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A Stitch Fix Alternative For Plus Sizes

A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

After I wrote and posted my completely honest review of Stitch Fix and then my post on Why I May Have Changed My Mind About Stitch Fix, I had a lot of people ask if I knew of any similar service that offered plus sizes.

I had heard of a site called Gwynnie Bee, but didn’t have any experience with it to know whether it was worth recommending. So I connected with them and asked about the possibility of doing a review of their service for all of the people who had asked me for details about it.A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes
I’m not plus sized, but I wanted to try out the service I could give you an honest review and tell you my thoughts on it, since many of you have asked. Here’s my completely honest review:

Gwynnie Bee is a clothing rental subscription service for women sizes 10-32. They are similar to Stitch Fix in many ways, but different than Stitch Fix because instead of having items sent to you to try on and possibly consider buying, they are a “lending service” where they lend you clothes to wear for as long as you’d like and then you ship them back and they’ll send you more. It’s almost like what Netflix used to be, only for clothes!

A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

How It Works:

1. Sign up here for a free 30-day trial of Gwynnie Bee to try out the service. If you don’t want to continue your service, you can cancel before your credit card is charged.

2. Once you’re signed up, you can choose which subscription plan you’d like to try out. They offer a variety of subscription levels and each is based upon how many clothing items you “check out” from their “lending library” at a time. A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

3. After choosing which subscription plan you want to go with, then you go to their extensive online catalog of clothes. They offer 2000+ items and 150+ brands in each size — everything from professional wear to casual wear to formalwear and everything in between.A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

4. Choose which items are your favorite from their online catalog and add them to your online closet (they have a minimum number of items you need to add to your closet before they will send you a shipment — they recommend adding at least 25 items to your closet so that there’s a better chance of you getting something you absolutely love). I loved that they offer a Size Advisor and Shape Report so you’ll know very specific details on each item. Plus, they have a customer rating system for every item. This helps you make better decisions about what to put in your cart.
A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

5. Wait for your shipment to arrive! It usually takes 2-3 days for them to send a shipment out. Please note, per their website: “What is sent is based on availability. You can prioritize items you love in your virtual closet, and we will do our best to get those to you as soon as possible. While you may have your heart set on a particular piece, we cannot guarantee it will available at that time.”A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

6. Wear the clothes for as long as you’d like as often as you’d like. When you’re ready to return them, use the postage paid envelope to ship them back. Be sure to also go into Your Closet on their site and click on “Return item” under the garment you’d like to return and let us know when you are sending back. As long as you are at your closet minimum, this action will trigger your next shipment. You’ll usually receive your next shipment within 2-3 days.

7. You can return and repeat with unlimited exchanges and free shipping both ways!

Here’s what was in my box from Gwynnie Bee:

A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

After reviewing my box of clothing + spending quite a bit of time on their site, here are my conclusions about Gwynnie Bee:

Pros to Signing Up for Gwynnie Bee:

  • They offer lots of different styles of clothing — something to suit just about everyone’s tastes. You can sign up for a free account to have access to their online catalog to see all the clothes there are to choose from.
  • The minimalist in me loves that there is no waste — if you don’t like something or you’re done with it, you just send it back.
  • You don’t ever have to worry about dry cleaning the items. Per their website, it doesn’t sound like you are charged for items that are stained or ruined, so long as you let them know ahead of time when you send an item back.
  • There is an unlimited number of exchanges. If you don’t like something or you only want to wear it once, you can send it right back. Or, if you love something, you can hang onto it for as long as you like — or even choose to buy it.A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

Cons to Signing Up for Gwynnie Bee:

  • It’s expensive — especially if you want to have more than one item checked out at one time. If you’re not wearing an item at least a few times every single week, the cost of “checking that item out” is quite expensive when you do the math.
  • You have to mess with shipping things back. If you’re anything like me, getting my act together to get something shipped is always a little bit of effort. Yes, they send postage-paid envelopes, but you still have to actually put the clothes in the envelopes and get them shipped back (maybe I’m the only person who has issues actually getting things mailed!).
  • Even though you do choose styles and clothes that you love and add them to your online closet, you don’t know what they are going to send you. If you love surprises, this is great. But if you’re wanting them to send you a specific item to wear to a specific event, you are taking a gamble that that’s going to happen. (They recommend that you increase the chances of getting an item you love by adding at least 25 items to your online closet. You can prioritize your favorites.)

A Stitch Fix Alternative for Plus Sizes

Overall, I was very impressed with Gwynnie Bee. I love that you know exactly how much you are going to spend each month and I love that it’s a way to have an ever-rotating closet without ever needing to leave the house to go shopping.

For those who work in a job where you often need to wear nice clothes and you like to have variety in your wardrobe, this is a great way to be able to have a rotating wardrobe without spending a lot of time out shopping to buy new clothes.

