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April 2013

A Eulogy for Fauve's Delphine & a Giant Gap in the Market

Bronte Plunge Balcony in Jade
At press appointments, I try to hold it together because I have a misleading baby's face, I want to eat all the free mini-cupcakes and my make up has already begun to melt because New York makes me intolerably sweaty. I try to keep my professional demeanor intact and avoid begging, whining, and squealing. When we got around to talking about Fauve in the Eveden meeting though, I became slightly unreasonable. Why, you ask? Because they're murderers...

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DD+ Outfit: Hello Peplum, It's Great to Finally Meet You

The weather was practically begging for an outfit post yesterday. I've been terrible about keeping these up, I'm such a wimp about taking pictures outside. I hate the cold! I don't know how other bloggers do it, their secret must be really, really cool coats. Now, I'm late to the party on this trend, but let's talk about peplum. Are you opposed? In favor?

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NYC Press Event: Fantasie

Behind the scenes: Eveden NYC's Wall of Bras (Fauve on the left, Fantasie on the right)
For Autumn/Winter 2013, Panache Superbra and Fantasie had a lot in common. In the past, both brands leaned in the "mumsy" direction while refusing to sacrifice a terrific fit. They were both conservative and reliable collections that sometimes left me a little drowsy. But both companies have rolled out strong, interesting designs for this season and there's an undeniable freshness in their approach. Panache has focused on designing new basics in the wake of their success with the Jasmine and continued popularity with the Andorra, while Fantasie has transformed many of their basics into sexy fashion.

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Ewa Bien

Driada (Bra style B230)
Ewa Bien began under unique circumstances and advanced to it's current position with confidence, energy, and incomparable design direction. After graduating with a degree in ecological biology, the eponymous founder could not find a job in her field. She began designing children's clothing and then, women's swimwear and simple lingerie for straight size busts. Ten years ago, the company realized the full bust niche market was expanding and began adapting their designs for DD+ women. Let's take a look at this spark plug:

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Are you curious about ordering from Avocado?

This morning, I received an email from Paulina Gi┼╝ycka, who is my contact at Avocado. She wrote to tell me she had read your comments on the post and wanted to help. If you're wondering about wire width, would like to know more about ordering or need help figuring out your size, she's your gal. I talked with Paulina when I visited the Avocado store and she's one of the sweetest people I've ever met. I guarantee you'll be in good hands. :)

Her email is  


Twelve years ago, Avocado was born out of a gap in the lingerie market. Joanna and Anna Lejwoda, the sisters behind the company, were unsatisfied with the ubiquitous matronly bras in their sizes. Felina and Triumph were the only companies creating full bust options in large quantities, but they found their bras too conservative and the size range too restrictive. The Lejowdas admired the French aesthetic and eventually found that while their bras were stunning, they weren't practical for everyday wear. They wanted to create a company that would combine the elements they couldn't find in the market and would align with their sophisticated taste. Avocado basics are simple -- almost minimalist -- but retain an element of whimsy and elegance. Their collection has the boldest, bravest, most impeccable pieces I've ever seen. I'm pleased to show you Avocado, a brand I've definitely fallen for: 

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NYC Press Day: Freya

Totally Tartan Padded Half Cup (July)
 Last week at my press appointment, I experienced my typical reaction to Freya  -- a combination of "Argh!" and "Ohmygod I want that!" -- but then something shifted. I did something totally out of character: I fought for bras I wanted to see from Freya!! On Miss Underpinnings, I have no problem articulating what I want, but in meetings, I'm too busy taking pictures, absorbing information, and I'll admit, I get a little shy. So, what changed? Well, I know I could not have done it without you guys. Your questions fill me with confidence and make me realize, hey it's okay to ask for things you'd like to buy! It might seem obvious, but it's taken me more than a year and a half to get to this point. I'm sending a big thank you your way. So, now I'm asking everyone in the comments -- if you could design a new Freya bra, what would it be?

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Guide to Samanta's Constructions

Samanta's Siva #922 & brief #500 (SS 13 Fashion)
Samanta organizes their bras by category (elegant, seductive, classic) and cup shape (shallow, deep, or very deep). They also recommend "matches" by indicating what type of tissue (firm, soft, small, big, etc.) works with a particular style.  Their fashion collections, which come out in the usual order, operate differently.  Unlike the British brands, who offer one or perhaps two constructions in a given debut line, Samanta offers several. The brand debuts fewer new lines overall, but with significantly more variety within those lines. For instance, the Siva fashion (SS13) has five different constructions. Or within the basic Papilio group, there are currently seven shapes available. They also guarantee that they put out one new construction per season so there's always something fresh to try.

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NYC Press Day: Reader Questions for Panache

Last week, I posted that I'd be visiting Panache and Eveden headquarters in New York City. Almost all of my meetings begin with the greatest question: what feedback have you received from your readers? So, to stay up to speed on what y'all are into, I called for questions, comments, and requests on my Facebook page and Twitter account. Here's what you guys had to say for Panache and their answers:

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Mix & Match Swimwear: Full Bust Tops & High Waist Bottoms

The suit that started it all -- Modcloth Cutie Pie Picnic Two Piece by Lucy B.
I was sitting around the other day on my computer, pitifully dwelling in a well of retail envy. As many of you already know, I'm crazy for retro details like puff sleeves, kitschy prints, and anything high waisted. I was scrolling through Modcloth's pin-up inspired bikinis and silently whining that none of the two piece sets came in full bust sizes. Granted, there are a few DD+ high waist bottoms floating around out there right now. If you like bright prints, Panache has their Tallulah and Freya has a black option in the Showboat range.  I love the texture of the Showboat, but I wanted something a little more over-the-top (see above) and striking. I decided to play around and see how many different combinations I could make with full bust bikini tops and high waist bottom options. The results:

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NYC Press Day: Masquerade

Alice Slip, 28-38 D-G
I've heard from brand representatives and fellow bloggers that the Autumn/Winter 2013 collection is an improvement over recent Masquerade seasons. I've revered the brand for some time, but the luxe label from Panache has been lost in the woods. I'd agree that this group is stronger and I'm still disappointed.

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NYC Press Day: Panache

Behind the Scenes at Panache
For a few seasons now, I've felt lukewarm towards Big Mamma P. They had remarkable success with their sport's bra, the Tango celebrated it's tenth birthday, and the rest of the collection seemed to be resting on it's laurels. I shouldn't dismiss these accomplishments lightly. Bras can debut and die in the same season so that the Tango has been popular enough to warrant a decade of production is no small feat. The reaction to the sports bra was unreal; it's the stuff C.E.O.s dream of. Finally, there was the big dark horse of the whole shebang, the Jasmine. It slipped under my radar, but every blogger who has tried it, or store owner who has stocked it, raves about that bra. But for Autumn/Winter 2013, the entire Superbra range came roaring back with a vengeance. Consider the prettiness:

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