The Plus Size Guide to Special Occasion Clothes

Posted by Jen Anderson on

The Plus Size Guide to Special Occasion Clothes

I'm always going on about versatile clothing and how you shouldn't feel obligated to buy an outfit that's only appropriate at weddings, holiday parties, and special occasions. But "don't feel that you have to" isn't the same as "you shouldn't". Clothing is supposed to be fun. If you want to buy a few non-everyday pieces, go for it! If most of your wardrobe is long-lasting classics with a super-low Cost Per Wear, your budget can probably handle a few pieces you save for special occasions.


woman wearing a mirage print duster jacket

Aren't Special Occasion-Only Clothes A Waste Of Money?

Not necessarily. If you're up for an Academy Award for Best Short Documentary, you're gonna need an Oscar-worthy outfit. And heck, no one pays that much attention to what documentarians wear so you can maybe wear the same thing the next time you're nominated. The Cost Per Wear is still astronomical. But it's not a waste because you're dressed appropriately for the occasion.

For special occasions that aren't quite that special, you could wear something sparkly and beaded that you'll only be able to wear again once or twice. And if that outfit makes you feel like a million bucks, it's money well spent. But you're not socially obligated to do that for most special occasions. It's your choice.


woman wearing a nora print sheer cardigan

Are You Suggesting I Dress Down For Special Occasions?

Perish the thought! In fact, I think you should declare more occasions special so you have an excuse to dress up. I do suggest that you be judicious when shopping for special occasion clothes. Treat yourself to a piece you love so much that you start looking for excuses to wear it. A Sheer Topper or Kimono Duster has a lot of visual impact, so you may only wear it once a month. Or even less. And that's OK. You need to look fancy sometimes, and having something fancy on hand is such a relief.

I'm thinking of clothing that's not versatile, but is enduring.

What's Enduring Clothing?

I don't necessarily mean durable clothes, though it does help if a piece doesn't fall apart at the seams in the wash. Classic styles are enduring - clean lines, solid colors, etc. because they're more restrained and understated than trendy clothes. You could wear the same Maxi Tank Dress/Kimono Jacket combo every time one of your 15 nieces and nephews gets married and you'll be in style every time.


woman wearing a green dream cocoon duster

But classics aren't the only kind of enduring clothing. Some clothes manage to exist outside of trends. Our sheer swing cardigans come to mind. So do the sheer toppers from Sterling that we carry. Animal prints are also timeless. Our super-popular black and gold chain print won't look out of place in a few years. Those fabulous cocoon dusters that give you a roaring 20s silhouette?Timeless. You can keep one of these pieces in your wardrobe for 20 years and it will remain a viable option.

These pieces are still versatile. Depending on what you wear them with, they can be fancy or simply fabulous. A print kimono jacket worn with pretty much anything is a stunning special occasion look. But wear that jacket over jeans and a tee, and the look is everyday fabulous.

Make Any Occasion Special

You don't have to save your special pieces for events with engraved invitations and passed hors d'oeuvres. Date night, brunch with friends, and dinner parties are all excuses to wear your special clothes. It's so much fun to get dolled up for a tea party with the kids or grandkids. Have that kind of fun even when the kiddies aren't around.

As I always say - if you're staying in all day and it doesn't matter what you wear, you might as well dress up.

Check out our other posts about plus size party outfits.

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