I Am a Big Clothes Horse

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A big bodacious derby racing clothes horse.

In Canada, there is not as much in the stores as there is in the US. I know this is partially because of sheer population, us being 1/10 of the US, but it makes for some bad selection. My inner (and outer) fashionista weeps when I walk into a Macys or Nordstrom’s or Layne Bryant. Plus sized American ladies, no more complaining until you have to come and shop in a smaller country. You can complain that sometimes, the exact same sweater in a “regular” size, often costs 5% more in a plus size.

My best bet in town, and in most of Canada, is Canada's only Department store (that is now mostly American owned, don't tell) – The Bay (no online shopping) I have been buying most of my "locally purchased" clothing here. They carry most of the major brands that make plus sized stuff – Tommy Hilfiger, Jones New York, Nygård, I.N.C., Style and Co, and other store brands than are more inexpensive. I tend to go for the higher end brands there, and wait for sales, they have great sales, they just arrive later than in American Department Stores.


photo: Eddie Bauer

There are other boutique-ish chain stores. Casual, comfortable and affordable, there is Cotton Ginny cottonginny.ca (also no online shopping), When I had a "real" job in an office, I bought a lot of work clothing at, Laura (again, no online shopping) they do petites, plus and regular. They do have some casual stuff, and a more mature customer base. There is also Addition-Elle, which is probably the most popular plus size chain, since we lost Antels a number of years go. You can find them at ddition-elle.com, but again, no online shopping. I worked there for a while; they carry a varied price point and style of clothing. They still carry, dressy, casual, special occasion, but have stopped carrying other brands (Jones, Elisabeth from Liz Claiborne, etc) and are manufacturing items using their own brand, which are just not as nice as the bands they mimic. They do carry swimwear, workout, and lingerie, which is a godsend here. They are similar to Lane Bryant, but not as trendy or robust a selection. Eddie Bauer used to go to a size 20 here, but now it is stopped it's sizing at an 18 and the only way to get plus- sizes is online

There are some other plus sizes stores to shop, I admit I do not frequent all that often. Reitmans, they claim to be Canada's largest women's specialty retailer, founded in 1926. Who knew? As I read more, I see they own Addition-Elle, < a href="http://www.penningtons.com/">Penningtons, and other women’s clothing stores that sell non-plus sizes. Wow. Oh and they are also owned by Rogers Giant Corporate Conglomerate. I had no idea! I can buy underwear AND a cell phone from them!

Essentially, I subscribe to the get what you paid for philosophy. Susan Wagner has a post on WHAT to wear when you are in plus sized fashions. Go read her!!! Come back on Sunday for part 2 of Where to shop when you are plus sized – ONLINE EDITION.

www.jenandtonic.ca
contributing editor, World blogs :: Canada

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