Last Tuesday, I went to the semi-annual lingerie trade show in New York, Curve. Before I went, I was so excited! If you didn't know any of the particulars, you'd think I was eight years old and going to Disneyworld. I planned my outfit ahead of time and made a checklist of brands and styles I was hoping to see.
This is a picture of me when I'm 8 and at Disneyworld. I think I may have been MORE excited for Curve.
The journey, to get to Curve, was pretty arduous. I woke up at five in the morning, rode forty minutes to catch the train, and then had a two hour train ride to the city. When we were on the train, I had a startling realization that I had 1.) pretty severe cramps and 2.) there was no way I was going to get any make-up on my sensitive, bloodshot eyes. That's also the exact moment I gave up on looking halfway presentable and taking any pictures.
When we walked in, the first thing we noticed was the relatively small dimensions of the show. Somehow, I'd imagined Curve to be larger or contain more booths. There were large booths, but it was a surprise to see all of the major brands in such an intimate setting. I suppose it does make some sense since the products are small as well. Bras, panties, vibrators, hosiery and nipple covers don't take up that much physical space.
The sweet ladies at the Little Bra Company gave us faux pearl badge holders.
Walking through the show, it became clear how focused this show really is. The booths were full of representatives showing their lines to prospective buyers. In some of the larger booths, there would be three or four meetings being held at once while live models posed and bystanders walked through to take a quick peek. It looked a little stress-inducing for some of the poor reps. When we could find a booth in a quiet moment, it was absolutely lovely to look through their new collection. That's why I look so super, duper happy below:
I attended the show with my fabulous manager, Barbara, and her daughter, Jamie. After several meetings, we all noticed this funny pattern. We'd see an entire collection and then make copious notes on which styles, colors, or collections caught our eye. Each time, each person's "favorite" would be the exact same type of bra. Barbara likes seamless basic t-shirt styles. Jamie liked push-up plunges. I wanted anything that went to a G-cup. Without thinking, we'd all picked the styles we thought looked best on us or we personally gravitated to. Although I thought it looked hard to be a brand representative, it was difficult to choose the best bras in a sea of fantastic design concepts, innovative lingerie ideas, and exciting fabric options. Lingerie buyers don't have it easy either!
In terms of trends, I really couldn't help myself. I'm such a slave to them. Here are a few patterns I saw across multiple full bust brands:
- Birds: Who knew?! It made me think of this clip, which kept cracking me up. The bird prints were actually really sweet and lovely, but I guess people in Portland won't be surprised to see a bra like this.
- Leopard print. Cheryl at Invest in Your Chest has posted photographs of the leopard print bras that will be available in the next season. The Parfait by Affinitas print was exceptionally bold and old-school.
- Retro shapes. I firmly believe high-waisted briefs make me look like a rock star. I'm a little biased; I was a history major so I like anything that makes me feel like I've gone back in time. Longlines and high-waisted panties were everywhere, but I'm really looking forward to two Freya groups, 'Gem' and 'Piper'.
- Moody Blue Palatte: For Autumn 2012, there are a ton of teals, opals, sapphires, greys, and rich navys. Usually I'm not into blue, but this bra blew my mind in person. If you prefer more feminine blues, the Cameo Blue colorway in the new Claudette En Dentelle will delight you.
- Extended Deco Size Range. I know this isn't technically a trend, but I just wanted to say: Hallelujah!!
Sadly, many of these styles or trends won't be available until autumn. Fall seems far, far away right now. Until then, there are still new, ground-breaking releases in the full busted lingerie world: the Star-in-a-Bra competition arrives in the States in April, the 28GG Freya Deco lands in June, and Evollove by the Bendon Group emerges in August!