The Curvy Girl Shopping Guide to Amsterdam

Amsterdam is undoubtably one of the most stylish cities in Europe: it’s bursting at the seams with quaint boutiques, beautiful people and the most fashionable desserts you’ll ever see! Once surrounded by the über-chique Dutch, who don a sort of  refined-edgy style that is perhaps best described as rebelliously sartorial, I instantly wanted to dress more like them. I enlisted the help of plus blogger Nefferth of Mode-Plus. She led me to some of the best shopping spots in the city to best achieve a dutch camouflage. I must say, I managed to be quite the chameleon; by the end even the natives spoke Dutch to me! 

Curvy Girls, get ready to take Amsterdam by storm! Here’s a mini shopping guide for your trip:

Monki - highly recommended by both Nefferth and Edith. Though Monki’s sizes stop at the ever ambiguous size “large”, the cut is quite giving. Edith explained that though the brand is dutch, the some of the designers are Japanese who favor oversize designs. This is a must-see for all “in-betweenies” as Edith says. (Those of us who are in-between straight and plus sizes). 

Primark – Edith calls herself the “Queen of Primark” in the Netherlands, and I believe her! She has scored so many great pieces for very, very low prices! The store is British, but it’s Rotterdam location comes highly recommended from models  Mayra De Wilde and Marlous Van Zee, and her Royal Highness of Primark, Edith (Style Has NO Size).

The 9 Streets: Adorable, unique boutiques along canals. Feels very dutch! Warning: some are quite pricey! 

H&M  - Ok, take a deep breath because what I’m about to say may take you aback. The sizing at H&M is cut larger in the Netherlands. I KNOW! In the US and especially in Spain & Italy, these stores practically offer doll-sized clothing. But I’ve conducted my own experiment to test this hypothesis, and ladies, the proof is in the pudding: I bought a white shirt size 42 (Us 12) at H&M in Barcelona. It “fit” (not so well), but the sleeves were unintentionally 3/4 length and I’m pretty sure it was not meant to be a crop top. I then tried on the same shirt at an H&M in Amsterdam in the same size 42, and the sleeves reached my wrists!  For me this news is simultaneously exciting and depressing: I’m relieved and happy to know that I can buy clothes at H&M but I’m a little depressed because I live in Spain where the clothes are still made for Barbie and Skipper. I guess I’ll just have to return to Amsterdam!! Oh and unlike in the US, H&M runs to a size 44/46 (US 14/16) in Europe! If you’re in northern Europe, definitely hit up an H&M!

Zara – Also cut larger in the Netherlands, AND you can find sizes XL (occasionally up to XXL) in every line. In Spain, you can only find XL in “Zara Basic” but hardly ever in the more chic “Zara Woman” line.

Zara Tips:
– Look at bottom of the tags, list of available sizes. Unlike in the United States, there are not always tags that say “one size fits all” but more likely just “M”. at the bottom, the available sizes will be listed

- Also, Zara sizes are generally a size smaller in comparison to their European counterparts. As such, a US 14 at Zara is a 46, not a 44 like at H&M
The Curvy Girl Shopping Guide to Amsterdam