Monthly Archives: April 2013

Couple of words about countershading in bra wearing

I’ve always been a plain colors girl. If I have to choose between print and plain it’s always plain.

And I love my bras discreet. I don’t have a prejudice against seams as I know that they can be flat enough to be invisible even under quite thin jersey. But I avoid frills and lace on my bras like evangelism of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

But there are always some exceptions (not with Jehovah’s Witnesses, of cause) and sometimes these exceptions are just meant for each other. I’m talking about busy prints and not so flat lace on your bra. It’s what busy prints do: makes shape less definite, flattened for our eye and lace texture just magically disappears. Irregular, little bit fuzzy and busy prints work the best. Mother nature used this effect zillions of times to hide its creatures in the plain site.

The only problem here is that prints can do the same to our body shape. And if you are not a sniper in an ambush you don’t want that. That’s why plain color cardigans work so great with floral print dresses. They add definition. But of cause they are not the only option (to tell the truth for me it’s “oh, no, so not my style” option). Vests, jackets, even wide belts can do the same. Strategically placed plain color panels can do the same. Print could be anything, Possibilities are endless, so let’s have fun!

Why I don’t like to shop for bras locally

“Don’t like” is actually underestimation. I actually hate this. Here is my reasons:

  • when shopping for bras I always should go through “you can’t be that size”, I definitely know my size range and how bra should fit, but explaining, demonstrating fit and size tag of the bra I walk in and sometimes demonstrating tremendous fit problems with the size they think should fit me is time-consuming (I do know that I look much smaller than I really am, but hey! I’m grown up woman and if I ask for the certain size this means I know what I’m asking for). And this is unavoidable, because with bras you can’t just silently pick you size and go to the fitting room in the vast majority of stores, you need sales people cooperatively looking for sizes in all that drawers;
  • it’s usually very limited choice in my size, and having a tricky shape leaves me sometimes completely out of options;
  • mark up is insane, I wouldn’t mind paying extra 30% on top of LCL or BraStop price for being able to try bra on first, but 200%?! Are you kidding me?
  • they always try to sell sister-size, if they can’t find anything in my size. Well, it could work when we are talking about one band size, but this is it. I’ve learned it long time ago with a cheap 38C bra (you can alter the band!) It felt like it should fit in the cups when it was a 38, but when it became 32 it became obvious that cups are too small. And because it is a push up, my breasts, which don’t like to be pushed, push the cups down, so I can wear this freak of alteration only with a very tight top. And needless to say that straps are too far apart.

So of all the reasons only the second one is really something objective. Break and mortar store should optimize its inventory, so it can’t afford to carry as much sizes and styles as online retailers. But if it was only that I would be hitting the stores time to time to find what’s new. With all four and would rather buy online, despite that it’s a hit or miss.

Review. Masquerade Rhea in black

Beautiful lace, cotton lined cups, incredible lift and shape (if you have the right size of cause), what not to love?

Masquerade Rhea. Product image from official site

Masquerade Rhea. Product image from official site

This bra is a real bestseller and was reviewed by many bloggers many times, so I think there is no point in a full review.

Here are some links:

Masquerade Rhea in Black by Sophisticated Pair (30H)

Masquerade Rhea in Champagne/Pink by Dimpsey Bra Fit (28F)

Masquerade Rhea in Ice Blue/Fawn by Windiegardie (Undiegamer) (28F)

Masquerade Rhea in Mulberry/Slate (Burgundy) by Faustine

Masquerade Rhea in Mulberry/Slate (Burgundy) by Bras I Hate & Love (30H)

Masquerade Rhea in Mulberry/Slate (Burgundy) by FullerFigureFullerBust (36H)

So my 5 cents about fit:

This bra has incredibly flexible wires. It could be a problem, actually. Rhea’s cups are way too narrow for me, but when I put it on wires are distorted by the band and I have absolutely no problems with narrowness. But the coin has another side: I can’t bend the wires, because they simply return to their previous shape. I was trying to bend the center out, because I have prominent breast bone (this means that any the center gore higher than 1.5″ pokes). Even when I placed my laptop on the wires and waited like 5 minutes it had no effect at all! Now I have two options: cushioning and clipping the wires, I’m going to try cushioning first and if it doesn’t help, then wish me luck.

