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five plus size thrifting tips on The Curvy Fashionista

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5 Plus Size Thrifting Tips

Hey there lovely people! As promised, I’m back to share my 5 Plus Size Thrifting Tips. With springtime quickly approaching, I’m sure you’re itching to add some new pieces to you spring wardrobe, right? Well, don’t count out the thrift store. Check out these 5 plus size thrifting tips that will make thrifting as a plus size shopper a bit easier! 

five plus size thrifting tips on The Curvy Fashionista

  1. Check all sections – even those not labeled “plus”. Most thrift stores I frequent don’t necessarily have a designated “Plus Size” section. I don’t let that stop me. Instead, I come prepared to hunt. I tend to find a lot of plus size gems snuggled between smaller sizes. So, be sure to look through all sections and sizes. 
  2. Don’t be afraid to try the menswear section. As a plus size thrifter and a woman who has semi-broad shoulders, I tend to find most of my blazers and jackets in the men’s section. It’s true that the structure of men’s blazers tend to be boxy. But when you find the one that’s a perfect fit, you feel like you hit the jackpot! 
  3. Don’t overlook the footwear. I know some hardcore thrifters who never find shoes while thrifting. I like to think that I’m one of the lucky ones because I always find great shoes, ranging from sizes 6 to 12! If you’re looking for more modern styles, I suggest the Goodwill locations. They carry a lot of the “leftover” shoes (and clothes) from Target. If you’re looking for something more unique and possibly one-of-a-kind, stick with your local thrift chains like Value Village, Village Thrift, etc. Now, thrifting for shoes can be tricky. Vintage shoes are usually cut very narrow, so I tend to buy shoes a size (or ½ size) up. Even if the shoe is your size, I suggest trying it on. Bring a pair of nylon footies with you and slide those babies on!
  4.  Be creative. You may find a piece that is indeed plus size, but it lacks shape and excitement. No worries! Think about the items you already have in your closet that can add some pizazz to that drab piece! If you can’t think of anything, head to the accessory section – I guarantee there’s something there to help jazz up that boring frock! 
  5. Shop more than just clothes. Thrifitng for more than clothes makes you a well-rounded thrifter. I love thrifting jewelry and accessories. From gorgeous vintage inspired handbags to unique belts, these sections (at most thrift stores) are goldmines!


So tell me, do you find these tips helpful? Are you planning to hit up some thrift stores this spring? Let me know and feel free to share your plus size thrifting tips as well! See ya next time…XO!

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  1. Sabrosa Vintage

    March 5, 2014 at 7:57 am

    so agree with all these tips – especially looking in all the sizes. and TRYING IT ON. you never know until you try. I’ve found some sz S and M items that fit my XXL body before. And plus size blouses and jackets often end up on the men’s side.

    • Whitney 'Nic' James

      March 6, 2014 at 9:37 am

      Trying on is key! I used to hate trying things on but now, I don’t leave the thrift store w/out doing it, lol!

  2. Morgaine Fey

    March 5, 2014 at 8:39 am

    I totally agree with the “look in all sections”. With stores like Torrid and City Chic using “S” or “1” “2” etc. as their sizes, sometimes thrift stores screw up and just shove them with like labels. Also, I agree with Sabrosa. Try EVERYTHING on. If it looks like it may fit, it could totally fit. My closet has the weirdest size label collection because I range from a 14 to a 24 dependent on store, style, etc. Also, thrift buddies are a must if you are someone who is not a strong decision maker. I love my thrift buddies, but I wish I had more bigger ones. Someone who is in your size range is super cool with the hunt and you can trade items to see if one of you rocks it better.

    I <3 thrift stores. I have had to put a yearly spending limit on myself because I erm, ::cough, cough:: get excited. OWN ALL THE CLOTHING!

    • Whitney 'Nic' James

      March 6, 2014 at 9:39 am

      Lol, I’ve had to budget & plan out my thrift shopping trips too. Like anything, thrifting can become an expensive habit.

  3. Roseabilly

    March 5, 2014 at 8:40 am

    I agree with these! Unfortunately my thrift stores are lacking. My Goodwill never has brand new items from Target for some reason. And they always have dirty, obviously used shoes that they want $15 for which is ridiculous! And even though I spend hours looking at everything in the store, I barely find anything that fits me (though I do live in an area with very few plus-sized gals and a lot of skinny ones). And Salvation Army isn’t any better. And The Council Thrift Shop is ridiculously expensive because they are “designer” items, when a lot of stuff in there isn’t. (But they do have a plus section).
    For someone who lives in the county of Los Angeles, we have really awful thrift stores for plus size girls.

    • Whitney 'Nic' James

      March 6, 2014 at 9:40 am

      Aw, no! So sorry to hear that. 🙁 Have you ventured out to other counties/cities?

  4. Kaylee

    March 5, 2014 at 9:56 am

    I agree totally with the shop in all sections because i always find something in Target that fits my 18/20 body that is labeled XL/or XXL. I live in a major city and don’t always want to shop at Torrid or LB. I have a plus size co worker who is always put together she shops at this online cosignment shop. I have purchased a few pieces also. my only problem is putting togteher outfits:(. I have to look for the web address and I will post it shortly.

    • Whitney 'Nic' James

      March 6, 2014 at 9:44 am

      Putting outfits together can be tricky, I agree. Especially because when thrifting, you tend to get a lot of random pieces. I suggest planning out a few full outfits/looks before you start thrifting. Then, hunt for those specific items. If you can’t find them while thrifting, make a note and then try shopping them elsewhere. 🙂

  5. Jessica T

    March 5, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    I’m definitely going to give it a shot!

    • Whitney 'Nic' James

      March 6, 2014 at 9:46 am

      Whoo-hoo!! Let me know how you make out! 🙂

  6. klynb

    March 6, 2014 at 12:43 am

    If you find something that might fit, try it on. Since so many plus size bloggers/writers suggest cutting the size tags out, you’ll have to do this.

    • Whitney 'Nic' James

      March 6, 2014 at 9:47 am


  7. Pingback: A new love on an old favorite | Clothe your Curves

  8. Lei-loni at Clothe Your Curves

    March 6, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    I have shopped at Thrift and consignment stores I the past for furniture to reupholster. After reading your post I was inspired to go on a hunt to find accessories. Ultimately I combined by love of crafting and fashion by putting a fun twist on a vintage favorite. Check out my post on my blog for my pictures and instructions!

    • Whitney 'Nic' James

      March 7, 2014 at 5:28 am

      I’m so happy you were inspired!! I like how you put your DIY spin on the clutch – very fun! 🙂

  9. Dabs

    March 7, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    When I thrift, I like to think of what a piece could be instead of what it is. I will find a skirt with great fabric, that man not fit, but will deconstruct it and use the fabric for a shirt or another skirt. You have to think out of the box. Get a sewing machine and learn to sew and then you will have more options.

    • Whitney 'Nic' James

      March 12, 2014 at 6:45 am

      Great way to approach thrifting! I wish I knew how to sew, lol. :-/

  10. Pingback: 15 Tips For Plus Size Thrift Shopping, Because Vintage Comes In All Sizes | Local Thrift Stores

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