Plus size woman going to resort


I have a dear friend who is plus size and has a very apple-shaped body (B-cup, very large mid-section and large bottom). Her husband is taking her to Cancun this winter.

She only wears black pants - even in the summer - with tops. I told her I would take her shopping before the trip and help her find a skirt or dress that is pretty and she feels comfortable in. I don’t know where to start. I’m a size 16 and tall but she doesn’t consider me obese. She is likely not going to wear a swimsuit, won’t wear shorts, and even capri’s are questionable. I thought a sundress or two with bright colors would be nice. I also thought a good bra would be good.

Does anyone have any suggestions? We are near Milwaukee. I would take her to Chicago if there was someplace appropriate to shop. I want her to have a good time and if she feels somewhat comfortable about her appearance it will help. She is trying to loose weight but cannot possibly loose enough in the next 2 months to be just overweight. She needs to loose 100 - 150 pounds.


I love being a personal shopper! I did this in college and it is super fun. Even now some people ask me to go look for stuff for them and I still love it.

There are plenty of plus-size stores available and plenty of tricks anyway to disguise extra pounds.

I’m not sure that there will be places selling clothes in her size and appropriate for Cancun weather before she actually leaves, however. Most clothing stores are selling winter clothes now.

However, after the new year or so is when stores begin to get ready for springtime, so…if she isn’t going until late February or something, she might be able to find some great stuff.

In the meantime, would she consider online shopping? For instance, offers clothing from size 12-28, I think. And they sell clothing in a variety of seasons. I just checked and they have plenty of spring/summer apparel that is for sale right now. How old is your friend? Most of their clothing is geared toward teens or young adult women, but she still might find something she likes. Also, there is not physical store, it’s just a warehouse site. is a plus-size store in sizes 12-30. They are owned by the Limited and tend to be very updated, as opposed to most plus-sized stores that sell ill-fitting and cheapy items that aren’t quality. Any age woman can usally find plenty she likes there. This is a store she can visit, not just a website. Also, Lane Bryant has a plus size lingerie portion of their store, so she can look for good-fitting bras. (Please have her get sized so she knows she’s actually buying the right fit.) is a site and catalog for the overweight to extremely obese population (sz 12-44). Check the sizing chart before she orders. They are not overly stylish but they have very loose, flowing styles that are simple in nature and might make her less body conscious. I clicked around the site just a moment ago to look, and they do have items she could wear in Cancun. This is not a store she can visit, it’s only a website and catalog company. is a national store that carries plus size clothing up to size 32, I believe. This is a physical store she can actually visit. They also have a huge clearance section that seems to constantly have clothing for the entire year available. (Clearance is hard to work with as there is not every size available.) is also geared towards the younger plus-sized crowd and attempts to make most of their clothing sexy in nature. However, I have bought dresses off there before for someone in her 40s who wanted to have a second honeymoon with her husband. (Given this is a trip with her husband, maybe that’s what she’s going for.) They carry lots of dresses. Some are off the shoulder or strappy. Remind her that she can buy strappy and then put a lightweight wrap or cardigan or shawl over it. (You might even take her to a fabric store and then she or the store can hem the sides of a chiffon piece of fabric. Works really easily as a cheap but cute way to disguise arms. She can also make her own sarong this way.) Anyway, they size up to 4x I believe. is a company that makes swimsuits for women of all sizes, from 0-24. They have some sort of spandexy, tight material that they use (called miracle suit). It actually works. I’ve seen a woman who was a sz 20 put on one of their suits and look thin. They also have sarongs and coverups. Here is a direct link to the women’s selection:

If she is an apple shape, the point should be to draw attention away from her midsection. If it’s totally out of proportion with the rest of her, it actually might be better to stick to skirts with tops so as to not emphasize the thickness in her middle. It will break her up that way. However, if the dress has an empire waist then she should definitely go with that! It will help skim over her belly and draw the focus upward. She could also do loose-fitting capris with a tank or short-sleeved shirt and a light cardigan to feel covered. Solid-colored, tailored short-sleeved shirts worn open with a white tank or short sleeved shirt and a solid or print fitted skirt can be slimming. Stay away from full-body prints. Smaller prints are much better than big prints. Stay away from horizontal stripes (but you probably knew that). Also, if she wears a loose flowy skirt, her shirt should be more fitted. Same with the opposite. Flowy shirt, fitted pants or skirt. That way she won’t look indiscernible under her clothes.



Would she consider wearing a body-shaper? These come in a a variety, from bras that slim the upper mid-section to give more bust-to-tummy definition to full-torso shapers that even tame a woman who is really well-endowed or has a lot of belly that looks better slightly slenderized. There are also shapers that are merely panties (but if she’s apple shaped, this might make her tummy look bigger). JCPenney carries these, as does Lane Bryant. There are also slip-style body shapers that go more easily under a dress or skirt. These usually come in a variety of sizes and are fit to either dress size or bra size. Do a google search to find what she might need best.

Also, since her bust is a B, she needs to be wearing only padded bras. LB has plenty of these. This will help tremendously in giving her more waist definition and drawing the eye upward.

