PSA: If you can't remember when you last bought bras, it is time for new ones.
Tank top weather has officially arrived in the Northeast. So, I'm feeling especially happy that over the weekend I "spring cleaned" my lingerie drawer and shopped for new bras. It was not that there was anything horribly wrong with my old bras; it's just that between losing weight, being on the DL from yoga (ie: no strength training of the chest muscles for 10 weeks) and the normal wear and tear to my everyday basics, I'd been feeling, well, less than my perky best.
So, off I went to the mall. I was planning on trying on a few different size combinations near to my "standard" size to find a fit that I liked. However, a sales rep wielding a measuring tape made this a much easier process. She simply took my high, full and underbust measurements and we were off and running. A few bras later, we agreed on my new size. Interestingly enough, the best fit was not in the size that I measured; the best fit was a size smaller in the band but a cup size larger.
Obviously, I am not the first sewist or blogger to write about the importance of the proper foundation garments. And there are lots of on-line guides to finding the best fit, like the one at Brasmyth.com or BareNecessities.com. I don't think that you necessarily need a high end or specially store to find a good fit either - you can start by taking your own measurements and then going from there. Shockingly, my own good experience took place at the very main stream, mass-consumption-oriented Victoria's Secret. I went in because I had a gift certificate. The woman who helped me was quite knowledgeable about their various styles, had a critical eye and directed me very well. If you are more self conscious about being helped in the fitting room by a sales person, then bring a close girlfriend or sister with you - someone who will be honest about how a bra looks and fits on you. And be sure to try several different bras and then slip on your tee shirt or top to see how it will look when you are actually dressed - to me that is the true test.
Armed with my new bras, I'm feeling like my clothes immediately look and fit better and my silhouette seems more sleek and streamlined. Somehow, I even feel taller.
Anyway, we now return to your regularly scheduled program...