I often have problem with straps due to the side-fullness and wide base. If cup edge to strap distance is rather small then straps begin practically in my armpits. And Rhea had the smallest distance from all my bras. It was so bad that it was not just uncomfortable, but fit was affected badly.

Here is an armpit area after alteration. My finger is where the strap was attached before

Here is the armpit area after alteration. My finger is where the strap was attached before

By the way, here is the detailed instruction, how to do this type of alteration (funny enough it features Rhea).

Review. Parfait By Affinitas, Jeanie Plunge Molded Padded Bra

This is my second attempt to get comfortable and good fitting nude molded plunge. I’ve bought this bra for $34.99 from e-bay (looks like I tend to buy most of my bras there, can’t resist much lower prices).

Jeanie is one of those bras that embody pure functionality. It allows you to wear deep V necklines (U not so deep), it doesn’t show under thin jersey, it’s good under a little bit transparent fabrics like thin cotton. And that’s it.

Jeanie Plunge. Front view

Jeanie Plunge. Front view

Jeanie Plunge. Profile

Jeanie Plunge. Profile

It resembles Freya Deco in many ways (shape, thickness of padding, overall construction), but has wider wires. This means that it’s not the best bra for a hot weather especially if heat combined with high humidity because padding is quite thick.

Good things about this bra:

Sturdy full band with side boning. Stable and secure. It’s brand new, so I can’t say for sure how it behaves with wear and tear, but it looks like it’s not stretchy. Wings are made from powermesh, which is usually good, as it’s breathable. It’s two rows of hooks, but it’s quite wide.

Jeanie Plunge. Wings.

Fully adjustable straps.

It gives nicely rounded shape.

Beige is a neutral shade (I hate when it’s sort of yellowish).

Things about this bra, that definitely good for me, but can be showstopper if you have different breast shape:

It has quite wide wires. In my book it’s awesome. Compared to the wires of Panache Porcelain Plunge they are about 1/4″ shorter on the side while being the same width. So no crease under the root and wire comfortably goes directly under the root.

Straps are fully adjustable, but I (5’6″ to 5’7″ depending of time of the day) have to shorten them a lot, shorter girls could have problems with them I assume.

Cups are quite open and center gore is really low, so if you have softer breast tissue you can experience spillage toward the center in this bra.

I’m not sure about cleavage. I have none. But the truth is it’s hard to get with my shape and size.

Things about this bra, that definitely not so good for me, but can be good for you if you have different breast shape:

From bratabase measurements it seems shallow, which isn’t really true. The reason for this is that supposed apex is higher than ends of the wires, so it’s hard to measure cup depth. I think that it would fit ok girls who have more depth than me.

Basically IMO this bra is a little bit to big in the cup for me, but one size smaller would be too narrow and too small overall. Right now there is no gaping, but it’s hell a lot of a bra. This makes Jeanie ideal for bloating days. So I’m going to keep it.

Here you can see how much deeper Jeanie is then Panache Porcelain Plunge. Both bras are 32E

Here you can see how much deeper Jeanie is than Panache Porcelain Plunge. Both bras are 32E

Not so good:

I don’t like how straps are attached, but it’s not visible even under thin jersey. Consider this a pet peeve.

Isn't it sloppy?

Isn’t it sloppy?

And frankly they are plain ugly. I don’t mind visible straps most of the time, but these I’m going to keep hidden.

Strap close up

Strap close up

Fit on me.

As you can see it’s pretty good under my test-the-shape turtleneck ). And it’s comfortable!

Love the shape

Love the shape (don’t pay attention to the tag, please)

Review. Panache Porcelain Plunge in nude

I own this bra in 32E, Nude since August 2012. It’s definitely not my favourite one, but I think story of my partial success could be useful.

This bra didn’t fit me out of the box, I have it altered and now it’s wearable, but it’s the most unflattering bra I have.

Good things about this bra:

Materials are more than ok. It feels comfy next to the skin and I have very sensitive skin, so you can assume that they are really good.

It’s lightly padded, so it provides nipple cover, but doesn’t look bulky and it’s flexible enough to adjust to the breast shape to some extent. It’s great for hot summer days when you have to walk from heat of the street to air-conditioned office.

The band is true to size. I’m still on the middle hook, but I don’t wear this bra regularly (I was in the August and September, but not now). So I can say: decent lifespan.

Cups run small.

