During last year’s winter coat search, reader Jame pointed me in the direction of Teresa Crowninshield, but it wasn’t until this past June that I was finally able to try one of her coats in person at the American Crafts Festival at Lincoln Center. So I’m interrupting my regular programming of swimsuits to tell you about this amazing company for two reasons: (1) they have thirteen days left to raise $25,000 on Kickstarter, and (2) once they’re out of a size, it can take several months to replenish–so even though we’re all still running around in strappy tops, if you want a new coat that fits like it was made for you this winter, now is the time to consider Tess Crowninshield Coburn’s designs.
As soon as I found the stall, I made a beeline for the Azurean evening coat in size 16. I felt comfortable explaining my size issues to Tess’s assistant Laura because she wears a 32G. Only after she helped me put the coat on did I discover she had put me in a size 10–and it fit! I’m wearing it buttoned-up for a super cold day in these pictures, and . . . there is no gaping or boob smashing.
However, I no longer shop just for myself–in my mind, I’m also shopping for Mia because she’s made me so aware of life as a 32J. So I asked Tess, “What if I wore a 34J?” Tess’s coats and jackets come with lots of seams that she can play with, so after we calculated that a 34J would add four inches to my bust, she said she would put me in a size 14 and nip it in at the waist. How much more would it cost to nip a coat in at the waist and shorten the sleeves (which you can see I’d need)? Alterations currently cost $30 . . . total. Including shipping. If you try a coat on with her in person, alterations generally take 2-3 weeks. If you order a coat from her online, she can work with you via Skype and pictures. (By the way, there’s only 1/8″ difference between each size for the shoulders, so going from a size 10 to a size 14 would only add 1/4″ to each shoulder.)
Two more styles that are especially popular with her fuller-busted customers are the Blue Patch Pocket Jacket and the Driving Jacket. When another full-busted shopper named Nautasha walked into the booth, I asked if she would try the Driving Jacket for Hourglassy readers to see how it fits. Nautasha told me that she can wear anything from a 32E to a 32H, depending on the bra brand. Tess put her in a size 2 jacket (which makes me think that Nautasha is well below a 32″ underbust).
If you get the chance to shop for a Teresa Crowninshield jacket in person, take it! In the meantime, here are two more of her jackets that would look fit and look great on a woman with a large chest.