100 lb. Club - OT - Need Dress-Finding Help!!!

View Full Version : OT - Need Dress-Finding Help!!!

04-15-2005, 02:06 PM
I have to go to two weddings in early May, and I'm beginning to panic about trying to find a dress to wear. You see, my body shape makes no sense right now. On top, I'm comfortably out of plus sizes, so I can usually wear a size 14 (depending on the cut, sometimes even a 12) or an XL. On the bottom, however, I'm still around a 16.

I've been in this limbo for a while now... I can't wear tops from Lane Bryant, and I can't wear bottoms in non-plus sizes. That leaves me in a bit of a bind when it comes to finding a dress.

I'm doing everything I can to try to lose enough weight by this time to fit in a "normal size" dress, but with every day that passes I start to think it's not going to happen by my neat little timetable. :lol:

Does anybody know of places that sell cute, *non-matronly* dresses in these weird quasi sizes like 16? I know Ann Taylor Loft has a few in size 16, but I'm just barely out of their size chart. I'm gonna go this weekend to check it out (sometimes those size charts LIE, I tell ya... LIE!). Both are outdoor weddings, so I'm looking for something sundressy in a nice (preferably kinda cute, not overly frilly, as those kind make me gag) floral or other pattern.

I tell ya, I'm glad to have lost the weight I have so far, but clothes shopping is definitely a challenge right now!!!

04-15-2005, 02:17 PM
How about something like this...


Coldwater Creek has tons of cute stuff and they have a very wide range of sizes. Do you have one nearby. If not, the website is great!!!

04-15-2005, 02:37 PM
Could you do a skirt or pants and funky top instead?

Dresses can be very difficult. Anything that is a-line or empire waised would be your best option.

04-15-2005, 02:39 PM
Ooh, Sandi, I really like that. Optimally, I want something a little shorter but that's definitely in the right ballpark! I didn't even think about shopping online for some reason... Thanks!

I'd really like to find a dress if possible, but we shall see!

04-15-2005, 02:44 PM
Try Newport News... It's a little cheaper for somthing you'll shrink out of so soon!

04-15-2005, 03:09 PM
I have been buying a lot of clothes recently, and I'm about the same size you are. I don't wear true "plus sizes" any more -- they tend to be cut longer, which I don't like now that I have less to hide, and the styles DO lean toward the "mother-of-the-bride" or churck lady look. So, these days I tend to wear Misses 14/16 on top and 16/18 on bottom. Here are some places I've gotten or seen cute springy/summery dresses and separates along the lines of above, and I'm satisfied with the quality:

JC Penny (more in the store than online)
Target (again, more in the store than online)
www.jessicalondon.com (plus-size sister company to Chadwick's, I still buy from them occasionally)

You could also try the following (online or stores), but I think their prices are too high for most transitional clothing: J.Jill, LL Bean, Land's End, Eddie Bauer.

04-15-2005, 03:15 PM
Hey - thanks for reminding me about Target (and for all the other recommendations.) I remember being in there a few weeks ago looking for a swimsuit -- the horror, the horror! -- and I noticed that they had a lot of very cute sundresses in a variety of sizes. Both of these weddings are pretty casual, so something like that might work.

I tell ya, I've said this a million times, but I will be THRILLED when I'm totally in non-plus sizes!

04-15-2005, 03:27 PM
Jennifer - look for something that has an empire waist and that goes out from there! My friend and I are thinking of starting a line of clothing, including dresses! We'd start at a size 12 and go to a size 24, or thats the plan so far. It's too bad you live so far away, you could have been our test subject. Also, if you lived closer you could have come into the store I work for now, we just got really cute dresses, one is black, white and pink, with flowers, sounds horrible.. looks SO cute. Goodluck! And if I come across anything online, I'll make sure to post it! (not that I shop online a lot... no really.. I don't.. ever.. which explains why my credit card isn't constantly maxed ;) )


04-15-2005, 03:59 PM
Jessica London

04-15-2005, 04:11 PM
I can't suggest any stores because we live in different countries (though you're welcome to visit and come shopping). I just wanted to say I'm so happy that you're in this dilemma - it means you're just about totally out of "plus" sizes and well on your way to being a total "regular-size" girl. All your hard work is paying off! Good for you!

04-15-2005, 04:16 PM
I get loootttttsssss of my transitional clothes at Target. mmmmm Target.

Some people say DisneyWorld is the happiest place on Earth. mm mmm. TARGET is the happiest place on Earth.

04-15-2005, 04:38 PM
I love Target, too. They get the very uncomplicated (but seemingly impossible to most retailers) idea that good design can be done at any price point and in all sizes. In fact, I was thrilled with my swimsuit from there, which -- instead of being an overly florid granny print with a looooooooooooong skirt -- ended up being a very chic, sexy black tankini with a SHORT coverup skirt and a keyhole tie at the bust. I actually felt kinda *hot* in it, and lemme tell ya, I ain't usually comfortable in a bathing suit!

Thanks, Jilly, for the kind words. I really am feeling great... a little impatient at this point, but I have more energy than I've had in years, and my confidence is at a 10-year high. And THAT'S inspiring!!!!!!

You guys are the BEST!!!!!!

04-15-2005, 04:48 PM
I don't know if the sizing at Loft is the same, but Ann Taylor's clothes definitely feel more generously cut than the size chart would indicate. The last dress I bought from there was two sizes smaller than I would buy in pants because of the A-line skirt. There are a couple of really cute dresses on sale there right now, I would definitely go trying things on, I bet you'll find something really cute (and if you love it, you can get it altered when it gets too big).

