Archive for the ‘Lingerie’ Category

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A Review of the Freya Adelphi

May 19, 2013

Today we have a special guest post from That Bra Does Not Fit Her. She normally wears a size 28FF/G and this is her review of the Freya Adelphi bikini – just in time for summer!

freya-delphi1

When I first started looking at full-bust swimsuits last Christmas, I immediately fell in love with the Freya Adelphi.
The print is adorable: ferns, poppies, and other tiny flowers and leaves along with 
unique colors. When it went on sale at ASOS, I decided that I needed to have it! Unfortunately, there was only a 32F left in stock—I normally need a 28FF/28G, but I figured I would just alter the band, since it was just a triangle bikini top. I got the tie bottoms to match, and it was on its way!

It actually was a pretty good fit, even with the large band and cups. I don’t think this is a reflection of 
the top running small, rather of the flexibility in sizing for the triangle tops. I can tell that it’s a little big in some places, but the fit doesn’t bother me:

freya-delphi2

If I could have gotten my usual size of 28FF or 30F, I think this would’ve fit better. However, I am happy with the fit and I wear this swimsuit all the time, even though I still haven’t gotten around to altering it. It gives a pretty good shape even though it’s a triangle top with no underwires. It’s not super rounded, but it’s not pointy either (and I’m usually pretty picky about “pointy” shapes!) I’ll also make a note here that my breast shape is primarily shallow and full-on-top, so my biggest fit problem is usually bras cutting in on top and wrinkling at the apex. I’m not sure if I would get quadraboob in a smaller size, because here the apex is rather empty, even though the top fits well. I think that, again, this type of top is fairly flexible in size and shape.

freya-delphi3

The only thing I wasn’t thrilled about was the tie bottoms: they were fairly high-waisted compared to my usual cheap Target bottoms (which was nice), but very narrow. This created a sort of strange, tall, inverted triangle look, and were revealing in a way I’m not used to. It sort of made my butt look taller, which might be someone else’s cup of tea, but not mine. I’ve noticed that this is a common shape for Freya swimsuit bottoms, but I’m not sure if the other style would have been better. I wonder if it’s a shape that appeals to people who are a bit older than me, and is just different than I’m used to. I ended up swapping the bottoms out for a pair of white American Apparel swimsuit bottoms that I got on sale.
If I ever get around to my list of alterations, I may use the fabric from the bottoms to make the bottoms match better, but for now it’s fine for me!

freya-delphi4

There are also some cute little metal “beads” on the end of the string that say “Freya” on them. I think they’re cute, although I suppose I wish that they were plastic instead of metal, because they get cold and land on my back.

Overall, this is a pretty fantastic swimsuit! I’m personally not a fan of the bottoms, but that may just be my personal preference (I’m picky about how my bum looks!) There are no glaring fit or shape issues, and the top does a good job of supporting my bust. Plus, the print is just lovely. I would keep the top even in a very wrong size because I just love looking at it!

A great review from That Bra Does Not Fit Her. Ahh if only I had the energy to put on a bikini right now 🙂

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What to do with that ever expanding bust?

January 25, 2013

Being big busted, or even just an awkward bra size can be a nightmare. We all know this, we have all dealt with the trial and error of finding that perfectly well-fitting bra, but what do you do when your bust hasn’t stopped growing yet?

There are many reasons why breasts continue to grow, or start growing all over again. These reasons are numerous and include things such as; pregnancy, weight fluctuations, age (both younger or older), hormones, diet, or even just that time-of-the-month.
The fastest growing of these is usually pregnancy – it can be quite an overwhelming situation, and you may end up living in the biggest bra you own, afraid to buy anything new because it won’t fit you a few months down the line.

So, what can you do to deal with this constant growth? Well, I’ve put together a few solutions that may be of some use. Sure you’ve gotta ride out these hormones, but you shouldn’t have to be uncomfortable whilst doing it.

