Infrastructure update

The Right Bra Will Make You Do The Happy Dance!

After months of procrastination, I finally got serious about finding a good molded cup t-shirt bra. The one I’d purchased in haste and a state of desperation two years ago was doing nothing for me.

As a friend of mine used to joke, I need a Doggy Bra: one that makes Pointers out of Setters.

Karen been after me about this too and she’s right…even if you think you know your bra size, get yourself measured. Turns out I needed to go smaller in the band and bigger (gulp!) in the cups for this particular style of bra. But I bit the bullet (the right bra wasn’t cheap) and came home yesterday with this little miracle worker.

Chantelle “Legende” T-shirt bra, $88.

It’s the most I’ve ever spent on a bra, and well worth it. Though it’s nicely proportioned and has some pretty details, this is an industrial strength bra, not the flirty, lacy kind that we’re supposed to wear to feel sexier (along with our matching lacy panties comme les femmes Françaises). Wearing pretty lingerie is great in concept, but when it comes to “underwear” (garments worn under clothing as opposed to being seen in) une femme goes for function over form. And the function is to make us look better in clothing, which no little lacy whisper has ever done for me.

Check out some of Karen’s “bra makeover” posts here, here and here.

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  1. Congratulations! Those lacy little numbers are only good for the A and B cup girls. For all of us whose cup runneth over, we need more solid foundations.

    I always take a t-shirt shopping when looking for bras and try it on over the top to see the effect.

  2. A good bra is worth the price. T-shirt bras have to be unembellished to give that supersmooth look.

    I have some very supportive lace or trimmed French and Italian bras; there are some busty Euro women! But buy them when there as half price they charge here.

  3. Chantelle makes great (albeit pricey) bras –and really pretty, too– I think their “Africa” –(or is it “Safari”?) line is really beautiful as well. I confess that I go to the good lingerie shops, try the stuff on, find out what fits me best in each line, then scurry back home and shop online for exactly that item– I hate paying full retail, and can find some really good deals as long as I know the exact size. I leave a trail of cranky shop assistants in my wake, holding a bushel of tried-on bras to hang up. Very bad…

  4. I don’t need the big guns, so to speak, but I hunt and hunt and hunt for a lined, NON-underwire bra. Anyone got any good ideas?

  5. Getting measured for a properly fitting bra was a life altering experience for Miss J a couple of years ago. So much so, she bought gift cards to the shop for friends so they could enjoy bras that fit, too. As for the cost, Miss J spent quite a bit more for her brassiere than Miss Pseu but it was SO worth it.

  6. I have done the Happy Bra Dance, and it is indeed satisfying.

    LPC — got to and you can find tons of lovely wireless bras. CS rocks, and prices are great.

  7. I have wanted to write about bras, but some of my students have discovered my blog, so I will comment here. I find bras miserably uncomfortable and don’t even NEED a bra (didn’t when pregnant or nursing either). Still don’t at 55. Anyway, I have to wear one for propriety’s sake, but the best thing about my summer break is a break from those dreaded items.

    Thanks for the opportunity to vent.

  8. Sigh. I feel it might be time for me to get MY girls re-evaluated, too. Glad you found your t-shirt bra of perfection, beautiful!

  9. Getting measured at Nordstroms was one of the best things I have ever done for my figure. What a difference a good bra makes!I love Chantelle and La Mystere bras for smooth and sensational support.

  10. I trust in Lise Charmel lingerie; beautiful styling and high quality. It is (?) a French brand in which I´m totally hooked.

  11. I just invested in a new Chantelle this weekend – love it! And a new Wacoal. In the Wacoal, I had to go up 3 cup sizes (I had told the assistant no, no never but she insisted I try it on) and it reminded me that size is just a number on the tag. It’s all about the fit.

  12. Imogen – smart to take the t-shirt with you!

    Sher – the straps on this bra are pretty thin, but don’t seem to dig in, I’m guessing because the overall support from the band and underwires is so good.

    Duchesse – any suggestions for which shops might cater to the busty Euro women? The one or two lingerie shops I poked my head in seemed to cater to the gamine French physique…

  13. Frugal Scholar – oh, you can’t imagine how I envy you!!! I haven’t been able to comfortably go braless since I was twelve or thirteen years old!

    Katriona – well, I’m sure for everyone who tries and flees, there are probably two or three who try and buy (and in multiples!).

    Sal – I’d been measured about four or five years ago and had been buying the exact same bra (Wacoal lace minimizer) ever since. It’s a good thing to get measured especially when trying new styles; it takes no time and doesn’t cost a thing!

  14. vicki archer – I have to agree with you! Our hairstyle frames our face, and a good bra creates a frame of sorts for our bodies/clothes.

    LPC – unless you have a great old-style lingerie store near you, my recommendation would be to check out a Nordstrom’s if you have one nearby. They seem to have the most knowledgeable sales associates and a great variety of styles and prices.

    Miss Janey – sounds like a great investment!

  15. Style Spy – I’ll have to check out for my replacments, thanks for the tip.

    La Belette Rouge – this is my first Chantelle, though I’ve had others recommend before. I’m going to have to check out La Mystere as well, thanks!

    metscan – I haven’t yet run across that brand here, but will be on the lookout for it.

  16. Chris – my “go to” bra for the last several years has been a Wacoal, and I also love that brand, but when it comes to molded-cup, the Chantelle was a much better fit. If it weren’t for the Sales Associate who recommended sizes and styles, though, I’d probably still be floundering in Bra Land.

  17. LPC, try Lilyette style #954. It has foam-lined cups, is wireless, and has wide straps. Kohl’s carries it. Only problem is they make it in white and cream, but no black.

    It’s annoying that more companies don’t make wider straps. And I don’t know why they have to put the straps so far to the sides. They would stay up better if they were as close as possible to the center back closing.

  18. Thanks for the reminder to get re-fitted. I did it this last winter, and it was not fun, but worth it.

    I’m enjoying your slide show of photos from Paris. Thank you!

  19. Whoa! Good job! This bra is indeed pretty, and many pretty panties will go with it. You bought this bra to be a good FOUNDATION, and that it is indeed. Foundations are ESSENTIAL. They are the building blocks, that well, help you build your blocks! Lingerie is for fun. If you can find something twix the two, all the better.

    You did not overspend; a specialty foundation could cost you $150. Order one more and skip the kitchen reno…

  20. Wacoal makes a sports bra with a “leotard” back and wide straps that fits and looks as good as any European bra! And it does NOT look like a sports bra! Highly recommended.