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Plus-Size Clothing Internet Shopping Guides
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Bridesmaid Dresses & Gowns

 
Please be advised that all of the "Editor's Picks" featured in this section are hand-selected by Elegant Plus. Although every effort is made to keep featured products current, retailers can sell out of popular styles before the Editor has had an opportunity to update the page. Although Elegant Plus earns a small fee on all purchases, it is a completely free shopping resource for the consumer, and many times we are able to provide links that offer consumer discounts and free shipping offers upon landing on the partner retailer's site. All selections are available at time of posting and purchases can be made directly from the retailer on the associated shopping link. All of the shopping guides include designer selections which are noted with the designer's name in descriptions.
 


Last Update: August 25, 2017

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SHOPPING GUIDES

Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Formalwear @ TB Dress Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus Size Dresses @ Nordstrom Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Retro & Vintage Modern Clothing @ ModCloth
Lace Trim Chiffon Gown, Size 2-26W| ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
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Light Blue Chiffon Gown, Size 14 - 22W | ElegantPlus.com Plus Size Bridesmaid Dresses Pick Green Lace Midi Dress, Size XS - 4X | ElegantPlus.com Bridesmaid Dress Editor's Pick
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Lace Trim Chiffon Gown
Size 2 - 26W

Chiffon Gown
Size 14 - 22W
 

Lace Dress
Size XS - 4X
 

Bridesmaids dresses tend to be simpler with cleaner lines than many other formal dresses; after all, the bridesmaids are supposed to be the foil for the bride on her big day! Dresses can sometimes be difficult to find for plus size bridesmaids, especially if the wedding party comes in a range of shapes and sizes and needs matching dresses.

They can range from full length gowns to cocktail length dresses, depending on the formality of the wedding.  Brides planning informal, outdoor weddings sometimes choose less formal social dresses in materials such as cotton for bridesmaid dresses, although usually fabrics, like wedding dresses, are formal.  Satin and taffeta dresses have more structure, while softer lines are achieved with lace, tulle, and chiffon. Occasionally a plus-size bridesmaid may express a wish for a dress with sleeves.

Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus Size Fashion @ Torrid Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Wedding Party Dresses @ Light in the Box Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Formalwear @ Macy's Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Fashion @ Lane Bryant
Mint Green Eyelet Lace Dress, Size L - 6X | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Chiffon One-Shoulder Dress, Sizes 2 - 26W | ElegantPlus.com Plus Size Bridesmaid Dress Pick
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Fit Flare Dress, Size 1X - 3X | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
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Plum Lace Dress, Size 12 - 28W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick

Eyelet Lace Dress
Size L - 6X

Chiffon One Shoulder Dress
Size 2 - 26 W
Custom Sizes Available

Fit & Flare Dress
Size 1X - 3X

Lace Dress
Size 12 - 28W
 

 

The most popular vintage silhouettes are classic mid-20th century in origin, although theme weddings can use anything from gothic inspired Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones styles to Deco inspired Great Gatsby styles of the Jazz Age.  More casual, bohemian weddings can even opt for simpler maxi dresses.

In recent years color rules for bridesmaid dresses have relaxed significantly, even for very formal weddings, with bright colors such as red and orange becoming more common, along with black, floral prints, or, even, in some of the most modern and progressive weddings: white.  Pastel shades still dominate at spring and summer weddings, while richer jewel tones are popular choices during the cooler fall and winter months.  Light tints in unexpected shades such as dove grey and honey gold are also options.This gives brides even more flexibility and ability to plan wedding schemes that truly reflect their personalities.

Some dresses need crinolines to achieve the desired silhouette, while all formalwear requires the proper undergarments and shapewear.

 

Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Dresses @ Nordstrom Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Women's Clothes @ Eloquii Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Fashion @ Zappos Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Women's Clothes @ Rainbow
Red Ruffled Crepe Dress, Size 14 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Bridemaid Dress Editor's Pick Ruched Midi Dress, Size 14 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Bridesmaid Dress Editor's Pick Purple Lace High Low Dress, Size 14 -24W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Floral Bell Sleeve Dress, Size 1X - 3X | ElegantPlus.com Plus Size Bridesmaid Dresses Editor's Pick

Ruffled Crepe Dress
Size 14 - 24W

Ruched Midi Dress
Size 14 - 24W

Lace High Low Dress
Size 14 - 24W

Bell Sleeve
Off-the-Shoulder Dress
Size 1X - 3X

 

Plus-Size Bridesmaids Dress Internet Shopping Resources

Sometimes the most challenging thing for a bride organizing a large, formal wedding with many bridesmaids is finding dresses in sizes to fit an entire range from super skinny to plus-size.  Nordstrom has gone out of its way to offer classic bridesmaid dress styles in their entire size range from 0 to 24W.  The style selection is often limited to those with very simple lines, but a range of colors are usually included.  Meanwhile, Dillard's is stocking more upscale designer labels in formalwear. Although styles are mainly more modest with sleeves and jackets, some youthful styles from designers such as Mori Lee, Terani Couture, Adrianna Papell, and Mac Duggal are available in sizes up to 28W.

Those who want a contemporary vibe can find some options from plus specialty designers such as Igigi (size 14 to 36W), and occasionally Torrid (Size 10 to 32W).

