Etsy is an online shopping website with a similar concept to ebay. The Brooklyn, New York based company allows sellers to sign up and post the wares they have for sale and buyers sign up to make purchases. While there are a lot similarities and differences between the two companies there are two major differences worth mentioning.
The first is that there is no bidding involved. If you find something you like then you click to buy it. The second is that all items listed by the seller are items they have created (there's also a crafting supplies section). The bonus side of this is you won't find a bunch of retail stores listing their merchandise at regular price (this is one of my pet peeves about ebay). Currently Etsy has over "150,000 sellers in 171 countries". They are also celebrating the fact they are about to reach the 1,000,000 member mark.
Etsy is an awesome place to go looking for one of a kind plus size clothing created by aspiring designers and sometimes established designers. One of my favourite is a Vancouver based designer named Jane BonBon. She makes some of the cutest dresses for regular and plus sizes; both of which are the same price. Clothing prices at Etsy obviously depend on the item being purchased, the type of fabric and the amount of work put into them. Prices can range from bargain to high-end. The style selection is incredible. You can find funky t-shirts, retro looking skirts, business attire, lingerie and even active wear.
The best way to look for plus size designs in a field of over a million products is to use Etsy's online "search" feature located at the top of every page. All you have to do is type in "plus size" and click enter and you will be given over 138 pages of options. Using "plus size clothing" will limit your options even more. Other relevant and specific search terms are: plus size tops, plus size dresses, plus size skirts, plus size pants, plus size vintage. But if you can put in the time go with "plus size" and browse your way through everything.
Some designers may only have one item in a few sizes while others are willing to make custom clothing, based on the designs you see, in other sizes if send the measurements.
It's important to realize that shopping at Etsy isn't the same as shopping at a regular clothing store. Each designer will have different return policies. And it is to be expected if something is custom made it is not returnable unless it has a defect. Read every seller's description as well as Etsy's policies. There is buyer protection but you need to know what is covered and what is not.
Another thing I like about Etsy is the look and feel of their website. It is easy to look at and there are not a lot of flashy distractions to overstimulate you. It sure makes for a relaxing browsing or shopping experience.
Visit my favourite Plus Size Etsy lens.