I Wasn't Happy With Plus-Size Formalwear Options, So I Created My Own Line

The X Collection was inspired by the idea of feeling like a superhero; when you put on a gorgeous gown that flaunts your figure, your confidence skyrockets, you hold your head up higher. You feel invincible, like you could take on anything in the world.
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Liz Black
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The X Collection was inspired by the idea of feeling like a superhero; when you put on a gorgeous gown that flaunts your figure, your confidence skyrockets, you hold your head up higher. You feel invincible, like you could take on anything in the world.

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When you've got a special event coming up, be it a wedding, prom, or you're just one fancy-schmancy lady, you want to feel beautiful, confident and sexy. But I think we can all agree that there are myriad problems with women's plus-size fashion, especially when it comes to formalwear.

An in-store shopping trip typically goes one of two ways: you're either forced to slink down to the department store basement, where they've hidden the plus section behind the housewares and power tools, or you're relegated to a “specialty store,” one that stocks only clothes for fuller-figure women. Whichever depressing option you've chosen, the end result is very similar: after perusing the rack of frump-filled frocks, you settle for a grandmother-of-the-bride style that seems more sack than sheath and appears to cost more than what Justin Beiber spends on legal fees. 

Get your dancing shoes ready, though, because what I'm about to tell you is going to make you want to RSVP yes to all those upcoming weddings you've been dreading.

I collaborated through my style blog, P.S. It's Fashion, with Fame & Partners, the Australia-based formal dress site, on the X Collection, a selection of 11 dresses for sizes 14 through 22. Two of the dresses are original designs that I created, and the other nine are pre-existing styles that I altered to make more plus-size friendly. 

Clara, $199

Clara, $199

So many brands that do offer extended size ranges just grade up their styles, turning what is an awesome style for a size-6 woman into an oversized sack for a size-16 woman. I worked hand-in-hand with the Fame & Partners team to make sure that we'd never run into that issue.

Harriet, $199

Harriet, $199

By making tiny tweaks, like lowering a visible lining from upper thigh to above the knee, putting in more support in the bust, and raising the back to be more bra-friendly, the dresses still maintain their original aesthetic, but are now even more flattering for fuller-figures. 

Dorothy, $329

Dorothy, $329

The X Collection was inspired by the idea of feeling like a superhero; when you put on a gorgeous gown that flaunts your figure, your confidence skyrockets, you hold your head up higher. You feel invincible, like you could take on anything in the world. But when I went to name the dresses I didn't want to consider comic book heroes like Storm or Rogue; I wanted to honor my personal feminist heroes like Dorothy Parker, Malala Yousafa, Harriet Tubman, Susan B. Anthony and more. Those women inspire me, as I hope to inspire other women some day. 

Gloria, $249

Gloria, $249

So settle for frumpsville no more. Check out all the dresses and let me know which is your favorite!