I’m telling you this for 2 reasons.
Last September, I began my Princess and the Pauper experiment with a 36G Wacoal Alluring and a 34G Empreinte Kaela. By November I was on the middle hook in each bra, and I’m now on the tightest hook in each. The Kaela feels amazing when I first put it on in the morning, but by noon it’s sliding around my rib cage and making me cranky. The Wacoal stays secure throughout the day, with just a little bit of discomfort after sitting in front of the computer all day.
I didn’t disclose this to you right away because I wanted to discuss it with the Empreinte rep at Curve first. Once at the Empreinte booth last month, I lifted my shirt to explain the problem and was hurriedly ushered into the model’s changing room. That’s where I learned that the center gore of an Empreinte bra absolutely must tack. No matter the assurances of the bra fitters who told me that Empreinte cups run deep, I am NOT a G cup in this brand . . . at least not in the Kaela.
This is a disappointment on a few levels:
My Princess and the Pauper experiment is totally invalid;
I can’t wear any of the gorgeous Empreinte bras that I’m going to post here sometime soon; and
It makes me cynical that even the best lingerie stores may push an imperfectly fitting but extremely expensive bra on a customer who depends on their fitters’ opinions. This does a disservice not only to the customer but also to the reputation of a bra company like Empreinte, which is very particular about their fitting methods. (If a store prides itself on its own special way of fitting, they avoid selling to that store . . . which makes me wonder if they made an exception for a well-known chain that has done away with the tape measure but sells Empreinte bras.) I should qualify this observation, however, by saying that although La Petite Coquette originally fit me in the 34G, two fitters at two other stores thought my Kaela fit well when I showed it to them.
This is a good thing on another level because:
I have learned that we can be as picky as we want to be about fit. We don’t have to compromise. There is “okay fit” and “amazing fit” out there, and we should always go for amazing. I saw this in action at the Eveden Bra Fitting School that I attended at Curve. My experience there is on my long list of topics that I want to write about here, but there just aren’t enough hours in the day!
I’m going to wax poetic about the brands Good Night Gilda and Claudette in an upcoming post, but because they only go up to an F and a G cup respectively, I cannot actually try them. I also can’t find any online reviews by full-busted women who have purchased and worn these brands. (Claudette samples were sent to Sarah at Stackdd, but they didn’t fit her, and Holly of TheFullFiguredChest, but she has since discovered she wears a 34J.)
Even though I sometimes roll my eyes when I see yet another bra review on a blog, it’s amazing how important they are. Because it requires so much more technical expertise to fit D cups and up than it does smaller cup sizes, I tend to approach new bra makers with skepticism. Honest reviews by enthusiastic bloggers make a big difference in which manufacturers I will trust (and I will post a blogroll some day soon–yet another task that’s perpetually on my Hourglassy to do list). So please approach my own write-ups about these brands with a healthy dose of skepticism until I can point you to a review by an F or G cup who has tried them (or get down to an F or G cup myself and try them!).
I’ll also be posting my very first Curvy Kate review here soon, too. Bare Necessities sent me the Curvy Kate Princess in 34FF to write about on Hourglassy, but when I tried it on, the cups were far too small. Thanks to reviews by Bras I Hate and others, I discovered that’s not uncommon. So I’ve asked to try it in–you guessed it!–an H.
Ever since I have been reading your blog I have been looking for an amazing fit. It is surprising what “fitters” try to sell me. I have learned that a great fitting bra must tack. I have been sized at a 30G or 32F/G depending on the bra. Some fitters have been trying to sell me 34s or other ill fitting combos just to make the sale-saying thats its ok-you can wear it -when obviously it does not fit! So disappointing-but at least I know better now. Thanks for all the info. I only wish I could find more 30G options in the stores!
Thanks for the encouragement to keep on going with this, Donna! Just yesterday, wandering around in my poorly fitting 36H Prima Donna Madison, I was reminded once again not to settle for anything less.
By the way, are you looking for swimsuits again this year? I REALLY want to try this Anita zip-front one piece! http://www.lindasonline.com/anita-rosa-faia-black-basics-elouise-one-piece-swimsuit-7742-black.html
I will probably look more for cover ups! I am on a medication now that makes me allergic to UV light-fun times-no more beach or pool for me! Better for the skin anyway—the suit looks nice but shelf bras never work for me-need the underwire-do you stay supported with shelf bras in a swimsuit?
In a one piece, I’m usually so smushed in that it’s like a sports bra. I’ll have to see what this one is like in person. I hadn’t thought of the shelf bra aspect until you mentioned it.
“It makes me cynical that even the best lingerie stores may push an imperfectly fitting but extremely expensive bra on a customer who depends on their fittersâ€™ opinions.”
This has made me cynical too, and sadly, I had already become aware of this when I was given a 30G Empreinte bra a few years ago at Intimacy and told that it fitted well. It was amazingly comfortable and I loved the bra, but I could fasten it all the way in the back, and I knew it wouldn’t last me long at all. Honestly, I mistrust almost all bra fitters – sad, but true!
I know it can be discouraging to realize you’re ‘sized out’ of a lot of ranges and realize that you don’t have any perfectly-fitting bras, but just think, you’re another step forward in bra knowledge and finding even better bras for yourself!