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 16, 2017
Bell Sleeve Shift Dress
Size 14 - 24W
Size 14 -
Floral Velvet Pleated Top
Sizes 14 -
Big name designers, both from the global Fashion
Week circuit and the lower key lifestyle and
television celebrity genres, are beginning to take notice
of the untapped demand in the plus-size clothing
market and are offering better, or bridge level
designer collections. Lower priced diffusion lines and
capsule collections are also starting to become
available from designers worn by celebrities and
showing on the runways of major fashion
Currently, some of the most
successful names in fashion have extended
offerings in size 14 to 24W including labels
from Rachel Roy, Donna Karan, Ralph Lauren, and
Calvin Klein with more affordable diffusion
Premium designer clothes
are available in extended sizes in the 12 to 16
range racked in the misses collections in
on-line luxury emporiums, while those offering
women's size 14 to 24W are still rare.
denim, along with dresses,
were the first offerings to extend into larger
sizes. Today, designer options are
available for most types of clothing, with special occasion
and work appropriate clothing
some of the most plentiful.
Contemporary, modern classic styles are among
the most popular with summer, resort, and
destination fashion being influenced by BoHo
Swimwear and lingerie are among
the most recent areas to expand into plus-sizes
at the designer level.
Styles can range from modern classics
to more artsy and BoHo styles,
particularly favored as resort and cruise wear.
One of the most exciting
developments in recent years is the emergence of
capsule collections with celebrities or
well-known fashion week designers through
quickly became one of the leaders when they
debuted a collaboration with Isabel Toledo who
is perhaps best known for dressing Michelle
Obama, and a follow-up lingerie collaboration
with Sophie Theallet.
Spring 2015 began a
year long partnership with Lela Rose
which was a perfect match for the
more feminine styles favored at that time of
year. These collaborations marry the
in-depth fit knowledge of Lane Bryant with some
of the biggest talent in the fashion industry
bringing styles at much more affordable price
points than their main collections to
full-figured women across the U.S.A.
Meanwhile, Project Runway darling
Christian Siriano collaborated for 2016
and Prabal Gurung headlines 2017.
Melissa McCarthy now
designs curvy collections regularly available at
both Lane Bryant and many of the major
department store, in addition to her own brand
website. Styles are contemporary to
bohemian in flavor with flowing lines, kimono
sleeves, bold and quirky prints, and a trendy
denim line to compliment for size S to 4X.
is the home of the more affordably priced
diffusion line of Anna Scholz for size 8 to 28W
where her designs join other British designer
lines from labels such as Joe Browns and Alice &
joins the designer capsule collection offerings
with a stunning resort style infused collection
from Teresa Maccapani Missoni in 2017.
The on-line space has also
provided the opportunity for several
plus-exclusive specialty designers to build a
following. Labels such as
have extended boutique designer sizing to as
large as 32W at moderate to better price points.
Here dresses and tops are the mainstay with
styles appropriate for work, casual, and
occasion wear. Soft jerseys and lace are
customer favorites. California
Igigi is back and
under new ownership but keeping their signature
high quality contemporary aesthetic and
full-figured fit in dresses for work and
occasions in size 14 to 36W.
Along with plus specialty
retailers, full-figured celebrities have also
been taking matters of fashion and style into
their own hands to launch capsule collections
designed for plus-size women by women who
understand their curves. These are available
through a number of different kinds of retail
Plus model Ashley Graham who
first turned heads modeling lingerie for
Bryant's Cacique collection,
now has her own lingerie line at
and designs a dress collection for
Another ground breaking plus model Tess
Holliday now offers her ultra trendy plus
exclusive line (mlbm) through department stores
such as Lord
& Taylor for sizes XL to 4X. Meanwhile, Queen Latifah's affordable Curvation
bra line has been available at
Rebel Wilson has launched her own
rock-and-roll vibed label just in time for Fall
2017 available through several of the major
department stores for sizes 1X to 3X.
QVC is home
to a large number of celebrity designers,
stylist collections, and affordably priced
diffusion collections for higher end designers
with sizing on most lines available to 3X or
28W. Among the most popular are Isaac
Mizrahi, Bob Mackie, Dennis Basso, Luxe Rachel
Zoe, H by Halston, LOGO by Lore Goldstein and many others.
Project Runway has had an ongoing relationship
with designers from the show frequently
launching affordable collections here.
Smaller plus-size women
in sizes to 18/20 often have more options and
are frequently included in specialty designer
capsule collections and celebrity diffusion
lines from budget friendly retailers such as the
designer capsule collections that often are
available up to 16 - 20 (XL - XXL), and
occasionally are extended into a full plus-size
range up to 4X. The Lilly Pulitzer
collection sold out in a matter of hours in
Spring 2015, which can only be good for
encouraging Target to include plus-sizes more
New York & Company offers an affordable celebrity driven
line from Eva Mendez, reflecting this actress's
feminine, vintage romantic style in appropriate
styles for work in sizes up to 18.
Macy's has begun offering
exclusive collections from celebrity stylists
and designers such as
Rachel Roy and Nanette Lepore in sizes for curvy women 14 to 24W.
Rachel Roy has done so well with the
collaboration she's launched her own brand
website to focus on her contemporary fashion
with a slightly BoHo twist that works as well in
creative office environments as around town on
the weekends or on resort vacations.
