As a woman, finding a good fitted top is akin to finding the Holy Grail. If your shape is quite straight up and down, you’re in luck; most likely you can find many a well-fitting top somewhere as simple as the high street.
At the other end of the spectrum, some women have quite a variation between the measurement around their chest, and the measurement around their waist. My measurements are 40-30, so finding a top that will be fitted in both those areas is more than a little challenging. It’s quick and easy to make simple box-shaped clothing, but to design a top that fits and clings to the contours of a curvy girl is no simple task.
Bravissimo, or Pepperberry as their clothing side is now named, were one of the first and few places I discovered that catered for a bigger bust. In addition to the standard clothing size, they allow you to specify a chest size as well; C – Curvy, RC – Really Curvy, and SC – Super Curvy (and lately they have been developing SDC – Super Duper Curvy). However, due to the cost of the clothes available, and the huge variance in their sizes, I do not often buy from them. My friend and fellow blogger Georgina Horne often writes about them, so you can find some much more detailed information about their clothes on her blog if you wish to know more.
It had been a while since I last purchased anything from Pepperberry, so recently I did. There was a lovely casual stretchy top on their website; the Button Trim Jersey top. I thought the two available colours – dusky pink and grey – were quite bland, but I decided maybe the pink could work for me. I have previously bought tops from them in a size 8SC (as I have often found their 8 fits like a high street 10) but I had heard some of their newer styles were tighter. I eventually settled on a 10RC, which was an OK fit. I think it was fine around the waist, but slightly loose in other areas.
It’s a nice top, and I do like it, but it’s just not quite perfect. I was very keen on the button detail and the waistband strip, but I think the bland colours ruin it for me. If they had perhaps brought it out in two brighter shades as well, I very much think I would’ve purchased more than one.
Up until very recently, I was still struggling with my well-worn high street tops, and feeling frumpy because they just don’t fit me the way I want them to. Through some discussions with friends and other bloggers, I discovered BiuBiu; the Polish equivalent to Pepperberry. Ordering from abroad didn’t put me off, because as any regular reader of my blog knows, I often buy lingerie from the Polish company Ewa Michalak with much success.
BiuBiu have a lovely site, and it has a translate button into English; very handy for me given that I don’t speak a word of Polish!
Like Pepperberry, they have three different chest size options. They use the letter ‘B’ which stands for ‘biust’ of course meaning ‘bust’. They have B – similar to Curvy, BB – similar to Really Curvy, and BBB – similar to Super Curvy. Their size chart put me in a 36BB, which in my opinion seems to be the equivalent of an 8RC (or even SC). I decided on two tops in 36BB and two in 38BB, as I had heard the 36 was tight on some girls of a similar size who had already tried BiuBiu.
This is the Porto in a 36B/BB (with the stretchy tops they have either B/BB or BB/BBB, as there is more of a variation with the added stretch).
I found the 36 quite tight, but then my waist size is more of a 10 than an 8. Of course in regular high street clothes, I rarely ever fit into a 10, because they don’t leave much room for the bust. I think if I were to get another Porto, I would opt for the 38.
This is the Pamir, also 36B/BB.
I love this top! It’s a little tight just as the 36 Porto was, but the pattern actually disguises that to some extent. I have a thing about my arms and shoulders being a bit bigger compared to the rest of me; this top is actually a great help, as the dark brown sleeves are slimming for those areas. This is definitely a favourite.
Next, another stretchy top, the Hue in a 38B/BB.
This is an unusual pattern. It’s not normally the kind of thing I would go for, but I already have a fair few plain block colour tops, and wanted to go for something a bit more interesting. I very much liked this; it’s more modest than the Porto or the Pamir because the neckline is stitched a little higher up. I found the 38 a much more comfortable fit than the 36, so I think 38B/BB is my ‘BiuBiu size’.
Last but not least, I was excited to try one of BiuBiu’s fitted shirts. It’s been a long time since I had a shirt that fit around the waist and didn’t cause all the buttons to ping off over the bust, so I was interested to see how these would fit. With the tailored clothes rather than the stretch, the sizes stay as B, BB and BBB. According to their sizing chart I would be 36BB, but I decided to go for 38BB because of my previous experience with the 36.
This is the Vanity Fair shirt in navy. It is a perfect fit in the 38. I love the square buttons, I love the shape and the very careful stitching – I have no criticisms about this shirt. If you need a lovely smart fitted shirt, BiuBiu is the place to go.
I am really very impressed with BiuBiu, not only are the clothes great, but the customer service is fantastic; they are exceptionally friendly and helpful. While Bravissimo is definitely one of my first choices for Lingerie, Pepperberry definitely comes second compared to BiuBiu in clothing. Their sizing is very consistent, which is especially a good thing if you are buying from abroad. I can safely say BiuBiu is a new favourite for me, and I will certainly be buying from them in future. Fitted tops are elusive no longer!