04-15-2005, 05:08 PM





On the Jessica London & Chadwicks, be careful, a lot of their clothes are DCO. (dry clean only)

04-15-2005, 05:13 PM
Okay first I gotta tell you my best friend, her nickname is teapot..and she is the queen of the bias cut skirt and sweater set, too chic to be believed. That way you can go for sleeveless or not, and show off your waist. Another good look is the JLo style dress, that highlites your chest and waist and allows for a more generous bum, and nice bums are in. After all only a dog would want a bone.

04-15-2005, 05:26 PM
I looked at Target swimsuits, and I liked the designs and the PRICES, but I had to go with one I found at JC Penny that was a lot more expensive, but had lots of bust support. My poor boobies are so deflated that they need a LOT of help, and the light support in inexpensive swimsuits (and even some more expensive ones) just don't do the job. *sigh*

04-15-2005, 06:49 PM
AND ... if you shop at Chadwick's, I just HAPPEN to have a coupon code that's good through 4/18 for 25% off any one item; they'll take it off the most expensive item you order. It works at Jessica London, too:


04-15-2005, 07:18 PM
Thanks, FG!

Funny that you mention the Target swimsuit boobie issue, because that was a dealbreaker for me with many I tried on, too. But the one I ended up getting had an acceptable level of support (less than I usually use, but enough to keep it from being vulgar!).

Thanks for the coupon code... we'll see what I can rustle up.

04-16-2005, 03:11 AM
Jennifer - Holy Moly Girl! You're doing fantastic on your journey - I'm so proud of you.. I remember when you first started! Wow, you're truly an inspiration. And don't you worry, soon ALL of the plus sizes will be long gone!

Have you found a dress yet? Make sure to keep us posted when you do.. and like always, I want to see pictures! :)

Goddess Jessica
04-16-2005, 03:30 AM
Ok, I know I'll get a lot of flack for suggesting this site. But it is my absolute FAV for buying dresses. It's just... well.... expensive!!!

They are GREAT for the inbetween sixes (plus-->regular).

But if anyone cares, their clothes hold up great! Even the DRY CLEAN ONLY that the Cute boyfriend threw in the washer AND the dryer. I almost had a heart attack.


04-16-2005, 05:32 PM
the DRY CLEAN ONLY that the Cute boyfriend threw in the washer AND the dryer. I almost had a heart attack.
My heart just stopped!!!

04-16-2005, 10:27 PM
Yeah... while we're on the topic; I need to get a prom dress that is acceptably stylish and not meant for "the church lady" :lol: I've gotten my last 2 formal dresses at Younkers.... but they were 3/4 lengths. I want a full length for my Jr. prom. Any suggestions?

04-17-2005, 01:28 AM
Jessica London has some nice "special occasion" dresses. They aren't exactly YOUNG, but they're not church lady either, more on the sophisticated and classic side.

Goddess Jessica
04-17-2005, 09:18 PM
Torrid young prom dress stuff is WAY cool.

04-19-2005, 12:10 PM
Jennifer and Apryl: I LOVE Alight.com. REALLY cute stuff!
Jennifer: JJill.com is a little pricier, but has really lovely, stylish stuff that's made well.

Good luck to both of you! I just purchased a whole new wardrobe :eek: because I really had just nothing to wear and am also going away to St. Maarten for a week and had literally NOTHING that fit. When I was steadily losing all of last year, I got smaller sizes of *just enough* clothing to get me through the weeks until I was another size smaller -- and last summer I was a bit heavier than I am now, and donated those clothes besides, since I lost still more before starting the chemo and then regaining some. And since I don't have the energy to shop for hours, I did all my purchasing online: JJill, Alight, Newport News, Speigel, Coldwater Creek, and Zappo's (for shoes.) I went OFF because I'm feeling so blue about my appearance -- mostly bald, up 21 pounds, no eyebrows, almost no eyelashes, several new scars......I've been prettier, I tell you! So some retail therapy did wonders! (And so do make-up, cool hats, and false eyelashes!) I'm doing my best to work it..... ;)

Ivanna B. Skinny
04-20-2005, 06:00 PM
Oooh...Sarah, St Maartin...You LLOOOOOVE it! My mom jsut gat back home from a cruise to there on Saturday!

Has anyone mentioned Anthropologie? They're pricy, but realllllly cute!

04-20-2005, 11:37 PM
Hey, guys -- I just wanted to thank you again for all your help and tell you that I FOUND A DRESS!!!! I'm thrilled, becuase it actually is a size 16 from Ann Taylor Loft, and what's even better is that it was significantly marked down. :) When I was trying it on, I immediately jumped to the conclusion that it was too small, but then I remembered watching my skinny friends try on clothes and thought... "hm, maybe it's supposed to actually fit like this!!!" I zipped it up and realized it fit just like it was supposed to -- snug but comfortable. Unfortunately, there's no picture of it on the website, so I will have to take a picture of it myself (maybe even with me in it - ha!).

I'm still a little nervous about my arms, which are still flabby, so I got a little cotton shrug to go over it. I'm hoping to have the courage to go without it -- hubby says it's better by itself.

Still gotta get shoes and jewelry, but I'm RELIEVED and absolutely thrilled to have another store where I can shop!!!! I'll be even more excited when I make that next jump from 16 to 14.

The head stuff is next -- I still feel like an interloper in the skinny girl stores. But nobody even looked at me funny when I took the dresses into the dressing room, so I think it is in my head at this point.

Thanks again for your help. Hope your seach goes well, too, Apryl!!!!