My Adventures in Bra Fitting

image of fitting kit What would do with them when you're done???

I suppose it is possible that there are women out there who walk into the lingerie section of a store and easily find a bra. Or several bras.

I am not one of those people.In fact, I am a bit bra-lore illiterate. For me, bra shopping usually goes like this:

I walk approach lingerie section of unnamed large department store. I see what appears to be veritable sea of bras in all sizes, shapes and colors. I approach salesperson who either gives me dubious look or eager look (which eventually turns to dubious). I get measured and assessed. it is not fun. Salesperson begins to forage for my size and preference. Out of sea of bras we find three that might work for me. After painful period of trying/discarding, we finally find one bra that meets my comfort/color/fit expectations. Mostly. I ask for more than one.

“Oh, sorry,” I’m told by salesperson. “That is only one, but I am sure you can order it online.”

Only I can’t. It has been discontinued. Or is sold out. Indefinitely. In fact, I never see that particular bra again. Anywhere. Ever. Except endlessly in my wash.

So I soldier on, keeping new bra (and older bras) on life support in hopes of keeping them on the job until I can summon up courage to go through that again. So when I got a mailing from Jockey Bra, I didn’t throw it away, even though it had skinny girls with pert, well-positioned boobs on the cover.

I opened it. Cautiously, but a bit hopefully.

It had me at “you can do this at home.”

That’s right, they send you a “fitting” kit (pictured above), with clear concise instructions on how to self-fit. Just me and my girls. No middle sales person assessing my assets (and finding them unduly influenced by gravity). Nothing personal, but if I can eliminate the middle-salesperson from my bra purchases, I’m willing to receive a package clearly identified as boob fitting kit through the mail.

I was excited to try this and did some mail watching, grabbed it when it arrived, and headed in for the fitting. I read the instructions. I examined the parts of the kit. I read the instructions again, then began my experiment in self-fitting.

I was a bit skeptical of the results, but they did promise a unique fit, so I had faith and ordered two bras (because I didn't have THAT much faith). I did it knowing that if my fit worked I could order MORE.

My bras arrived in a very large box for two bras. That was my first intimation that I might have flunked fitting. I opened the box and studied one of the bras. And realized there were a few things missing from the simple instructions. Well, maybe just one thing.

There is a difference between “spillage” and “sag-age.” (If you don't know what I mean, you will some day. Cuz Life Happens. And so does gravity.)

So I had to call their help line and admit that not only had I failed in this adventure in fitting, I’d failed badly. Miserably. Possibly epically. She suggested a re-fit. Then I had to admit I’d tossed the kit. Because what does one do with all those boob cups? They really aren’t suitable for anything but cupping boobs. Yes, my actions lacked aforethought, but so did my attempt at fitting.

Like I said. #Fail.

She very nicely sent me a new kit and offered some, um, parameters for which part of the kit I should focus on during my next fitting. At least the “salesperson” wasn’t in a hot fitting room with me. And she didn’t see my face or my boobs. Now I’m once more awaiting delivery of round two in the Great Bra Fitting Adventure. But I give Jockey Bra high marks for a) kindness and b) actually having more than one of the bras I want.

So how do things go for you in that fitting room? Have you had an epic fitting fail that you’re now willing to talk about? Please share, because I don’t want to be lame by myself.

Perilously yours,


Pauline Baird Jones

Perilously fun Fiction


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