Manolo for the Big Girl Fashion, Lifestyle, and Humor for the Plus Sized Woman.

July 11, 2012

Maxi Dresses: a little more information

Filed under: Uncategorized — Miss Plumcake @ 1:42 pm

So…maxi dresses. What exactly do you all want? Posting has been slow this week thanks to an undue quantity of nincompoopery that has led me to spend some quality time with my bank account wondering exactly how much cash I should have on to bribe my way out of kil…wait, never mind, talking about it it would make it premeditated, right? So uh, move along, nothing to see here.

*nonchalant whistle*

Anyhoodle, maxi dresses. I keep thinking I’ve written about them but I went back and looked through the archives and you’re right: Nada. I did shoes for the maxi dress (hint: if you email in asking for my advice but already have made a decision one way or another, don’t ask for my advice.) and mention them frequently, but I’ve never managed a full post on ankle grazers specifically.

So, in the immortal words of Ginger, Baby, Scary, Sporty and of course Mrs David Beckham Spice, tell me what you want, what you really, really want.

It probably won’t go up this week thanks to the aforementioned nincompoopery, but be patient my glamorous grasshoppers, and we shall we what we shall see.


  1. Well, to be honest, I would love to find a Maxi dress that didn’t make short, apple shaped me look like I was even shorter and more apple shaped.

    I’m not entirely sure that is possible though, which is why I rarely even look at them. All I think of is “mummu” when I see them…

    Is there a remedy for this?

    Comment by Babs — July 11, 2012 @ 2:19 pm

  2. I would love to see advice on what to look for in a maxi if is on a limited budget. Construction details, fabric, etc would be helpful.

    Comment by Melissa — July 11, 2012 @ 2:53 pm

  3. It’s might be a bit “cosmo” but can you address age-appropriate maxi dresses? Perhaps situationally-appropriate is more apt, but most of the maxi’s I’ve seen seem to only work on the beach. Are there ANY maxi dresses that one can wear to work? (I mean, just because you CAN wear them to the office, does it mean you SHOULD?)
    And, sideways related, accessories. Because I always covet at least one piece of bling you post. :-)

    Comment by Leah — July 11, 2012 @ 3:11 pm

  4. I’m with Leah – I work in a very casual workplace, and love a maxi dress (I’m tall, and often to lazy to shave my legs, so it’s a match made in heaven.) But many maxi dresses have spaghetti straps and are cut VERY low, which is a no-go. Any maxi dresses with sleeves (even a cap sleeve)?

    Comment by La Petite Acadienne — July 11, 2012 @ 3:27 pm

  5. Here’s the maxi question to end them all: ARE THERE NICE ONES WITH SLEEVES? Is it really too much to ask?

    Comment by Ida — July 11, 2012 @ 3:36 pm

  6. Maxi dresses for the short and large breasted! I can live with sleeveless (I’m learning to work the wrap-as-sleeves thing), but strapless means I can’t wear my architectural undergarments…

    Comment by sd — July 11, 2012 @ 3:39 pm

  7. How does a short, curvy girl make it look chic? You said to go with flats in your last post, but I think a maxi with flats would make me (at 5’3″) feel kind of schlumpy. Are heels always a no-no? And of course, examples of a few you consider good examples of the genre.

    Comment by SarahDances — July 11, 2012 @ 3:44 pm

  8. … something that doesn’t make me look like Mrs. Roper…

    Comment by vod kanockers — July 11, 2012 @ 4:17 pm

  9. I agree with Babs – I have a hard time finding maxi dresses that look good on ‘apple’ body types – bonus if you find something that looks good on top heavy apples as well :)

    Comment by Just_My_2_Cents — July 11, 2012 @ 4:53 pm

  10. Sleeves.

    Comment by Monica — July 11, 2012 @ 5:39 pm

  11. Some with sleeves that aren’t over $50, or show me how to wear them in the cooler months. I love my maxi dress, but I don’t know if i should wear it with a cardigan, or a blazer, or if I should just hang it up after summer.

    Comment by Bethany — July 11, 2012 @ 5:43 pm

  12. I’ll chime in with a plea ideas for the short girls–only in my case, I’m not an apple, I’m a pear.

    Comment by Leigh Ann — July 11, 2012 @ 9:53 pm

  13. That’s “plea FOR ideas for the short girls.” Sorry.

    Comment by Leigh Ann — July 11, 2012 @ 9:54 pm

  14. Advice about wearing maxi dresses if you are short. I am what might be politely called an “apple” and I am 5’2″. Can I pull of a maxi dress? If I get them hemmed is it still a maxi dress?

    Comment by Michelle — July 11, 2012 @ 11:31 pm

  15. What about maxi skirts? Or are those an abomination?

    Comment by Teteatete — July 12, 2012 @ 12:29 am

  16. What is age appropriate but not schlumpy in a maxi? I am a tall (5’11”)curvy hourglass age 50 with boobs and legs. Can I wear a spaghetti strap maxi if my arms are ok, strapless bra is worn (absolute requirement), skin is really good, and the neckline is fairly covered (no cleavage)? Several people have said I look fantastic in said dress but I have a deep need to be age appropriate since the recent birthday – I refuse to be mutton dressed as lamb but not sure what is right at this stage other than to be a bit more covered.

