So, I am plus sized. Just like most of you reading this. (unless you’re just a dear friend of mine and don’t care about curvy girl fashion – in which case – what’s up?!) This is going to be a long post – but there will be a giveaway listed at the end – so make sure you get there!
But that severely limits my places to shop. I’m sure I am not the only one who has been dragged around with size 2 friends to store after store to just watch them try on jeans and tops in endless stores in endless combinations. That is shockingly not a good time. And Torrid only recently became in local stores – so for all of high school and middle school I just said “oh, that’s cute.” for my friends while I browsed hair bands and socks.
But now I am not in high school. And I had to get dressed for work, special events, dates, day to day, weddings, parties, school, class, life, etc. So I had to find a way around that lack of mall options. I eventually found places online and groups for such things. And here I am, the fashionista you see before you!
Preston often teases me that I am singlehandedly putting malls out of business with my online shopping. That’s a whole different story. Even if stores have plus sized sections – the online version is almost ALWAYS more sizes, options, and styles. (Forever 21, Rue21, H&M, etc.)
And since I am doing what my mom is calling, “shacking up” with Preston where I live with him about 4 days a week and he lives with me about 3 days a week (and he has a total bachelor pad and until last week had never owned tin-foil) – I am making us all kinds of meals today so that we have dinner and lunches while I’m with him. So this will be a quick post because I have to get back to cooking. Blargh. So far I’ve made skillet sausage, spinach and potato gnocchi skillet meal. Next up is autumn hash. Then salmon foil packs. Gah. Maybe if I’m motivated, I’ll make some sesame chicken. If anyone is interested in some ‘make ahead recipes for people who can’t really cook’ comment below and maybe I’ll make that soon!
So, in the best order I can muster – here is my top ten list of stores I like to shop at.
Dear God, I can not preach this enough. I looooooooooove ModCloth. They have really cute, unique, interesting prints. And they range for different tastes in dark colors with florals or novelty print on top of pastels. They have straps, cotton, stretchy, wedding dresses, strapless, satin, all of the things. And they have flattering shapes for most all kinds of bodies. I do wish that their price tags were a little lower. I mean, I have bought things from them that I paid only $15 for and I think my most expensive was over $100 – but I would say on average – a dress or skirt is between $50-$90. I wish it was more like $30-$70. But other than the mildly high price tag – this is my number one store. I will sing its praises all day every day.
Torrid is a GOD SEND for being a regular person. It’s hard to shop at modcloth and not look like a 1950’s housewife. Even if you tone it down – it’s still a toned down version of whatever crazy print it is. Torrid is all about looking smoking hot everyday. It’s great fitting leggings, jeans, skirts, button up shirts, fun graphics, sweaters, underwear. It’s kind of like a WAY trendier and younger Lane Bryant and a less intense Hot Topic rolled in to one. It’s perfect. It has great options for more alternative looks (leather, lace, mini skirts, graphic t’s, skulls, etc.) and great options for work place, for parties, and for fun! They have kind of high price tags, but I would say fairly comparable to other stores. They also have lots of flash sales, coupons, reward points, e-mail exclusives, BOGO deals. It’s easier to NOT pay retail price at Torrid.
Eshakti, for any who do not already know of it’s glory – is a store that offers to custom size its products so it is nearly impossible that it won’t fit. You can edit length, sleeves, edit necklines and embellishments. It’s great! They can be a little pricey but they used to offer REALLY great deals. Like $40 off or Buy 2 – Get 2 Free, etc. They have pretty much done away with that which has pretty much halted my shopping with them. The prices range from $50-$100 ish. But it’s another $9 for customization and the shipping is another $11 or so. So a $50 dress after tax, alterations, and shipping could be $75-$80. This change in price point has recently effected how often I shop here – but Eshakti definitely offers a service that is uniquely amazing. It skips the step of needing a tailor. And Eshakti offers some adorable prints, something for every taste, and can make pretty much anything seasonally appropriate. I just miss the discounts!
