So. Lingerie. I really like nice fitting, good looking but not too sexy underwear (I mean, I like the sexy stuff, too–but not as part of my basic everyday wardrobe). For a while I was really in a rut, kind of believing that boring black and beige were all that I needed. Looking back, I don’t think I realized how much being out of shape and slightly overweight affected my body image in this particular regard. Now, however, I’ve gone down in bra size (kind of a feat, really) and my older bras just really don’t fit. Actually, they didn’t really fit before either, but it was a closer thing. I’ve never had a professional fitting, but I’ve been reading lingerie blogs and websites in an effort to learn more about accurate fit. This whole minor obsession actually came about / was reinvigorated because of how fit is approached on sewing blogs–really, they will teach you so much about your clothing and fit in a way that isn’t how we normally view or think about the clothes we wear. I’m learning, though, that as a small busted person, I have in some ways a lot more choice in where I purchase lingerie and what it is I can buy. There is really no va-va-voom for me, but on the other hand, I don’t have to spend a lot of money on support. Right now, as I purge my drawers of what doesn’t fit or has just…expired…I’m asking myself the following questions. Building a whole new underpinnings wardrobe from scratch is a little spendy, so I need to focus my efforts.
- Do I have a need for different kinds of basic bras and what should those considerations be?
- work — want a smooth, somewhat conservative cut; need to be lightly lined; don’t want anything super sexy, but may need different cuts/fits to accommodate various articles of clothing
- workout — mostly require compression and support; prefer lightly lined; can be a bit more playful with these
- home — soft cup; long line; comfy for sleeping or lounging; something a bit more casual than my work bras
- How many basic bras do I need — and what style?
- work — 8 is what I’d like to work up to; have 3 -5 now (depending on what I count); should include 2 strapless and 1 racer back.
- workout — currently own 8 and that seems to be reasonable; as I replace these should consider looking for slightly more fun options
- home — own 2.5 (the one is really just terrible and I’d be embarrassed to be hauled off in an ambulance in it), would like to have more like 4
- Does basic only mean neutral colors or can I branch out?
- For work, probably need to be mostly neutral. Other areas are opportunity for fun.
- Do I want my tops and bottoms to match and how many of each do I need?
- I like them to be at least complementary and to have about 3 for each bra–so need about 24, which I own; as I replace need to focus more on neutral complementary (but still cute–this is where I start to get a bit bogged down).
- Need to be complementary, when worn together, to my pear shape which feels more pronounced to me than ever.
I have not yet found bra nirvana. I am a little embarrassed to admit that the Gilligan O’Malley line at Target suits my body very well–they are so cheap, comparatively! But they do tend to stretch out rather quickly in my experience. I like drifting through the intimates section of Dillard’s and drooling over the Wacoal bras–but I don’t need the kind of support they are famous for providing larger busted ladies. And unfortunately, I’ve found the selection of other brands to be a bit hit or miss. Not sure why…although my favorite lounging bras are from there and they are cute, comfy and amazing as far as looking actually a little sexy while still being completely wire free and lightweight. Although this kind of bra is apparently called a bralette and makes me feel like a twelve year old. These are perfectly appropriate for me now. But I do wonder what small breasted women do as they age…do you just have to resign yourself to the supportive cami?
The nice thing about a plan is that I’m giving myself permission to go out and buy more underpinnings! But I want to be a bit more thoughtful about the process…and I’m also still losing weight (slowly) so while I would personally be a little depressed if my bust lost even more volume…I can’t entirely count that out right now.