Yes, it’s pricey and not for everyone (especially those who are regularly thrift store shoppers!), but my friends who are plus sized tell me that it’s really hard to find cute clothes in plus sizes. So this would be a great way to be able to find lots of cute clothes that are in your size at a set price every single month.

Sign up for a FREE 30-day trial of Gwynnie Bee here.

Have you tried out Gwynnie Bee before? If so, I’d love to hear about your experiences with it!

{This post was underwritten by Gwynnie Bee. Read my disclosure policy here.}

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42 Comments

  • Jenni says:

    Since when is size 10 a plus size????

    • Patti says:

      I was thinking the same thing!

    • B. says:

      I was wondering the same thing. I’ve never thought of size 10 as a plus size. 🙂

    • Julia says:

      AGREED! Please don’t call size 10 or 12 for that matter plus size!

      • I was really surprised about that, too. I just shared their information… so my apologies if anyone felt hurt or offended by that part of the post. I am so sorry.

        • Yeah, I’m with all of the commenters that get irritated about the labeling of plus sizes, especially when many healthy women are what manufacturers consider “plus” sized- which is a horrible term in my opinion anyways. It’s definitely not your fault regarding this company and their labeling. I’m very thankful you did a review on it. I always appreciate you being willing to put yourself out there for us. 🙂

        • Patty says:

          There is nothing offensive about being called a plus size. It’s just a number, not a character flaw.

          • Lisa says:

            I understand where you’re coming from but for me this is awesome news! I’m a size 10/12 but very broad and big boned. The clothes from most regular retailers simply don’t work on my body and it’s extremely frustrating. I had an easier time finding clothes when I was a size 22! Of course, that could also be the difference between being 20 years old instead of 43 but we’ll ignore that. 😉

            Thanks for the review, Crystal!

          • Goldie says:

            Exactly.

        • B. says:

          Oh, I didn’t think it was you, Crystal! I’m sorry, my surprise was direct at GB, that they would consider a ten a plus size! 🙂

    • Gwyneth says:

      If you’re a runway model, then yeah, size 10 would be considered ‘plus’…they don’t advertise that size 10 is ‘plus size’ just that they offer sizes 10-32.

    • lara says:

      It’s not that a 10 is plus sized per se. It’s that many designers who specialize in plus size actually start their sizing at 10-12 and go up from their. This is actually great news if you are busty and curvey and like more coverage. The typical size 10-12 is just a increase of a style designed for a size 2-4 and doesn’t adjust for changes in proportion and curves.

  • Tara says:

    I have been using Gwynnie Bee for about a year and a half now (though I took about 4 months off.) It is expensive, true, but here are the advantages, IMHO:
    1) I have the opportunity to try much more stylish and higher quality clothes than I can find in the mall. I most stores that carry plus sized clothing are either too trendy/young, too basic or too cheaply made. With GB, I don’t have to make disappointing trips to the mall only to come home empty handed.
    2) You can keep the pieces as long as you want or, if you get something in the mail and you hate it, you just stick it back in the envelope and send it back immediately. You don’t have to fill out any paperwork. You just send it back. If you let them know online that you have put a piece in the mail to return it, they immediately start prepping your next shipment.
    3) I can try out different styles of clothing that I might have otherwise been afraid to try.
    4) They often run specials that make it extremely affordable to keep your at-home pieces.
    5) They have a GB shop that is open to members only where you can buy some of their gently used clothing at really excellent prices.

    I recently transitioned from a work-at-home job to a new position where I needed to step up my wardrobe. GB has helped me build up a work wardrobe that I am very happy with, where I think my local mall choices would have left me with disappointing options. I have also had the opportunity too borrow some pieces that are WAY out of my budget, but fun to wear a time or two.

  • Melanie says:

    Hi Crystal. I read your review on Stitch Fix and wanted to try them out but couldn’t because of the size issue. I did some research and found three plus size services that are very similar to Stitch Fix: Gwynnie Bee, Dia & Co, and Plvsh. The latter two offer new clothing. I am trying out Dia & Co now (too soon to give an unbiased review) and hope to give Plvsh a try also. Just thought I’d throw those out there for others who like the idea of clothing subscription but who don’t fit the size profile of Stitch Fix. Have a great evening!

    • Thanks SO much for sharing those recommendations!!

      • Melanie says:

        You’re welcome! And thank you for taking the time to review a company that offers plus-sized clothing. I have started shedding my frumpy duds and dressing “for the life I want to live” because of your encouragement here. 😉

    • Maryalene says:

      Are those two rental or purchase subscriptions? I used Stitch Fix for a while but ultimately decided I had issues with their quality. Then, I looked at Gwynnie Bee but the thought of renting clothes stresses me out. I don’t want to have to treat my clothes with kid gloves and worry about then getting stained. (Yes, I see that Gwynnie Bee is ok with taking back stained/ripped clothes but knowing my personality, I think I would still stress about it.) Would love to hear what you think about the other two!

