If you’re visiting London in the coming months and planning to do what millions of women do when in town (from wherever in the world they might hail), that is, shop like there’s no tomorrow, you may be glad to know that the high-quality, high-street outlets throughout the UK capital are thoroughly committed to catering to women of all dress sizes; they’re only too aware that women naturally come in all different shapes and sizes.
Indeed, you’ll also find that, being one of the world’s foremost retail destinations, London can boast its fair share of shops that make more effort than others, in fact, when it comes to plus-size women’s clothing. As you may have expected, most of these stores are located in and around Oxford Street, the major shopping thoroughfare right in the heart of the West End, so they’re very easy to get to and find (especially if you’re staying at, say, one of the hotels in Paddington London)…
(Unit 2-3, 529-533 Oxford Street W1C 2QN)
Stock items up to size 32 in everything from nightwear to special-occasion-wear, this retailer’s been going strong since 1971 and, so successful is it, the high-street brand enjoyed its very first catwalk show at London Fashion Week in 2014.
(499-517 Oxford Street W1K 7DA/ 14-28 Oxford Street W1D 1AU)
Low budget it may be, but Primark’s a stickler for stocking its shelves with high-quality garb and these two stores are no exception – one near Marble Arch, the other near Tottenham Court Road – when it comes to all sizes in women’s, children’s and men’s clothing, in addition to a plentiful array of homeware and toys. In particular, be on the lookout here for affordable dresses, coats, shoes, shirts and blouses and accessories.
(508-520 Oxford Street W1C 1NX)
One of the British high street’s mainstays, Next (at the Marble Arch end up Oxford Street) is where to head clothes up to and including size 26.
(203-207 Oxford Street W1D 2LE)
Another much-loved UK chain store, New Look’s flagship shop’s to be found near the Oxford Circus junction – and, don’t doubt it, the garments here both affordable and diverse; ranges alter pretty regularly so you’re bound to find something that doesn’t just fit you but it also reliably on-trend.
Marks & Spencer
(458 Oxford Street W1C 1AP)
Marks & Sparks, as you may well know, is a British institution; it’s been supplying the people of the UK with high-quality clothing (in terms of womenswear, cashmere, shirts and blouses, trousers, skirts and lingerie, especially) at relatively affordable prices for ‘donkey’s years’ and shows little sign of letting up any time soon. At this, it’s giant Oxford Street store (sited between Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Road), women’s sizes tend to go up to size 28.
Long Tall Sally
Finally, this place is ideal if you’re not just plus-size but on the tall side as well (hence the chain’s name); located in Mayfair’s Chiltern Street, so not far at all from the likes of the Park Grand Paddington Court hotel, the West End’s Long Tall Sally store is perfect for providing flattering clothing for women whose height exceeds 5’ 8”. Included in their wide range of clobber – all of which goes up to size 24 – are shoes on the larger side too. You can’t say fairer than that.