These Curvy Outfit Ideas Are the Right Mix of Trendy Items and Basics

While the fashion industry still has a ways to go on and off the runway when it comes to size inclusivity, we have seen major steps in the right direction over the last couple of years. For instance, brands such as Mango and ASOS cater to curvier bodies on a larger scale, and there are a growing number of incredible plus-size brands that were built with inclusivity in mind from their inception, such as Good American and the small brand Karoline Vitto.

Still, plus-size options can feel few and far between compared to the offering for straight sizes, especially when you're looking for something specific. (Is it just us, or should brands start offering all of their styles in extended sizes, and not just some?) Building up your wardrobe for a new season can feel daunting enough for anyone, but even more so if you wear anything above a size 12. So we turned to the holy grail of inspiration—Instagram—to swipe a few outfit ideas we think will lessen the load for you.

The key to building a thriving wardrobe, in any case, is mixing basic and trendy items, and these outfits are proof the formula works for any size.


(Image credit: @ali_tate_cutler)

Flowy midi dresses remain an easygoing outfit that lends the feeling of effortlessness and put-togetherness no matter the weather. A button-up style with a collar brings the garment even further into daytime territory, while gathering details at its buttons will create that cinched effect we all love.


(Image credit: @tylauren)

When in doubt, marry two of fashion's favorite mega trends of the season together, such as a checkered print and a green hue. Then, instead of blue jeans, lean into your preppy side with a khaki-colored pair.


(Image credit: @erica_davies)

When the weather isn't fully forcing you to wear pants, keep warm yet relaxed with a sweater-skirt set. You can definitely mix and match similar-looking tops and bottoms if you have trouble finding an actual set (who hates more options, anyway?), and keep a blazer handy for any in-person meetings you might have that day.


(Image credit: @marina_torres)

Jeans and a white tee may not be "hashtag groundbreaking," but there are a couple of ways to elevate the look. First, opt for dark, slim-fitting jeans. (Even fans of lighter, loose, lived-in jeans need a pair of these.) Next, dress up your tee with a statement jacket—think faux fur, vegan-leather details, or both.


(Image credit: @so.candice)

Indeed, there's more to laid-back dressing than sweatpants. We love this styling recipe, which includes a relaxed, oversize crew-neck, a miniskirt, and a pair of flat statement shoes.


(Image credit: @imanleila)

Monochrome dressing has become the holy-grail cheat code to building an easy yet fashion-forward ensemble. Play around with different textures for added zhuzh. For example, try layering a sweaterdress under a faux-fur jacket.


(Image credit: @oliviamarcus)

Try out this unusual take on styling a striped button-down top for a not-so-business-casual look. Trade in trousers for roomy jeans, swap your heels for chunky lug-sole boots (the only shoes that matters in the winter), and layer like a pro with a puffer vest. 


(Image credit: @rendagrella)

The best things come in twos: ribbed sets, power suits, and the leader of the trifecta, a matching leather set. Similar to the skirt set we talked about, you can totally mix and match here if needed. Just try scoping out textures and shades that look as identical as possible. This outfit is perfectly primed to transition into nighttime, too.

We're on a never-ending hunt for cool brands to shop that cater to curvy bodies. If you can relate, you'll definitely want to check out the plus-size stores we're loving right now.

Freelance Contributor