Plus Size Clothing, Plus Size Styling

3 Ways for Mature Plus Size Women to Add Red to Their Outfits – from the Bold to the Subtle

A version of this post originally appeared on Sixty and Me.

“I want to wear red but it scares me to stand out!”

I’ve been designing clothing for women – specifically in plus sizes – for decades. And this common refrain about wearing red is something I’ve heard time and time again.

As you get older and your personal style begins to change, you may find that you’re less ambitious when it comes to fashion. You want to look your best – beautiful, elegant, sexy – but perhaps in a more subdued way.

That isn’t the case for everyone. If you’re a bold and gorgeous woman over 50 who wants to show off vivacious colors in your wardrobe, more power to you!

So instead of shying away from adding red to your outfits, learn to make this beautiful color work for you. It can enhance your personal style – whether that’s strong and bold or delicate and subtle.

1 – Go Bold with a Crimson Red Tunic

A strong red color – like crimson – pairs great with basic black. Keep everything else about your outfit simple and let one piece in a powerful red tone do all the talking.

A great way to do that is with a crimson kimono. A subtle print over the deep red will add a softer touch to the outfit without cutting down on the bold color.

Crimson kimono

Pair your standout red piece with subtle jewelry for an outfit that looks great anywhere. Dress up your tunic with fine metal jewelry. Or keep it fun and casual with chunky accessories that either match the red of your tunic or complement the black in your outfit.

Going bold with red is not always easy for plus size women who have been made to feel like they should disappear behind their outfits. No way! If you adore this color, show it off! You’ll love the confidence boost you get from looking your best in beautiful, bold red.

2 – Step Up a Simple Outfit with Red Accessories

Not ready to make a bold red color the centerpiece of your outfit? No problem. You can keep your outfit simple – in neutral colors – but step up the interest with red accessories.

If you’re keeping it casual, chunky red jewelry is the way to go. You can go with a simple beaded design with matching earrings, necklace, and bracelets. To add some more visual appeal, look for creative geometric designs. Or mix and match the shapes and sizes of your necklaces and bracelets. A little variety – plus a beautiful shade of red – will take your outfit from simple to stunning.

3 – Keep It Subtle with a Softer Red

Crimson red is not your only option. There are lots of beautiful shades of red that are subtler, but no less flattering or appealing. If going bold is not your preference, choose a more delicate red to enhance your wardrobe.

One nice way to achieve this look is with a dressy burgundy cardigan. It can be worn over a black top and bottom to create an interesting color combination that doesn’t leap out like more attention-getting hues. Look for an item that mixes a variety of shades of red and perhaps a simple pattern to keep the color understated but still impressive.

Burgundy Kimono Cardigan

Burgundy is an excellent choice for formal wear. But there are many other subtle, soft reds that work in both dressy and casual outfits. Try a pastel red with white neutrals for a fresh vibe. Or tea rose red that’s light while still offering a beautiful red tone.

Tea Rose Separate

Adding more red to your outfits is a great way to mix up your style and introduce a gorgeous color palette. But don’t feel pressured to go too bold or too subtle. Use these tips to create a look that’s perfect for you – with a combination of colors that complements your personal look.


Stephen, Your Designer

“There is an amazing feeling of artistic accomplishment when all the parts come together into one harmonious aesthetic. It's a connection with who you are and the elements you choose to express yourself visually. This is what making clothing is all about for me. It's like when a songwriter hears his first written notes from a voice or a baker who has practiced a recipe and nails it or a figure skater who exceeds her own expectations. I express my sense of art in clothing. I see things in color, shape and texture. I react to the touch of silk on my skin and my eyes are aware of how color combinations make me feel. My goal is to bring all of these intuitive notions to garments that are sized for larger women. If I can accomplish this then I have reached my goal.” – Stephen

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