Trends in Bras and Great Fitting Tips
By Nancy G on March 05, 2012
Interesting factoid: The average bra size in the U.S. is 36DD.
Over the past few months I've come across some excellent articles about bras and trends in bras. It's time to share!
Since sewing is one of my hobbies I follow several sewing blogs. One of the fabulous things about accomplished sewists is they understand all sorts of nuances about why clothes don't fit and they graciously share them with the world through their blogs. You don't have to sew to glean all sorts of useful information.
Bra Fitting Goodness
The shape and style of bra one is wearing significantly alters how a finished garment fits. That is why I found More On Bra Fitting - Bring a Measuring Tape from Gorgeous Things' blog so informative. I learned two important things from this article:
- When you are trying on bras use a measuring tape and measure from your neckline to the fullest point of your bust. You'll see that different style bras can vary greatly in the amount of lift they provide, irregardless of whether you are small, average or large busted. I tried this with two different style bras I recently bought, a smooth cup Natori and a 3-piece Chantelle. There was an inch difference in the amount of lift they provided (exactly what the author found when she tried these same bras on.)
- Minimizer bras push your breasts apart. It kept bugging me that when I wear my Natori smooth cup bras underneath t-shirts my breasts look like they are miles apart and growing from my armpits. Now I get why.
For Smaller Busts
Okay ladies, as a full-busted gal, I want you to know I'm not overlooking you. The winner of the Her Room Undies Award for small-to-average cup size bras last year was the Timpa bra. You might also be interested in reading Power to the Girls with Smaller Cup Sizes, where you'll learn that, no, you are not going crazy, bra manufacturers have been focusing on larger cup sizes in recent years and your selection has gotten smaller (see Interesting Factoid, above.)
For Fuller Busts
I went to Nordstrom's in early December for a new bra fitting. I came home with two Natori smooth cup bras and a 3-part cup Chantelle. I'm unhappy with the Natori's. I find they are gaping along the top of the cup after only two months of wear. I love the 3-part Chantelle which fits perfectly, my only complaint is I can't wear it under knits because it looks a bit lumpy. On Sunday I picked up my friend, Liz, to go shopping and the first thing she said was how frustrated she was finding a t-shirt bra that didn't gap!
As serendipity would have it, Tomima, of Her Room, recently wrote two articles about these very problems. Trends for Spring explains why smooth cup bras have gaping problems and talks about the 2012 design trend towards beautiful, seamed 3-part bras. In Is Your Contour Bra Gapping? Tomima recommends two smooth cup styles that have a bit of elastic sewn into the upper portion of the cup to reduce the gap. (Unfortunately these bras are only available in up to a D-cup size.)
There's a new sports bra in town that's getting good reviews, the Panache Underwire Sports Bra. This bra was scientifically designed to significantly reduce bounce. I like the fact it has some mesh for breathability and there are a couple options for the back straps.
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