How To Find the Best Plus Size Vintage Clothing

  It’s an exciting time to shop vintage.

image for article How To Find the Best Plus Size Vintage Clothing

It’s an exciting time to shop vintage. With the accessibility of the internet, a veritable treasure trove awaits, and it’s never been easier to find new (to you) garments. 

But what about plus size shoppers? Is it true that vintage clothing just amounts to dusty sacks of fabric for the plus size customer?

Our research proves decidedly not: we’ve compiled a compendium of chic plus size vintage clothes that proves that every body is a fashionable one. 

Plus Sizing Through the Years

Plus size fashion has come a long way since Lane Bryant first introduced the term in the 1920s. Back then, and into the mid-20th century, the cuts of plus size clothing tended to be boxy and largely unflattering, focusing on concealing rather than highlighting the curvy body type.

But by the 1980s, plus size fashion experienced a revolution with the launch of one of the first high-end brands targeted at plus size customers, Marina Rinaldi.

The market continued to rise through the 1990s. Despite the speed of its growth, mainstream boutiques and department stores mostly underserved this demographic. This left plus size boutiques, often criticized as unfashionable, to try to fill in the gaps. 

Today, the average size of an American woman is between 16 and 18. Despite this, plus-size customers still have far fewer options than their straight size counterparts when it comes to in-store shopping.

Fortunately, the advent of online shopping has given plus size customers a wealth of options to choose from in comparison to the pitiful early days of the movement. The popularity of plus size models like Lauren Graham and Tess Holiday gives hope to more diversity in the fashion industry.

Cultivating Your Eye

The audience for plus size vintage is gaining visibility, and accordingly, the supply of the online market reflects that. There are way more than just muumuus out there these days. Vintage fashion has proven its durability and can suit a number of trendy new aesthetics without participating in the waste of fast fashion.

Check out these stylish numbers:

  • We’re obsessed with these adorable high-waisted black and white plaid shorts. This is perfect for a summer picnic day or paired with a bright vintage swimsuit for a trip to the beach. 
  • This funky patterned blue and black blazer works for either a night out or a day at the office. Style with sparkly statement jewelry for extra panache. 
  • Live the cottagecore moment of your dreams in a lovely cotton-silk blend floral dress. Pair with a rattan purse and poetry reading on the grass.

Fashion Means Inclusivity

Representation matters. It’s important to remember that vintage fashion is not just limited to sample sizes, even though it can be difficult to find style inspiration for larger bodies in magazines and online. Sometimes this requires creating the content that you wish to see. 

Share your fabulous vintage style fearlessly and boldly on social media and on Pinterest boards everywhere you can. The change starts with you: be fierce, unapologetic, and flaunt your vintage savoir-faire. 


The troubling history of the plus-size section — and where it has to go from here | Mic

The Average Size of the American Woman is No Longer 14 | Byrdie

Plus Size Models: The 13 Most Famous Plus Sized Models | Marie Claire Australia 

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