Figuring out the right assortment of bras in a retail store can feel like an insurmountable, ever-evolving challenge. In the past, I wrote more extensively about buying plans, but generally speaking, the process of narrowing down literally hundreds of bras to the profit-turning core collection found in the shop requires time, patience, and feedback. Usually I read through reviews of products left by consumers to help my decision process, but some reviewers do not know how to properly fit themselves and leave complaints more related to purchasing the wrong size than to the bra itself. As a result, I love interacting with other store owners and discussing our best-sellers. Bra fitters have firsthand experience trying the style on multiple body and breast shapes and can often provide more accurate information. In one such conversation, my friend Jackie from Her Underthings in New York raved about the new Serena Lace from Fit Fully Yours, but each store is unique in what works for them. Naturally, I had to test one myself!
Serena Lace boasts a three-section cup design with a two-section lower cup composed of a more rigid fabric for added vertical lift. Stiffer fabrics like this frequently hold their shape better over time due to the lack of stretch, thus increasing their longevity. The upper section features a two-ply fabric with an interior mesh and exterior floral lace with the same combination reappearing on the wings. Light stretch in the lace and an elasticized edge improve contouring without sacrificing hold and containment. The chief complaint I hear about stretch lace styles is that the flexibility of the lace does not keep the breast stationary, especially with movement. I call it “the jiggle factor.” With Serena, there is just enough stretch for the bra to adjust to the shape of the breast while still providing excellent security.
On the interior, Serena features a lightly padded side sling to pull in breast tissue from the side and keep it supported. Nicole, the other Fit Fully Yours bra I reviewed, also had this feature, and I like how it provides projection without needing an extra panel in the cup design. In fact, the overall profile of the Serena Lace is almost an oxymoron. The shape is forward, lifted, and rounded but mildly minimized. Cast aside any images of mashed breasts, a uniboob profile, or side boob for days though. Serena displaces the tissue in such a way that you still get all the benefits of a supportive cut-and-sew without a lot of “in your face” projection.
Part of this unique silhouette derives from the U-shaped underwires. In the center, the wires nearly overlap at the top but are also lower for a moderate coverage fit. However, the cup fabric near the gore is not overly deep and boasts a moderate projection, in contrast to styles with similar underwire profiles like the Panache Jasmine or Cleo Marcie. The moderate projection avoids creating an east-west profile on my close set breasts but would also suit average or wider set types too. Personally, y’all know I tend toward that ultra forward look, but I must admit I find Serena Lace a nice compromise, particularly because not everyone loves the same shape. Not to mention, ultra projected boobs are harder to fit into clothes too.
My one and only gripe with the bra is the height of the underwire on the side. The width of the wire is actually okay, with minimal space between the tissue and the wire, but the wire rests too high under the arm. When I move my arms, I can feel it. Usually, the added height causes the side of the cup to pull uncomfortably into my underarm, but Serena’s fabric and shape is comfortable. If only the wire was about 1/2″ shorter!
Fit Fully Yours is notorious for placing a strong emphasis on quality. This is not a company interested in making cheap bras which do not last, and I appreciate that commitment. Serena Lace is no different. The materials manage to be both sturdy and comfortable, and the soft, padded side panel cushions tissue wonderfully. Furthermore, the stitching is quite tight and discreet for a smoother look under clothes. The wings use the same 2-ply element as the upper cup for excellent smoothing and anchorage. Three hook-and-eye closures in the back increase security, and the partially-adjustable straps feature an optional racer back which can be moved to the perfect position. Of course, the flip side is that you may not be able to tighten the straps enough for normal wear. Petites or short-waisted people will be impacted by this decision the most.
Aesthetically, Serena Lace is a dressed up workhorse style, like the Budweiser Clydesdales. Floral lace accents with a touch of sheen complement the tonal print on the lower cup, and I love the lace extending up on the straps for a quasi-bralette feel. The taupe color is fashionable and also an excellent skin-tone neutral option. The materials, particularly the shape, keep the color from looking too flat and dull. This is how you do a neutral people! Now to be fair, there’s nothing crazy or innovative about the rest of the design though, and that’s fine. This is a bra you can wear everyday but still feel a little sexy.
I also want to quickly note the size range and price. Serena Lace is about $70, and the quality definitely befits the price. Furthermore, it’s available in 32 to 44 bands and DD to US J cups (UK GG), but after factoring in the band tightness, I would reclassify it as 30-42 bands. Usually styles like this do not have such an impressive range. Overall, Serena Lace is a fantastic bra and a great option for fans of Elomi, Fantasie, or Panache cut-and-sews. My only grip was the underwire being about 1/2″ too tall for me.