A collage with a purple dress, phone case, brown belt, and brown booties.

No-Fail Outfit Formulas That Start With a Belt and a Dress

There are some tried-and-true outfit combinations that have withstood the test of time. Think: white tees and jeans, flannels and leggings, and of course, dresses and belts. Belts have long given us a way to (effectively) customize the fit of our favorite dresses. We can use them to cinch our dresses at our waistlines, or turn our dresses into drapey, bohemian looks (by fitting a belt loosely around a dress and allowing the fabric to drape around it). There are so many ways for belts to elevate even our most casual dresses, and the plus-size belted dresses outfits we’ve crafted are here to prove it.

Nearly any dress without a defined waistline (or a loosely-fitting one) is ideal for pairing with a belt. Shirtdresses, vacation-ready maxis, and even bodycon dresses are given new life when you add one little accessory. And having the power to change up a huge portion of your wardrobe with just a belt? That’s a game-changer right there.

These accessories are so easy to mix and match with different dresses in your closet, so by investing in a few options, you can create endless ensembles. (!) Try pairing a cute denim dress with a braided belt or elevating your favorite sweatshirt dress with a wide belt. Then, switch it up and try the wide belt with the denim dress and the braided belt with a sweatshirt dress. The key here is to have fun with it—and experiment to your heart’s content.

Of course, for those in need of a bit of inspiration, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading for some seriously can’t-miss plus-size belted dresses outfits to try ASAP. Your wardrobe has never been more versatile.

Here at Unruly, we’re committed to featuring plus-size pieces we genuinely love and want to share with you. We’re connected to an affiliate revenue program, which means we might make a small commission when you buy products through our shopping guides. This in no way affects pieces we choose to feature, and it never will. (Confused? We’d love to answer any questions you have about this. Email us at beunrulyinfo@gmail.com!)

1. The Shirtdress

Ah, the shirtdress. Arguably one of the easiest dress styles to elevate, we can’t help but top it off with a classic and simple black belt. (You can also go for a statement belt if you’re feeling bold!) Just add your favorite slide sandals and a pair of colorful sunnies, and you’ve got the perfect weekend look.

A collage with a black dress, black sandals, black belt, and green sunglasses.

shop the look

dress — $29.99 from H&M
belt — $12.67 from ASOS
shoes — $29.99 from Target
sunglasses — $99 from Crap Eyewear

2. The Bodycon Dress

Pairing a sexy bodycon dress with a belt? Groundbreaking. Just trust us on this one. Add a belt with a statement buckle to a bodycon mini dress, and watch as every jaw drops. Finish the look with a pair of black slingbacks and a trendy purse. Voila!

A collage with a red dress, pink purse, black heels, and a black belt.

shop the look

dress — $16 from PrettyLittleThing
belt — $14.50 from ASOS
shoes — $55.50 from Torrid
bag — $59 from JW Pei

3. The Denim Dress

Is there anything more versatile than a denim dress? Paired with a braided brown belt, colorful sneakers, and oversized sunnies, you can’t lose. This is the kind of effortlessly cool look your weekend outfit lineup needs.

A collage with a dark denim dress, brown belt, colorful sneakers, and black sunglasses.

shop the look

dress — $34.99 from H&M
belt — $22.50 from Torrid
shoes — $150 from Madewell
sunglasses — $189 from Apercu Eyewear

4. The Animal Print Dress

Animal print dresses are always fun, but they’re even better when you add a belt. Here, we’re sticking a classic black belt, but you can certainly opt for something bolder—like neon or pastel hues. If you do keep the majority of your ensemble neutral, though, top it all off with a colorful bag.

A collage with a zebra print dress, blue purse, black mules, and a black belt.

shop the look

dress — $29.99 from H&M
belt — $10.40 from ASOS
shoes — $25 from Target
bag — $69 from JW Pei

5. The Sweatshirt Dress

Sweatshirt dresses are the perfect opportunity to stay cozy while looking effortlessly cute. If you want to take things up a notch, though, add a wide belt to cinch the dress around the waist. Then finish off the look with coordinating booties and an Instagram-worthy phone case. *Chef’s kiss.*

A collage with a purple dress, phone case, brown belt, and brown booties.

shop the look

dress — $14.85 from Nasty Gal
belt — $28.50 from Torrid
shoes — $115 from Everlane
phone case — $55 from Casetify