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. 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.
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Last Update: August 17, 2016
More Colors Available
Color Block Knit Dress
Size 12 - 30W
Knit Kimono Sleeve
Size 1X - 6X
Silk Patchwork Print Maxi
Size 1X - 3X
Maxi dresses are
a popular choice for
summer music and arts festivals such as
winter resort vacations. A favorite with both the
crowds all year long, they are easy to wear. Simply toss
over your favorite
sandals and layer on the
Generally casual in style, some
can double for more formal affairs with a change
of accessories for those traveling with limited
suitcase space. Those dresses in casual knit fabrics are
also popular pool and beach cover ups over swimwear.
Cooler winter climates see long
maxi dresses paired
with boots with the
ability to subtly layer on leggings or
tights for extra warmth.
sweater shrugs and crochet boleros worn
with sleeveless maxi dress styles for cooler indoor conditions or extra
upper arm coverage.
Styles come in patterns, global prints and
solids. Long, loose flowing shapes are
particularly cool and comfortable in hotter
weather, and can always be
belted to change the
look or add shape to your silhouette.
Clever use of color placements and patterning,
in addition to waist placements can visually add
height even to shorter women. Figure types
with heavier legs may feel more comfortable with
longer skirt coverage, as well.
Maxi dresses in recent years have almost
achieved the status of a modern classic
with solid color styles appealing to women who
appreciate simpler and more casual looks.
have also been especially popular with a wider
range of women.
With the BoHo trends that came into style in 2015, patterns are
including seventies paisleys, scarf prints,
tribal prints, and gypsy styles.
The upscale designer style of Joan Vass and
Eileen Fisher is also simple knits and mainly
solid colors. Both are regularly available
in size 1X to 3X.
an upscale resort wear designer, is another
excellent and consistent resource for both solid
color and printed knit maxi dresses. Sleeve
styles can range sleeveless to long sleeves,
with the kimono sleeve caftan style one of her
classics that gets offered in new colors and
patterns each season. Exceptionally long
with raw hems, expect to invest in some
tailoring to get these dresses hemmed to your
custom length needs upon arrival.
Other contemporary designers who regularly offer
maxi dress styles in larger sizes include Johnny
Was, Melissa Masse, and Anna Scholz. Johnny Was
is especially noteworthy for their use of
natural fibers such as silk and rayon with
floral and romantic vintage BoHo aesthetics.
Melissa Masse is based in Los Angeles and works
mainly in gorgeous, bold prints. A growing
celebrity following sees her maxi dresses on
less formal red carpets. British designer
Anna Scholz designs her own prints and is
much a textile artist as she is a fashion
designer, creating some unique looks. All
three can frequently be purchased from
Saks Fifth Avenue,
Neiman Marcus, and
Moderately Priced Plus-Size Maxi
Dress Shopping Resources
While the popularity of maxi dresses have meant
that they have been available at most retailers,
they are especially plentiful in the summer
festival season in the trendy fast fashion shops.
The following retailers stock more of them all
For those who like a definite bohemian flavor,
the selection in
a variety of unusual prints are the maxi dresses
in sizes up to 28W is well worth a stop.
One of the best collections of BoHo print styles
that can be tailored to any length for size 0 to
36W is at vintage and retro dress specialty
Indie contemporary Los Angeles plus designer
especially well known for their soft, knit maxi
dresses which are mainly available in solid
colors in size XL to 5X. Styling here can
be similar to more upscale Rachel Pally, and
these are good versatile pieces that can be
dressed up or down.
is an additional source for those who like
brighter colors and bolder patterns at budget
friendly price points has recently extended
sizes to 32W. The British Style
Invasion has seen the rise of trendy cataloguer
Asos in the
American market during the last year.
Dresses are one of their strengths, with
inventory changing quickly.
Lord & Taylor have both increased more
trend conscious, moderately priced inventories
in the last few years with labels such as Tart,
Melissa McCarthy, and Vince Camuto in maxi dress
styles to size 4X.
African American oriented cataloguer
be an excellent source for both more
sophisticated maxi dresses that can be worn for
a number of different occasions, in addition to
Caribbean island style that is good for resort
and vacation wear. Long caftan styles are a
specialty. Fabrics are a mixture of synthetics
and natural fibers in size 8 to 26W, although
occasionally larger sizes up to 32W are offered.
frequently carries heavy gauge travel knits and
lighter weight fabrics in contemporary styles
appealing to the resort and cruise vacation
crowd in size S to 3X, with petite sizes
available to XL (16).
specializes in fabrics with an ultra-soft touch
which are frequently natural fibers such as
cotton and silk. Lines can be simple and
contemporary or more bohemian caftan styles.
Sizing here is diverse with many dresses
available in both petite and tall sizes to 18,
in addition to sizes 2 to 24W.
Of the plus specialty stores
offers the widest selection of maxi dresses to
size 32W, with many styles stocked only on-line.
Mainly in bold patterns and packable knits,
price points are moderate with sales and
discount offers frequently available directly
from the website.
often has a good depth of inventory with a
slightly more youthful appeal in sizes up to 6X.
regularly offers maxi dress styles from size 12
to 38W, with an especially good inventory for
the cruise through summer seasons.
Catherine's is another regular spot for
contemporary looks for sizes up to 5X.
Sealed with a Kiss
offers an easy California infused style with
free flowing maxi dresses a core part of their
aesthetic. Solids and prints are offered,
with popular options including the convertible
maxi dress that can be worn a number of
different ways and trendier fabrics such as
lace. Sizing here runs XL to 6X.
eBay boutiques offer some of the widest size
selections. One of our favorites for maxi
Only Golden Goddess
which carries Moroccan, BoHo, and
gypsy style fashion including some with Ren
Faire inspired details in sizes up to 5X.