Last Friday was the big day. I dressed in easy-off sandals, tee shirt and jeans; packed snacks and water for energy; and encouraged my husband to go on a tour of London by himself. Then I spent FIVE HOURS at the Oxford Circus Pepperberry.
Soon it might not be necessary to fly to England just to avoid overseas shipping costs on big bust clothing. While in the store, I heard a rumor that Bravissimo has heard its American customers and is considering plans to open in the United States! It’s unclear whether they will open as a brick and mortar store or online only, but either retail method will be a welcome change.
Until then, if you’re like me and have avoided purchasing from Pepperberry because you’re afraid of the cost of returns for ordering the wrong size, here’s a rundown of the sizes that fit me best during my dressing room marathon. After telling one of the saleswomen that I wear a 32F (but you’ll see that I ended up in a different size in strappy tops and sleepwear), she looked me over and suggested Curvy/Really Curvy in S or M for knits, and Curvy in UK 10 or 12 in wovens and more tailored styles. I tried other size combinations when I couldn’t find a 10C or 12C in a style I liked. I’m wearing my Empreinte Erin in these photos.
[FYI, we don’t get remuneration for any Pepperberry purchases you might make after clicking on the links below, but we do receive a small commission if you purchase bras, sleepwear or strappy tops after clicking this link.]
I’m wearing a 10C in this picture and a 12C in the photo below it. Even though the 10C cut a little at the armhole, I prefer its overall more fitted look. The 12C was very comfortable but slightly baggy around the waist.
There are so many features that I love about this dress: the subtle gold edging at the neckline and pockets, the working zipper in front, the pockets, the shirttail hem, the soft exterior fabric and the cottony feel of the lining even though both layers are viscose.
The extra fabric in back was a common issue with most of the dresses I tried, but I realize this isn’t the case for everyone. Below is the 10C again.
I could easily have taken a couple of inches of the 12C up at the shoulders.
I was impressed by they way the lining was enclosed with the rest of the dress seams.
The 10C/RC fit great. Like the Safari dress, both layers are viscose but feel soft and cottony. The scoop neckline was perfect–not too deep and not too high–and I liked the side zipper.
This is the one dress I had hoped to bring home in my suitcase, but I learned a sad truth about Pepperberry knit fabric–it’s thin and therefore clingy. For someone with less bulges (or who doesn’t care if her bulges show), then it’s fine. Otherwise, it may help to size up for less negative ease.
The 10C/RC fit perfectly at the boobs. The 12C/RC was slightly more relaxed but still clung.
The interfacing around the band helped give it some structure.
Cute cottony print on the outside but unfortunate shiny acetate lining on the inside. The 12C fit me best. It has a nice side zip. Overall the style was meh on me (I think it’s the length), but I’ve included how it looked on one of the saleswomen so that you can see the possibilities.
I love the vibrant color and print, and if it weren’t for the shiny acetate lining, I would have been tempted to buy this dress and wear a plunge bra under it. The 10SC worked best for me.
I wanted this 10C/RC dress to work for me because of the unique quilted fabric and zippered pockets, but the sleeves, high ribbed neckline, and A-line skirt conspired to make it look frumpy on me. Also, the black seemed slightly faded. For a classic LBD to carry its weight in dressier settings, it needs to be a true black.
I love the neckline, print, and 100% cotton shell and lining. I’m wearing the 10RC.
This one has pockets and is also 100% cotton inside and out. The cap sleeves grew on me, but I might remove them if I owned this dress–they were slightly restrictive. It was one of the few dresses that didn’t bag at my lower back. I’m wearing 10RC.
I was about to call it a day until I started browsing the Pepperberry catalog in my dressing room. Whenever my husband sees a woman wearing a dress like the Keyhole Maxi, he’ll say, “I wonder how you would look in that.” Now I had to make another round of the floor just to find pieces he’d like.
I think I’m wearing the 10C/RC in these pictures. Once again, the fabric is clingy, but the print helps camouflage my bulges a tiny bit, and I knew my husband would love this dress regardless. You can’t tell from the angle, but the keyhole definitely requires a plunge bra.
In the end, I only modeled this dress for my husband, and of course he loved it, but we both agreed that I should buy something that I could wear to more than just a date night with him.
This dress would be more versatile than the keyhole maxi. I’m wearing the 12R/SC. The fabric felt more solid so less clingy. I really like the deep V in back!
I’m not a fan of the beaded neckline, but I’m sure there’s a way to carry it off. I’m wearing the 10R/SC. This time it’s not clingy because of thin fabric but because the fabric has slinky-sweater-type feel.
Finally, the 12R/SC was one of only two remaining dresses in this style on the rack, and as you can see, it fits fine–and there’s plenty of room for larger boobs than mine. The fabric feels slightly heavier than the other knits I tried and glides a bit better over my bulges. It also has my favorite sleeve length.
I know why I like this dress so much–it reminds me of my Lauren Ralph Lauren “you just know dress find”! And this is precisely the reason that I put it back on the rack . . . there’s a good chance I can find a Lauren equivalent in the States. At Pepperberry, I was on the lookout for things I couldn’t find anywhere else.
The saleswoman confirmed that this is a very popular style that she herself owns. She also pointed out the newer, floral version with cap sleeves. She owns it, too!
How about you? Is there anything in today’s post or on the Pepeprberry website that you’d like to own?