Off the Rack ~ Autumn/Winter 2016 Curve Expo Part III

Part 3 of my Curve coverage: Claudette, Curvy Kate, and Parfait. First up is Claudette:


Claudette

Claudette has a lot of new styles coming out, starting with sheer bodysuits and wire-free bralettes:

IMG_2165

The pink shades on the left two mannequins are called “Walk of Shame” and the silvery tan of the right two mannequins are “Blondie.” Here are a couple closeups:

IMG_2154

IMG_2155

IMG_2156

Now, I have to be honest and admit that I don’t quite understand the purpose of the body suits. They’re a single layer of mesh, are completely sheer, and provide no bust support. The Claudette reps suggested wearing the Dessous bra under the bodysuit, but considering that the Dessous bras are also sheer, you’d probably still have visible nipple. The only person I can see wearing these as outerwear is Rihanna, and I can’t imagine anyone wearing it as underwear.

The bralettes, on the other hand, are cool by me. They’re a double-layer of stretch mesh, so there’s a little more coverage, and the bra band would at least provide a modicum of support for mid-size breasts. I also think they look pretty damn cool with the thick black, colorblock-esque trim and the big metal rings attaching the straps.

Both the bodysuits and the bralettes have adjustable straps, and come in sizes XS – XL. The bralettes also have an adjustable bra band with hooks and eyes.

As for normal bras, we have some great new colors for the Dessous:

Left: Pussycat, right: Walk of Shame, with Mercury trim and straps. All the new Dessous fashion colors have flat trim instead of a scalloped edge, while the core shades (Black, Blondie, Allure, Elsa Pink, and Sunkissed) still feature traditional scalloped trim.

Left: Pussycat, right: Walk of Shame, with Mercury trim and straps. All the new Dessous fashion colors have flat trim instead of a scalloped edge, while the core shades (Black, Blondie, Allure, Elsa Pink, and Sunkissed) still feature traditional scalloped trim.

Left: Last Call, right: Purple Rain, with neon yellow flat trim. I’m a big fan of these two color combos.

Left: Last Call, right: Purple Rain, with neon yellow flat trim. I’m a big fan of these two color combos.

Next we have the new Muse collection, which features lightly lined satin bras in the same cut as the Dessous. The last padded Dessous bras didn’t get enough orders for a production run, but so far these satin ones are getting great feedback. They’re offered in the Mercury and Purple Rain colors:

IMG_2159

IMG_2160

Love the asymmetric satin and mesh blocking on the front of the panties, and of course the detachable suspenders on the boyshort. The back of these are all sheer mesh­—cheeky!

Another new style is the Darling collection, featuring demi bras in semi-sheer lace:

Top: Controversy, bottom: Walk of Shame.

Top: Controversy, bottom: Walk of Shame.

Lastly, the new Fishnet colors, Mercury (bra) and Last Call (panty):

I have a Fishnet bra from the very first collection, when the straps and trim were made of velveteen, and I love it. The fit is great and I adore the center-pull straps. In fact, I ordered another more recent color from Zulily last week. I see the “Last Call” colorway in my future too (you all know I can’t resist teal!).

Some final news about Claudette since the last Curve show: They tell me they’re really focusing on growing their brand recognition and playing with brand expansion. Additionally, some big news is that their sale site for discontinued designs, Claudette Encore, has expanded from shipping exclusively within the US to now include Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, and the UK, with more countries a possibility in the future. They closely monitor the website’s analytics to see in which countries the most visitors are located, then try to add them. So even if they don’t currently ship to your country, keep visiting and sharing the site, and maybe you’ll be added!


Curvy Kate

For Autumn/Winter 2016, Curvy Kate is featuring fewer bright and girly colors, and more tonal and wintery shades such as purple and burgundy, with a few pops of color here and there.

Swimwear and lingerie on the front rack, Scantilly on the back rack.

Swimwear and lingerie on the front rack, Scantilly on the back rack.

Cabaret, available in 28 – 40 D – JJ.

Cabaret, available in 28 – 40 D – JJ.

Belle, available in 28 – 40 D – K.

Belle, available in 28 – 40 D – K.

Vixen, available in 28 – 40 D – J.

Vixen, available in 28 – 40 D – J.

The freaking adorable longline babydoll Kitty, available in 30 – 40 D – J.

