Maxi Dress Week–and a Grouping PSA

In Tina’s post tomorrow, she’ll share some interesting prints and lines that are flattering to busty women in a maxi dress, so I thought I’d share my own recent find on this subject. Also, look for my review of the Bolero Beachwear maxi dress on Wednesday–it just arrived this afternoon and I don’t think I’ll be taking it off for the rest of the summer!

You know why the Style & Co. sleeveless striped maxi dress in front caught my eye, don’t you?

neckline boob sleeveless striped maxi

Here’s a hint.

hint neckline boob sleeveless striped maxi

Yes, it has bra-friendly straps and a nice scoop neck, but the grouping of the stripes makes this an especially big bust friendly maxi.

So you can see why the photo below also caught my eye.

waistline boob striped maxi

A better bra would help, too, but it’s the effect of the bright pink stripe above her breasts that caught my attention.

Busty women can wear any stripes they want any way they want! But if your goal is to look lifted, avoid allowing the stripes to group your boobs with your waistline.

 

 

Full Bust Finds

Sometimes I stumble across full bust finds that I wasn’t planning to write about, and I want to share them with you while they’re fresh on my mind and still available in stores. So I’m creating a new category for this type of post. Today’s discoveries came from yet another venture into Macy’s. I couldn’t help it–I passed it on the way to get buttonholes sewn into one of my shirts, and I had to see if I could fit the Jessica Simpson seersucker dress in size 12.

Only there was no Jessica Simpson seersucker dress left in size 12, and it’s no longer available on their website either!

However, I found another great Jessica Simpson dress that you’re going to love. It’s not even on the Macy’s website, but you can find this chambray Jessica Simpson sundress on the Dillard’s website.

 

jessica simpson chambray sundress

I found the size 12 to be boob-smashing, and they didn’t have a size 14 in stock, but this gives you an idea of the fit.

jessica simpson chambray sundress side

 And I’m not even bothered by the armhole bra display because guess what? Those wide grosgrain ribbon straps are adjustable in back (and I was wearing them at their very loosest)! Plus, the elasticized smocking is great for contributing a little more give to the boob area.

jessica simpson chambray sundress back details

Next up is a Betsey Johnson dress that I only wish I had an excuse to buy. This could work for any event that requires dressing up–weddings, cocktail parties, graduations, etc.

betsey johnson lacy polka dot dress

 It’s lacy and stretchy and oh so feminine. Other than needing to be slightly shortened, I felt like the size 14 fit perfectly.

perfect big bust dress for a wedding betsey johnson illusion

 And guess what? It even has back interest!

betsey johnson illusion dress back

(Ignore the pink hanger loops.)

The keyhole back actually lay flat when I wasn’t contorting myself to take this picture. In both photos, you can see my beige bra through the lace. I’d want to wear a prettier bra under this dress, but the visibility otherwise wouldn’t bother me.

Off the Rack ~ Urkye “Floresy” Dress Reviewed

Urkye recently introduced a bunch of new dresses, including two really cool colorblock options, the Esy and the Floresy, each in three colorways. I immediately knew I’d be buying one, but stupidly waited to see if Urkye would offer a coupon or a sale.

I really wanted the Floresy in the green on black color, and I kept checking to see if any sizes were selling out, a warning that I needed to snatch up my size before it was gone. And then all of a sudden one day all the 36’s and 38’s were gone! Now that I’m looking again it seems more green sizes are back in stock, though with low availability. In any case, I ended up buying the black on purple color while I could.

I was going to order 38 o/oo since my 36 oo/ooo Kieska dress is a little tighter than ideal, but it turned out to be a blessing in disguise that I could only get 36 oo/ooo because this dress runs much looser. In fact, it’s actually a little too loose and also has a couple other issues as well.

(I’m wearing a 65HH Comexim Magic Blue bra in all these photos. And as always, click the photos to see them larger.)

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The biggest issue for me is that the chest is baggy under my bust. It’s quite bizarre, because it fits just fine in the upper half. It’s as if my boobs are too high up for the dress.

