Plus Size Dresses: Women’s Fit Guide

Two-Piece Jacketed Dress

A two piece jacket dress can strike the right note for meetings or casual evenings out. There are a variety of styles; more elegant two piece jacket dresses may include a longer, flowing jacket that is nearly a tunic and skirt decorated with embroidery or beading. For daytime wear, fabrics are simpler and jackets may be shorter. You will see jackets with peplums, but most women should avoid the peplum; it juts out at the waist and makes your rear end look larger. Look for a jacket short enough to end at the waist but without standing out away from the body. Soft, draping jackets and skirts are more flattering than more highly structured pieces.

Figure Flatting A-line Dress

The A-line dress is the most flattering dress type for any figure and is especially so for plus size figures. The A-line fits closer at the top, starting a gentle flare well before the natural waistline and skimming over the hips with room to spare. This style is highly feminine without being too specific, suggesting the curve of the body rather than outlining it. A-line dresses have soft lines that can camouflage flaws and make the most of your best points. Choose an A-line dress with a jewel neck if you want to minimize your bust or a deep V if you want to make the most of it. Because A-line fashions come in every length, you can choose a short dress to show off your legs.

Sexy Plus Size Black Dress

Every woman has to have a sexy Little Black Dress! And plus size women need the LBD too, even if it does come in larger sizes. The LBD is your guarantee of having something nice to wear to any event, and at a moment’s notice. Make your Little Black Dress something special by deciding beforehand how you want to look in it. Demure or elegant? Sexy is a state of mind, and some women feel sexiest wearing a dress that leaves a lot to the imagination. The essence of choosing the right sexy little black dress is finding the one that makes you feel gorgeous. It might be knee length, with a nipped in waist; it might be a flowing column of satin or velvet. Remember—it doesn’t have to be short; Audrey Hepburn’s LBD was a long, sleeveless evening gown.

Plus Size Career & Work Wear

Where you work can dictate what you wear, but there are some styles that work well in the professional to semi-casual workplace no matter where it is. Wearing the right clothes at work seriously impacts your image and your success! Appropriate clothing is hugely important: solid colors come across as more serious than prints or (heaven forbid!) florals. Try a sheath dress out of men’s suiting fabric in a fine wool plaid, that you can pair with a jacket or cardigan. Linen, gabardine, and wool are the right fabrics for the workplace. Keep career dresses slightly tailored and fitted; avoid swingy skirts, plunging anything, and short skirts. Skirts should be either ever so slightly above the knee or a couple of inches below it.

Plus Size Wrap Dress

The right wrap dress can make you look terrific, but finding the right wrap dress can be tricky. For plus size figures, the dress fabric should have more structure than the usual clinging jersey, so it will wrap nicely at the waist but stand away from the body at the stomach and hips. A flared skirt paired with a wrap top can work wonderfully as long as the flare begins above the actual waist. Watch out for 1970’s style wrap dresses, which featured the bust by creating big, deep V-necks that make most women look blowsy. If you have an extremely flat chest, you might try such a dress with the right bra, of course, for a completely new, chesty look. Otherwise, rely on the wrap to create the curves you want to be noticed and save the bust for another dress.

Summer and Sun Dresses

The sun dress is a summer staple, and it comes in as many styles as you can imagine. Find the sun dress that flatters your figure! You don’t need Barbie’s waistline to look great in a slip dress, an A-line or an Empire waisted dress. Empire waists look especially nice in sun dresses because the fashion is playful and slightly retro; as impermanent as a summer frock. Slip dresses are also pretty and playful; because they fall from spaghetti straps in a straight line, they can minimize hips as well as hiding the waist. Show off your legs with short skirts or maybe a skirt with a slit in the side. If you’re going for a fairly modest, A-line sun dress, consider a more daring, plunging front or a backless style.

Halter Dress

The halter dress cannot be misinterpreted. It is always playful; sometimes suggestive. It is not a serious dress and should never be worn to work unless you work as a fashion consultant in a vintage clothing store. This is a third-date dress; a dress for home wrecking and Martinis. This is not an opera dress. The halter dress flatters most figures; with the right bra, women of all shapes and sizes can get along just fine in a halter. You don’t need us to tell you that the deeper the neck, the wilder the evening. Accentuate your waist by choosing a halter that lifts you up, elongating the torso. Large busted women should avoid halters with too much drape; they add too much weight to your top. Small-busted women can choose halters with more fabric and some slouch to it.