spoilt for choice and could turn things down because they werenít quite right. The clothes werenít frumpy and fit beautifully. And if the fit wasnít perfectÖthen they would alter them for free.

14 years on and whilst some things have changed; Iím no longer in my mid 20s and now live 1000 miles from Brighton rather than a poultry 70; others havenít. Iím still large although at Emma Plus Iím only considered a medium and I still buy all my clothes at Emma Plus.

On Saturday I made one of my now twice yearly pilgrimages to Brighton to visit Emma and Jaq and to re-stock my wardrobe for Summer í09. As usual it was a real pleasure and I came away with everything, and more, than I wanted (3 Marina Sport blouses, 1 Anna Scholz kaftan, 3 pairs of jeans, 3 pairs of trousers, 2 t-shirts and 1 nightdress).

Just to finish my posting (sorry itís so long winded). If you are out there, frustrated about the lack of great clothes for larger women, and wondering if itís worth the risk of giving up a day to get down to Brighton then I say TAKE A CHANCE, like me, it could change your relationship with clothes forever! Believe me when I say that Emma Plus is unique. Emma and Jaq have a wonderful eye for fashion so the choice is always varied and great, the service is 2nd to none and, what really makes the difference and could never be duplicated are Emma and Jaq themselves who are the warmest and most friendly people I have been able to find within 1000 miles of home.

NICOLA (Madrid, Spain)


 Emma    Monday 04 May 2009 at 15:43

Hi Nicola

What a wonderful posting! I am so grateful to you for your kind words and sentiments.

Actually, I donít think that you, or many of our other customers, always realise that they are the main reason that Emma Plus is in existence! Were it not for women like you, who take looking good really seriously, and who have the taste and fashion nous to seek out and buy what we have, we would not be here now...

I am put in mind of another shop, in another part of the country, that I was made aware of about 15 years ago. The owner was at the end of her tether, and was phoning to ask me whether I wanted to buy any of her stock, which was current season, but was not selling at all in her location.

I was dubious; usually if a shop isnít selling its stock it is because it hasnít chosen the right things. However, when I looked into the situation, I found out that this shop had beautiful stock, but the customers there just werenít interested in it. The owner listed the ranges that her customers had requested her to buy. I wonít mention them here, but they were the usual suspects in those days - dreary tents in drip-dry fabrics.

This was before the advent of the internet, and it seemed impossible for the shop owner to widen her customer base, so she chose to close her business rather than buy and sell what she felt was depressing clothing. Actually, I agree with her: speaking for myself, if I couldnít stock really lovely clothes, I would rather be working at Tescoís, or selling lawnmowers for a living.

It was at that moment that I really appreciated how incredibly lucky I have been here at Emma Plus. We have wonderful local customers, who have been frequenting us for years, and who have really supported us through the good economic times and the bad. We have also been able to develop and grow through the enthusiasm of customers like you, Nicola, who are willing to travel some distance, because they simply wonít contemplate the dreary, and are willing to expend the time and effort necessary to obtain what they require without compromise.

It really is true to say that you get the clothes shop you deserve!

So it's partly thanks to you that I donít have to sell lawnmowers for a living...


diane cullen    Saturday 02 May 2009 at 12:32

 Post #35 

Subject: Your wonderful shop

Dear Emma and Jacq,

A very grateful thanks to you both for all your help yesterday after yet another exhaustive but satisfying session in your shop. As usual you came up with all the correct clothes, wonderful help and comments. I know that I never have to ask for a size as you always manage to come up with the correct one, or if not, out come the dressmaker's pins! It's so nice to be treated as a normal person and not given the cold shoulder when you mention you are a plus size in other shops. On entering your shop you are immediately made to feel at home with no pressure to buy and a welcome rest is always guaranteed on the sofa with a ''cuppa''!You are both inevitably correct in deciding what will suit me, and I know I can just relax and wait impaiently in the fitting room for you to keep the flow of clothes coming.
Again many thanks to you both for all your help.- Diane


 Emma    Saturday 02 May 2009 at 17:59

Hi Diane

Thank you so much for your comments about the shop - Iím so glad that you enjoyed your visit!