Note the ski slope shape under my boobs instead of the fabric curving along the underside.

Note the ski slope shape under my boobs instead of the fabric curving along the underside.

Here’s how I expected it to fit (or at least closer to this).

Here’s how I expected it to fit (or at least closer to this).

I definitely wouldn’t size down to a 34 because it’d be too clingy on the rest of my body, but I’m fairly certain a 36 o/oo would be an improvement.

The second major issue is that the hips aren’t shaped quite right. Where the black fabric meets the purple on my hips, the sides come to a distinct point. You can even see it a little in Urkye’s own photos, but until I got the dress I just assumed that was bunching up like you always get walking around in a tight jersey skirt.

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You can really see it when you lay the dress out flat. The hips are shaped with an actual point instead of being a smooth curve.

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Now, altering the hips is a really easy fix. I just have to turn it inside out and sew a new curved line at the pointy spot. But I’m not totally sure what to do about the underbust. Ordinarily, I would take in the sides a little leading from under the sleeves to the waist. But with all the seams, and since this dress is shaped with a contoured, three-dimensional chest instead of a flat plane, I’m not sure how much of a difference that would make. I’ll have to do some pinning with the dress on my body to see what I can come up with.

My last disappointment with this dress is that the contrast between the purple and black is not as noticeable as I had hoped. It’s quite dark and they kind of blend together unless you’re standing in direct sunlight.

All that being said, there are some positives here. For one thing, I love the length! I’m so sick of super short dresses that hike up when I walk and end up barely covering my rear. This one stops halfway over my knee when I first put it on, and hikes up to a reasonable length just a couple inches above the knee when I walk around. I can sit and bend down without worrying about flashing someone.

The fabric is also wonderful. It’s 92% cotton and 8% elastane (aka spandex) and feels smooth and cool against the skin. It’s a little stiffer and thicker than my old Kieska dress, so my bra band isn’t as visible and it doesn’t show visible pantylines. I also think it’s just a cool, edgy-looking dress.

I still really like the green color and am so tempted to order that one too, but I don’t really think I can justify it since size 36 o/oo is not in stock and the fit of 36 oo/ooo is so off.

Best Breasts Forward ~ Sweating Through Summer

I hate being hot.  Not hot as in how I look but the actual temperature.  This distress is multiplied by a bazillion because I am large busted and live in NYC.  The heat combined with unrelenting humidity make me want to stay inside until fall.  Unfortunately, that is not an option for me.  Life rolls on, children need to be taken to events, groceries need to be bought and Mama needs her vitamin D.

How I wish I could grab a little tank top and go on about my business, but my 32Js make this a problem.  Fortunately there are tank tops that fit properly.  Bravissimo sells a few with built-in bras that many have had success with.  I bought one last year, but it just didn’t work for me.

image image

For me, it isn’t just the fit that is the problem.  I struggle with trying not to look too sexy in the summer. It’s difficult to get people to understand that I’m boobalicious by nature NOT because I’m trying to turn you on sexually.  Even in a tank with a small amount of cleavage showing, large busted women still get the stares.  I’ve tried to throw on lightweight cardigans over spaghetti strapped dresses and tops but to be brutally honest . . . I’m sick of doing so because it’s too damn hot!

The older I get, the less I care about what assumptions people are making about my properly perched, well-supported boobs.  It’s something my husband and son have to learn to get over.  It’s no secret that their wife/mom has big boobs.  They’ve always been big.  Their friends know they are big, their friends’ parents know they are big, their teachers know they are big . . . even the guy who makes our sandwiches at the corner store knows they are big.  No more hiding behind cardigans willing myself not to sweat.

Tank top on, best breast forward!

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From the Hourglassy archives, here are more ideas for dealing with sweat and heat when you’re big-busted.

  1. Don’t Sweat It
  2. You’ve Lost that Soggy Feeling
  3. Big Bust Heat Wave Bras and Strappy Tops
  4. Staying Cool
  5. Summertime, and the Living is Strappy