Things about this bra, that definitely good for me, but can be showstopper if you have different breast shape:

It has very wide wires and they come high on the sides.

Color is pretty fair, more like blush, but more yellowish. It could be showstopper if you have a darker skincolor, because nude is bore and if it’s lighter than you skin it show through factor is almost the same as for white bra. I have hard time finding foundations and powder light enough for me (I need 00 shade in most brands, which often is not available), so for me it works, but I strongly unadvise you to buy it in nude if you are two or more tones darker than me.

No so good:

The piping shows through. So I can wear the bra with woven fabric shirt, thicker jersey, but not clingy and thin jersey. This kind of ruins the point of having seamless bra.

Problems I have with this bra

It’s very shallow and it’s almost no volume near the wires. It folds there on any picture of the bra I ever saw.

Here you can clearly see how shallow cups are, especially near the wires

Here you can clearly see how shallow cups are, especially near the wires

Cup concave near the wire. Panache, why?

Cup concave near the wire. Panache, why?

But the whole shallowness is really a problem. I don’t have a lot of profile, but this is too much even for me. It slightly folds (one more reason not to wear it with something clingy) because of “orange in the glass” effect.

Under thin jersey crease is very visible

Under thin jersey crease is very visible

Here you can see the crease near the wire and other not pretty things.

Fit flaws

Fit flaws

Cups are very high, almost full cup high. So their edges cut into armpit a little. I assume that on person shorter than me or with breast positioned really high it could be a real problem.

Straps are a little bit far apart for me, combined with tall cups it’s not comfortable at all.

The main problem I had is that cups edges in front were cutting into the tissue and in the same time I have a gaping. Tightening the straps was creating bad quadroboob, but the gaping was still there. The bra seemed to fit in all other places and returning $40 bra with $30 postage fee doesn’t have much sense, so I decided to alter it: seamstress removed the piping then cut about an inch of the cup and then attached it back. I wish I told her get rid of it. I wanted to make cups 1/2″ lower, but she said that it would be too difficult. So I basically got more open cups and then I immediately found out that I should loose the straps almost all the way.

Panache Porcelain Plunge after alteration

Panache Porcelain Plunge after alteration

Even after the alteration but I’m still having a quadraboob (not a major one, but still). It doesn’t show in woven shirts, because the issue is most visible near the central gore, but it’s very visible without it and visible under clingy top.

I think that this curved inside cups aren’t right for me at all as I have pointed breasts and they are quite firm, especially on top.

This bra works as a minimizer on me.

Here is another review, much more positive.

May be 32F would be better on me, but I don’t really like the bra and cup shape isn’t right for me. Altered bra served it’s purpose as white button down bra in summer and early autumn, and was laying in the box unworn and unloved most of the time, but now spring came and I need a better nude bra.  So, stay tuned for the next review.

PS Don’t get me wrong. This bra is actually great if you need something discrete  if your breasts are compatible with its shape and construction. It just happened that mine are not.

Review. Freya Lounge, Erin Lounge Pants

I bought them from Large Cup Lingerie, online shop, which was praised a lot in lingerie blogging community for free worldwide shipping (fast free worldwide shipping I want to add!), very reasonable prices and excellent customer service. I also ordered Masquerade Rhea from them, but she should wait, because straps were too far apart for me and the fit was off, so I gave it to my seamstress to fix this.

But Freya Lounge Erin Lounge Pants were spot on. I ordered them in size 12 and they are totally ok on my 37″ butt. I think I could even get away with size 10, but I’m glad I ordered 12, because I like loose fit in lounge clothes. Fabric is incredibly soft and breathable.

The waistband features elastic in the back and firm front with ribbons. It took me a little bit to accommodate to this, because you definitely should take this into account when taking them off or putting on.

erin pants

Sorry, no rear view, kind of tricky to make

I love the stripes (and my cat’s hair doesn’t show!).

Aren't they?

Aren’t they nice?

They have a back pocket. I can’t say that I really like it, but it’s not a showstopper either.

Back Pocket

Back Pocket

The quality of seams is good (the photo below features the only place that a little bit sloppy).

Waistband inside

Waistband inside

UPD Today I found that the side seam on a waistband came apart. I think this is still my favourite lounge pants, but exercises with thread and needle are real killjoy for me. Looks like Freya needs quality control improvement.