The last time I wrote about a longline bra was the unsuccessful Freya Piper nearly two years ago. Though that one didn’t work out, I’ve since been on the hunt for a better longline. I really love the way they look, and I very much appreciate how well a longline band stays in place. You can sister size up one, if not two, bands and it still won’t ride up since it’s so wide. This is great for me, because there are a lot more 30 and 32 band longlines out there than there are 28s.
This week I’m reviewing the Passionata Bloom longline and the Claudette Dessous longline. Disclosure: The Claudette was purchased with my own money, but the Passionata bra was received as a review sample. All opinions are my own and based entirely on my experience.
First a thank you to both Bare Necessities and Passionata for getting the Bloom to me. BN was out of only my size in this bra, so I emailed them to ask if it was a size they simply didn’t offer, or if it was sold out, would they be getting more? The answer was yes, it’s a size they offer, but it was in fact sold out. But they offered to contact the manufacturer to get me one to review. Then when Darlene and I toured the Passionata/Chantelle showroom, they mentioned that it was on its way, and later even followed up once it shipped. So thanks to both companies, because I definitely need this gorgeous bra in my life!
So here is an aaaaaadorable overall photo of Bloom:
And a clearer manufacturer’s photo of a bustier model:
On the Passionata website, Bloom is listed as a longline, but on most sites that sell it, it’s listed as a demi. I would argue that it’s somewhere in between. The band is only a fraction longer than usual in front, but is significantly longer than average in back, with five rows of hooks and eyes (and four columns!). So it looks pretty standard from the front, but comes up high in back.
This bra is offered in 30 bands, but it stops at G cup (French, so the equivalent of UK F) instead of H (UK FF), so I had to sister size twice from UK 28G to 32F (i.e. I got the listed size of French 32G). As I’m wearing it on the tightest setting, a 30 definitely would have been ideal, but as I stated above, the width still keeps it from riding up, and the gore even tacks (though less firmly than it would in a tighter band).
So here are some detail shots:
As for fit, I find it to be really comfortable and have a nice shape. The cups seem deeper at the base than my molded Starlight bra was, which is great for me. The wires are sufficiently close together at the gore for my relatively close-set breasts, and as I mentioned above, the gore tacks well despite the technically-too-big band.
The cups are made up of two layers—a super sheer mesh balconnet shape underneath triangular stretch lace side slings that meet the straps. The layers are attached along a single vertical seam over the nipple, so the lace doesn’t flap around like the Figleaves Paige and Lulu Tout Amelie.
Finally, a feature I really like is the ultra-soft and ultra-wide neon pink elastic at the top of the band. It is so comfortable. It’s also used as the waistband for the matching panties, but I really wish Passionata would use it on the bottom of a bra band too.
Here are some detail shots of the bra on me:
Now, I do have two minor complaints. First, I kind of wish the band was longer in front. This short length tends to bunch up. Although unlike Freya’s Piper, the short band means there’s less fabric to scrunch up and it’s not painful—but it’s a bit annoying. Here’s a comparison of when I first put it on, and then after a bunch of movement:
The second complaint is that although I like the look of the tall back, the extra height means that the cups come up rather high under the arm, and have a tendency to rub my armpit:
Thankfully, the fabric is soft enough that again it doesn’t hurt, but again it’s a minor annoyance. In the end, though, I would definitely buy this bra again. It’s just so beautiful! I wish I could wear it as a shirt.
The next bra I’ll discuss is the Claudette Dessous longline, which I bought on flash sale site Zulily.com. I have a few Dessous bras, each bought from a different season, and they all fit or feel slightly different. The neon green one from their very first collection is shallow, small in the cup, big in the band, and the fabric is quite stiff. The orange with pink trim, from the successive season, fits closer to true to size, and is still stiff. The camouflage with neon lime trim from Spring 2013 is very much true to size and the fabric is softer. And finally, the “concrete and hot coral” longline I’ve got here is the softest fabric yet!
My first Dessous was 30G (UK) since they didn’t offer 28 bands at the time. And since the cups ran small, I stuck with 30G even once they started offering 28 because they topped out at G. At the moment, I’m in between 28G and GG anyhow, so I figured a slightly too big cup would be better than slightly too small. My camouflage Dessous is quite large in the cups, enough that I could probably have gotten away with a 28G, but the longline 30G is definitely correct in the cups.
All this sizing inconsistency makes it really hard to guess at your size when ordering from a non-refundable source like Zulily or the Claudette Encore sale section (for discontinued leftovers from past seasons), but I would say the longline fits true to size in the band and one size small in the cups.
Let’s get to some photos now, shall we?
The manufacturer photo looks more coral, but the pink trim is definitively neon pink in real life:
As for the rest of fit, the cups are only the tiniest bit shallow on my full-on-bottom boobs. The boning makes the band come to a slight point where it’s attached:
I’m wearing the band on the tightest setting since it’s a 30, but again it’s well anchored due to the width:
And the wires don’t come up too high on the sides, so there’s no rubbing:
Again I have to reiterate how freaking soft the fabric is. This bra is so light and airy! It’s just perfect for summer. And the shape is quite round yet still natural looking:
Note, however, that the horizontal seam does dig in a smidge and give a bit of a lumpy profile—I would guess as a side effect of the mesh being so soft and thin:
After all this gushing about comfort and softness, though, I do have one big complaint. Once again the extended band is not long enough to stay down. The boning helps, but it’s still not long enough. In fact, when I wore this bra on a particularly active day, the boning actually curled into a C-shape (imagine the left side of the C being up against my ribs) and became very uncomfortable. I kept reaching up my shirt to try and fix it, but it wasn’t until I took the bra off that I realized how much it had bent. I easily bent the boning back to straight, but I certainly don’t expect it to stay that way.
Since the boning is my only complaint and I’m completely enamored with the fabric, I’ll definitely buy more Dessous bras in the future, but I’ll stick with the regular ones and skip the longlines.