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Fashion & Style

The top 10 plus size clothing stores in Toronto

Posted by Staff / April 17, 2014

plus size clothing torontoThe top stores for plus size clothing in Toronto are a far cry from what shoppers have come to expect from 14+ clothing. The elasticized waists, polyester turtleneck tunics, and sequined butterfly motifs that still haunt the shelves at some specialty retailers are slowly disappearing, thanks to the rising popularity of style blogging and the growing realization that plus-sized shoppers want and need real fashion - not just what's "forgiving," "flattering," and "camouflaging."

While there are still improvements to be made, particularly in terms of accommodating all sizes and budgets, Toronto is giving its plus-sized customers reason to get excited about going shopping through friendly environments, a sense of inclusivity, and most of all, beautiful clothes.

Here are the top stores for plus size clothing in Toronto.

Your Big Sister's Closet
There's something for everyone at this cheerful Junction boutique: Wannabe Bettie Pages, Edie Segwicks and Claire Underwoods can all find gold among owner Karen Ward's collection of dresses and separates in sizes X-3X. Don't leave without perusing their accessories, including bright tights, costume statement rings, and sharp handbags with extended straps. (Ward also organizes Big Deal Toronto, a popular annual pop-up sale where fashion bloggers sell pieces from their own closets. Finds are phenomenal and rarely over $20.)

Gussied Up
This elegant Bathurst boutique is a top destination for classic pieces and Canadian designs in sizes X-3X. Helpful owner Victoria McGroarty has an eye for wearable, versatile pieces like day-to-evening dresses, casual blazers, leggings and cute but practical undergarments. Feminine details and timeless prints are a constant, as are current looks like bright pastels and sweet blouses with menswear detailing. Vintage-inspired bathing suits that fit like a dream are pricey, but completely irresistible.

SexyPlus Clothing
This aptly named shop, offering sizes 12-30, recently underwent a move and a makeover after opening five years ago at Yonge and Church. While it's no longer technically in Toronto, the shop itself is now as vibrant as its unique merchandise - a substantial collection featuring covetable day and evening dresses, and made-to-be-seen lingerie. Owner Stefanie Augusteijn works hard to make sure shoppers keep coming back, offering private shopping parties and meet-and-greets with local bloggers.

Voluptuous
A welcome affront to the belief that plus-sized shoppers should be covered from head-to-toe, Voluptuous sells bold, blatantly sexy clothes in sizes X-3X. This small Canadian chain's selection recently transitioned to include (slightly) more diverse pieces: High-waisted booty shorts and strapless bodysuits now share space with beachy maxis, crisp A-line dresses, pencil skirts, and sheer boho blouses. Service ranges from encouraging to entirely disinterested, but prices are usually on point.

PRiMAALA
Architectural, modern and sophisticated is the rule at this brand-new Dundas West shop. PRiMAALA is unquestionably fashion-forward, featuring sharp blazers, crisp skinny pants and richly textured knit dresses in sizes 12 to 24. Saturated colours and substantial fabrics mark much of the selection - an alternative to the bright, feminine pieces favoured by other boutiques. The store's stunning, opulent design gives some glamour to the shopping experience, something lacking in a lot of plus-sized stores.

The Answer
The Answer specializes in mid-to-high-end plus-sized clothing from sizes 14 to 24. Selection relies heavily on drapey fabrics and modest shapes - think art-teacher chic - but interesting details, good quality, an emphasis on natural fabrics, and a welcoming environment set this midtown boutique apart. Classic businesswear, athletic gear and a great selection of sweaters are highlights. (Just stay away from the obnoxious style tips on their website.)

Curvaceous Consignments
While it lacks the cool chaos or Cinderella-at-the-ball awesomeness of some of the city's better used clothing destinations, Curvaceous Consignments is the only local store of its kind catering exclusively to plus-sized customers, from sizes XL-5X. Most pieces err on the side of conventional and business casual, but there are a few vintage knockouts waiting to be discovered, including knockoffs of Marilyn's famous halter and Joan Holloway-worthy curve worshipping sheaths.

Legs Plus and Bra Boutique
Hidden in a suburban strip mall, Legs Plus is claustrophobically packed with both upscale and everyday lingerie. Unlike other bra specialists claiming to service plus sizes, only to stop at a 40, this welcoming shop sells sizes 28D-58J. They make the list for understanding not all plus-sized bodies are created from the same DD-and-up mould. Hard-to-fit sizes, like small cups with a large band, are readily available and can be ordered if not in stock. Bonus: the store offers a 15-day trial period.

Marina Rinaldi
This high-end Yorkville boutique is renowned for its colourful, upscale workwear in sizes 8 to 26. While the larger sizes are overpopulated with matronly styles and boxy cuts, there are some beautifully tailored pieces with interesting details to be found. Of-the-moment jacquard coats, cropped patterned pants and pencil skirts with subtle, eye-catching details are standouts, as are opulent beaded accessories.