Before we get on to the bras, let’s talk about nightwear and around-the-house wear. You may remember a post I wrote a few years ago about Hot Weather and Big Bras, and in this I very briefly mentioned some of the M&S Secret Support tops. Well I’m pleased to say they are still around and still as useful as ever. While they are generally ‘inside’ tops, perhaps a little too free flowing to be worn in public, they are certainly good enough for the home. Having said that, they have now produced a version which has a bra clasp underneath, which actually is good enough to wear in public! They are fairly similar to Bravissimo’s supported cami tops, but an awful lot more affordable.

The M&S tops are listed as size DD-G; I know what you’re thinking, that doesn’t sound very big. True, it’s not huge, but it will also depend on the clothing size you pair it with. A size 10 DD-G is going to be at the smaller end, the equivalent of a 30-band perhaps, but if you’re concerned about comfort more than looks, a looser top in a 12, 14, 16 or whatever size you choose, will give you a much more adequate bosom space. Of course if you do happen to be pregnant, then this is a wonderful solution for you, as you will need to be buying a bigger clothing size to make space for that bump anyway!

So, here are the M&S tops:

Secret Support DD-G V-Neck Stretch Camisole

M&S Secret Support Stretch Camisole

M&S Secret Support Stretch Camisole

I can say from experience that this is a lovely and very comfortable top. It keeps you supported and in place, and it’s great to sleep in. Unfortunately it only comes in white, which is slightly boring and also makes it a little see-through. But as I mentioned before, this is more of an around-the-house top in any case.

Secret Support Cotton Rich DD-G Bra Vest

M&S Secret Support Bra Vest

M&S Secret Support Bra Vest

This is the top with the bra clasp at the back, which makes it fully usable to wear in public, but not so comfortable for sleeping. Fortunately it also comes in black as well as white this time. I found that a size 14 DD-G was very comfortable, not too loose, and fits my currently 32H chest. In fact, there is even a fair bit of room to grow in there!

And lastly..

Limited Collection Secret Support Modal Rich Floral Lace DD-G Vest

M&S Secret Support Lace Vest

M&S Secret Support Lace Vest

Well, this one is fairly indecent for the bigger bust, but nice to look at. I have this also in a 14 DD-G, and it is particularly low cut. By far my least favourite of the three, but it is still comfortable, and still great for sleeping in.

So, on to the bras. What exactly do you do when you don’t even know your size anymore?

The first thing to do is to try and re-establish your bra size. Ok, they may not stay that size for long, but you need to have a starting point. If you are comfortable being professionally fitted, try Bravissimo or Leia Lingerie, as they are some of the few shops likely to fit you into your correct size. If you’re not comfortable with that, here’s how to work it out yourself.

Image from All Sports

Image from All Sports

Measure under your bust, this is your band size. If you are inbetween sizes, say 33 underbust, try both a 32 and a 34 band and see which fits you best. Next, measure your overbust (around the middle of your breasts) – the easiest way to do this is to lean over forwards. This is the more difficult measurement to take, what with breasts flopping about all over the place, so don’t assume it will be 100% accurate.
For example, if your underbust measures 32 and your overbust measures 42, that is a difference of 10. So, count 10 bra size letters. 1: A, 2: B, 3: C, 4: D, 5: DD, 6: E, 7: F, 8: FF, 9: G, 10: GG and so on. Match that with your underbust measurement.

You would then have a starting point size of 32GG – this does not necessarily mean that is your exact bra size, but you can be sure that if it isn’t, your size will be very close by. The next step is trial and error with different brands and styles of bras, not much fun but worth it once you find one that fits the best.
There are of course lots of criticisms of using the tape measure, mainly because measurements do not set your bra size in stone – breast shape and comfort play important roles too. However, the quickly and constantly growing breast often has to be measured – it’s the one time when you may struggle to keep up with your body.

One of the must-have bras for growing breasts, is a sports bra. Usually they are very boring and no fun, but perhaps you will change your mind when you see this one.

The Panache sports bra:

Panache Sports Bra

Panache Sports Bra

I have this in the purple-blue-grey combination, but I’m very excited to purchase the pink version. Plus, if you buy the pink sports bra, Panache donates 10% of the profit to the charity Coppafeel, who try to raise awareness about breast cancer.

