Men's shirts: bold, interesting prints, large sizes?
February 28, 2020 6:31 AM   Subscribe

Help me, fatshionistas of Mefi! I am a fat woman who really likes men’s shirts with bold, interesting prints. Examples: Everything Tan France wears on Queer Eye, Alex Horne’s octopus shirt, this shirt here. But even when I can find things I like, I can't find them in sizes large enough for me, because men's shirts don't tend to be sized for the proportions of a cis woman with big hips (50") and chest (49"). Where should I be shopping?

  • I don’t mind whether I buy things from the women’s section or the men’s section, but I tend to prefer shirts that have a minimum of feminine detailing if any (ruffles, bows, ruching…) I am familiar with the options at most of the big plus-size women’s clothing stores and they mostly do not have what I’m looking for.
  • I also know a couple of the options marketed as tomboyish or androgynous options (Wildfang, Kirrin Finch, Gender Free World) and I like their stuff but tend to be right at the upper edge of their size range.
  • Definitely interested mostly in online options as I'm in the fashion-conservative midwest, but willing to make a road trip to Madison or Minneapolis if you know a good place.
  • I love plaid but probably already own as much plaid as I ever want to own
  • Budget: $100 is the soft upper edge of what I want to spend for a shirt but I fear I may have expensive tastes.
posted by Jeanne to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (17 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
I would look at modcloth as I think many of their blouses would match your needs.
posted by raccoon409 at 6:37 AM on February 28, 2020

It looks like you’d be an XXL at Wild Fang
posted by andreapandrea at 6:38 AM on February 28, 2020

Whoops sorry you mentioned that.
posted by andreapandrea at 6:40 AM on February 28, 2020

so this may not jibe with your expensive taste but I, a larger bodied male person, have a couple of loud print shirts like the ones you linked to that get consistently positive feedback (like someone makes a comment about liking them every time i wear them). One is old navy (people are always shocked when this is how i respond) and one is asos. the sizing for each of those companies is a total crapshoot, but if you dont mind playing the return hassle game (and probably ecological badness of it all) could be worth checking out.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 6:52 AM on February 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

Would you consider having your shirts made? You might be able to find a local seamstress (seamster?) who could customize a pattern to fit you well and the price for one shirt made that way would be high, but subsequent shirts using the same pattern probably cheaper.
posted by lakeroon at 7:12 AM on February 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

Dapper Boi! They go up to 4XL and have things like this.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 7:39 AM on February 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

Bobobos has some sizing options; I like these chili peppers.
I love this pattern at Romwe, not sure about sizing.
Good search options on Cubavera site.

Tailoring is not cheap, but consider having side vents added to shirt bottoms so they ease over your hips. It's not terribly difficult. Searching camp shirts got a different set of results.
posted by theora55 at 7:51 AM on February 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

I’m boycotting them but I have gotten similar men’s shirts from Amazon and you can try and send back the ones that don’t fit.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 8:09 AM on February 28, 2020

Bugatchi fashion shirts in classic fit might work. They always catch my eye at Nordstrom because they have a lot of color and interesting patterns. They seem well made, but are expensive. On the other hand, if you get them at Nordstrom they have a really good return policy and if you're near a store you can have them altered there.
posted by fiercekitten at 8:11 AM on February 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

I have become a huge fan of Nooworks, which is woman owned business in Oakland, CA. They partner with artists for their prints, and do regular small releases.

Coincidentally, today I am wearing one of their Joyce shirts, which is what I am going to recommend you look at. The XXL has a 49.5 bust measurement. Not sure about the hip measurement but they are very responsive on Instagram to questions. The cut of the Joyce is fairly unisex.
posted by See you tomorrow, saguaro at 8:23 AM on February 28, 2020 [2 favorites]

Definitely seconding Old Navy men's section! Their winter prints are pretty boring but their summer shirts are great, I have several fun print ones including cactuses and octopi and all kinds of weird stuff. They fit me well up into a 22/24, I think I was wearing either XL or XXL at that point. The trick is, at least it was for me, to buy the classic fit, not the slim fit, which is harder to find, especially in the stores. It's boxy but it fits hips. Their return policy is generous and you should never buy anything from ON that isn't on sale because it will be on sale soon if it isn't now. Their women's buttonfronts are also sometimes fun but I always have button gaping issues with those, and they are usually thin.
posted by possibilityleft at 11:23 AM on February 28, 2020

How about Big Bud Press's unisex button-up shirts? (They sell out fast, though, so you have to keep an eye on their site.)
posted by the_blizz at 12:24 PM on February 28, 2020 [2 favorites]

I was coming here to rec Big Bud Press! I am usually just on the edge of straight sizes and had to size down in their tshirts, from a L to a M, because they do unisex fit in a way that skews bigger. They go up to 5XL and make loud, cheerful prints.

I also thought maybe Uniqlo? But their selection of prints is more sedate than I would have expected.
posted by Lawn Beaver at 1:36 PM on February 28, 2020

ASOS MEN'S! Here's thier plus men's specifically. Don't forget to check the Sale and Outlet sections too!

My husband and I both like INC from Macy's. Looks like you'd be the 2x there as well.

Obviously it will vary by day/season/brand but Nordstrom Rack is another good online place. And if you find a brand you like, there's a good chance Nordstrom has more options.

Express may be an option, but keep in mind some of their shirts are slim cut, and some others aren't. They also suggest 2x for that chest size.

I (a small woman) also think men's shirts have way more fun, bold prints and I just got 2 amazing ASOS men's shirts even though I usually wear women's. I adore them. I also have 2 INC shirts.

+1 for Big Bud Press, but I only have their t-shirts and a couple discontinued jackets, haven't tried button downs.
posted by Crystalinne at 1:22 AM on February 29, 2020

Banggood has a ton of really wild prints, in sizes up to 5xl, sometimes 3xl.

A couple more
posted by at at 4:45 AM on February 29, 2020

Seconding Amazon and asos I would also try stitchfix men's boxes, if you haven't. I specifically have asked them for Hawaiian shirts and funky button-ups and have gotten really nice shirts with things like sharks! and pinata donkeys! and loud florals! The quality tends to be pretty nice, and they're pretty good with fit even across the gender aisle; I'm plus size and large chested and have teeny arms compared to most men's sizes and they have sent me short-length shirts that fit well. Here's what i've gotten in my boxes so far.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 12:47 PM on February 29, 2020

If you find a vintage shirt of a brand you like, put an e-bay alert on the brandname + your size. Then every time one comes up on e-bay, you'll get an alert.
posted by wowenthusiast at 10:05 PM on February 29, 2020

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