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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: May 4, 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: Formalwear @ Macy's
One Shoulder Gown, Size 2-26W| ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
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Ruffled Cold Shoulder Dress, Size 8 - 16 | ElegantPlus.com Plus Size Bridesmaid Dresses Pick Lace Dress, Size 1X - 3X | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
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One Shoulder Gown
Size 2 - 26W

Ruffled Cold Shoulder Dress
Size 8 - 16
 

Lace Dress
Size 1X - 3X

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: Retro & Vintage Modern Clothing @ ModCloth Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Fashion @ Lane Bryant
Floral Off-the-Shoulder Dress, Size 10 - 30W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Chiffon Fit & Flare Dress, Sizes 2 - 26W | ElegantPlus.com Plus Size Bridesmaid Dress Pick
More Colors Available
Blue Lace Midi Dress, Size XS - 4X | ElegantPlus.com Bridesmaid Dress Editor's Pick Lace Swing Dress, Size 14 - 28W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick

Floral
Off-the-Shoulder Dress
Size 10 - 30W 

Chiffon Fit & Flare Dress
Size 2 - 26 W
Custom Sizes Available

Blue Lace Midi Dress
Size XS - 4X
 

Lace Swing Dress
Size 14 - 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 Fashion @ Zappos Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Dresses @ Nordstrom Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Women's Clothes @JC Penney Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Evening Dresses @ Dillard's
Lace  Dress, Size XL - 5X | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
More Colors Available
Grecian Pleated Gown, Size 14 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Bridemaid Dress Editor's Pick Navy Blue High Low Gown, Size 14 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Bridesmaid Dress Editor's Pick Chiffon Shift Dress, Size 14 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick

Lace Dress
Size XL - 5X
 

Grecian Pleated Gown
Size
14 - 24W

High Low Gown
Size 14 - 24W

Chiffon Shift Dress
Size 14 - 24W

 

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.

Plus specialty bridal retailer Sydney's Closet carries a selection of more formal looks, some of which are appropriate for the wedding party with the largest size range available from 14 to 40W.  Those who want a more 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: Women's Clothes @JC Penney Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Fashion @ Eloquii Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Upscale Women's Fashion @ Neiman Marcus Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Fashion @ IGIGI
Tiered Vintage Dress, Size S - 3X | ElegantPlus.com Plus Size Bridesmaid Dresses Editor's Pick Bonded Lace Color Block  Dress, Size 14 - 28W  | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Lela Rose, Floral Fil Coupe Dress, Size 2 -16 | ElegantPlus.com Plus Size Bridesmaid Dress Editor's Pick Print Maxi, Size 14 - 36W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
More Colors Available

Floral Maxi
Size 1X - 3X
 

Bonded Lace
Color Block Dress
Size 14 - 28W
 

Lela Rose
Floral Fil Coupe Dress

Size 2 - 16
 

Print Maxi
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: Wedding Shop @ Neiman Marcus Let's Shop! Elegant Plus:  Dresses @ Simply Be Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Fashion @ City Chic Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Plus-Size Dresses @ Nordstrom
Rachel Pally, Cold Shoulder Maxi Dress, Size 18 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick
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Floral Chiffon Dress, Sizes 8 - 22W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Chiffon Maxi Dress, Size 14 - 26W | ElegantPlus.com Bridesmaid Dresses Editor's Pick
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Silk Dress, Size 2 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Bridemaid Dress Editor's Pick
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Rachel Pally
Cold Shoulder Maxi

Size 1X - 3X

Floral Chiffon Dress
Size 8 - 22W

 

Chiffon Maxi
Size
14 - 26W

 

Silk Dress
Size 14 - 20W
Avg - Petite
 

 

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 and Shoe Buy.

 

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 @ Unique Vintage Let's Shop! Elegant Plus: Fashion @ Lord & Taylor
Pink Gingham Check Dupioni Dress, Size 0 - 36W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick Green Tulle Dress, Size S - XXL | ElegantPlus.com Plus-Size Bridesmaid Dresses Picks Vintage Swiss Dot Swing Dress, Size XS - 4X | ElegantPlus.com Bridesmaid Dress Editor's Picks
More Colors Available
Rachel Roy, Floral Dress, Size 14 - 24W | ElegantPlus.com Editor's Pick

Gingham Check
Dupioni Dress

Size 0 - 36W
Avg - Petite - Tall
 

Tulle Dress
Size S - XXL

Swiss Dot Swing dress
Size XS - 3X

Rachel Roy
Floral Dress
Size 14 - 24W
 

 

 

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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