I write a lot of commerce stories for digital outlets. Mostly, these are round-ups of items based on what people are searching for online during any given season. I spend hours finding (and writing about) the best polo shirts or plus size loungewear or luxury sneaker brands — all topics that are assigned to me by editors. And while I love assignments (freelance writers will get it), I’ve been thinking more and more about why I view that kind of work as more legitimate than, say, rounding up some items I love on my Instagram or on my own blog. Why is it that when it’s me who is making money from what people are buying, instead of a big publication, that that work is suddenly is less legitimate? Or not as cool? Or something to shy away from?
And here’s the thing about commerce writing: Even though I’m paid a flat fee for the article, the publication itself keeps making money from that story in perpetuity. In five years when someone Googles “best luxury shoe brands” and clicks a link on a story I wrote and buys an item, it’s the website that’s making that commission, not me. It adds up over time in a big way (especially if I’m doing my job correctly!). All this isn’t to say that I plan on giving up those type of assignments altogether, but rather that I’m curious about what it would be like to put that same energy into creating my own commerce stories as well. To be clear, I have no interest in making my blog or social media a steady stream of links and nothing else. But while it will never make sense for me to write a luxury sneaker round-up for my blog, it does make sense to me to share a round-up of the things I think I am best at finding.
Today, that happens to be spring and summer dresses for weddings, vacations, and beyond. As someone who has wasted hours of my life trying to find the perfect dress that just so happens to come in a size 14/16, I feel like I have a very particular skill set when it comes to finding cute dresses that look good on bodies that look like mine. So, why not spread the love? Hopefully this helps you find something you love!
Spring & Summer Wedding Guest Dresses
Starting from top left…
- BUY HERE: Free People One-Shouldered Black Dress // This is the dress I have in blue (you can see it in this Reel), and it’s just an all-around versatile dress… comfortable, sexy (but not super revealing), appropriate for a lot of different dress codes. A winner all-around. I wear the XL in this, and I’m usually a 14/16 in dresses. I can also wear a strapless bra with this (a FAQ).
- BUY HERE: ASOS Pink and Orange Floral Wrap Dress // I am very into pink and orange at the moment, what can I say?
- BUY HERE: REFORMATION RED FLORAL PUFF SLEEVE DRESS // Reformation is pricey but the quality makes every dress feel like something that will last forever. Now if only more than 5 percent of their pieces came in plus sizes….
- BUY HERE: SUNDRESS BLUE CHECKERED PRINT DRESS // I am *always* on the hunt for smaller brands that have sizes that work for me as a size 14/16. I’ve worn both the XL and XXL in Sundress items and both have worked for me. I think this blue/white dress is super pretty.
- BUY HERE: ELOQUII BLACK DRESS // This is just the right balance of sexy/comfortable/versatile, IMO.
- BUY HERE: ABERCROMBIE RED PUFF SLEEVE DRESS // OK, how cute is this??? I’m an XL in most of Abercrombie’s dresses, if that’s helpful for you!
Spring & Summer Little White Dresses
Because everyone needs crisp, cute white dresses for summer (great for brides-to-be too, though).
From top left…
- BUY HERE: ELOQUII WHITE/FLORAL DRESS // OK, how sweet is this dress? It’s giving Reformation IMO. Plus, Eloquii items are *constantly* on sale.
- BUY HERE: ELOQUII HIGH NECK WHITE EYELET DRESS // This would be perfect for a bridal shower or just as a cute spring dress for date night, etc.
- BUY HERE: FREE PEOPLE FLORAL DRESS // Bohemian Elizabeth Bennet vibes, anyone?
- BUY HERE: ANTHROPOLOGIE EYELET STRAPLESS DRESS // The ruffle details on the top of this dress are everything, and I LOVE that it comes in plus sizes. Bigger bodies deserve romantic, dainty, strapless dresses for summer, too!!!
- BUY HERE: J.CREW MIDI DRESS WITH CUT-OUTS // This dress comes in a ton of sizes (including plus sizes, of course!), multiple colors, and is cute AF. Imagine pairing this with some bright heels or leather sandals… or anything, really. Perfect for summer.
- BUY HERE: ANTHROPOLOGIE SMOCKED WAIST DRESS // Speaking of Reformation vibes… um, HELLO! This dress is so freaking romantic and yes, comes in plus sizes, too! Anthro has really stepped up its game lately.
Spring & Summer Vacation Dresses
Give. Me. All. The. Colors.
Starting on the top left…
- BUY HERE: FREE PEOPLE STRING OF HEARTS DRESS // This dress is just so pretty. And Free People has the most breathable, comfortable fabrics, so it’d be perfect for a beach vacation dinner.
- BUY HERE: FARM RIO YELLOW DRESS // One of these days I will hate puff sleeves and smocked dresses but today is… not the day. Everything Farm Rio releases is gorgeous, and this dress is no exception.
- BUY HERE: ELOQUII RED AND PINK DRESS // If you’re looking for a sexy body con dress to wear on a cruise or at a resort sometime soon… this is the one.
- BUY HERE: SUNDRESS GINGHAM MAXI DRESS // If I wasn’t spending so much money on travel right now, this dress would already be on it’s way to me. One of my biggest struggles with being plus size (even as someone who’s on the smaller end of plus size and can fit into some straight sizes) is that I see so many of the same dresses again and again and again. There just isn’t as much inventory! That’s why when I find out a brand like Sundress has options that are completely unique AND will fit me… it feels amazing. This dress is completely original and bright and SO FREAKING HAPPY. I will dream about it, to be honest.
- BUY HERE: ASOS HOT PINK SHIRT DRESS // Everyone needs an oversized button down/shirt dress to wear on vacation. It’s the perfect addition to pretty much any beach outfit and it keeps your arms and chest out of the sun if you’re like me and prone to sunburn. Plus, it’s a great solid to pair with more creative accessories.
- BUY HERE: FREE PEOPLE FLORAL OFF-THE-SHOULDER DRESS // This is just so sweet and romantic. I can picture it being worn to a candlelit picnic dinner in a field or for a night dancing on the beach. So, you know, it’s pretty versatile!
As always, just a disclaimer that these are all affiliate links and I make a percentage of commission when you shop any of the above links. I hope you’re able to find something you love, and I’d love to hear what other types of shopping stories/links you’re looking for!