4.) Thrift Stores
I love, love, love thrift stores. I am ALL about getting a high priced item for about $4. It’s super. I will say that I am partial to Salvation Army – because they have a bigger plus sized selection and lower prices than Goodwill. Goodwill, although, has super high quality stuff sometimes and you can get shoes, purses, scarves, etc. This is just a lower cost way to get some unique, real vintage, and versatile pieces. I’ve found Torrid stuff that was still online for only a few bucks. I have found sweaters from Lane Bryant, dresses from Target, and re-purposed some awesome vintage dresses into being some real steals!
This is a TJMaxx/Marshalls/HomeGoods style store. It’s like a surplus store. I can find TONS of stuff there. I have found cute sweaters, work tops, party tops, tons of summer dresses. I even got a full length formal dress there once. The most expensive piece of clothing I ever bought was like $25. This is totally a place to get some great stuff. However, there is no ‘online’ version and it is hit or miss for limited stock. There can only be one item in a size 20 and that is the only one. I will say that I tend to hit more than I miss at Ross. But their plus size section goes up to a 3x/24/26. They have dresses, skirts, pants, tops, sweaters, even winter coats. (and while you’re there you can pick up new shoes, a designer purse, and some ninja turtle mugs. Ross has literally everything).
6.) Old Navy
This is an easy one. Cute sweaters, graphic T’s, jeans, dresses, pajamas, basics, long sleeve shirt. This is a great place to get items to layer! They sell up to a 4x online and usually up to an XXL in stores. But these are great, resuable, versatile pieces at a great price point. Old Navy is also always having promo’s and coupons and reward points. As Preston always says, “No one pays retail price these days.”. Another added perk is that if you buy online – you can return directly to the store. It is unusual to not have to ship it back. So if you’re unsure of the size – buy both! You can just return whichever doesn’t fit.
People often forget about these places because they are considered lower quality. However you can get some totally great stuff! I am a big fan of getting sweaters, dresses, basics, and usually on clearance! That puppy sweater, that sheep sweater, that pink dress, and those cupcake pajamas collectively cost $39 dollars. That’s awesome. I have paid more than that for one shirt. But just because they are super stores – don’t let it shy you away from checking their online stores to see what they have for plus sizes! It can be a hidden gold mine!
8.) Department Store
Boscovs, JCPenney, Sears, and Kohls. They tend towards ‘older looking’ clothes. Many of those clothes are geared for older professional women. However, if you pair the pieces with the right outfits and accessories – you can totally dig up some gems. See, that burgundy blazer was meant to be sold as part of an UGLY burgundy pantsuit with like a beige turtleneck top under it. Blech. But a cute burgundy blazer matched with a scoop neck, gray plaid skirt, and a hairbow – it totally brings it back to this century. They also have fairly good price points and sales.
9.) BST Facebook Groups
I have no idea why this is so low on my list. This has become my new favorite place to shop. Like, I hardly go on other websites. BST (for buy, sell, trade) groups on Facebook exist for basically every brand. Modcloth has a few, Torrid has a few, Pin-Up Girl Clothing has a few, Old Navy has one, and then just ‘general’ plus size groups. I probably belong to like twenty of those. You can bundle, buy directly from other users, get pieces that are no longer available online or in stores, and have access to tips, ideas, and style pieces of other beautiful ladies with similar body types! These groups have been an absolute godsend! I have entire outfits that I traded for. Like I just traded for them. It’s great.
10.) Vanity Fair
Vanity Fair is this like giant outlet store near me. They used to be thriving and lively and full of several outlet stores. In the last 7 or 8 years, they just have slowly been going out of business. This is a little local gem. Even though most of the stores have gone – the house brand still remains. I have so many tops, leggings, and sweaters and pajamas from these places! This is kind of a ‘local advantage’. The price point is low and the stock rotates fairly often. But I have a bunch of summer dresses and skirts, a bunch of sweaters, and tons of tops from VFOutlets and they have held up and been versatile!
So here’s the “end of blog” spiel!
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This week is the special giveaway! I will be posting a picture on Instagram today! 3/18. You must be following me on Instagram and leave a comment about what your favorite plus size store to shop at is and why and you will be entered to win a $20 giftcard to one of the stores listed in my top 10! The winner will be selected next Thursday 3/24 and announced on the blog!
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Love all you wonderful ladies (and gents!) out there!