The good news is that Shoshanna’s dresses are worth giving a try. Although you’ll see from Parts 2 and 3 below that I only had a 33% success rate, I’m very pleased with the one dress that fit, and I think that some of you may have even more success.

Unlike most bandeau style sundresses that I’ve mourned in dressing rooms past, the dress below, which is a size 12, allots the correct amount of fabric for the breast area. I wish I’d taken a close-up to demonstrate, but there is no seam bifurcating my bosom here! It actually runs horizontally beneath my breasts the way it’s supposed to, and just the way flat-chested women are accustomed to.

True to Shoshanna’s purpose for developing her clothing line, I didn’t have to wear a bra under this dress. The bottom two pictures in this Part 1 show the bustier insert and clasp that gave me a secure feeling of support and were definitely more comfortable than a strapless bra. Since the back goes quite low, it’s great not to have to worry about finding a strapless bra that will stay hidden. This was my first time to encounter a dress with this feature, but the saleslady told me that many high end dresses have this feature, some with several hooks in back rather than a single clasp. Too bad my wedding dress didn

t have it!

The side view photograph shows my only criticism of this dress: the Hanging Tent Syndrome, where fabric falls from the bust line and hides the waist entirely. Not having a fitted waist is definitely comfortable, but the Hanging Tent Syndrome puts us full-breasted women in danger of looking like we’re wearing a moo moo.

The third photograph shows the amount of my cleavage on display if I were to choose to tie a bow in front instead of behind my neck. I like this option for a date with my husband, although definitely not for a company picnic. Let me know if you think otherwise, but I think with the bow tied behind my neck, I could wear this dress to a work event.

Since this dress costs $365, it’s something of a splurge. Ultimately, I couldn’t justify it yesterday, but I came up with a few reasons to buy it (besides the great fit) that almost pushed me towards the cash register with my credit card: (1) the 95% silk/5% lycra fabric has a great feel (although the acetate lining wouldn’t feel so great on a hot, humid summer day–but then again, who cares when don’t have to wear a bra?); (2) it has pockets each of the Shoshanna dresses had pockets, a feature that I love; and (3) I felt pretty in it. When I really am in the market for a sweet summer dress, I’m going to give Shoshanna another try and hope that yesterday’s experience wasn’t a one-off.