7 Ways To Wear Maxi Dresses And Midis When You Are Short And Plus Size

Whether it's a fitted midi dress, a glamorous floor length gown, or a high slit maxi skirt, plus size women in dresses prove that looking fab doesn't always mean an A-line skirt that falls right at the knee. And this glamour doesn't just apply to women whose thighs are as long as they are thick. When I was in the fourth grade, I was the tallest kid in the class at 5'1" but my growth spurt stopped. Now in my twenties and at the same height, I am used to being one of the shortest people in the room — and don't get me started on the dreadfulness of standing room only concerts as a short person. But when it comes to being short, plus size, and fashionable, I definitely don't buy into the idea that I can only wear garments that hit below my knee if and only if I have the height to back 'em up. 

If there is anything that has come from the O Magazine crop top controversy, it's proof that plus size women — myself included — are no longer holding back when it comes to expressing our distaste. We are absolutely over being constantly policed due to what is and what is not "acceptable" to someone else's comfort levels. So I decided that I was going to wear seven garment styles that hit below my knee because as a fat, short woman, I am often told to cinch-in my waist and keep the length of my skirts above the knee so I look taller. I decided consciously to do the opposite. Just like there's nothing wrong with being fat, there's also nothing wrong with being short.

I wore flats or smaller platform shoes because I am often told that I look tall in photos and I didn't want to add any extra height. Plus I was also trekking through Sicily with Niche Italy in these photos, so I wasn't about to be in six-inch platforms on 1000-year-old cobblestone streets. And of course, I had to pair some of the looks with crop tops. 

1. Wrap Maxi Skirt

I am obsessed with the checkered pattern on this vintage faux wrap skirt. The pattern made it pop but it was the cut of the skirt that made it comfortable to wear all day long. The front features a faux tie on the side while the back waist band was elastic. I paired it with a red stretch crop top from Charlotte Russe, which features a double bar open back for another element of surprise from the back. 

2. Halter Style Maxi Dress

When I was told that I needed to be dressed not only to trek through Palermo all day but also to have dinner with a duke and duchess, my immediate thought was this halter dress that I got at a local discount store. The halter-style neckline and the high slit give it a touch of eleganza while the lightweight fabric made it easy to wear all day long. I paired with a gold chain belt from my line. ASOS makes a similar plus size printed halter maxi.

3. Bodycon Midi Dress

Thanks to Eloquii’s amazing lookbooks featuring plus size bloggers, I have fallen in love with the midi length trend. When I tried on this bodycon midi dress, I was impressed with the pattern, fit, and where it hit on my short frame. Some midis end up actually hitting me at ankle length but this one totally worked for me. Though the pattern I have is sold out, Rainbow still has another floral midi dress available.

4. Peasant Style Maxi Skirt

When I first wore this vintage peasant style maxi skirt, the elastic was so stretched out that I ended up holding the skirt up all day. I decided to remove the original elastic and replace it with a fresh band, which made the vintage skirt wearable again. This style is super breezy! I paired with a basic black crop top and a caged body chain from own collection. Target has a similar plus size skirt.

5. Asymmetrical Maxi Dress

On the last day of my trip to Sicily, this dress was still in my suitcase just begging to be worn. I love the cut of it and the ruching on the side. The muted burgundy is not my usual style but I think it totally fit with the backdrop. This look was my favorite because the cut of the hem made it look like I was wearing both a mini and a maxi at the same time. I got this dress from Charlotte Russe and they have a similar long sleeve style still in stock.

6. Printed Fitted Maxi Skirt

This cotton fitted maxi skirt was one of the most comfortable looks. I paired it with an oversized crop top and was lounging my way through one of Sicily’s most gorgeous cities. Nordstrom Rack features a similar fitted plus size maxi skirt for all of your lounging needs.

7. High Slit Maxi Tee

The high slit maxi tee is something I have worn in the past, feeling insecure about how short it made me feel. I decided for that reason that I had to get past my fears and try to wear it again. This time, I didn’t pair it with any accessories and instead of leggings, I wore my favorite bike shorts from Re/Dress. I felt cute and I stood proud with my maxi tee hitting right above the ground.

So if you are petite and still plus size like me, don't feel like you need to shy away from garments that drag on the ground when you are headed to the dressing room. Maxis and midis — like any style — are for everyone

Images: Alysse Dalessandro

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