Last weekend was the Curve Expo lingerie and swimwear trade show for Autumn/Winter 2015 in New York. Unless otherwise noted, everything you see below will be released for sale around October 2015–February 2016. This week I’ll cover some lesser-known brands I checked out at Curve, and next week I’ll go over the usual suspects of Claudette, Curvy Kate, Panache, and Parfait. I’ll be doing an Eveden overview all on its own, because Darlene and I went to their NY showroom and got to talk about and photograph everything from the current season and A/W15.
I’m just going to go in alphabetical order here, and provide some highlights of what I found:
Fit Fully Yours
Fit Fully Yours is a Canadian lingerie company that’s been in business for 11 years as of this April. Their bands go from 30 to 40, plus 42 and 44 in some models, and one model (the Maxine Moulded) that goes up to 46 band. Cups go from A to J in American/Canadian sizing, varying in availability depending on the bra. Here’s their sizing schema at D and up, with UK equivalent on the right:
In going through their lookbook, it seems that most bras stop at G or H. The ones that reach J (or UK GG) include Maxine Moulded, Gloria Smooth Lace, and Nicole See-Thru Lace.
FFY bras include quite a few features that I’m often on the lookout for, such as straps that attach to the cups at the center instead of outer corners of the cup; double-layer bands where at least one layer is fabric not mesh; triple-hooks on all DD+ sizes; and straps that are closer together in back without being a racerback.
Another interesting feature that they told us about is that instead of using hard boning on the sides, they use a quadruple layer of fabric. As such, you still get the same support and structure, but it’s more flexible and won’t dig in.
The styles are fairly basic, but come in lots of great colors. Further, they keep the colors in production for up to two years (sometimes more), much longer than most brands. So if you find something you really like and it wears out over time, you can actually get a replacement!
Above is the Maxine Moulded, in dark teal. The color is really saturated and lovely in real life, even better than it looks in my photo. I love the decorative bits where the strap connects, as it takes this from a basic to something a little more interesting.
Above are all the colors of the Crystal Smooth, which has slightly less coverage than the Maxine. I’m a big fan of the lime green, and I think the little crystal decoration in the gore makes this design just a little more special.
Finally we have the Elizabeth Smooth Lace. The little pearls are pretty fun, and I like the lace band.
I wish I’d taken a photo of the Gloria Smooth Lace. It has a lace sling around the outer edge of the cups, which continues onto the straps. But even though the straps are decorative, they’re still fully adjustable. How rare!
Overall, I’d say that FFY makes tee shirt bras with colors and little extra details that make them just a little more special than a totally plain one. Prices range from $49 for their wireless options up to $80, about on par with other non-luxury big bust brands.
Harlow & Fox
Harlow & Fox, the ever-luxurious indie British brand, has been doing quite well for itself. They weren’t at the Curve show, but set up shop in a local hotel to show the newest collection.
This year H&F are introducing two of my absolute favorite colors—bright cobalt (though they call it “indigo”) and a rich teal. My photos do not do the colors any justice whatsoever, but I’ll try to get across how absolutely stunning these pieces are…
Here’s the complete Indigo Eleanor collection: bra, bikini, thong, garter belt, tap pants, half slip, and robe. They all have the most delicate and pretty black eyelash lace, which is so gorgeous and sultry paired with the blue.
Augh, the color. I can’t deal. I saw a lot of cobalt at Curve, but nothing compared to this. And the silk is so soft. I wanted to swim in it.
Above is my attempt to capture the teal, but nothing I did with my camera could get it right. It looks rather dull here, but it was really bright with a heavy blue tint. It was almost iridescent and made me think of peacocks.
There were also some new black offerings, including a Viola longline bra, side-tie bikini briefs, lacey thong, long silk gown (in two cup options—DD-F or FF-G), and a kimono of transparent cream tulle with black eyelash lace on the ends of the sleeves and skirt portions and a wide silk sash.