      • Melanie Brake says:

        Dia & Co and Plvsh offer new clothing for purchase. They both send a box of clothing once a month (allowing you to opt out, if desired) and allow five days to ship the items back. They offer a discount (around 20%, I think) if you purchase all of the items in the box. Dia & Co does not charge your card for anything other than the $20 stylist fee and Plvsh charges a $25 styling fee as well as placing a hold on your card for the entire amount of the clothing in the box they send. Please double-check my information as it may have changed (and I am sharing the info I learned from what I remember of my research).

        I have received one box from Dia & Co and, unfortunately, didn’t find anything that worked. It was partly my fault: I could have been clearer in my descriptions of what I know works and doesn’t work for me, and I didn’t upload pictures to help the stylist. They do allow you to set a budget amount for each piece of clothing–anywhere from the lowest setting at $50 and up to $200, perhaps? Because I am experimenting, I have mine set at $50 and they did stay within that average for all five pieces. I did find a pair of shorts they priced at $79 on sale at Nordstrom Rack online for $30. It definitely pays to check pricing. I ended up sending everything back and losing the $20 stylist fee. I could have made two items work, but Crystal has taught me well, lol! I won’t keep anything in my closet that I don’t absolutely love.

        I am trying one more box from them and then trying Plvsh which, from the website description, looks to offer more upscale clothing. I believe their set price point for a box is a total of $500, and I recognized several more upscale names including Eloquii (quality albeit pricey plus clothing worth checking out on its own). It looks like a great service. I will admit, however, that I am slightly put off by several glaring grammatical errors in their professional ad copy. I know, I know…it’s a small thing and has nothing to do with their skills as clothing stylists, but I always experience a flicker of hesitation when I come across sites/stores/ads that haven’t done a thorough job of editing.

        I searched online for reviews for both companies and didn’t find much, but there are a few out there.

        Good luck!

        • Maryalene says:

          Thanks so much for the detailed info Melanie! I think Dia & Co is more in my budget so I might give them a try. Do you have a link I can use to sign up? (Hope that’s ok to ask here!)

          I have very limited (read: no) fashion sense so I love the idea of other people picking out clothes for me, but it’s been hard to find a service that’s a good fit. So many companies seem to cater to the XS crowd (which I get since it seems like a lot of designers don’t make clothes in bigger sizes).

          I was right on the bubble of sizing for Stitch Fix and after I left them, I tried Keaton Row. My first stylist was fabulous, created a great Lookbook and I bought a few items that have become go-to staples in my closet. Then my stylist left, and I was sent to someone new. I requested a Lookbook from her, and she told me she was sorry, but they couldn’t style XL people. It sounded like a bit of bologna since the other stylist didn’t seem to have a problem putting together some options.

          Anyway, I’m sure I’m preaching to the choir here!

          • Melanie says:

            I hear you, Maryalene! It is so hard to find nice clothing and to know how to put it together. I love certain looks but often can’t figure out how to make them work well on my body (a very curvy 18/20). I’ve spent far too long hiding in oversized black tops and leggings/jeans!

            No worries with the Dia & Co link; I simply wanted to pass along the info I’ve learned. ?

  • Lisa says:

    Crystal this is exciting information! I’ve never “shopped” like this before & it is intriguing. I do have a couple of questions. What about cleaning the clothes? Are we required to dry clean everything while we’re renting it? That would be very costly. Also, are the clothes that we receive in a rental package brand new, or are they gently used? I do see that they sell gently-used clothing……is that what becomes of the things that are sent back? Thanks VERY much for this interesting post!

    • They take care of all the dry cleaning and you don’t have to worry about laundering or dry cleaning them! That’s one of the perks — and would save dry cleaning $$ if that’s something you are usually paying for.

      The clothes are either new or like new. They said that they have a very, very strict screening process for what they send. The clothes they sent me looked brand new.

  • Melinda says:

    If you use Gwynnie Bee, I would write down the tracking numbers each time you send an item back using a prepaid envelope. I sent 3 items back in an envelope and they claimed that they never got them. They ended up charging me $180.00 for clothes that I sent back. I was very disappointed and ended up cancelling my subscription.
    I also had an incident with them where I received clothes that did not appear to have been dry cleaned. The shirt smelled of body odor.
    Overall, I had a very mixed experience with this company.

