First, I must apologize for the delay in blogging here. I have so many fantastic ideas for the new year, but my business partner and I are in the midst of finishing up all of the necessary information for last year’s financials plus getting a jump start on taxes (basically stuff we both abhor with a passion). Sadly, blogging is one of the lower priority items on my agenda for the time being even though it’s one of my favorite aspects of the business. Ironically, despite intermittent Internet access, winter storm Jonas has provided me the perfect opportunity to catch up work on blogging because I was stuck at home while a barrage of freezing rain and pellet-sized hail assaulted the already fragile tree limbs, tempting them to give way and fall to the earth. Rather than brave the packed ice constituting our roads which left my brother’s newer and nicer car sliding about and unable to climb a hill, I curled up inside with a beautiful afghan knitted by my aunt as a present, my terrorists, and a glass of wine to write product reviews and edit a very special guest post for later this week. Here’s hoping all of my east coast readers weathered the storm safely.
We are moving forward with our annual sales discussion to examine the sales of each cup size. Be sure to check out both our demographics post as well as our band size breakdown. Keep in mind, cup size means nothing without a band to give it context, but for the purposes of our analysis, I want to compare how sales across cup sizes differ. Below is a graph for the sales distribution of each cup size. (Note: For my discussion, I will refer to cup sizes using the UK sizing system.)
Last week, I posted a glowing review to the new Anna Pardal Hibiscus Longline in the classic plunge shape, and today I want to compare and review a longline with the three-section half-cup design, similar to the Doyenne on the website. The sample I received is for the as yet unreleased Anna Pardal Rosa, which I am told should be on the website soon.
TweetHello Everyone, When I review a product, “short” is not a word I would use to describe the post. My goal with reviews is to provide the kind of detailed information I prefer to read when doing my own research, and as a result, I comment (excessively) on fit, sizing, materials, and the design to give an accurate representation of the product. Furthermore, I also review bras in my starting point size or sometimes the size I found which works best to prove the problems/benefits will not change with a new size. This week, we are tweaking the formula for a special brand: Curvy Couture. The expression “In with the new, out with the old” has become the mantra for some of our brand recently, and several bras favored by my 34+ band size customers are being discontinued ranging from the incredible N by Natori Conceal Contour to the Elomi Rita and Caitlyn bras, leaving me scrambling to find ways of satisfying customers with a new style. Cut-and-sew cups are easier, but t-shirt bras? Ouch! At the moment, quality t-shirt bras in 38+ band and DDD+ cup sizes are lacking, and we rely on the Elomi Bijou and Amelia (both of which are fabulous) as well as the occasional Wacoal or Natori. We’re in the south though. It’s hot. People live in t-shirt, so we needed to find some more options! As a result, I have spent considerable time researching alternatives to expand the inventory in the shop, and a friend who owns a boutique in Hawaii kindly forwarded me the information for Curvy Couture, an American brand offering 34-44 band sizes UK C-G cups (Note: They use a variation of American sizing ending in H cups, but it’s really closer to a US I/UK G). Based on the needs
TweetHello Everyone, We’re going back to the past for the final time . . . for now! Confused? Don’t be! Today marks the end of my “shot before/during/immediately after illness” period which saw posts wither away in my filing system for months. From now on, however, the blog is moving forward with recent reviews, fresh content, and more helpful advice, and I find it appropriate that my final backlogged post would be a Curvy Kate bra. My relationship with the brand, much like my health the last year, has always been a roller coaster, and for every bra I like, another comes along to make me question why I haven’t given up entirely. Would the Carmen revive my love in the brand, or would it be the bra which made me walk away? Sizing & Fit: When I ordered the Carmen, I consistently wore a UK 30HH although at the time of the pictures/video, my issues with 30 bands were developing. Based on the initial fit, I found the Carmen to be true-to-size for Curvy Kate, and the 30 band was firm but comfortable on the loosest set of hooks. Furthermore, the cup had no gaping or overflow issues like I experienced with the Ritzy, and I loved the overall shape provided by Carmen. The underwires were narrower than most CK bras, and the cups boasted more projection toward the front without compromising lift. All of my complaints with previous Curvy Kate bras center on the conflict between my close set breasts and the frequent use of wide and shallow designs by the brand. As a result, I often struggled with fit issues including breasts splayed toward the sides, overflow at the center from the shallowness, a cup which pulled into my arm, and extra space on the side and
TweetHello Everyone, Can you believe how prolific I am with blogging this week? The muse must be upon me! Anyway, today I am venturing into the backlog vault, which I am proud to announce has decreased considerably, to discuss the Freya Rapture Side Support Plunge. When the promotional shots released, I was instantly intrigued because I am a huge supporter of Freya branching out into new styles. For the last several years, Freya rested on the success of its plunge balcony bras and the ever-popular Deco rather than tackle fit issues and requests from customers under-served by the brand’s offerings. With Rapture, the use of a side panel and four-section cup seemed to indicate a shape change to provide more lift, an improved shape, and more forward projection. Sizing & Fit: Since Rapture was only available up to an H cup, I opted for the UK 32H instead of the 30HH I needed at the time. The band felt firm but comfortable on the loosest set of hooks, but I was also in the throes of weight fluctuations and illness recovery. Since Freya bands sometimes stretch quickly, I would have liked to see how the bra performed long-term. (Whoops, I gave away the fact I didn’t keep it.) The cups did not have any gaping although I did have a smidge of overflow on the larger side which was not noticeable under a t-shirt; as a result, I felt the 32H was an ideal size for me. Let me preface my analysis of the fit of Rapture by noting Freya was my go-to brand for awhile, and the plunge balcony styles worked well for me, creating a natural but lifted shape under tops. When my breast shape changed and I teetered more into HH cup territory, the sides of the
