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Plus-Size Expert

Our Plus-Size Fashion Expert Felicity knows that size doesn't matter... fashion is for everybody! So put down that celery stick and get fashionable!

Fashion for the Party Girl on a Tight Budget

Hey girls!!

With the holidays right around the corner, parties are on the horizon. Family dinners and religious services are numerous. Trying to find the appropriate clothing to wear to everything is enough to make your head spin! Have no fear, Felicity is here to help!!

I get through a busy party season by seeking out mix and match pieces in basic colors. There are 5 pieces you ideally need to have in your closet. Here they are:


Every fashion diva needs the perfect pair of pants that can go with anything. I love my black bootcut chinos that I picked up at Target not too long ago. For about $24.99 they're a steal! Stay away from those pleats, though. They can make a little tummy into a much larger balloon! Hot fabrics of the season are varied and quite versatile. Check out a pair of drawstring velvet pants or cotton with brocade or embroidery embellishment. Both of these can be found at your local Lane Bryant, among other stores. Pair a pair with a sparkly twinset and you are ready to ring in the New Year!


You should also invest in both a long and a short skirt. They can be dressed up or dressed down, depending on the occasion. I'd also recommend black or gray for these, as they can go with anything. When looking for a long skirt, go trendy with a slit up the side or the back. Also be on the watch for detailing along the bottom of the skirt, which is very hot right now. Skirt length is in an anything-goes stage right now. Look for a length that hits below the knee in addition to those that are on the shorter side.


Audrey Hepburn had the ability to turn a simple black dress into a fashion staple. My color choices are, again, black or gray. I'd also go red with this one. Favorites of mine are simple sheathes with interesting necklines, like a banteau or ballerina cut. This is a huge investment piece that has the ability to relieve many of your last minute fashion anxieties. "What am I going to wear?!" Break out your dress and start to accessorize!


Twinsets are a fantastic, fashionable way to add options and a bit of panache. You can wear the cardigan and shell together (hence the term 'set') or alone. The shell makes a great top in warmer weather and the cardigan looks fabulous over another top or dress or even tied around your waist or shoulders, which is very in right now. This is an area where color can splash out. Try a bright turquoise or light pink here. If you want to be a little different, try buying a different color shell and cardigan.


A button down shirt is a basic that no fashion fanatic should be without. This is where your personal style can shine through. There are a wide variety of colors, patterns and fabrics available to you. You can be traditional with a simple white oxford, or opt for something a little funkier, like a metallic mauve silk shirt with reflective navy stripes. There is also a large middle ground. Keep your eyes open for updated classics like a pale pink button down with sleeves.

Once you have all of your pieces, you can begin to mix, match and look wonderful! These items give you more than 15 great fashionable options. First, you need to figure out where you're going. You will obviously need to dress more conservatively to go to a religious service or an office party than when you're headed out to a Millennium bash at a friend's house. Here are just a few of the many outfits you can create:

Pants + Shell/Shirt + Cardigan
Dress + Cardigan/Shirt
Skirt + Shell/Shirt + Cardigan

There are thousands of places you can find these items. Check any department store and don't forget to look in the "business woman" department. Many times you can find a good dress or skirt there. My advice: wait until the day after Thanksgiving. EVERYTHING is going to be on sale then. Yes, I realize that it is going to be the craziest day to shop, but the bargains that are just waiting to be found are worth it! Besides, isn't being the best dressed gal at the fiesta worth the wait in line?


Check these other great articles from our Plus-Size Expert:

Claustrophobic Closet Clean-ups6/18/01
Fancy Formal Frocks3/29/01
Mainstream Sizes Expanding: A Clothing Revolution or Just an Experiment?2/15/01
All Your Questions Answered10/23/00
Trendy Dressing for the Cooler Weather9/25/00
Big, Beautiful Bathing Beauties5/29/00
Sizzling Summer Style5/22/00
Sporting the Sporty Look!1/25/00
Tackling the Clothes Closet Clean Out1/04/00
Self-Esteem: Come Out, Come Out Wherever You Are12/20/99
Felicity's Fabulous Fashion Finds12/13/99
Fashion for the Party Girl on a Tight Budget11/16/99
Formal Fashion without Looking like Aunt Fanny11/08/99
Attitude: The ESSENTIAL Accessory10/11/99
Felicity the Fabulous Full Figured Fashion Fanatic10/04/99

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