When you're planning to be a guest at a wedding, it's important to find a dress that is both fabulously flattering and appropriate to the event. Gone are the days of frumpy plus size looks that are designed to hide your figure. Instead, you can show off your best features in a wedding-appropriate dress that is stylish, sophisticated, and gorgeous. There are a lot of great shopping options out there, and one of them will have a look that's perfect for your body type, budget, and special event.
Dresses for Daytime Weddings
Typically less formal than evening weddings, daytime weddings still require a certain level of dress. For summer weekend weddings, a dressy sundress is a great choice, and a nice party dress will work any time of the year. You can go with long or short styles, in your choice of a print or solid color fabric.
Lane Bryant specializes in stylish clothing for plus size women, and they have many beautiful dresses. This is the place to come for simple, sophisticated styles that will suit your body shape.
- Midi Sleeveless Jacquard Dress by Adrianna Papell: This floral print dress features metallic threading and a tulle-lined skirt with box pleats to add fullness and flare. It is priced around $270 and comes in sizes 14 to 28. It is ideal for a daytime wedding as it can be dressed up or down depending on the accessories with which you choose to pair it. The mid-calf hem is long enough that you won't feel exposed and the rounded neckline gives you a bit more coverage up top while still maintaining a flattering silhouette.
- Foxfire Faux Wrap Dress: Embrace the cold shoulder trend with this faux wrap dress that comes in black, burgundy or animal print. This dress is priced around $120 and comes in sizes 2X to 4X. It is done in a stylish faux wrap style that will flatter your waistline and look good on any type of figure.
Woman Within carries a variety of casual dresses ideal for a daytime wedding. From simple sundresses to A-line styles, this site is filled with options that will suit women of all ages and sizes.
- Floral Print Maxi Dress (pictured): This dress is priced under $70 and comes in sizes up to a 6X with petite options available. It is made in your choice of black, purple, pink, green, and red patterns and reaches almost to the ankle. This dress has a relaxed fit that will not cling to your body and a rounded v-neckline. It is roomy and comfortable and will flatter your body no matter what size. The dress is made in a non-cling fabric and has short sleeves so it's ideal for the woman who prefers more coverage. It also has a flared hem to create visual balance for your shape.
- Georgette Empire Waist Dress: This knit dress by Ellos is priced under $45 and is available in sizes up to a 34W. It comes in white with black print, lavender and black, and reaches just below the knees. This dress has a flattering A-line silhouette to maximize the skirt's movement and ensure that it will not cling to your curves.
Wedding-Appropriate Cocktail Dresses
If you're attending an evening wedding, a cocktail dress is the perfect choice. This type of semi-formal dress can look stunning on fuller-figured women, especially since it allows you to show off your lovely legs and ankles. Avoid wearing a gown in the wedding party's colors if you happen to know what they'll be.
Nordstrom has an exceptional selection of cocktail dresses for plus size women. You'll find plenty of styles that are perfectly appropriate for a wedding, with options from all your favorite designers. There are dresses to be found for every age and body type.
- Marina Tiered Lace Dress (pictured): This cocktail dress is priced under $130 and comes in sizes 14W to 24W. It is done in a range of colors including navy, ivory, gunmetal gray, rose and amethyst. This knee-length dress features an empire-style bodice and crisscross panels that will hide troublesome areas such as hips and thighs to slenderize your figure. This dress is sheer at the sleeves and back and has a tiered skirt. It is fully lined for extra coverage.
- Adrianna Papell Faux Leather Illusion Fit and Flare Dress: If you are tired of dark lace cocktail dresses, this dress is the perfect choice. The body of the dress has gold faux leather applique over a sheer black tulle bodice and the skirt is black with subtle animal print jacquard. This gorgeous dress is priced around $180 and is available in sizes 14W to 24W. It has forgiving pleats on the flare skirt, is knee-length, and has charming cap sleeves.
Kiyonna features cocktail dresses in a variety of styles and colors. From trendy designs to classic looks, this site is filled with cocktail dresses perfect for women of all ages and sizes.
- Retro Glam Lace Dress (pictured): This elegant dress is priced under $170 and comes in sizes 0X to 5X. It is done in black lace with your choice of black, purple or red lining. This dress features a removable sash that can be used to cinch in your waist, a vintage-style brooch as an accent and a loose-fitting skirt that will skim over your curves. It has sleeves that are a done in a short, flowing length and a flattering surplice neckline.
- Sweetheart Knit Wrap Dress: This cocktail dress is priced under $100 and comes in plus sizes up to a 5X. It is available in black, navy, and scarlet. The flattering faux wrap style works well on any figure. This dress features ruching across the chest and a sweetheart neckline to enhance smaller curves and help cover up larger ones. This dress can be dressed up or down and will remain a classic for seasons to come.
Long Evening Gown Styles
Invitations to some of the most formal weddings may specify that guests should dress in 'black tie' attire. According to EmilyPost.com, this often means a long evening gown. There are a number of long styles that are appropriate for weddings and look stunning on full-figured women. Consider an A-line gown, a loose, flowing dress with an empire waist, or a simple sheath. Just avoid choosing a long, white gown because that fashion is reserved for the bride.
Macy's is a great place to shop for plus size styles, and you can often find beautiful dresses in designer names. The size range varies by the style and designer, but you'll have no trouble finding something flattering. There are options for women of all ages, including modest dresses to trendy styles for women in their teens and twenties.
Spense Plus Size Sleeveless Rhinestone Gown (pictured): This lovely black or deep purple dress is priced under $110 and comes in sizes 14W to 24W. It is done in a stylish yet flattering faux wrap bodice with a rhinestone brooch that gathers the waist on one side, which slims the tummy area. This dress has a full-length roomy skirt with full lining that flatters the hips and legs. It has keyhole with button closures in back for an added romantic detail.
Betsy & Adam Plus Size Cascade Ruffle Draped Gown: This floor-length royal blue gown is priced below $200 and comes in sizes 14W to 20W. It features a romantic cowlneck with a draped back. This dress has ruching throughout the bodice that is flattering to all figures and the back draping offers some upper arm coverage. It has a hidden side zipper as well as a cascade of ruffles along one side.
One Stop Plus
At One Stop Plus, you can find a variety of long dresses perfect to wear to a wedding. You can expect to find simple yet elegant styles with and without jackets. No matter what your age or body type, there is sure to be a dress for you.
- Roaman's Sequin Back Dress (pictured): This elegant black dress is priced under $200 and comes in sizes up to a 34W. It is done in a long, formal length and features a slightly fitted bodice with a flared skirt hem. The dress has an embroidered mesh back that's adorned with sequins and beads and will demand attention from all over the room. The dress also has princess seams both front and back to provide structure and a hidden side zipper.
- Roaman's Beaded Lace Jacket Dress: This dress is available in a variety of jewel tones and neutrals and is priced under $200. It is available in sizes up to a 34W and will flatter any figure. This dress features a sheer lace jacket and body with a matching lace overlay that leads to a full, lined chiffon skirt. The flowing style works well over curves and will not cling to your body. The jacket has beading and sequins around the hem for added glamour.
Lovely and Appropriate
Shopping for wedding guest attire for plus size women is fun and simple, especially when there are so many beautiful options out there. Take your time perusing available styles to find a dress that makes you feel lovely and perfectly appropriate for your event.