Beyond time spent by the pool or on the beach,
resort vacations to Mexico, the Caribbean, and
more exotic locations often include swank
dinners and evenings out, time strolling quaint
boutique lined streets, taking in the local
sights, and indulging in sporty activities.
Wardrobes need to be packable, stylish, and
provides both clothing in sizes up to 3X and
other specialty items sought after by travelers
heading to more exotic locations such as
electric adapters, luggage, passport and money
protectors, rain coats that fold down to a small
pouch, cosmetic and toiletry kits compliant with
current TSA standards, and more.
Free flowing skirts and maxi
dresses make comfortable alternatives to
and capris in hot weather. Natural fibers
such as cotton and linen are popular options.
de riguer, so be sure to pack
a couple of pairs.
Those indulging in spa,
yoga meditation, or active vacations may also
More romantic holidays might need a
dress or two and some
sexy lingerie tucked away
in your suitcase.
Many of these items are
impossible to find in any size in local retail
outlets. Hence the advent of internet shopping
has been a boon for those planning winter
Students headed on sunny Spring Break vacations
One of the most popular styles for free spirited
warm weather vacations are the long flowing,
easy looks that are an important part of BoHo Style,
although many women still prefer classic casual
Currently part of mainstream fashion trends and
consequently currently more widely available at
more types of retailers, the BoHo Style Tribe
has a distinctive flavor. Some retailers
that specialize in the look and make an
excellent resource for curvy fashionistas
getting ready for vacation include Soft
Surroundings and Pyramid Collection. Both
are moderately to slightly upscale priced with
works in more natural fibers including silk,
linen, rayons, and cotton with flowing styles
and hand crafted detailing such as embroidery,
tie dye, and crochet laces for size 2 to 24W.
Petite and tall sizes are also both often
available up to size 18, making this a
particularly hot shopping spot.
has more of a vintage flavor to their offerings,
including classic 1960's to 1970's BoHo styles.
You'll find plenty of maxi dresses, swingy
tunics, palazzo pants, and casual skirts here
with a unique resort vibe for size 2 to 28W.
Pay attention to sizing for individual garments
as this retailer is careful to include numerical
equivalents for the standard 1X, 2X, 3X that
varies considerably from manufacturer to
Less focused in style, but still an excellent
resource for more moderately priced options, are
Serengeti and Ulla Popken.
is an excellent spot for highly packable crinkle
skirts and dresses, along with a good selection
of knits. Tees and tops also have a
more whimsical vibe that can often work well for
bohemian style mavens. Sizes run true to
generous up to 3X.
is a boon for the extended plus-size diva with
sizes available from 12 to 38W. Resort
styles tend to arrive on the early side here,
with a good selection of natural fibers, floaty
chiffon maxis, tunics and toppers, and knits in
styles that can work into bohemian wardrobes
with ease. Trendy, California retailer
Sealed with a Kiss
is a good spot for easy knits in flowing styles
in both solids and fun prints. The
convertible dresses in both maxi and shorter
lengths are a particularly good find for beach
holidays and can go from swimming to cocktail
hour with a simple re-style and change of
accessories. Sizing in generous and prices
affordable for size 1X to 6X. Meanwhile,
maxi dresses in fun prints, cold shoulder tops,
and bell sleeves mostly in packable, wrinkle
free fabrics are plentiful at
Avenue for size 14 to 32W.
Of the department stores, the deepest year round
selection of bohemian inspired fashion
appropriate for warmer weather can be purchased
at Dillard's and Neiman Marcus.
is the more moderately priced of the two with an
unusual, and well stocked selection of labels
for plus-sizes that will speak to those with
both more romantic and more natural fiber
versions of BoHo style. Those needing more
formal cocktail dress styles for cruises and
upscale resort wear will also have especially
good choices here, many with sleeves.
Sizing for more casual options runs up to 24W,
while some of the formalwear selections are
available as large as 28W.
The most upscale BoHo labels including Tolani,
Johnny Was, and XCVI are regularly available
If you're looking for global inspired prints in
flowy silks, crisp linens and cottons, with
details such as eyelet lace this is a sure bet.
Kimono toppers, maxi skirts and dresses, palazzo
pants, and tunics are stocked all year for sizes
up to 3X.
For core basics such as tees and tanks in a wide
variety of colors, Appleseed's and Blair
are sure bets. Those looking for cotton
will find solids and stripes at
with a good selection of necklines and sleeve
lengths from tanks to long sleeves.
Usually a dozen or so colors are available and
shift seasonally for sizes up to 3X.
more likely to have tees available in easy care
poly-cotton blends, and some styles are
available in extended plus-sizes with petites to
2XL and women's to 5X. More extended sizes
are also available for skirts, shorts, crops and
dresses at reasonable price points and quality
More upscale shoppers will want to check in at
Talbots and Coldwater Creek where natural fibers
are the norm. Along with knit tees and
tops, classic bermuda shorts, khakis, shift
dresses, and knee length to midi skirts in
contemporary color palettes and cuts are resort
shoppers with women's sizes available in both
average and petites up to 3X. While modern
classic in vibe, new collections and color
palettes arrive monthly with resort and cruise
collections arriving January through March,
including harder to find items such as shorts.
includes bathing suits and classic occasion wear
in its resort collections. Solid and
patterned knits, cardigans, dresses, and skirts
are worth the stop. Many of their designs
take a more artisanal turn that keeps the
contemporary flavor without going full-scale
BoHo that makes their relaxed collections a
favorite with vacation shoppers for size 4 to
24W. A favorite with women who
like a more contemporary feel to their classics,
the offerings at
Draper's & Damon's
are particularly good for relaxed vacationers
who still prefer to look polished and put
together. Easy toppers and shirt jackets,
coordinated pant outfits, and separates are
available in extended sizes along with dressy
separates and cocktail dresses appropriate for
cruises in sizes up to 26W.