It really is a pleasure to work here - we have some of the loveliest customers you can imagine. Sometimes itís just like being at home, with a succession of friends calling in.

Iím glad to hear that the service you had was to your liking - weíve been so incredibly busy lately that we are beginning to worry that we havenít been able to give everyone the individual service that we would normally like to provide...


Sandra Fruen    Tuesday 28 April 2009 at 14:45

 Post #33 

Subject: My First "Emma" Experience!!

Hi Ladies, as promised I am adding my views to your very useful blog. I had my first (and definitely not my last) visit to your shop on Friday. I didn't know what to expect but I arrived with an open mind and a feeling of hope. We (hubby Chris was driver/2nd opinion if needed) entered the shop to be greeted with smiles, hello's and more importantly for Chris, a comfy sofa and a cup of tea. I have never been treated so nicely in a shop before, you all wanted to know what the outfit was for (our son's 1st Communion and a posh wedding) and all the ladies started to suggest outfits or pieces that would be appropriate for my shape, height, colouring and for the occasion. No-one was pushy, and the only real advice was to try on all suggestions and see what I liked, and what I felt comfortable in. I did find two outfits that I loved - one for my 2 occasions, and one because I just loved it! I keep thinking "What was the best part?" but I still can't decide. I loved the way you looked after Chris, and still managed to look after everyone else arriving in the shop. I love the fact that my clothes are being altered to fit me, and I love the fact that I have to come back to collect them and try them on knowing that you won't let me leave until they are perfect. Thank you for making shopping a wonderful experience again Emma, Jaq, Tessa, Beryl and all the other ladies whose names I cannot recall (apologies). Looking forward to seeing you soon. Sandra


 Emma    Tuesday 28 April 2009 at 15:29

Hi Sandra

Thank you so much for all your kind words. All the girls are thrilled that you had such a great time, and that you found what you wanted!

It really was so lovely to meet you and your husband - hope to see you again soon!


Kathy    Wednesday 15 April 2009 at 21:42

 Post #29 

Subject: Tees!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

fab Emma -love the shape and style...
its a big birthday on the 30th Apr... are you and Jaq availble that evening?


 Emma    Thursday 16 April 2009 at 10:29

Hi Kathy

This is going to sound like I have a social life (- and I don't), but I'm going to London on that day, of all days. Can we do something on another day, say a Saturday night...?

I'm glad you like the look of the Ts. Some of them have got just the shape and texture that you like.

Hope to see you soon.


 Kathy    Thursday 16 April 2009 at 20:47

Drat! but maybe see you on the Friday
Tees are great... as are all your items!
Love to all...


 Emma    Friday 17 April 2009 at 16:09

Hope to see you soon, Kathy!


Kathy    Tuesday 31 March 2009 at 12:41

 Post #24 

Subject: Love the Site

How are you gals... love what you have done here and as a long standing customer and friend - just wanted to add my two (c)pence in.
This is the best place to go to get the best clothes for us better endowed ladies!
Emma and Jaq are real trend setters!
See you soon I hope


 Emma    Tuesday 31 March 2009 at 15:00

Hi Kathy

How lovely of you to place this post, and how great to hear from you!

I hope you are well - and that we see you soon. Thank you for your kind words.


Andi    Sunday 08 March 2009 at 09:05

 Post #15 

Subject: Thanks


Just wanted to say that i am so glad i finally made it to your shop. Having known of your existance for a while i finaly visited needing an outfit for a wedding and it was a real pleasure and as you know i could have bought lots more!
I am looking forward to my next visit already




 Emma    Sunday 08 March 2009 at 19:54

Hi Andi

Thank you for your kind words! It was great to see you, and I'm so happy you liked the range. We had such a busy week that I'm afraid that we may not have been able to give everyone the level of attention that we normally do, so I hope you were well taken care of!

I was glad you found plenty to like - we are certainly very well stocked at the moment...