I’ve never been much of a swishy, romantic robe kinda girl (I don’t even own a bathrobe), but I was totally into the longline bra, which I previously tried in gold and absolutely fell in love with. Apparently customers felt the gold one ran small in the band, so that issue has been fixed with the new model.
Not the best photo, but let me assure you this thing is gorgeous and fits like a dream. Feels like a dream too! The silk is so soft, which is especially appreciated on the straps, and overall it’s a terribly light and comfortable wear.
I realize Kris Line is not that new for most people, but this was the first time I got to look at some of their stuff in person. I am desperate to try out this Polish brand. They’re often featured on US flash sale site Zulily, but unfortunately they don’t accept returns (not even for store credit) with any intimate apparel, so it’s really only useful if you know your size.
Kris Line uses UK cup sizing from A to O (yes, O!), and bands from 60 to 115 (or 28 to 50 [yes, 50!]). They truly have the widest size range of any brand in existence that I’m aware of.
The most popular styles are Brillant and Fortuna, the latter of which also comes in a baby doll in white or black, sizes 30-50 B-KK (though each band size down loses the top letter, i.e. 30 goes up to KK, 32 up to K, 34 up to JJ, etc. Band size 50 stops at F).
Kris Line also offers a nice range of nursing bras and tons of awesome swimwear, including a gorgeous ombre collection that I’m really lusting over, though sadly I doubt I’ll be able to find it in the US since Kris Line has very limited distribution here.
Finally, of the brand’s large cup bras, there are just three styles: soft (no padding), semi-soft (padded on the bottom half), and Deco Plunge (molded cup). Once you know your size in each style, you can use that as a guide for all their bras.
I wish I’d taken more photos, but here are the few I have:
Here’s a brand I’m really excited to share with readers. Coincidentally, I bought one of their bras just before the Curve show and I’m really pleased with it (review to come in a few weeks!), so I was really excited to speak with them in person.
Passionata is part of the Chantelle lingerie group, though they just launched in the US last fall. Since Chantelle is a French brand, Passionata uses single letter sizing. All their bras go up to an E cup (i.e. UK DD), and they also offer lots of really cute cuts up to an H (or UK FF).
Started in 1988, I was told that Passionata was created as a backlash against the Calvin Klein-esque minimalism and androgyny of that period. I think that aesthetic is still reflected today, with lots of color and flirty details. The point of view these days is also “all about comfort all day.” Price point is on par with similar brands, about $60 a bra.
All the models I’m showing here come in the larger cup sizes (up to H).
Just a little teaser here. Rago is the go-to shapewear brand for pinup girls. Their shapers have really nice vintage styling and attractive colors and seaming. Some have bra cups up to DD that offer a subtle bullet shape. The best reviews I’ve found are on MissVictoryViolet.com.
What I’m showing here is their “corset dress.” I would love something like this to wear under my ’50s dresses to suck in my tummy just a little and give some nice poof (but not too much) under the skirt.
This dress offers “extra firm” upper body shaping. Additionally, while it only comes in small through xl (with no cup sizes), the cups are actually expandable (see photo below), so it could probably work for busty ladies up to a point.
In NY, the corset dress can be purchased at Enz’s in Manhattan, or can be ordered online.
Like Kris Line, this is actually a brand lots of bloggers have covered, but this was only the second time I got to see their pieces in person. The first time was at one of our busty clothing swaps, when someone had brought a 28G (I think) to give away, and it did not fit me at all (it was way small in both band and cup). I believe the sizing at this point is a little more consistent with other British brands, and so I’d really like to try it soon.
The theme of the A/W15 season is “kiss and tell.” I was told it’s about “loving the thrill of the chase” without necessarily being in love. So sassy! I really love it and think it’s great that the brand is here for the woman wearing the lingerie, not for her man. Additionally, all the bras go up to at least a UK HH and some go up to J.
After seeing the brand in person and getting to check out all the details and the lovely fabrics and fabulous colors and prints, I’m desperate to try it myself.
Which Tutti am I? Let’s see…