Rosie the Rebel
Calling themselves "Canada's rockabilly, psychobilly and retro clothing retailer," this Bloorcourt boutique sells '40s and '50s-inspired pieces - mostly glamorous and cheeky full-skirted dresses - in sizes XS to 4X. Their selection is limited, but this is the only shop in town catering to lovers of brash pinup style that gives substantial shelf space to plus sizes, and makes sure shoppers on the larger end of the spectrum aren't left out. Friendly staff know their products and how they work on plus-sized bodies.

Writing by Ashley Petkovski. Lead photo of PRiMAALA by James C Lee.

Discussion

18 Comments

Rob Ford / April 17, 2014 at 07:06 am
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I get all my bras at Legs Plus and Bra Boutique. All my other clothes are from Sexy Plus and Voluptous. just wait until my crossdressing videos come out!
nice / April 17, 2014 at 09:54 am
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i'll be the first to say it, plus size models now a days, are so damn hot!
Serious Question replying to a comment from nice / April 17, 2014 at 11:01 am
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Do you wear a fedora?
nice replying to a comment from Serious Question / April 17, 2014 at 11:32 am
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Bowler.
Serious Question / April 17, 2014 at 01:48 pm
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I'm sure it goes well with your duster coat.
J. / April 17, 2014 at 02:02 pm
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is it just me or the sizes are getting smaller and smaller?
seems to be replying to a comment from J. / April 17, 2014 at 02:25 pm
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Probably, chicks are working out more.
Stefanie / April 17, 2014 at 03:00 pm
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Hey Blog TO staff, thanks for the listing and the review! You captured the essence of SexyPlus Clothing and we're so proud to be listed among these top plus size boutiques. And while we're now in Mississauga, we do serve all shoppers via our website sexyplusclothing.com. Cheers! Stefanie, Owner, SexyPlus Clothing
Karen / April 17, 2014 at 05:08 pm
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Wow, what a lovely review of our shop!

This is such a great resource for plus size women in Toronto.

Thank you so much for the write-up!!! We're in great company on this list, and we really appreciate your coverage and your help in spreading the word about both Your Big Sister's Closet and Big Deal TO!
Vanessa / April 17, 2014 at 07:10 pm
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Voluptuous should be removed from this list due to disgusting customer service and obscenely poor quality.
Rosie the rebel should also be removed. They carry plus size because the lines they carry offer them. If that's all it takes to make your list please add Damzels to it.
Anilee / April 17, 2014 at 07:27 pm
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Curvaceous consignments closed last weekend. It WAS a great place to get plus sized clothes at great prices. I hope they relocate one day soon.
Shawna / April 18, 2014 at 01:00 am
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Gussied Up is the absolute best store on this list. I always find great plus size dresses there!
ginnee / April 18, 2014 at 09:38 am
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Must say, I was disappointed in Gussied up because their stuff is really NOT for those with plus sized busts.

Very sad Sexy Plus moved out of town. With no car and a clear need to try items on, it might as well have closed. Shopping online is just too risky.
Stina Scott / April 18, 2014 at 03:29 pm
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In case anyone is interested....

http://www.sweetechoplus.com/

Online only for the most part. She is located in the Niagara area. Specializing in Pin-up, Rockabilly and Lingerie. Can be found at many festivals and events. Hosts occasional dress parties and has weekend open houses. Check out the webpage and FB group. Lots of options for super stylish vintage inspired looks. Imports Hell Bunny and Spin Doctor for the UK. XL-4X.
Tom / May 2, 2014 at 05:39 am
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From these photo alone-they look amazing. Definitely adding these to my blogging list.

http://www.lucyclothing.com.au/ladies-plus-size-clothing
Theo / May 18, 2014 at 02:49 pm
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A store that I have been going to for the last 8 years is Doll Factory by Damzels. They have carried plus size retro inspired dresses and the owners know their stuff. I have bought numerous dresses, tops, bottoms and even swimsuits from them over the years. I like the idea of going to a store where people know you, seek out items that work for your body and this is what I get at Damzels.
I prefer this store over Rosie the Rebel who seem to cater to a younger crowd and I did not find their staff helpful.

I also agree shopping online is a pain because you really need to try things on-not all sizing is equal or true.

There is a Curvaceous Consignments in Thornhill on Yonge street just south of highway & on the west side of Yonge. A bit of a trek.
Julia Errazo / May 24, 2014 at 09:09 am
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There is also a bridal designer on-line who is based in Toronto- I want to call her Pippa Middleton- but it's not- it's Pippa XXX (something) we ordered our brides maid dresses from her. She was very very very good and plus size herself. My sister is a size 30 (very very top heavy 52H) and we had the most gawd awful time time trying to get a dress.

I'm a 44 DD and was really happy with the look and price. I'd post a photo but I cant on this website. Anyway .... I buy things at YBSC and SV for more casual stuff. I tried getting things over the border but it cost too much and should just buy it here.
vintageclothing / July 5, 2014 at 03:21 am
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Yes, plus-sized shoppers want and need real fashion.

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