As a plus size women, events and functions can be a daunting experience. With race season fast approaching (or basically already here), it dawned on me that the races are not exempt from the feelings of anxiety and awkwardness that many plus size women feel. Uncomfortably shuffling through a crowd, sweating body parts and chafing thighs, unhealthy food and drinks that result in bloating; how good does going to the races sound right now! I know, pretty terrible, why would you go? Well if you’re anything like me, AN EXCUSE TO GET DRESSED UP! Woo! My favourite thing!
So basically, I spent a little time shuffling through my wardrobe trying to find the perfect races outfit to share with you beautiful ladies, because also, going to the races shouldn’t send your broke before you even get there! (Take note younger me) That said, if you feel like a new dress is on the cards, I’ve made some suggestions below. The two looks I’ve come up with, while you may not be able to replicate perfectly, I hope you can take the tips and tricks behind them and apply it to your own perfect race day look!
My first look was built around this gorgeous last season Sheike dress that I had in my wardrobe from a Christmas party. Sheike is a great place for those inbetweenies looking for beautiful pieces (I’m more around an 18 at the moment and I can squeeze into some of their more generous size 16 pieces). Although this particular dress is not available anymore they have very similar styles online (and instore) now in the Spotty Satin Dress, Night Noise Maxi and Exclusive Dress. The reason I’m backing these styles is because I find them sooo forgiving for many different shapes. They all draw in at the waist (on a stretchy band) creating a faux waist and then flow out over those gorgeous womanly hips we’re carrying around, creating a beautiful shape on the body. Also they are more of a straight cut style that many women like, however because they have that flow and don’t sit directly on the skin you can fit in a few more champagnes and canapes without worrying about bloating (that’s a big one for me! 😉 ). If you find a few drinks does make you bloat, or your prefer not to wear fitted clothing, these dresses are the perfect shape while still looking feminine and giving you shape.
I paired this dress with nude accessories and a bright lip! A good lip on race day can act as an accessory in itself and you can use it to tie your accessories into your dress by using a complimentary shade to a colour in your dress. I picked these Novo shoes up a few months ago for a photo shoot and have worn them with everything since! You can find a similar pair online. The best part about these heels is the wedge, my biggest races outfit tip is always, always, wear a wedged or thick heel. There is nothing worse then trying to walk through the grass in a stiletto heel and sinking into the dirt! For my fascinator, I like to match it back to either my shoes or with my dress (and then wear different complimentary coloured shoes). In this case I have stuck to the nude theme with this beautiful Max Alexander leaf headpiece. I personally love that it is on a headband, not something you have to pin in, as this gives me piece of mind for the entire day!
My second look was a little more ‘sultry’. This City Chic dress is one I picked up from one of their outlet stores during winter, figuring it would come in hand for many occasions during the warmer months. Right I was, it’s the perfect races dress! I love the style of the fitted bodice with the big A-line skirt, for those ladies who don’t like things clinging to their hips or just feel more comfortable that way, this is the perfect style. I love the flower/leaf detail in this dress as it makes it appear nearly transparent underneath, and breaks up that full on block colour.
For this look I have gone with classic black accessories that I had in my wardrobe. If all else fails black is always a good way to go accessory wise, and if you are struggling to match your black staples to a dress try to tie them together by using a colour/black combo earring, or adding a black belt into your dress. Again I’ve gone with a pair of Novo shoes from last season that I had in the back of my wardrobe, falling back on my ‘solid heel’ theory these ones will keep my feet comfortable all day. Underneath (both dresses), I am rocking my most attractive pair of spanx, it’s important for me to stay comfortable (and as un-sweaty) as possible on a long day out, so a good pair is worth the investment (and avoiding the embarrassment of a visible panty line!).
My beautiful black fascinator is a trend I love at the moment, with the lace pattern built up all over it. It also matches this particular dress perfectly! Once again, this Morgan & Taylor headpiece is on a headband to keep it secure on my head all day without having to worry. While some might object to having a headband covering your entire head, you can always style your hair to sit over the top so it is less noticeable. I’ve pulled my hair up and into a flat bun for this particular look, this way I don’t have to worry about curls dropping or humidity wrecking my straightening efforts. Also on a day out in the sun and crowds this is an easy and subtle way to keep your body temperature down. Personally, I over heat very easily, and there is nothing more mortifying then getting sweaty at a classy event, so by having my hair pulled up and off my neck I’m already keeping myself just a tad cooler.
So if you are heading off to the races in the coming weeks, I hope this has been slightly helpful! But the most important thing is that you feel amazing about yourself! Use the excuse to dress up, have fun, and embracing your own #prettyforplussize. Show me how you’re dressing up for the races by commenting or tagging me on IG!