Ruth Sherborne    Friday 06 March 2009 at 16:10

 Post #14 

Subject: My forthcoming visit

Hi Emma and Jaq,
I've had a good look at your website and can't wait to see your lovely clothes in person! I love the forum and all your wonderful replies, Emma, it's lovely that you take the time to answer ladies questions so thoroughly.
I would like to see some crease free clothes if possible, some trousers would be good and perhaps a nice top which would be suitable for day and evening wear. If I can get a nice outfit for Lourdes that would be great!
Looking forward to seeing you, and as I'm now a size 18/20 I will be able to fit into your very smallest clothes!
Love, Ruth. x


 Emma    Friday 06 March 2009 at 17:47

Hi Ruth!

To everyone out there in cyberspace, Ruth is my cousin who is now considerably smaller than the last time she visited my shop several years ago (we are nearly all fuller-figured in our family, it seems!). Well done for shrinking, Ruth.

We do try always to stock easy-wear clothes, that are stretchy and non-creasing, suitable for work or travel. My ideal travel outfit for the summer is cool, casual, but smartish in an easy kind of way (one never knows, there may be a chance to get bumped up in the flight), and I would like it to be pretty and colourful too.

Luckily, there is a ready supply of these kinds of clothes from ranges such as Deluca (T-shirts and tops), Exelle (soft drapey jerseywear) and NP (just about every kind of casualwear you could mention - from jeans to jackets).

I hope you will find just what you are looking for in the shop when you visit soon.


Clare Ovenell    Tuesday 10 February 2009 at 13:49

 Post #7 

Subject: Thanks

Just wanted to say thank you for your help on Saturday. I got exactly the trousers I was looking for. Perfect material - nice and cool - and now I have some colour. Really looking forward to wearing them once they have been taken up. You had so many lovely things. It is so rare to have a choice and not just take the one thing that fits even if you are not too keen on it.

As you know I am now looking for the perfect white top - that covers that 'difficult' area. Please keep me updated as I know you have your new stock coming in.

Why is it that most designers for larger sizes never make tops long enough? They always cut them off at exactly the worst possible place.

Thanks again... I'm already looking forward to my next shopping trip.


 Emma    Wednesday 11 February 2009 at 12:35

Hi Clare

It was so good to see you on Saturday and I was particularly delighted that you ended up buying the cobalt-blue linen trousers I mentioned on the forum!

The subject of the length of tops is a vexed one. Everyone needs a different length, and most people need different length tops for different functions. For example, tops need to be longer over trousers than over skirts. This is because trouser tops have to skim over one's bottom (and sometimes thighs), not just one's tummy.

We solve this problem in two ways. We try to get a wide selection of different lengths (all long enough to cover at least one's tummy), and then we offer a free alteration service to tweak the selected top to the perfect length.

The one thing that many of my customers seem to agree on is that the High Street does not seem to have understood the need for longer tops for large women. I have a confession to make - although I feel just as aggrieved about this as everyone else, we do benefit from the situation. Women often travel some distance to come to the shop, often because they can't get long enough tops, shirts, jackets and jumpers. It's actually very good for our trade!

The question of why the big chain stores don't seem to have understood this touches on what I think is a fundamental problem in the large-size fashion world. The serial failure of the buyers to understand what we larger women require! Sometimes when I look at what the High Street stores are offering in our sizes I have to draw the conclusion that if they had just one larger woman involved in the selection process they would have a radically different range.

 Emma    Saturday 13 March 2010 at 15:29


You mentioned that you didn't mind me showing a photograph of the lovely long(!) blouse that you bought from Emma Plus this week.

Actually, we have had quite a few beautiful blouses in lately. This one has everything you were looking for: a lovely, slightly thicker, creamy linen, with generous pleats which didn't look too blowsy. It's got three-quarter length sleeves, and is a length that particularly complements trousers. It's by a company called Ellbi.

I know it was a white blouse that you were particularly looking for, but it's worth mentioning that this one also comes in several different colours.

I hope you are very happy with it - a really good blouse is a precious thing!

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