Panache Sports Bra - Pink

Panache Sports Bra – Pink

I found the band true to size, and the cups fortunately run a little big. It is an underwired bra, but weirdly (to me) it does not really ‘feel’ underwired. If you are actually using it for sport, it has that brilliant racerback clasp option, which makes the bra even more firm and supportive if that’s what you’re after. When I used it for sports I much preferred it in the racerback style, but now that I’m using it to keep my growing breasts under control, it’s useful to have the standard option too. It is without a doubt, the most comfortable sports bra I have ever owned – just wonderful. I recommend it for everyone.

Image from Threads Magazine

Image from Threads Magazine

If you happen to be a whiz with a needle and thread or a sewing machine, you may be able to get some good bargains on bras, both in stores or on places like ebay. Looking for a 32HH, but can only find a 36G? Then grab one for cheap and turn it into the 32HH you need. Having the skill to alter a band can be a lifesaver, but remember you can also pop to a local seamstress (sometimes a dry cleaner’s as well) and ask them to alter it for you. This can become especially necessary if you get to JJ/K/KK and so on, when bras your size become increasingly difficult to get hold of, not to mention expensive.

If you are still eager to buy the same bras you’ve always loved, and not let breast growth or pregnancy get in the way of those pesky sizes or wires, you may want to think about the purchases you make. So you’re a 34J and you want to buy a bra that will fit you right now? Good idea, but while you’re there, why not buy a 34JJ as well to save you some time? With my breast growth I have been doubling up on my purchases. I buy bras less often, but when I do, I grab an extra bra one cup size up to make sure I have something to wear for next month.

One last thing would be to head on over to Ewa Michalak’s website. If you don’t see your bra size listed, sometimes they can custom make one in your size, so it’s always worth asking. This becomes especially useful when you are out-sizing most other brands.

Bust increase doesn’t have to turn into an ‘attack of the giant breast’ horror movie, even though it may feel that way. Just try and put your comfort first, and make sure to have a few fall back staple items to get you through each month. Remember to keep an eye out for any bra swap/sell groups online, and always keep one eye on ebay in case any great bargains pop up. If you are going through pregnancy breast growth, and perhaps have friends that have been through it too, make sure to ask them what sort of ideas they came up with, they may surprise you with some great growth solutions!

Love

Sophia xxx

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Choosing Bridal Lingerie

September 13, 2012

Buying bridal lingerie is a challenge at the best of times, but when you outsize most bridal boutiques, it makes finding that perfect undergarment doubly hard.

It has taken me quite some time to compile this selection (not least because I’ve been simultaneously planning the wedding – just 1 day left to go now!)
Of course these are just some of the lingerie items I tried and tested. I browsed different brands in Debenhams (not including the Debenhams Gorgeous range, as the current extent of their bridal range is one ivory t-shirt bra) and saw that almost every ‘bridal’ devoted section carried mainly 38Cs – none had bands smaller than a 34, and there were no cups bigger than a D. I was disappointed to say the least, but then again, high street brands never fail to disappoint.

After a great deal of trial and error, I found a selection of lingerie perfect to test out for the big day.

I visited my faithful friend Bravissimo, knowing they would have at least a few pieces of Bridal lingerie in store.

First I tried the gorgeous Evie basque by Panache.

Panache Evie – 32G

First and foremost, this basque looks and feels beautiful. It’s soft, supportive and just lovely to look at. My only problem was that it wasn’t right for my dress. My gown has a v-shaped neckline, so the standard strapless straight-across-no-cleavage style just wasn’t going to work for me. The size however, was spot on for me in a 32G.

The next thing I tried, was the Gossard Ooh la la Corselette in vintage cream.

Gossard Ooh la la Corselette – 32G

This was mildly better in terms of shape relating to my dress, but frankly it wasn’t half as comfortable as the Evie basque, and I felt like it was just too much (especially with the bow in the middle – how does that work under a wedding dress?)
Again I tried a 32G, but this one came up a little big in both the cup and the waist. I just didn’t find it particularly flattering for my shape, and it very much felt like a big busted corset made for a very straight slim figure.