The freaking adorable longline babydoll Kitty, available in 30 – 40 D – J.

The back of Kitty, with a delightful keyhole.

The back of Kitty, with a delightful keyhole.

Princess in “Blueberry,” available in 28 – 40 D – K and 42/44 D – G.

Princess in “Blueberry,” available in 28 – 40 D – K and 42/44 D – G.

Speaking of Princess, it’s now going to be offered as a plunge bra in black with sizes 28 – 40 D – J. There are plans to design into the family further and offer more shape variations in the future.

Moving on to Scantilly, the 30 – 38 DD – HH boudoir collection, it’s now up to nine ranges, and Curvy Kate just keeps introducing more incredible experimentation. I really love this season in particular:

How amazing is this metallic bronze Ignite half-cup bra? It has a double-strap criss-cross in the back.

How amazing is this metallic bronze Ignite half-cup bra? It has a double-strap criss-cross in the back.

I’m simply obsessed with the new chartreuse colorway of the Peek-A-Boo set.

I’m simply obsessed with the new chartreuse colorway of the Peek-A-Boo set.

The Showtime collection is a little flirtier and less overtly sexy. It comes with a really cute brief that features strapping across the back to reflect the bra’s gore.

The Showtime collection is a little flirtier and less overtly sexy. It comes with a really cute brief that features strapping across the back to reflect the bra’s gore.

Had to get a closeup of the strappy gore. I wish more everyday bras would play with the gore like this!

Had to get a closeup of the strappy gore. I wish more everyday bras would play with the gore like this!

Hello, amazing Unleash collection! Here you see a bra in faux leather with a buckle at the front of the band. It pairs with…

Hello, amazing Unleash collection! Here you see a bra in faux leather with a buckle at the front of the band. It pairs with…

…these fabulous high-waisted panties with a cutout and another little buckle…

…these fabulous high-waisted panties with a cutout and another little buckle…

…and this fun sheer tunic that includes a buckle on the back, and a skinny belt-like apparatus that remains under the fabric in back, but comes through holes on the sides to be fastened over the fabric in front (with another matching buckle!), to define your waist in front but keep the back flowy. So innovative and original!

…and this fun sheer tunic that includes a buckle on the back, and a skinny belt-like apparatus that remains under the fabric in back, but comes through holes on the sides to be fastened over the fabric in front (with another matching buckle!), to define your waist in front but keep the back flowy. So innovative and original!

Lastly, I’ve got one swimsuit to show you, that was a big hit at the show:

Say hello to Hypnotic, in a graphic black and white print with neon yellow piping.

Say hello to Hypnotic, in a graphic black and white print with neon yellow piping.

Finally, I have to say that I really love the lookbook CK put together this year. The first few pages highlight their accomplishments and social reach. Among this section, there are photos of women of all shapes, sizes, and even ages wearing Curvy Kate. I appreciate this not only for its diversity, but also because it really allows customers to see how the garments fit on a range of bodies. It’s so refreshing compared to the ridiculously homogenous and overly Photoshopped models of Victoria’s Secret and other mainstream brands.


Parfait

This season, Parfait is introducing some really rich colors. They’re also expanding the sizing of some models to include C-cups, bands 42 and 44 up to FF, and panties in 3XL and 4XL, where cups previously started at D, bands stopped at 40, and panties stopped at 2XL. The expanded models include Carole, Casey, Charlotte, and Jeanie.

Estelle, based on the same frame as Charlotte. It’s basically a lace Charlotte!

Estelle, based on the same frame as Charlotte. It’s basically a lace Charlotte!

Estelle balconette in “Merlot.”

Estelle balconette in “Merlot.”

Simple but effective: I love the black piping on the Aline tee shirt bra.

Simple but effective: I love the black piping on the Aline tee shirt bra.

Casey in “Ruby Wine.”

Casey in “Ruby Wine.”

Marrianne unlined wire bra in cobalt.

Marrianne unlined wire bra in cobalt.

Destiny in “Nightshadow Blue.” (Great color name!)

Destiny in “Nightshadow Blue.” (Great color name!)

And of course we have a new Charlotte color! This time it’s a warm, pinkish chocolate with shiny bronze accents:

IMG_4033

Next week, my final Curve post, about Eveden and Panache and their respective house brands.