You can cancel your appointment with Louise Feuillere, the corseterie I introduced to you in 2009.Â We now have our own luxury custom bra maker here in the States.Â (If you’re in Europe, however, why don’t you go ahead and keep your appointment with Louise and tell us all about it?)
Norma Loehr was in New York last week to source fabric and meet with clients, but she also took time out for frozen yogurt with me.Â Talking to her was as inspiring as you can imagine it would be.Â Norma becameÂ a custom bra maker for the same reason that many of us wish we could make our own bras–she couldn’t find anything in her size.Â She is between an A and a B cup with a narrow back, but she requires an underwire that usually goes with a 36 or 38 band.
Given all the great DD+ bras on the market, you may wonder why an Hourglassy reader would even need a custom bra.Â A basic bra like this one begins at $275 (note that she uses a three-part cup for fuller busts for the same price).
I can think of a few of reasons to need this bra:
- You have a 26″ or 27″ band;
- It’s challenging to accommodate the size difference between your breasts;
- You want a bra in a skin tone that you can’t find anywhere else;
- Your frame is such that underwires are always poking you, or they’re always too wide or too narrow; or
- You’re between cup sizes and are tired of dealing with extra space or bulging cups.
What else might tempt you to invest in a custom basic bra?
Personally, I’m much more tempted to invest in a beyond-the-basics bra.Â First, I would like styles that aren’t available in my size, like:
- a version of the Freya Nieve in a basic nude color (becauseÂ I could get more wear out of it under my white shirt in nude and would never worry about back bulge again!
- a sweet little bralet like this B.Tempted–it wouldn’t be a pure bralet because Norma tells me I would get no support, but she could make a supportive bra underneath with the look of a bralet above.
- a racerback that fastens in front–Norma would make it for me with the caveat that there is only room for one line of hooks, and therefore it can’t be made tighter or looser.Â I’m fine with that because that’s how my Enell sports bra works.
Next, I would go with wildly indulgent pieces like:
- a bra made to complement my dress for an upcoming black tie event or a wedding, one that was meant to be appreciated when a viewer caught a glimpse of it; and
- bras in gorgeous silks and laces and colors, with frilly straps or a big fat satin bow in back to be displayed from a backless dress.
Isn’t dreaming a wonderful thing?Â And especially when you have someone who could make your dream a reality!
Tomorrow I’ll tell you more about the process of hiring Orange Lingerie to sew a custom bra for you.
Yep, I can definitely can think of plenty of reasons why I’d want a custom made bra. Hmm… maybe a good investment once I reach my goal weight? 😀 A custom-made longline bra would probably be my first choice too.
Hmmm. Custom bra as incentive award. Great idea.
Can she use any fabric? I have always wanted a bra printed with snowflakes. (I doubt anyone will ever mass market this in a J cup as it would be such a seasonal item.) And a bra printed with tiny whales. And a Fair Isle print. And… ha ha the list goes on…
My impression is that she can use any fabric that will play well with the other parts of the bra as long as it wears well. I haven’t told Norma that I posted this yet, so I’m sure she’ll answer your questions once I do!
Fun fabric ideas!
Just thought I’d weigh in on this. I went to bra school with Norma and also work out of Chicago. Neither of us will use fabric that clients just bring in. Most of those fabrics, especially unusual prints, are unsuitable for making bras. A fabric that behaves differently necessitates an entirely different pattern from the fabric we use. We both have our own selection of fabrics and designs that we know will work for clients to choose from. That said, I do actually have a pink whale print fabric on hand that I like to use. 🙂
Oooo, this is dangerous! Now I know what I want for Christmas…
Dang, I am not even in the US and yet I am tempted!
I struggle with the same problem as Norma, only on a much larger scale. I wear 40H(UK)/40K(US), but the wire width I need can usually only be found in bras with much larger cups and bandsizes. (38-40 J-K or in 48-52 DD+). I’ve thought about sewing my own bras, but I also struggle with finding wires in my size in bra-makers supply shops. I thus try to get my hands on old used bras with the right wires on ebay and through friends, it is a real pain!