By this point, I felt like even the bigger busted brands were starting to let me down. Why did nothing seem to be quite what I was looking for?
I decided that the answer was that a basque or corset just wasn’t for me. Perhaps it was time to start looking at matching sets rather than a single piece.

I had seen just the thing I wanted to try. Bravissimo’s new Ivory Satine bra. But guess what? They had sold out of every size even remotely close to my own size! I was so disappointed, but never fear, there was something else I could try in the meantime…

The Satine bra is the same design as Bravissimo’s Oh So Kimono bra. All I needed to do was find my size in that style, and rush home to order the Ivory Satine online! Problem solved.

Bravissimo Oh So Kimono – 30H

As I have discovered with other Bravissimo own bras, the 32G I tried ran loose in the band and small in the cup. The best size for me was actually 30H, there was still a little emptiness in the very bottom of the cup, but the style just naturally pushes your bust to the top of the bra. It’s smooth, soft and very very comfortable, I couldn’t wait to try out the Ivory version.

Bravissimo Ivory Satine – 30H

The Ivory Satine was out of stock in my size for quite some time, so it was a month or so before one arrived at my door. Unbelievably, as bad luck would have it, I had lost a bit of weight by the time it arrived, which meant the 30H was just now a little too big, which you can perhaps see a little bit in the pictures. Despite this, I adore this bra, it is just so beautiful – I have decided to keep it anyway, as I’m sure it will fit me again. 🙂

By this time, it was too late to order a replacement, and so I went to my trusty Polish favourite – Ewa Michalak – and bought a couple of bras to test out, hoping one would do the trick.

First I tried their white Mleczny strapless bra:

Ewa Michalak – Mleczny – 65GG (30GG)

This was a terrible fit on me, unfortunately. I got a tighter band 65 (30), and that felt perfect, but for some reason, the cups just did not work for my shape. Weirdly the side I have that big gap at the bottom of the cup, is my bigger side. The shape of this bra is really better suited to a top-heavy breast shape, unlike mine. You may often find that a bra that works for one woman, won’t work for another woman of the same size, purely because their breast shapes are very different.

The last one I tried was the very lovely PL Malwa bra.

Ewa Michalak – PL Malwa – 70G (32G)

This was perfect. Both comfortable and cute (look at that adorable flower detail!), it was just what I was after, not to mention it gives great lift and cleavage. I got this in a 70G (32G) and it was absolutely spot on in that size – a nice tight band (considering I measure 30 underbust at the moment).

Ewa Michalak – PL Malwa – 70G (32G)

The matching pants were very cute too! They do run small, so I made sure to size up.

I should also mention that I was very keen to get hold of the PL Lilia bra to try, as it has that beautiful satin-y finish that I was after, but alas my size was out of stock, and I really had run out of time by this point.

I think looks-wise, my real favourite was the Ivory Satine bra, but in terms of what worked with my dress, the Malwa was the clear winner. Both brilliant bras, and definitely my favourites out of everything I tried on.

Well girls, sorry for the fairly short post this time, I am finishing this just as I nip out the door to my hotel, and won’t be back until after the wedding! Wish me luck!

Love

Sophia xxx

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A Rival for the Deco Bra

July 30, 2012

As some of you may remember, last month I reviewed the very lovely Parfait by Affinitas Charlotte bra. At the end of my post, I talked about their beautiful Casey bra too, and how I was very keen to get hold of that particular style. I am an absolute sucker for a blue bra (particularly the lovely light blue of this one).

Well, the wonderful Cha from Large Cup Lingerie (who I believe is the only UK retailer to currently stock the Affinitas Charlotte bra) very kindly did some digging, attempting hunt down the Casey bra for me. She really knows how to unearth those hard-to-find bras, because sure enough, I am now the proud owner of a gorgeous light blue Casey.
I cannot recommend Large Cup Lingerie highly enough – rarely have I ever asked a company for help finding a certain item (that they do not usually stock), let alone have them hunt it down for me and keep me very well-informed along the way. Remember that LLC also offer free worldwide shipping, so if there is a particular item of lingerie you are after, they should be your first stop for information, without a doubt. As always, their customer service is beyond reproach. Click here for more information about their site.