Oh, one more place that is good for more middle-aged types is Macy’s Charter Club brand in their plus-size section. Macy’s also carries Elisabeth which is Liz Claiborne’s plus size line, some of which is good and the rest can be ignored. But they have had some beachy stuff in the past which was styled more for 40+, with short sleeves, walking shorts, breezy pants, etc.

Something else to take advantage of is accessories. While most bigger woman need to tone down the ruffles and other stuff that can add excess to their body, there are still details which can really flatter and help create confidence, too.

If she has a medium to long neck, big chunky wooden or big beaded jewelry will help draw attention to her face and is in style, too. Same goes for tiny scarves tied smartly around her neck and knotted to the side. If she has a short neck, stay away from all of that and maybe suggest nice earrings and a matching pendant and/or v-necks or square necks (stay away from scoops!!!) to draw the eye upward.

Okay hopefully this was coherent enough to make a little bit of sense. :slight_smile:


[quote=DeniseR]I have a dear friend who is plus size and has a very apple-shaped body (B-cup, very large mid-section and large bottom). Her husband is taking her to Cancun this winter.

Does anyone have any suggestions? We are near Milwaukee. I would take her to Chicago if there was someplace appropriate to shop. I want her to have a good time and if she feels somewhat comfortable about her appearance it will help. .

shopping for our sizes is very frustrating. Maybe Chicago has more choices, but it will still be a long hard shopping trip. On-line you are much more likely to find what you need in these larger sizes.
Junonia specializes in sportswear for larger size women, especially bras for active women, swimsuits that are attractive, wear well and hold up. By sports clothing I mean clothing for sports-biking, hiking, exercise, tennis, swimming et. al. They also have sundresses, skirts, matching shirts and jackets and travel items (no iron). also knits, tees, T-shirt dresses, knit dresses that travel well and go over shorts etc. Where I live borders resort territory and the knit long T-style dress, or empire waist knit dress over shorts is an easy, cool attractive look. I just ordered another broomstick skirt to go with T-shirts, very versatile and travels well.

another site with good plus sizes is silhouettes.


If she drinks one ounce of cold water per pound of body weight every day, she’ll lose a considerable amount of weight before her trip. I was able to drop 40 pounds in ten days.


:eek: That sounds very, very, very unhealthy.


****I’m assuming she wants to go shopping for new clothes??

If so, I would wait until closer to the trip.

1. She’ll be motivated to lose weight until then.

2. She won’t be buying clothes that don’t fit.


Thank you, ladies, for the suggestions. My friend is in her late 30’s and her husband is in his mid-40’s. She has no hopes of a second honeymoon (that’s a whole other story) but I want her to feel good about herself while on the beach and meeting with other vacationers.

I will search online and keep notes so that when the time comes we have something to work with. I think online shopping might be the way to go but we do have a Lane Bryant in our town. Thanks again!


Does Chicago have shopping??? Chicago has some of the best eating, and for that we pay in large clothes sizes. But we are creative, let me tell you!!!

Take the train in from Milwaukee, or park in Kenosha and take the Metra from Kenosha to Ogilve Station. You can walk into most department stores and get elegant big clothes that are reasonable. Vive le Femme, Carsons, etc.

As a semi-large woman (size 16- beats the 22 I used to be, let me tell you!) I would recommend August Max or Casual Corner Woman for a cruise, if you can find one near you.

There is an outlet mall on I-94 near Kenosha that has a Casual Corner Woman. I think your friend will like the customer service there.

If you go a little father down to Vernon Hills in the northern burbs, there is Hawthorn Center.* NOTE: Do NOT stop in Gurnee at the megamall. Keep going to Vernon Hills.* Torrid is there, but a bit youngish (they cater to large teens). There’s Petite Sophisticate, if your friend is large but short. There’s a Lane Bryant that does **not **parade stretch pants and stretchier tops, but some really cute clothes. There’s a Penney’s that has cute large clothes, and there was this underwear store that had large underwear that was PRETTY and didn’t catch in the wrong places- but the name escapes me.


Junonia is a good source for going to Cancun. Also check out Just My Size – They carry far more than just underthings!

I get some of my exercise wear at the JMS on-line store. They also now have A and B cup bras in sizes over 36! I am so excited as my daughter is a size A cup in a 40 or 42.

JMS and Junonia will be starting to carry those winter vacation clothing.

I will agree that an empire waist would be a good choice. Also check out anything that has a Princess seam.

Junonia will have some great (but rather pricey) vacation type clothing. Go on-line and request a catalog so you can take the book to your friend, the same with JMS.

I hope you all find what you are looking for.

Brenda V.


I have helped my MIL shop for large-sized clothes and have found stylish, flattering options at both Talbots Woman and Nordstrom both of which I’m sure are in Chicago. The idea to drive to Kenosha and take a Metra into the city is a great idea. The Old Orchard Mall in Skokie/Wilmette is also a good shopping locale.


Check out Coldwater Creek too. Especially their clearance section on-line.


Another source of discounted plus size wear is

I’ve gotten some nice things from them including my new winter coat. If you request a catalog then you can get discounts occasionally. Since they are a clearance type company you can still get summery things now in their clearance section. I would imagine that in January the 1st “Spring” warm weather items will start showing up. I live in Texas, so we think it is summer about 9 month of the year anyway.


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