Plus Size Fashion Advice For Older Women

Older plus-sized women want stylish, well made clothing for business and play to match their lifestyles. It's possible!

The days when plus-sized Women of A Certain Age were relegated to fashion choices involving only dark colored tents, mumus and baggy sweats is over. The most common clothing size is now 14, and plus-sizes of 18 and up are an increasingly large share of the market. Designers are starting to take note. Increasingly, mature plus-sized women are successful, employed, active and confident. They want stylish, well made clothing for business and play. They have the money to spend and demand clothing and accessories that match their lifestyles. The fashion industry is responding by making more choices available for this growing market.

There are no hard and fast "rules" when it comes to fashion - your style is your own, and individual as you are. But everyone can use a few guidelines, and if you haven't thought about updating your individual style lately, there's no time like the present!

Don't just stick with dark colors and vertical stripes and avoid boring beige, say experts. This is outdated advice, and wearing boring clothing won't make you look five sizes smaller anyway. You are big and beautiful - flaunt it! Stay away from mixing several items with busy patterns because this flatters nobody. If you like bold or bright patterns, mix it with a solid, contrasting color. Put together outfits mixing colors from palettes. Think spring - peaches, lemony yellows, leaf green and geranium. Or fall - rich orange, coffee brown, deep green and autumn red. If you are layering different pieces, try not to be too monochromatic. Playful colors will add interest and

There are clothing styles that just scream "Grandma." Nothing wrong with this if you are a proud Grandma! But in general, schlumpy color-coordinated sweats, T-shirts with poofy embroidered teddy bears emblazoned across the chest and polyester ensembles will just make you look frumpy. While sometimes comfy and frumpy is just fine, be careful you don't fall into the trap of dressing "too young" because thatnever looks right! Wearing clothes that are too tight or toorevealing is usually unflattering.

For warm weather casual wear, capris are an excellent choice. They are cool and comfortable and can be paired with almost any style of top. Currently, breezy, bright Indian-style tunic tops are fashionable and flattering, but big shirts and pretty cotton twinsets will work very well, and since three-quarter legnth sleeves are popular, it won't be difficult to find pretty tops that will neither reveal every inch of your arms, or droop down to your knuckles.

Speaking of warm weather - no need to worry about your skin being too pale to show off! We all know by now that tanning and too much sun exposure is bad for our skin - but modern self tanning lotions are nothing like the ones that made us blotchy and orange. If you're going to be revealing a little leg in capris, consider one of the excellent self tanners on the market. A little colour will give your skin an even, healthy glow without the bother or risk of lying in the sun or visiting a tanning salon. An added benefit of a nice tanned complexion is diminishing the appearance of freckles and age spots.

For business wear, most department stores now have a wide range of suit styles for plus sized women in figure-flattering styles. Buy the best quality possible - the difference in a well cut suit will be worth it. A well cut suit will enhance your figure, and the drape and fit of quality tailoring and fabric in a classic style will give you years of mileage. Pairing a suit with pretty, bright shirts, different colored hose and accessories can give you a varity of looks. Try jackets that fall below the hip, or long swing jackets for extra flair and shape.

A big plus for full-figured women - you can get away with chunkier, more dramatic jewellry than small women. Use this to your advantage when dressing up an outfit. Try on dramatic earrings, wide chains and showy pendants. An up-to-date hairstyle and eye-catching accessories paired with a well put together outfit will create a flattering look.

And finally - shoes. Good shoes are a must. You are all about comfort when it comes to footwear, as well you should be! Poorly fitting or overy high or narrow shoes can cause foot, posture and even safety problems. Luckily, it is not difficult to find comfortable, stylish shoes to complement any outfit or activity. Ankle straps tend to accentuate heavy ankles and make legs look shorter, and very flimsy, strappy styles generally do not flatter plus-sized women. Well fitting loafers and stylish mules go well with almost any outfit. For colder weather, ankle boots have the same leg-shortening effect that ankle strapped shoes do, but calf or higher legnth boots are extremely flattering.

So if you haven't shopped for pretty clothing for a while, you might be surprised at the wide range of choices and styles now available. Don't fall into the trap so many of us do by sticking with the same old outdated styles for decades too long.

Now might be a fun time to go out window shopping. If you think an outfit might be too bold or unflattering - try it on - you never know!

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