Parfait by Affinitas – Casey – 32G

So, on to the review. As the title suggests, I think we may finally have found a rival for Freya’s very own Deco bra. The Casey is lightly padded (in a very similar style to the Deco), and gives a nice smooth cleavage, again, much the same as the Deco. The colours are fairly limited, it only comes in light blue and nude, but despite this, looks-wise it is actually very elegant. The cups are overlayed along the sides with a beautiful lace of the same colour – this definitely gives it a little something extra so it doesn’t feel quite like your run-of-the-mill everyday bra.

Parfait by Affinitas – Casey – 32G

The sizing however, is very different to that of the deco. I have this in a 32G, the same size as I have my Charlotte bra. The cups are very generous, and I think possibly I would even have chosen to size down. In any case, this is good news for H-cup girls, as it means they may not necessarily be outsized by the brand. I found the 32 band true to size, not overly loose like the deco, and not too tight either. The straps are fully adjustable, with the standard 3-hook clasp at the back. I felt wonderfully supported in this bra, and it passed the wear-test with flying colours, causing no discomfort whatsoever.

Parfait by Affinitas – Casey – 32G

If you’re looking for a deco alternative, keep the Casey in mind, it does not dissapoint. As ever, I really do hope Affinitas consider increasing their size range. They have such a charming selection, I really think branching out a bit further would give them a lot more business.

Curvy Kate – Smoothie Bra

I’m also very much looking forward to the release of Curvy Kate’s Smoothie bra which will be released later this year. Not only does it look like another rival Deco bra, but it goes all the way up to a J-cup! Exciting news!

Love

Sophia xxx

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Freya – Blog Star Competition Two!

July 10, 2012

Last year, Freya launched their first Blog Star competition where they searched the nation for new and exciting blogging talent. Well, they’ve done it again!
Freya have launched their second Blog Star competition, and you could be in with a chance to join their blog panel, and contribute to their ‘fitting talk’.

Freya Blog Star Competition

To enter, all you have to do is pick out your favourite style or styles from their AW12 collection, write a short paragraph on what you like about it and why, and upload a photo to go alongside your description. Freya give an example on the entry page to give you some ideas. You can upload either a mood-board or a photo to back up your thoughts on their collection.

You have until the 15th of July to get your entries in, and the finalists will be announced on the 17th July.

Click here to find more details and to enter the competition.

Good luck girls!

Love

Sophia xxx

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Ewa Michalak – CH Lato

July 5, 2012

Ever since Ewa Michalak posted this beautiful picture (below) on their Facebook page, I have yearned for the Lato bra.

Ewa Michalak models wearing the Lato bra

The photo has four of their current models all posing together each wearing the stunning bra – some of them wearing the plunge style, and others wearing the half-cup.
It is such a happy photograph, and the Lato consists of such gorgeous summery colours, that I knew I had to get hold of this bra.

I was unsure as to whether to get the CH (half-cup) or the PL (plunge) version, because both were very tempting. I opted for the CH Lato purely because I own more PL styles at the moment.

The first thing to note is that this bra (as with most of their bras) is wonderfully comfortable. I often wear Ewa Michalak bras to work because they feel so nice to wear…all day long, (not kidding, I’m wearing one now!)

Ewa Michalak – Lato – 70G (32G)

As with many of their styles, this bra runs tight in the band. I am currently wearing most bras in a 30GG at the moment, but purchased the Lato in a 70G (32G). The style and fit are almost identical to the CH Toffik bra, which I loved, so I was more than happy with the fit. The bra straps are only partially adjustable, however, the straps are not particularly stretchy, and the band is very supportive which makes this work. The cups are lightly padded and run true to size, so I got this in my usual cup size and it was a perfect fit.

Ewa Michalak – Lato – 70G (32G)

Unfortunately (as I often seem to forget) half-cup bras don’t work brilliantly on me, because I have bottom-heavy breasts. This can often mean I have gaping at the top of the cup (which is actually the reason why I no longer own one of the fabulous Rhea bras). Despite this, I decided to keep the Lato bra, it still looks lovely, and the gaping isn’t as obvious as I make it sound.