Those who want a vintage vibe will want to look into the special occasion dresses available through ModCloth which is getting more and more options in extended sizes 3X, 4X, and 5X.  Classic vintage styles are also available from eShakti with all styles available in their full size range from 0 to 36W, and for a small fee customizations such as hem length, necklines, and sleeves can be altered to suit individual preferences and heights.  Unique Vintage offers both vintage mid twentieth century cocktail dresses in their main collection and formal gowns with Old Hollywood appeal in the "prom" tab for sizes XS to 5X.
 

Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Upscale Women's Fashion @ Neiman Marcus Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Evening Dresses @ Dillard's Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Fashion @ City Chic Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Fashion @ IGIGI
ZAC Zac Posen, Ruffled Off-the-Shoulder Gown, Size 2 -16 | ElegantPlus.com Plus Size Bridesmaid Dress Editor's Pick Mikado Satin Dress, Size 14 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Strapless Floral Dress, Size 14 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Bridesmaid Dresses Editor's Pick Rose Lace Dress, Size 14 - 36W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
More Colors Available

ZAC Zac Posen
Ruffled Off-the-Shoulder Gown
Size 2 - 16
 

Mikado Satin Dress
Size
14 - 24W

Strapless Floral Dress
Size
14 - 24W

Lace Dress
Size 14 - 36W

 

Budget Bridesmaid Dress Shopping

Those on tight budgets will find the best selection at some of the direct-from-manufacturer formal wear websites that generally offer size 2 to 26W, with small fees for alterations for things like dress lengths.  Most styles are available in many colors making wedding planning easy.   Order time is generally much shorter than most local bridal shops, with free global shipping often arriving in only a few weeks. We recommend Light in the Box and TB Dress.

 Inexpensive social, cocktail, and evening dresses are regularly available from Dress Barn with a more extensive inventory available on-line than in most stores.  Designer collaborations with Carmen Marc Valvo and Heidi Weisel are sometimes available at a fraction the retail costs of their top shelf lines, providing some extra pizzazz to the collections here in size 4 to 24W.

Less formal styles such as jersey maxi dresses, and the occasional lace dress, can be found in size 1X to 6X at SWAK.  The dress selection Torrid can also turn up more casual styles in size XL to 5X.

 

Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Fashion @ Lord & Taylor Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Retro and Vintage Dresses @ eSHAKTI Let's Shop! Elegant Plus:  Dresses @ Simply Be Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Dresses @ Forever 21
Lace Cold Shoulder Dress, Size XL - 4X | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
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Cap Sleeve Fit & Flare Dress, Size 0 - 36W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
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Sequin Halter Trim Gown, Size 16 - 28W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Floral Off-the-Shoulder Dress, Size XS - 3X | ElegantPlus.com Bridemaid Dress Editor's Pick

Lace Cold Shoulder Dress
Size XL - 4X

Cap Sleeve
Fit & Flare Dress
Size 0 - 36W
Avg - Petite - Tall
 

 

Joanna Hope
Sequin Trim Halter Gown
Size 16 - 28W

 

Floral Off-the-Shoulder Dress
Size XS - 3X
 

 

Finishing Touches

Formal dresses of all silhouettes need the appropriate undergarments and shape wear worn underneath in order to achieve the smoothest, most structured looks.  This is true for women of all shapes and sizes. Her Room  offers one of the largest and most diverse inventories available on the internet with sizes available up to 8X. 

Many full-figured women wear hard-to-find sizes for items such as strapless bras to go under bare formal dress styles.  Both Bare Necessities and regularly offer a wide range of options in more voluptuous sizes, in addition to plus specialty retailer Lane Bryant which has consistently offered some of the best fitting plus-size bras on the market with their Cacique line.

For shoes, designer options can be a treat for such special events.  Major department stores such as Bloomingdale's and Saks Fifth Avenue have some of the best options for true luxury lovers. 

Sites such as Luisa via Roma are also official outlets for the entire runway collections of some of the most famous world designers.  Those on more modest budgets will find the best selection of sizes and styles available from shoe retailers such as Zappos .

 

Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Retro and Vintage Dresses @ eSHAKTI Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Wedding Party Dresses @ Light in the Box Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Dresses @ SWAK Let's Shop! Elegant Plus:  Plus-Size Dresses @ Unique Vintage
Floral Dress, Size 0 - 36W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Satin Gown, Size 2 - 26W | ElegantPlus.com Plus-Size Bridesmaid Dresses Picks
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Lace Dress, Size 1X - 6X | ElegantPlus.com Bridemaid Dress Editor's Pick
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Green Chiffon Flutter Sleeve Dress, Size 2X - 4X | ElegantPlus.com Bridesmaid Dress Editor's Picks

Floral Dress
Size 0 - 36W
Avg - Petite - Tall
 

Satin Gown
Size
2 - 26W

Lace Dress
Size 1X - 6X

Chiffon Flutter Sleeve Dress
Size 2X - 4X
 

 

 

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Plus-size clothing featured is hand selected by the Elegant Plus Fashion Editor from our extensive network of plus-fashion business partnerships. Although Elegant Plus earns a small fee on all purchases, it is a completely free shopping resource for the consumer, and many times we are able to provide links that offer consumer discounts and free shipping offers upon landing on the partner retailer's site.

 

 

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DRESSES WEDDINGS SPECIAL OCCASIONS