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Plus Size Wear to Work Essentials


Poised, Polished, Professional, and Plus Size: The Plus Size Wear to Work Essentials

Plus Size Wear to Work Essentials

Last week, I shared with you tips for plus size professional work wear, kind of like an overview of what to wear to work. As promised and much requested, today we will go over what items are your essentials for work, how to wear them, and tips when rounding out your work wear wardrobe!

Before I delve into this, understand that different industries and positions can be more lax or stringent upon dress code, these tips will give you a starting point and from there you can play within the lines of your company’s dress code!

Shopping for a work ensemble can be tricky, especially if you are just entering the workplace-either just graduated or re-entering. Even if you are looking to spruce up your look, it is quite easy to get lost in it all! So before you go and buy all the trendiest pieces and items, let’s go over what items you should have in your closet!

Tips when shopping for Plus Size Wear to Work Essentials:

So key, when trying on your items, if it restricts movement, pulls or tugs at the seams, outlines one of your body parts, or shows too much leg or cleavage, leave it. If I can see the outline of your underwear, it is too tight. Get my point?
I kept referencing lining, and for wear to work options, lining allows your garments to lay on your curves without tugging or pulling, and allows your body and curves to breath comfortably. This is also a great alternative at times to the slip or shape wear!

Dependent on what you already have in your closet, it is always best to start out with great neutrals for your work wardrobe. Black, navy, gray, and different shades of brown and tan will help provide you a great foundation to your ensemble. Bold hues serve as a great accent color!

Shopping for wear to work essentials can be confusing and at times frustrating, but have no fear, there are places you can go that cater to your wear to work needs Without looking frumpy, dowdy, or boring! I promise!
Eloquii, Lane Bryant, ASOS Curve, Lafayette 148, Rafaella, Nordstrom, Macy’s, Bloomingdales, Target (The Merona Line), Dorothy Perkins, and Lord and Taylor are great places to start!

What are your wear to work essentials? Where do you go to buy your plus size work wear? Sharing is Caring!

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Written By

I am the Editor in Chic of The Curvy Fashionista. Often goofy. Forever emo. Always a Virgo. You can find me somewhere grooving to 90s R&B.



  1. grownandcurvywoman

    February 6, 2012 at 9:40 am

    Talbots Woman is also also an excellent resource. Their clothes are not frumpy. Whatever they make in their straight sizes, the have it in plus. Their clothes are great quality & hold up very well after multiple wears.

    Great article!

  2. Jennifer Sawyer

    February 6, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    I go to talbots, ashley stewart, lany brant for jackets, Lafayette 128, j jill, nordstrom, lord &taylor. i am learning that the high waist pants are great! also pin stripes are heaven. just make sure it fits,not too lose or tight, put a cardigan if you have pants with no jacket.

    • Marie Denee

      February 11, 2012 at 11:01 am

      Oooh i love me some Lafayette 148 too!!! I love that you are finding sooo many gems!!! 

  3. Lexi

    February 7, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    I third Talbots!  It’s not the frumpy store we grew up with.  Their clothes are good quality and they have sales often.  Agree with grownandcurvywoman about the styles they offer– usually plus sizes are relegated to a small selection, but not at Talbots.  I also rely on Nordstrom (I miss their Semantiks pants) and Macy’s for work wear. For jeans and casual wear, I like Lane Bryant.  Agree with you on the lining– it makes clothes drape better and wear longer.  A tailor is your friend– I’ve had clothes hemmed etc, but modified too (cowl necks are not my friend, and it’s easy to have them re-done to an asymmetrical neckline).  Have found some gems in tops, jackets and accessories at TJ Maxx and Ross. 

    • Marie Denee

      February 11, 2012 at 11:00 am

      I completely forgot about them! Ugh! YESSSSS!!! LOL 

  4. Curvy CEO

    February 7, 2012 at 6:11 pm

    This is a great post! (But, I guess I’m biased 🙂 Will definitely share with others. One of my first posts was actually a shopping guide – I must admit that I haven’t really ventured into Lord & Taylor and Bloomie’s . . . I’m going to venture there soon, though 🙂

    • Marie Denee

      February 11, 2012 at 11:00 am

      You have to visit!!! You will be a happy blogger that you did! It’s all about options!

  5. SJP

    July 30, 2013 at 8:37 am

    Great advice. The tips are the perfect starting point for building a solid work wardrobe.

    One piece of advice I give is to be wary of magazine layouts that feature career wear. Those suits tend to be a little more revealing than what the average corporate office will allow. I always give a literal “rule of thumb” when it comes to hem height. If the hem of your skirt falls higher than your thumb’s length above the top edge of your knee then the skirt may be too short for the office. Especially for curvier women (not using curvy in place of plus-size here) our hips and backsides can make a skirt rise a littler higher in the back and when we sit down our skirts (regardless of a woman’s size) will rise at least a couple of inches. If your skirt already is inching to mid-thigh, then when you sit down that skirt will be mid-thigh or a little higher.

    I have seen many woman get passed over for promotions due to their style of dress. They get upset and say it shouldn’t matter. If you want to climb the corporate ladder and be more visible within your company then you need to present a professional and polished image that is representative of the company you work for. I need to stop because this is a topic close to my heart. lol

    • Marie Denee

      August 26, 2013 at 4:56 pm

      XOXOXOXO I missed this comment but thank you madame for sharing!

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