    Additional dress suggestions would be great. Sleeves whether cap or full on would be a bonus. I would really love decent fabric (heavy enough not to cling) and packable.

    I would love an opinion on maxi skirts and how to wear them and not look hippy chick.

    Suggested jewelry per neckline/type of dress would be wonderful.

    Comment by txbunny — July 12, 2012 @ 9:51 am

  17. They’re not inexpensive, but I adore Rachel Pally’s maxi dresses in plus sizes. In fact, I’m wearing my sleeveless navy caftan dress today. I tend to wear mine with tanks underneath since plunging necklines aren’t so appropriate for work wear. The jersey knit is lovely and skims nicely. I’m busty too, and these look really nice.

    They all come with raw hems that are usually way too long, so I get them tailored to just barely hit the floor. I also usually wear a short sleeved cardigan with mine to cover arms.

    Pally also does a three quarter sleeve caftan – I have two of those and love them as well.

    Comment by Allezoop — July 12, 2012 @ 11:21 am

  18. Okay, so I might be alone on this one, but my question is about maxi dresses for the tall. The very tall. I have a problem finding maxi dresses that are long enough for me (I’m 6’3″ in flats), and I was wondering at what point a maxi dress starts looking like the skirt equivalent of high water pants, i.e. just silly?

    And if you know any manufactures that make really long ones? But mostly, how much ankle/shin can be shown without wrecking the proportions of the look?

    Comment by mywhimsey — July 12, 2012 @ 11:30 am

  19. In the shoes post, you said not to wear your maxi dress with a cardigan.

    Fair enough, but please show us some that look good on those of us who are…fleshier…on top without a cardigan. Spaghetti strap free, please, sleeves preferred.

    I am actually wearing a maxi dress today for the first time ever. It’s navy and has a sleeveless surplice neckline and I think it is decent in terms of not making me look too tenty. But I reconsidered my bosom exposure and added a cami underneath before I left the house.

    (And I confess that I am wearing a cardigan because I don’t feel like I can go sleeveless in the office. But it is a tie-front one and I think it looks okay.)

    Comment by thinposter — July 12, 2012 @ 1:00 pm

  20. My office goes a bit casual in the office in the summer, so maxis are great for me. I avoid the spaghetti strap ones like the plague, simply because even out of the office (when I can show bare arms) I hate visible straps and who needs tht much architecture in hot weather? So I go for for half-sleeve or short-sleeve (no cap sleeves, please, I’m 45), or sleeveless with a bolero or light jacket. No t-shirt-type fabrics for the office but for Fridays, and I keep the patterns dialed way down. Empires are great, princess cuts even better. The maxis I wear to work tend to stop at at or just above my ankle; anything longer feels a bit too “party” for me. I have a couple from Jessica London that I really like.

    Comment by Whitney — July 12, 2012 @ 8:23 pm

  21. Maxi dresses for short super busty girls who are hour glass shaped. More the styling of the dress than the actual dress itself actually. I’m always concerned about the shoes. And how to cover up when cold without looking ridiculous.

    Comment by Kirsty — July 12, 2012 @ 11:20 pm

  22. Can you find printed maxi dresses that aren’t polyester? The only cotton ones I find are plain. Poly-spandex is too hot for summer in Florida!

    Comment by Jade Wombat — July 13, 2012 @ 9:47 am

  23. I’m with sd, I’m barely 5′ 1″ and a 36J in the boob department. And at age 48 my waist is getting less and less defined. Should I just give up when it comes to a maxi dress???!!!!

    Comment by AquaMarine — July 13, 2012 @ 7:37 pm

  24. Just one more thing – Happy Birthday, Plumcake! Have a little fromage and some champagne and celebrate the day.

    Comment by mywhimsey — July 14, 2012 @ 1:06 pm

  25. I like the idea of a maxi dress for the summer. Also, being 5’4″ and apple-shaped, long shift-esque dresses make you look like a short circle.

    Comment by BrooklynShoeBabe — July 14, 2012 @ 4:20 pm

  26. I am 5’4″ and probably an apple shape. Every time I see those dresses in the mall, they invariably have spaghetti straps and a pattern that is way too big for me. Any length past my knee makes me look as if I am standing in a hole.

    Prove me wrong.

    Comment by dcsurfergirl — July 15, 2012 @ 3:24 am

  27. I am 5’2″ (on a good day) and fairly apple shaped. I have found that the ones from LeeLee’s Valise in Brooklyn work very, very well. She does maxis with sleeves, too. No spaghetti straps on the sleeveless ones so you can wear a real bra. Basically the only maxi dress I will ever wear in life.

    Comment by maydarling — July 15, 2012 @ 7:50 pm

  28. Can you find me a maxi dress that covers my bra straps and is available in petite/short lengths, is made of a breathable fabric, has a pretty pattern, and will flatter an apple shape? And while you’re at it, can you find me a unicorn?

    Comment by Erin — July 15, 2012 @ 10:57 pm

  29. Can you explain (either to me or the retailers of the world) the point of the polyester maxi dress? If I am wearing a long, lightweight dress, it’s because it’s eleventy billion degrees outside. Making said long, lightweight dress out of a non breathable fabric seems to defeat the point.

    Comment by Gryph — July 16, 2012 @ 8:12 am

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