5 Fashion Choices Plus-Size Women Should Make This Spring

For most of us, cold weather just doesn’t lead to the desire to do interesting things with fashion: It kind of just encourages baggy sweaters and thermal leggings. Besides the return of iced coffee and daydreams of the upcoming festival season, the best part of spring is feeling freer when it comes to our clothes.

Spring is the time to box up all those sweatshirts, stash away the knee-high boots, hide your oversized winter coats, and put away the leggings for next year. And with that, go a little bold. It's time take some risks, say yes to body love, and appreciate all the parts of your figure that you may have qualms or insecurities about. It could even mean a far better, less anxiety-ridden — and maybe even fun — swimsuit season come summer. Here are some suggestions for a more confident (and probably cuter!) spring season:

BRING ON THE BRIGHTS

We all love black: It's sexy and elegant and mysterious and chic. But it’s not the only color in the universe, and it’s certainly not the only color curvier women should feel obligated to wear. Spring is bright. It’s about flowers and sunshine and ice cream and all those other storybook things. I know lime greens and hot pinks aren’t necessarily “slimming," but I’m a firm believer that dressing in bright colors can really improve your mood. And I'm a firm believer in being proud of all the curves, no matter what.

Try Vince Camuto Long Sleeve High-Low Blouse, $99

DITCH THE TIGHTS

A huge topic of sensitivity for plus-size women is legs. “I have cankles.” “My thighs are too wobbly.” “Have you seen my cellulite?" And yet, these are traits women (and men for that matter) of any size can possess, because despite what the media may depict via countless airbrushed, oiled, and waxed mannequin-people, no one is perfect. A huge step to self-love can be showing off the body parts that have previously been personal triggers, and realizing that the world won’t end and you’ll survive.

FIND SOME FUNKY

Patterns are a wonderful thing. Though solids are classic, nothing says springtime like oversized flowers or neon geometrics. And they exist for virtually any style out there: skull patterns for the punk chick. Hawaiian florals for the rockabilly babe. It’s so tiring to hear that patterns aren’t flattering, when in actuality, they can be one of the most complimentary things. Flattering isn’t about slimming. It’s about finding something that radiates your personality and makes you feel like you. It’s about feeling pretty and confident and special and unique. The goal shouldn’t be finding the clothes the make you look the skinniest (no matter your size), but rather, finding the clothes that make you feel the best.

Try Torrid Insider Floral Crop Top, $48.50

GO FOR THE CROP

Crop tops are a bold choice for anyone, whether you’re a size 2 or a 20. Wearing a shirt that doesn’t totally cover your stomach seems dangerous and terrifying at times. I’m not suggesting you wear a crop top and ultra-low-rise jeans (does anyone even makes those anymore?). But why not go for the crop top and the high-waist skirt? You’ll probably see a bit of skin, but showing the world you embrace the body part you’re so often told to hate is profoundly empowering.

Try Jessica Simpson Aztec Jacquard Crop Top, $48.95

SAYONARA STRAPS AND SLEEVES

Sometimes I wonder if the reason most things have sleeves on them is because all women are secretly self-conscious of their arms. You see women with beautiful bodies wearing long-sleeves in the spring and summer, and sort of think, WHY? I vote for putting on pieces that show off your arms in their full glory. Going strapless or tank can be really bold, and subsequently really beautiful. And hey, it’ll improve the tan.

Try Brightly Printed Sleeveless Top, $23.77