I don’t know why I thought the rules for lingerie would be different, but Margaret Shrum injected some common sense into my lingerie life.  Here are three guiding principles that I took away from our consultation:

  1. Looking good takes planning.
  2. Work from where you are.
  3. Budget for everything, including lingerie.

Looking good takes planning.

This isn’t news to you, is it?  But I always forget.  So often this summer I’ve rushed around assuming that my look will take care of itself when the time comes.  Then surprise! It’s time to walk out the door and I discover that my only clean bra is black when I needed a nude one.

Lingerie is especially an after-thought at home.  For instance, I’ll grab whatever ancient tank top happens to be within reach at bedtime, or I’ll sit in front of the computer in an old shirt from Mr. Campbell.   I figure it’s okay to wear stretched out or faded items around the house because no one else will see them.

So Margaret asked me this question:  “How does it make you feel to wear those things?”

Uh.  Not good, actually.

I feel good in things that make me feel pretty.  I feel like I don’t matter in things that simply cover me up.

I’ve been doing a lot of wardrobe analysis since beginning this blog, and now I’m going to give undergarments, loungewear and sleepwear their share of attention as well.

Work from where you are.

When I contacted Margaret, I dreamed that my session with her would result in a drawer full of patterned bra and panty sets like the Éprise sets that I lusted over in April.

However, the truth of the matter is, I’m pretty conservative.  I don’t want even the hint of a bra to be visible from beneath my white Campbell & Kate shirt.

Fortunately, Margaret picked up on this.   It’s not that I’ll never have or wear beautiful patterned bras.  I’m just not ready for them yet.

One reason is that Margaret recommends owning at least 7 everyday bras that fit.  I have two, and even they don’t fit that well anymore.

Budget for everything, including lingerie.

Here’s where Margaret’s true value came out for me.  She’s not only extremely compassionate, but she’s also a numbers person.  Ideally, she recommends that a woman budget for everything, including lingerie, at the beginning of the year.

Since we’re more than halfway through the year, we came up with the following plan to increase my everyday bra count:

  1. Émpreinte has offered me a vendor gift of the amazing Kaela bra.  I should take them up on it.
  2. Use my La Petite Coquette store credit on a Prima Donna Madison (0162129 in 36G, and hopefully in cafe!) and matching underwear.
  3. Buy the Émpreinte Sofia from the Town Shop.
  4. Buy the 3-part Chantelle Icone in iris.
  5. Buy one of the amazing Conturelle bras that Mesi introduced me to in Milwaukee.

She recommended that I acquire one new bra a month.   Then I can budget for a few non-everyday bras in the new year.  Plus, when it comes time to replace my everyday bras, it won’t need to happen all at once.  Genius!

What about panties?  Margaret is definitely of the matching persuasion.  She recommends that I buy two matching pair for each bra.

Finally, what about weight gain or loss?  Margaret’s take is that it’s okay to have more than one bra size in your lingerie drawer.  Our weight is always fluctuating.  If I find that I maintain a certain weight for a few years, then I can let go of the sizes I no longer wear (another example of working from where you are).

There’s so much more that I could write about what I learned from Margaret, but you’ll have to look for it in future posts.  I’m also hoping that she will share a few of her lingerie finds for D+ women in guest posts here!