Of the department stores Nordstrom is the best for classic to
contemporary resort and cruise wear.
includes some artsier and BoHo labels such as
Lucky Brand tees and Citron silks that can
coordinate well for those who are mainly classic
in their tastes but want to add a fun vacation
vibe to their looks. Look for linen
pants, classic bermuda shorts, jeans and denim
from NYDJ and an excellent collection of shirts
and light cardigans and fun toppers for sizes up
to 24W. A small collection of
swimwear from premium labels is available all
year, along with items such as excellent quality
sleepwear, and extensive selection of dresses
from casual to occasion and cocktail making this
a hard-to-beat one stop shop for those with
limited time to shop.
Those with the largest budgets or planning once
in a lifetime trips frequently choose more
luxurious and upscale resorts. Better,
upscale and designer clothes for full-figured
women are still harder to come by than slimmer
counterparts. However, the situation is
considerably better than it has been in the past
with some resort and lifestyle designers
extending ranges to be more size inclusive.
Contemporary resort designer
works in ultra soft modal jersey that drapes
beautifully. Not only is this fabric
packable, but her pieces often dress up or down
making them especially travel friendly.
Her color palettes and pattern choices are both
tasteful and on trend. Selections
include easy fitting dresses, tunics, skirts,
and palazzo pants that mix and match.
Pants, dresses, and skirts tend to run extra
long, but are designed with a raw edge that is
easily cut to fit. Have a tailor do this
for you if cutting stretchy fabric in a smooth
straight line makes you nervous. White
Label sizing is to a generous 3X. Those
needing larger sizes will find similar styles
available from plus specialty designer
size 10 to 32W. Fabrics aren't as
luxurious, but the price points are generally
lower as well.
Silk tunics, ponchos, skirts, and dresses in
beautiful BoHo prints are specialties of
with sizes available up to 3X. Meanwhile
creates many crochet pieces and generous, extra
wide leg and flare pant styles for a relaxed
West Coast vibe.
has a more contemporary style with gorgeous long
open front jackets and straight leg and wide leg
pants in silk and other fine fabrics in classic
black and white that coordinate in upscale
cruise wear style for sizes up to 24W.
Many of these pieces will work for cocktails and
dressy dinners, in addition to polished yet
Those especially looking for linen will find
both woven and knit options from Eileen Fisher
and Bryn Walker.
is known for relaxed, somewhat boxy silhouettes
in eco-fibers. Light silks and organic
cotton, hemp, and linen knits mix and match in
natural color palettes, although trendier and
more saturated hues are also a part of her
collections. Whisper light knit ponchos,
kimonos, and cardigans are perfect for hotter
weather with sizing usually generous to 3X.
plays with layers and asymmetry in her designs.
Wide pants are often designed with unusual
silhouettes such as cropped lantern legs.
Mainly working in woven linen, these cool
comfortable clothes have an artsy and earthy
Those with a modern classic will appreciate the
pieces from the
LAUREN Ralph Lauren and
CHAPS collections. The
former uses more natural fibers and better
quality fabrics than the lower priced CHAPS
collection, but the styles are similar.
Widely available through many better department
stores in sizes up to 3X the resort collections
come out in January. Pieces range from
flippy silk skirts in pretty prints to
classically tailored linen jackets. Cotton
and silk shirts in both woven and knits are some
of the most popular items for quality vacation
style. The more expensive Ralph Lauren lines are
also available larger than average for luxury
designer clothes to a 16.
Those looking for the most luxurious designer
looks in full-figured sizes will appreciate the
line from Italian design house Max Mara.
Department stores carry the special occasion and
work appropriate parts of the collection most
frequently, but more relaxed resort pieces turn
up from time to time, especially at
which carries the most upscale cruise and resort
styles for extended sizes anywhere. Marina
Rinaldi looks tend to lean more toward modern
classic to contemporary with exquisite
tailoring, and nothing but the finest fabrics.
Sizes available range from 10 to 24W.
what immediately comes to mind when thinking
about warm weather winter vacations. And
this certainly is one of the core components of
resort wear. Plus-size women in recent years have been given
more fashion forward swim options, including two
piece bikini and tankini styles. One piece
and classic swim dresses remain popular in sleek
solids and on-trend prints.
While many more retailers carry swim styles in
the later spring to early summer, and a few more
from January onward, very few spots are good all
year. Of the department stores
the only one with a deep year round selection
for sizes up to 24W. Here you'll find well
known designer labels such as Michael Kors and
Ralph Lauren, in addition to sought after swim
brands such as Gottex and Miraclesuit.
a growing collection of trendy, inexpensive
styles for sizes 1X to 3X including one pieces,
swim dresses, tankinis, and bikinis.
is a leader in full-figured swimwear using their
experience in fitting bras to offer some of the
best bra fit swimwear on the internet.
Styles have become more trend conscious and
include collaborations with well known upscale
designers and swim specialty brands, giving this
shopping spot a gold star rating for size 14 to
28W. Sister retailer,
offers mainly one piece styles and swim dresses
throughout the year in sizes 16 to 34W.
Worth a special mention, although more seasonal,
is the swim collection at
One of the most beautiful and innovative
collections at moderate price points, this
retailer give curvy women in sizes 12 through
34W options usually out-of-reach at this size
and price point. Finally, those who look for
trendy and retro bikini styles will find the best selection for L
to 6X at