Shelly’s Friday Fitting

Iris was, as usual, a genius at finding what worked best. Before I disclose Shelly’s size after the jump, see if you can guess from the clues below.

1. As I tweeted earlier, Victoria’s Secret put Shelly in a 38C. It was an adorable blue and white polka dot 38C, but it did nothing for her figure. The VS bra is on the left.

2. Iris put Shelly in a seamed Chantelle (on the right). Iris insisted that seamed was the best option for Shelly–that’s the next clue for you. (I think Shelly also looks pretty good in the Prima Donna Satin below–but that’s not a clue. I continue to resist seamed bras. Iris said she’d like to put me in the Prima Dona Menton. Has anyone tried it?)

3. Shelly has always nodded so knowingly when I’ve explained the type of shirt I’m creating. But I couldn’t tell if it was just a bad bra causing her to relate, or if she was a D cup or higher. Here’s your next clue: she can relate because she’s a D cup or higher. On Friday, she told me about a meeting she once attended in India where the speaker stopped everything and said to her in front of everyone, “Would you button your shirt? It’s distracting everyone.” She hadn’t even realized that one of her buttons had popped open. Can anyone top that horror story???

Okay, drum roll please . . . . and continue after the jump to see if you guessed Shelly’s correct size. (One more hint: I didn’t.)

Shelly wears a 34DD/E. Congratulations, JJ, for being the first one to guess correctly!

Interestingly, Shelly considers herself to have a pear shape because she has wide hips. However, with her new bra size in mind, she may want to play up the hourglass aspects of her figure!

What I’ve Been Wearing All Weekend

I found this T-shirt for $12.99 at JCPenney on Thursday, but I don’t see it online. I love the scoop neck, of course, and the color, but here’s what else I’ve noticed: the pattern distracts from my bust! I’ve always searched for plain tees, but with the end-of-summer sales and my desperation to replace some of my stained tees, I was open to trying whatever caught my eye. I really appreciate the detail that I post after the jump.

Speaking of stains, on the way home that day, I bought a chocolate ice cream cone. While using my right hand to put my change away, my left breast bumped into the ice cream I was holding in my left hand. That’s what I get for forgetting that part of me sticks out further than the rest of me! Thankfully, the Baskin-Robbins lady let me go behind the counter to wash it off my white shirt right away.

Here’s the detail I appreciate. For a simple tee that only cost $26 originally, it says a lot that JCP made sure to match the fabric pattern at the seams.

Business Briefing: Going for it! Going for it?

I’m finalizing everything for my first production order, so this business briefing may be all I write today. The reality of placing this order has actually paralyzed me. Yesterday, I found myself browsing the mall–ostensibly for the great finds I’m going to report on this blog–but truthfully, shopping is my classic avoidance/comfort strategy. Read after the jump if you’re up for the self-analysis and pep talk I’m giving myself. I would certainly appreciate your thoughts!

Even the buttons are paralyzing me. The plastic buttons above cost $0.78 per shirt. Shell buttons cost $5.83 per shirt. Shell buttons are nicer, but not $5.05 nicer. Or are they?

(By the way, do you want to know why “white-white” shell buttons cost so much? I learned this on Tuesday. It’s because each shell only yields a limited surface that either (a) doesn’t need to be cleaned or (b) is thick enough to withstand cleaning. The more cleaning that is done, the thinner the surface becomes, which makes the button more likely to break. One shell may only yield three white-white buttons.)

And then there are the measurements. First, in writing them down, we’re discovering that size 8L (for G/H cups) may have different measurements in places like sleeve length than 8S and 8M (for D/E/F cups). I’m inclined to move forward rather than revise the pattern because I know the shirt sample from this pattern looks great on my H cup model. It seems foolish to put the time and expense into revisions that I’m not positive will matter. However, when a customer tries on an 8M and an 8L, the only thing that should be different are the bust measurements. The current situation has the potential to confuse customers. On the other hand, what if 8L customers are happier overall with their shirts than 8M customers? See what I mean about paralysis?

Don’t get me started on the correct measurement for the collar stand width. Is it edge to edge or button to buttonhole?

When I step back, I think the real issue is fear of commitment. I’ve spent two and a half years preparing to place this order. Now that it’s time to jump, I’m inching back from the edge of the diving board.

I’m also a perfectionist. It should reassure me that I’m calling this first order of 48 shirts a “soft launch”. I’m placing such a small order in case I’ve really miscalculated something and everyone needs to return their shirts. Plus, I’m offering women who purchase during the soft launch a rebate for sending me their honest reviews.

But it’s hard to convince a perfectionist to put down her pencil. I need your help!

Marketing Disillusionment?

You’ve probably already read the Jezebel story that London Fog photoshopped Christina Hendricks in its ads. If so, what was your reaction to these side-by-side pictures?

At first I was incensed. By itself, the picture on the left would cause me to wonder what was wrong with me when I tried the coat on. The picture on the right gives me a realistic expectation of the best it can look on an hourglass shape.

Today Marketa sent me The Gothamist version of this story, which has a YouTube video of the photo shoot embedded in it. After watching the video, I feel less annoyed. She simply looks amazing. I’m going to try trench coats on the next time I see them (and strike a few of those poses for my husband!). So perhaps London Fog’s marketing has worked after all.

What I am annoyed with, however, is Jezebel. When I read the Jezebel article last night, a couple of stylists wrote about hourglass figures in the comments section. They suggested leaving a trench coat unbuttoned to the waist and belting it (a la Jennifer Hudson). I meant to go back and read their comments in more detail today, but they have since disappeared! (Nothing after the jump.)