TweetHello Everyone, Before you see pictures and think “Hey, this woman changes hair colors faster than most people change their sheets”, let me say this review is from my backlog pile, i.e., it’s a couple months old. But, yeah, I do change hair colors a lot too. Anyway, I always mention when I write a Curvy Kate review how I have an unrequited love affair with the brand because their bras are beautiful but never seem to fit. However, in the last few seasons, I have seen quite an improvement, making me more inclined to give Curvy Kate another chance. When I saw Ritzy in Ruby Spice, my initial impression had me drawing comparisons to the Tease Me, a longtime favorite bra because of its comfort and beauty. In fact, after the band stretched too much for daily wear, Tease Me became my lounging/weekend bra. Given my overwhelming positive experience, I hoped against hope the Ritzy would be a worth inheritor to my once beloved bra. Size & Fit: Initially, I ordered my standard 30HH but found the cup and band to be too small. Even on the loosest setting, the bra would not fasten without an extender, and I had overflow at the center of the cup. At the time, I was experiencing breast fluctuations which may have contributed to needing a higher cup size, but the band definitely ran small. I filmed the video review in the same time frame as Dare which fit well in a 30. Ultimately, I exchanged the bra for a 32HH which corrected the tightness of the band and muffin top on the cup. However, despite discovering the correct size, the bra was plagued with fit issues. Tease Me always created a smidge of space between breast tissue and underwire, but because my
TweetHello Everyone, File this review under my “Better Late than Never” category as it was recorded pre-Fall illness; however, since the Minnie is now an ongoing style for Cleo, discussing the advantages and disadvantages of the bra remain relevant and possibly helpful for anyone interested in exploring what Cleo has to offer. For me, I was drawn to Minnie because it reminded me of an earlier Cleo polka-dot bra called Zia—a personal favorite, and I hoped Minnie would live up to my expectations. Sizing & Fit: When I ordered Minnie, my body was in the throws of both breast and weight fluctuations, and my usual UK 30H did not fit. The band was comfortably snug on the loosest set of hooks, but I had overflow at the top of the cup as well as the dreaded “quadboob.” At the time, I could not determine if the fit issue originated with my body changes, inconsistent sizing, or shape incompatibility. Having had time to reflect on everything, I think the issue was the shape of the cup and my changing size/tissue. In addition to increasing in size, my breast tissue became fuller toward the top, and Minnie works better for balanced or lower-fullness breasts on account of how the cup darts inward. In contrast to another Cleo best-seller, the Marcie, Minnie has a closed in shape toward the top, meaning some people may need to size up to ensure a proper fit. Sadly, others with very full-on-top breasts may not be able to wear the style at all. I would have loved to test a 30HH for comparison, but with my size changing, I didn’t want to order bras that may not fit for long. As with other Cleo unpadded bras, Minnie utilizes narrower underwires and deeper cups with a moderate center
TweetHello Everyone, I know what you’re thinking right now: “Another Comexim review? We get it. You like the brand!” Yes, my wonderful readers, I do love the brand, but the timing on this has more to do with me clearing out the backlogged reviews I mentioned last month than heartfelt affection for the company. I have been trying to post things in the order I had originally taken pictures/videos although I have some new reviews I will interject here and there as well. Returning to the topic at hand, today I am discussing the decadently gorgeous Comexim Cherry. Sizing & Fit: Per usual, I purchased the UK 32HH (one cup and one band size up from UK size) which has consistently been the best for me in both Comexim and Anna Pardal. The band of the Cherry was a little looser than my other bras, and I did alternate between the first and second hook depending on the day, but I don’t know that dropping to a 30 band would have been comfortable. While the band was larger than the styles I tried in the past, it also seemed less stretchy and held up better over time, most likely on account of the heavier fabric on the wing. The cup did not have any gaping or wrinkling although I did have very minor overflow on my larger side. In the past, the only other Comexim unpadded bra I tried was Diana from their collaboration with the wonderful Anna Pardal. I adored the look and lightweight feel of Diana, and I was eager to see if products from the original Comexi Linea Artisana line could do the same. Spoiler alert: This bra is incredibly comfortable. So many times, customers will try on bras in the shop, usually Natori, and compliment the design
TweetHello Everyone, The weather predictions were spot on yesterday when they said our area would have at least 8″ of snow accumulation, and I am presently gazing through the window at the newly minted wonderland of my backyard while I write and catch up on work. Since I am snowed in today, I thought it would be fun to indulge in a little bra competition on the blog. More or less, I am writing a double review on two similar styles. So, double the pictures! For my fellow pale sisters, beige bras often function as the closest shade to our natural skin-tone, and I am often asked which Anna Pardal or Comexim bras work best as a basic beige bra. As it happens, when I first requested samples of the line, I received both an Anna Pardal Milk & Honey as well as a Comexim Basic, and I have been wearing them both for several months, meaning my opinions are more evolved and comprehensive. (Note: All of the pictures were taken when I received the bras.) Sizing & Fit: Both bras are my standard Comexim/Anna Pardal size of 32HH, which worked well. The band on Basic immediately felt a little stretchier, but I still started wearing it on the loosest set of hooks. The cup size on both was also correct with no overflow of the cups. Both of the pictures taken from the side do seem to indicate significant gaping, but my lack of experience with modelling is more to blame than the bra. Furthermore, both bras also have the practically trademarked Comexim narrow underwires, lower center gore and side, plunging shape, and deeper, lightly padded cups. The profile from the side is incredibly lifted and rounded, and I am huge fan of how the underwires do not extend