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12 April 2013 @ 04:44 am
Bras and baggage  
So, apparently everything I knew about choosing bras was wrong...

I went to La Lingerie today - an upscale foundations store where one of my friends, devikat, is a fitter. I have long had issues getting a bra that fits well, pretty much since I was visited by the cleavage faerie in freshman year of college. These days, I require high-quality engineering in order to be comfortably supported and usually I will go into a bra shop and be thrilled - THRILLED - if I can find something that fits well, never mind even hoping for something pretty. Well, apparently part of my issue is that I'm outside the normal range and partly I had been choosing from an inappropriate part of the range that was available. My band size was 2-4" smaller than I usually get and apparently you should get a bra that initially fits on the longest setting so that it will still fit as the band stretches. However, moving down a few band sizes made me shift from DD to FreakingRidiculous. However, FreakingRidiculous fits great! Even better? Even after weeding out the ugly ones and the ones that just did not fit right, there were six - SIX! - that I actually liked! While they were beautiful, they were sooper spendy, so I only got two to rotate and put the others on the "wish list" the store keeps. It's more than I've ever spent on underwear in one go, but just wearing one of them for the evening, I can completely tell the difference. I see fewer, but better, bras in my future (but also more handwashing as I am certainly not throwing them in the washing machine)!

After the store closed, devikat and I went out for dinner and then back to my house for her to get judge-y on the rest of my wardrobe. I have discovered that I have sort of an issue. I will BUY clothes, but I won't GET RID of them until they are literally falling apart. This leads to a borderline hoarding issue - a massively overstuffed closet in which I can't find anything and that contains entirely too many things from high school. (I know I am not the oldest among my readers, but that is still 20 years ago, people.) Not good. I resisted some of the requested deletions, but generally complied with devikat's suggestions... mostly. She took a few pieces hostage when she left the house... probably correctly surmising that I would fish them out of the to-go pile. Damn my predictability! Still, we did good work - I have a better idea of what I have and I am getting rid of PILES of stuff that is old, worn, outdated, doesn't fit, or is just plain unflattering. There's still some sorting to do with socks and underthings and a box or two of seasonal clothing, but we made huge progress and I am even able to hang up a bunch of things that had been previously folded in the armoire, so hopefully there will be less ironing/reironing in my future. What I do have is now neatly organized and there is room to see what I have where. :) Good things.

Again, another fascinating ostensibly clothing-related post, but really, paring down and really focusing on the "Fix It or Forget It" mission is doing a lot toward clearing up my physical and psychological clutter and baggage, so I feel a need to share.
Current Mood: productiveproductive
(Deleted comment)
eithni: darkladyeithni on April 15th, 2013 02:59 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I may try those sites in the future, but I know I needed to start with a good in-person fitting. :)
Kareinakareina on April 12th, 2013 02:46 pm (UTC)
I can't imagine a store carrying so many different bras that fit and I would wear. But then I am a total fibre snob--I simply will not wear a bra made of synthetic fibre. I have never seen one for sale in linen or silk or wool, so that leaves cotton, which is very hard to find, but does exist in some sport bra styles, and once I have even found it in a "pretty" bra, but that was the exception.
eithni: darkladyeithni on April 15th, 2013 03:02 pm (UTC)
I'm usually a fiber snob, but bras are the exception. If I could find an appropriate bra in linen, I'd be in heaven, but I make do with dinosaur, as it's the only thing really available in the sizes/styles I need. Panties, on the other hand, are non-negotiable natural fibers only. :p
Cat Dancer: fedorapixel39 on April 12th, 2013 04:10 pm (UTC)
I am a big fan of the "wash in the washing machine on super-delicate-don't-you-dare-agitate" because I am lazy, but washing in the shower works pretty well too. The only problem with that is when Someone (whose name may or may not be Mikey) bitches about bras hung to dry in the shower.
eithni: darkladyeithni on April 15th, 2013 02:58 pm (UTC)
Well, considering that I have my very own shower and no boy to bitch at me, shower-laundry is the most likely. :)
Elizabethliz_bet on April 12th, 2013 04:49 pm (UTC)
Having a well fitted bra is the best feeling ever and can completely change how you carry yourself and feel all day long :) I too have an odd size which makes finding bras difficult and spendy, but absolutely worth saving up for.

I also get a little bit longer lifetime out of my bras by cheating a bit... as they get older and stretch out and don't fit well even on the tightest setting, I carefully take them in about half an inch on each side in the side-back area. Just fold over in the best spot, stitch a line, open it up and stitch down the 'seam allowance'. Not possible with all bras, but useful when you don't have $70 to drop on a new bra. :)
eithni: sewingeithni on April 15th, 2013 03:06 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I already do that with the "cheap" bras because, well, I'm sorta cheap. :p
DameJ: Miragedamej on April 13th, 2013 12:53 pm (UTC)
I have similar issues. I've been meaning to make an appointment at La Lingerie and invest in a couple well-fitting bras. My front-load washer has a "hand-wash" setting, and I have clotheslines in the basement, so maintaining them isn't difficult.
eithni: darkladyeithni on April 15th, 2013 03:08 pm (UTC)
I can wholly recommend it. It was a giant PITA to try on 20+ bras, but they keep your info on file, so you don't have to remember or repeat the process unnecessarily.
catdfoxcatdfox on April 13th, 2013 02:01 pm (UTC)
having the right bra size makes a huge difference both in comfort and looks. I have been investing in bras for some time now and like you, find I often can't afford more than 2 at a time. I have a hard time ordering online unless I know the brand and style already as I am a bit difficult to fit, especially after increasing 3 cup sizes with each kiddo.

Enjoy the closet space and new bras!
eithni: darkladyeithni on April 15th, 2013 03:13 pm (UTC)
Thanks! It's been an awesomely supportive weekend. :)
arebekah: Malificent 2arebekah on April 14th, 2013 11:56 pm (UTC)
I have found that this product from Ikea is perfect for drying bras: http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/80189663/
eithni: excellenteithni on April 15th, 2013 03:14 pm (UTC)
Heehee. I haz one! In kitchen green!