Contemporary designers who are size inclusive
are becoming more readily available. Some
have their own shopping websites, while other's
are still mainly available through department
stores and other large e-commerce emporiums.
Along with the well known designer brands such
as Calvin Klein,
has been gaining momentum at many of the major
department stores. An excellent resource
for quality black core basics, other pieces have
artisan detailing and a loose, easy silhouettes.
been adding brands such as contemporary knitwear
Nic + Zoe
which has wearable styles for casual to office
in better quality fibers and stylish designs.
Designers such as
space with easy, versatile jersey knits and is
available from a large number of better
The leading eco fashion designer,
is exceptionally popular and characterized by
loose oversized shapes layered over slim
silhouettes in organic cotton, fine wools,
linen, hemp, and silk for size S to 3X.
Department stores such as
offered affordable, diffusion collections in
extended sizes throughout the recession
providing celebrity styles from names such as
Jennifer Lopez and well-known career designers
such as Dana Buchman and CHAPS from Ralph
are still mainly available at the higher
price points in designer fashion from better,
bridge labels and specialty boutique designers.
is perhaps the best known of the size-positive
eco-fashion designers, department stores such as
also regularly stock natural fiber designers
such as Brynn Walker who works primarily in
linen and Citron which is an art-to-wear silk
stocks silk, linen, and cotton with BoHo
brands such as Tolani, Johnny Was, and Rachel
Pally, and contemporary resort and tailored
career looks from labels such as Caroline Rose,
Lafayette 148, Misook, and Joan Vass.
Look for the luxury Italian designer lines at
Saks Fifth Avenue,
along with contemporary designs from Single and
Beyond Vintage which often work in silk.
Work appropriate styles from less well known
designers are unique to each of the major
upscale department stores.
Dillard's offers Ming Wang who works in
premium, heavy gauge knits worked into jackets
and blazers. Meanwhile another label, Eva
Varro, specializes in arty, mixed prints worked
into tunics and dresses. Special occasion
dresses are also a specialty here with more
upscale designer evening labels regularly well
represented, including names such as Tadashi
Shoji, Mac Duggal, and Terani Couture.
often offers labels such as Eileen Fisher, Vince
Camuto, and Ralph Lauren with some more upscale
brands such as Lafayette 148 also well
Neiman Marcus is the only place to find
designers such as Michael Simon, Misook, and
Caroline Rose in larger sizes, in addition to
particularly deep selections of Eileen Fisher,
Lafayette 148, and Joan Vass. Meanwhile,
Lord & Taylor
will turn up suit options from names such as
Nipon and Tahari, and dresses from Gaby Skye,
Anne Klein, and Jessica Simpson, in addition to
a particularly deep selection of Ralph Lauren.
A growing number of more youthful, contemporary
designers at moderate price points are starting
to turn up in a noticeable inventory shift with
labels such as Carmakoma, Junarose, and Modamix
frequently well represented in addition to Nic +
Zoe, Karen Kane, and MYNT 1792.
Saks Fifth Avenue is the place to stop
when looking for full-figured sizes in James
Jeans, and both day and occasion dresses from
ABS by Allen Schwartz. In addition
to luxury European designers, more moderately
priced yet still upscale contemporary labels are
beginning to be regular staples, including
Johnny Was and Eileen Fisher.
is an e-commerce platform that allows small,
local brick and mortar boutiques all over the
U.S.A. to have a store front in one easy to
search location. Representation in
plus-sizes tends to be on the smaller end, with
price points ranging from moderate to higher end
luxury European labels, but a growing number of
larger sizes are appearing and it's worth a stop
for those who like the out of the ordinary.
Clothing Bargain Shopping
In season and end of season mark downs are
frequently available directly from the major
department stores on-line and from the designers
themselves. Often especially good are
on-going weekend sales with temporary mark downs
and discount coupons.
Lord & Taylor
also discounts end of season merchandise
with some exceptionally good bargains available
on contemporary and mid tier designers.
Saks Fifth Avenue can have some
astoundingly deep discounts available at the end
of season on high end designers, while the main
Neiman Marcus website does as well.
While some of the past season bargains go to
both of these off-price sister retailers (noted
below), many don't and are instead available
only through the main website. While not
designer per se, this is one of the best spots
for good quality cashmere sweaters which is
frequently discounted in time for the holiday
gift shopping season.
One of the most noteworthy and anticipated
designer fashion events is the pre-season sale
in mid to late July when upcoming Fall styles are marked
down for a couple of weeks, and go back up in
price at the end, which happens at
Styles that sell particularly well will often be
re-ordered and offered later, while others may
be unique to the sale period only. Also
worth checking out is
which offers a combination of clearance items
previously sold on the main website, and
inventory from additional designers at deep
Saks Fifth Avenue sends some past season's inventory
to its sister website
Saks OFF 5TH,
and Neiman Marcus has
More and more often, however, designer labels on
discount are different than the flagship sites.
Flash sale sites such as
are also beginning to regularly include
plus-size designer fashion up to 24W. Many
of these are good for getting luxury fibers such
silk, and leather on
discount, in addition to designer clothes, hand
bags, shoes, accessories, and jewelry.