Back in 2011, I introduced you to Barbara’s New Beginnings, a bra store that falls into the category of “one of the good ones”. However, I’ve never had a fitting there myself, so I was extremely interested when reader Karen tweeted that she had found “a store” carrying 28 bands in Indianapolis and was on her way to a fitting right then. Sure enough, it was Barbara’s New Beginnings. Karen has written great posts for Hourglassy in the past (DIY Nursing Bras; Shape, Cut and Confidence from a DIY Mother; and A 28G Guest at the Wedding), so I shouldn’t have been surprised by the detailed email that she sent me after her experience at Barbara’s. I asked if I could share it on Hourglassy, and happily, she said yes.
We drove up to Indianapolis because Bloomington has a non-existent selection of maternity clothes, and while I was trying on some new maternity shirts and reveling at how cute my tiny little bump is (13 weeks pregnant!!), I couldn’t ignore the fact that I was busting out of my 28G Panache Porcelain. So, when the girl on the line from Barbara’s New Beginnings said that they had a lot to offer in 28 and 30 bands, I cried. Yes, I did. I may be a little hormonal, but I’ve been around Milwaukee, and I’ve visited Chicago, and no one has ever carried a 28 band. It’s so hard to make that decision to buy the 30 band or 32 band and have it altered to something that might fit when done.
When we arrived (I had the whole family with) at Barbara’s, a fitter named Susie met me at the door. She put some of my information in the computer (address, phone number, email), and then took me back to a fitting room. I told her the bra I was currently wearing and why I didn’t like it anymore. She asked me what I was looking for, and I said something to get me through the next six months before I’m in nursing bras again. I was looking for a nude bra and a colored one. I shared that I usually wear three-part bras with the A-frame support to help pull side tissue forward, but I’ve been having problems with the seams digging in with my current bras, likely because they’re too small in the cups. She had me take off my shirt, measured my underbust at 27.5″ and said that I could probably wear a 30, because in all likelihood, I’d be getting bigger. True, but bands stretch, and I just wasn’t ready to drop my 28 bands to the wayside on that possibility.
She went to the back room and brought back two bras at a time. I had an immediate let-down feeling as I saw granny-bra after granny-bra pile up. Each bra was nude in color with 1″ or wider straps, a seamless full cup, and in 30 bands. After trying these bras on and not finding one that even slightly fit, I asked if she had anything more “fun” and would she mind bringing me an identical bra in a 28 and a 30 band so I can compare the two for a better fit. Susie said that, unfortunately, all that they had in my size were seamless full cups and that they don’t carry many of the fashion colors because there are not as many women buying in this size range as in the 34-38 bands; the nudes stock better. She did bring me the Panache Porcelain that I was wearing when I came in, both in a 28G and in a 30FF.
This is where I actually learned something! Though there are sister cup sizes, and the width in these cups will be the same, those cup sizes won’t be exactly identical in volume because of the placement of the straps and how high the cup is designed to come up the breast. You could go to a larger cup size in a smaller band, but your breasts still may not fit. This has apparently been my case! I need the greater volume, even if I do benefit from a smaller band. I have full-on-top breasts, so the 28 cups have not been fully encompassing the breasts. It will be better in the future to purchase the 30 bands and have the bands altered.
So, she didn’t have exactly what I was looking for, but I did purchase one bra that fit very well, in purple no less. 🙂 I’ll likely purchase what else I need from online, but I’ll be going back to the shop for nursing bras!