Big girl takes on Big brands

Hello my loves,

So this is for my local curvy ladies but if you have these brands where you are, have a read 🙂

Typically, shopping for me is done online. I have become well versed with the sizing at ASOS and Forever 21, and a few other websites. I decided to shop in brick and mortar stores this month to fill you in on what your options are.

Store 1 : H&M

Most of you regular followers will recall my striped red dress from the store last month. I was in a bit of a rush that day, so I decided to visit the flagship store at Somerset this time around to see if a plus sized girl could consider shopping here.

Verdict: Mostly No

Let me explain.
The largest size in the store is EU 42, which is a UK 14. So for someone like moi who is an inbetweener (uk16-18)’s very slim pickings. Pun fully intended!

If you are a plus sized lass like me, you will be scouring the aisles and rummaging between the clothing tags looking for the largest available size only to find a plethora of size XS’ and M’s. It was a test of my patience, that was for sure.

Dresses with a generous amount of stretch are helpful, that’s how I got away with the red dress. That is also how I managed to purchase a sleeveless black dress with a high collar and trumpet hemline. For those of you who think that the trumpet hemline is not for us big girls, that is so untrue.

The basics section of the store does have plain tees that accommodate to our lush sizing. So if you are looking to find plain tops or layering options, that’s a good place to check out.

The ladies section is divided between clothing catered to ages 25 and above, and the teen-adolescent section. In the first section I acquired myself a navy top with a sheer shoulder and arm panel, a retro maxi chiffon dress with long bell sleeves, a plain black short sleeved maxi dress with side slits just below the knee. The navy top sits comfortably, while the chiffon dress needs some adjustment at the waistline, the plain black dress is perfect.

It took a long search through the clothing racks to find these outfits.
Generally, the tops fit rather small at the waist, were too tight at the arm holes , or flattened my boobs. Make sure that you try ALL the items that you fancy, because looks can be deceiving – a generously willowy top may appear to fit you but you won’t know how well it sits on your frame unless you give it a try. I know, the fitting room is not a fun place for some of us (Me included), but it’s a Necessary evil!

For someone ample bottomed and thick thighed like me..the skirts (short or long), jeans, shorts and pants were not an option. Unless you’re looking for harem pants, which are cool.

The teens section has more color and fun prints, but the sizes are very petite unless you’re going for a sweatshirt. I was coveting a kitten printed sweatshirt from that section for the longest time and size L fit me well, so I snapped it up!

Unless you are a size 16 and below, Unless it’s fashion accessories that you’re shopping for, or Unless it’s something really stretchy or surprisingly roomy (a rarity) – you’re better off shopping somewhere else.

Prices are fairly reasonable, that’s one of the very few upsides.

Store 2 : Dorothy Perkins, Wisma Atria

Dorothy Perkins is a part of the F3 franchise which includes Topshop, Topman, Ben Sherman, Miss Selfridge, Etam (lingerie store). I was accumulating credits to get my membership card so this was my second stop.

Verdict : Yes

The brand caters to sizes 16 and above, and they carry these sizes at their brick & mortar stores. Pastels for spring were abound as was work wear and printed tees.

Let me just confess something though:
the selection bored me. I was not going to go crazy in the store just because I was grateful that it catered to my size. That was something I used to do a long time ago. Not anymore.
A larger size does not equate to a boring wardrobe. I think my style choices, along with so many other plus size bloggers out there are a testament to that fact.

If you are looking to build a plus size wardrobe from scratch, this is a good place to start. If however, you’re like me and have gotten a taste of the amazing plus size clothing options out there.. this store will not be a place you will frequent as much. I visit DP when I am looking for simple statement pieces like a cream pleated skirt or a laced blue shirt.

BUT I will say that their fashion accessory section is very tasteful! I acquired this necklace last night from the store.


I popped into Miss Selfridge, which is right beside Dorothy Perkins in Wisma Atria to have a look-see. They cater to sizes uk 14 and below, so it’s a no-go for me. But like DP, their accessories section is pretty good.

I hope this post will be helpful when you consider shopping beyond the confines of your laptop! I think I’m happier with the latter, except for shipping costs and time but that’s all relative in the larger scheme of things aka looking fabulous.

Cheers to the start of April !
I hope it’s a good month for you lot 🙂

All my love,
xxxo Aarti Olivia


One thought on “Big girl takes on Big brands

  1. I would absolutely agree with both these assessments. H&M shaping is bizarre and a lot of their clothes are minute with no bust space or also very short.

    DP had good sizes but can be very bland. I do love their accessories though especially when they have a sale.

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