It’s one of my new favourite bras; the beautiful aqua blue ribbons and coral floral patterns work wonderfully together. While lots of people are off having fun in the sun, some of us (sadly) have to stay here, in the rain, whilst our bikinis gather dust. Despite the crummy weather, the Lato really does make you feel like summer is just around the corner…somewhere. 🙂

Caroline over at Curvy Wordy has done a review of the PL Lato, so if you’re interested in the plunge style, why not take a look and see what she thought.

As some of you may know, I’m getting married in just a few months, so apologies if my posts are a bit few and far between. I will certainly be doing a bridal lingerie post at some point soon – oh the trials and tribulations of trying to find something that fits. Hopefully, Ewa Michalak’s Lilia bra will be one of the ones I test out!

Love

Sophia xxx

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Parfait by Affinitas

June 2, 2012

Affinitas are a brand I was not previously familar with, so when I heard about them from some fellow big busted girls, I had to see what all the fuss was about. It’s safe to say their beautiful selection of lingerie is nothing short of stunning. The set that caught my eye in particular (and Becky’s too, who reviewed it on Invest in Your Chest)  was the Parfait Charlotte set. It comes in red/black as well, but it was the peach/black that really stood out for me. The Parfait range is probably my favourite from their selections, but there are so many beautiful items it’s hard to choose! 

Parfait by Affinitas – Charlotte – Peach/Black

It’s taken quite some time to get hold of this little gem in my size – I contacted numerous companies asking for assistance, including Affinitas themselves, but they just brushed me off suggesting different styles or colours instead. They were at least friendly and polite which is great, but didn’t solve my problem especially as I had my heart set on this particular version of the Charlotte.
The one wonderful company that went above and beyond to help me on my quest for the Charlotte bra, was Large Cup Lingerie. I have heard of them before of course, but never realised quite how brilliant they really are. They are the reason I have this gorgeous set in my possession, and they have very quickly become one of my go-to online shops to buy from.  I cannot fault their customer service, and their online site reminds me a lot of Leia Lingerie, with an outlet section with lots of discounts, yay!

The Charlotte set has a beautiful vintage feel to it; the modest peach colouring combined with the burlesque-style black and satin panelling makes you feel a million dollars as soon as you put it on.
When it arrived in the post, I raced to put it on and headed off to work. I think it must have done incredible things for my confidence, because I received three lovely compliments throughout the day, and the only difference was the bra set!

Parfait by Affinitas – Charlotte – Peach/Black

It is lightly padded with 3 hooks at the back, and fully adjustable straps. I chose to get a 32G; I had heard that the band ran tight, and found that indeed true. It was perfect in the 32, and in fact it’s very comfortable. In the first 5 minutes I thought the label would become really scratchy, but I completely forgot  it was there from that point on, which is very good news (I hate to cut out labels). The cups do run small, so the centre gore was very slightly lifted in the middle. I suspect perhaps a GG would’ve been a better fit, but crucially, it wasn’t uncomfortable, nor did it bother me, and there didn’t seem to be any four-boob syndrome going on.

You will notice in the pictures of the bra, that by the end of the day, my breasts had shifted about, so there is a bit of space at the bottom – once rearranged however, the space goes away again, which is a similar issue I have with the Deco bras. It doesn’t cause any problems, it just means you need to check every so often that everything is sitting where it’s meant to be!

Parfait by Affinitas – Charlotte – Peach/Black

I had a choice between regular or high waisted briefs; I opted for high waisted – given the beautiful retro style of the set, I think they go wonderfully with the bra. I got them in a Large, and they were a perfect fit, very comfortable too. 

I’m amazed actually that such a ‘bedroom’ set is so pleasing to wear. I wore it for the whole day, and didn’t have any real fit or comfort issues at all. 

You can buy this set here from Large Cup Lingerie, and they offer free shipping worldwide!
If you’re in the US, you may also have some retailers near you that stock Affinitas (lucky you). 

I’m still lusting after some of the other Parfait by Affinitas bras, and the next one I have my eye on is the Blue Casey bra…it looks like a light blue Deco, wow!

Parfait by Affinitas – Casey – Pale Blue

Love

Sophia xxx