  • Thanks, Crystal for the great, helpful review.
    Dear Gwenie Bee. Get a clue, please. Sizes 10-18 are not “plus size.” There is size-creep now putting even 14 into plus size, but I’d not heard of 10 and 12 as “plus size.” (Ok, probably at Abercrombie) Get some real plus-sized women on your staff–possibly even those over the age of 22. You might also be interested in knowing what I, a plus-sized woman, don’t like. I don’t like FAT LADY TUNICS and I’ve attached the blog post that explains WHY. https://hopewellslibraryoflife.wordpress.com/2016/04/28/id-dont-want-to-wear-a-fat-lady-tunic/

  • Jen says:

    I have not used Gwynne Bee, but I have used Le Tote in the past. It’s a similar deal with the rental, but you can get a lot more for a lot less. It’s $59 a month and you get 3 garments and 2 accessories in each tote. You can exchange them as much as you want each month. Note that if you keep something from a tote it is assumed that is a purchase and you will be charged for the item. Otherwise, you must send everything back in one group instead of by item. The garments go up to size 16, and the accessories are quite varied. It is similar to Gwynne Bee that you are not guaranteed what you will receive and they pick from your queue of clothing choices.

    I stopped using the service when I started working from home and did not need to dress up everyday. However, when I was still in the office this was a great way to get a constant flow of new items for a reasonable price. I highly recommend them if you are interested in an affordable lending service. The customer service was great and you get high end clothing. This is great for a clothes horse that loves a volume of new styles, but maybe doesn’t have a budget to live like one.

  • Alicia says:

    The thought of renting clothes stresses me out, so I haven’t tried Gwynnie Bee. I did just try Dia & Co. It seems much more similar to Stitch fix as far as policies. Here’s the link to my thoughts! http://www.sweepingupjoy.com/dia-co-review/

  • Alicia says:

    (I thought I commented, but I don’t see it above…so sorry if this is a repeat!)

    I looked into Gwynnie Bee, but the thought of renting clothes stresses me out.

    I just tried Dia & Co., which seems much more like Stitch Fix policy-wise. It’s a $20 styling fee that gets applied to whatever you decide to keep. There’s no shipping either way and a discount if you keep everything.

    You can see my honest review of Dia & Co. here: http://www.sweepingupjoy.com/dia-co-review/

    As someone who *hates* shopping, I was really pleased with having items picked out especially for my style and body type. 🙂

  • Kate says:

    Another option that no one has mentioned, Trunk Club. They are set up somewhat like Stitch Fix, in that you work with a stylist, who chooses a “trunk” of about 15-20 pieces that you try on and keep or send back. The stylist makes suggestions on how to wear the items and coordinates with items that you kept from previous trunks. My husband joined originally and has been VERY pleased. He is 72 and has spent the last 20 years growing his own business. His wardrobe consisted of jeans and polos. Now he is ready to upgrade his image and Trunk Club has been wonderful. Then I, a plus sized mom, decided to join and I have been very pleased. The quality is better than what I can find at my mall and I am saved the expense of purchasing things I would be unhappy to wear. Crystal, I was inspired by your honest reviews of Stitch Fix to jump in to this and it has been great.

  • Angel says:

    You have to have a PayPal to sign up. 🙁
    Wish they didn’t require this.

  • Jennifer G says:

    I have been a subscriber of GWYNNIE BEE for almost two years now. I love it! I am a professional woman and a mom, so I need a professional wardrobe. I also live in a very rural area, so it is four hours to the nearest shopping mall of decent size. I love the convenience and the economy of time and treasure of using their service. I spend $200 a month in my budget for workplace clothes (shoes, accessories, this rental service, etc) and find that I now have a reputation for rarely wearing the same item twice. I monitor my closet wardrobe using their mobile app as well as the website, so I do have a notice of what they are sending next. And I have gotten into the habit of stopping by the post office three times a week to drop off my “laundry” bags to return. GB also has a web store where they sell retired items at a steep discounts, and offer random sales to entice me to purchase items that I have at home. I have purchased about ten items in the past ten years, when the deal is too good to pass up!, but I have learned to expect the next surprises in the next shipment to me.

  • Laura Bowman says:

    I tried them earlier this year. My only complaint, and it’s a big one, is the time it takes to get a response with email from them. I had wanted to keep an item, but it was near the time I needed to cancel or be charged the next month. I sent an email about the issue, but I canceled so I wouldn’t be charged. It took them 2 weeks to get back to me. By then I had another issue…they were charging me $42 for the dress I kept instead of the $12 (amazing price) that HAD been listed on my account. I sent back another email trying to explain and get the issue resolved and I still have not heard back. I tried calling several times too. Left a message but no responses.

  • Casey says:

    I tried gwynnie Bee, and during the entire 30 day trial, nothing i ever selected was in stock, so by the end of the trial i had never received a shipment. I immediately cancelled.

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