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Taking Up Space: A Complete Guide to Oversized Fashion

Taking Up Space: A Complete Guide to Oversized Fashion After over a decade of bodycon fashion, oversized clothes are back. And we're not just talking about the big gowns you...

Taking Up Space: A Complete Guide to Oversized Fashion

After over a decade of bodycon fashion, oversized clothes are back. And we're not just talking about the big gowns you see at the Met Gala and on the red carpet. This trend goes all the way from haute couture to celebrity streetwear. However, it can feel a bit more intimidating to pull off than trying a new print or a bold color. Trying oversized fashion is a risk that is sure to pay off, as this trend can change the way you think about silhouette and personal style.

What Is Oversized Fashion?

Oversized clothing pushes beyond normal proportions to be noticeably larger than even the roomiest clothes. Excess fabric, baggy sections and opulent drapes are all possible when you go oversized. Clothing isn't the only option for sizing up, either. Big bags, accessories and even shoes can get in on the trend.

The sheer number of celebrities embracing the oversized look has given this trend some serious fashion clout over the past few years. Stars often go beyond big jeans or a baggy sweatshirt, bringing larger-than-life clothing to the red carpet as well. Tessa Thompson's winter coat fit for a literal giant is a perfect example.

Why Is Oversized Fashion Popular?

This larger-than-life wave of current style is so different from past years that you may wonder where the trend came from. Trends are usually reactionary. The current streetwear vibe of huge sweatshirts and wide-leg, high-waist jeans is certainly a pendulum swing away from the extremely fitted silhouettes of the past few decades (think the Hérve Léger bandage dress or circulation-destroying skinny jeans.)

However, this trend may not be all overreaction. After all, this is hardly the first time in history an enormous silhouette has been in style. What were Marie Antoinette's iconic pannier skirts if not oversized? Or a flapper dress that hung to the knees without touching the body?

Sweatshirts and jeans aren't the only clothing items getting supersized. Runways are featuring extreme suit jackets and dress shirts billowing like gowns. These style elements are usually associated with status, power and wealth.

Instead of thinking of oversized clothing as juvenile — a child rolling around in her mother's closet — think of it as a kind of opulence that has all but disappeared from day-to-day life. This style is a breath of fresh air in a modern world where luxury often means beige, watered-down, minimalist. Oversized is conspicuous, elegant and regal. It's designed to take up space.

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Tips For Wearing Oversized Fashion

If oversized dressing is still daunting, here are some tips to make it your own.

Embrace the Space

People will look at you in these clothes — and that can be a good thing. You don't need universal approval for your style choices. The space this style takes up conveys that you're comfortable in your skin and gives a visual and tactile sense of power. If you're used to wearing body-hugging clothes that emphasize all the "right" features and minimize all the "wrong" ones, embracing an oversized silhouette can be freeing for your mind and your body.

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Oversized Can Be Sexy

A common misconception about the oversized trend is that it's sexless or designed to hide your body. That's not necessarily the case. While oversized clothes can obscure your shape, showing skin is as easy as wearing a giant t-shirt as a dress or a tiny bra underneath a massive suit set. This can actually create a more sensual look than a tight-fitting dress because it's more visually interesting.

Don't Feel the Need To Balance

Many style guides tell you to pick only one oversized element per outfit. This means pairing big jeans with a tiny crop top or balancing out a giant sweater with a tight-fitting skirt. This is certainly one way to wear the oversized trend, and it can add a lot of variety and contrast to your silhouettes.

However, don't be afraid to go in the opposite direction. One of the most common worries about oversized fashion is that you'll be "drowning" in your clothes, but this can be an intentional and powerful style choice, even if you're naturally petite.

Allow yourself to let go of the idea that only one type of silhouette is flattering or even that you have to dress in a "flattering" way at all. What if you didn't consider the opinions of strangers when getting dressed for the day? Oversized clothing is a gateway to that ultimate fashion freedom.

Size Up Your Bag, Too

A massive purse is useful as more than just a style statement. You can fit a small country in an oversized tote bag. Take advantage of one of the few hot trends with a practical purpose and size up your bag as well.

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3 Oversized Fashion Looks for Beginners

Here are three great starting places to experiment with the oversized look.

1. Sized-Up Suit

A suit is a great starting point for the oversized-curious because it has built-in structure. To amp this outfit up for a night out, match any detail on the suit jacket to a fabulous thigh-high boot. Zendaya rocked this look with rhinestone details on her oversized suit jacket, opting for slicked-back hair to emphasize the outfit's silhouette. 

2. Baggy Jeans and Fitted Top

This is the easiest gateway into the oversized look since giant jeans have come in and out of style a few times in the past thirty years. You may even have a vintage pair at the back of your closet. Try a sparkly crop top or a fun printed turtleneck to contrast the jeans.

3. Oversized T-Shirt and Maxi Skirt

The grunge revival is in full swing with this comfy casual look. Contrast theme by pairing a feminine tulle skirt with an oversized masculine t-shirt.

Find the Latest Oversized Fashion To Expand Your Wardrobe

Don't be afraid of oversized fashion. This powerful look is appropriate for any age and personal style, so it all comes down to finding unique pieces that speak to you. At Kate Hewko, we bring runway-ready looks at affordable prices. Browse our latest selections to get inspired.

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