Browsing Tag


Events & Launches, Lingerie

Wishing a Happy 3rd Birthday to Curvy Kate

A couple of weeks ago I took some time out from unpacking at my new flat and melting in the heat to head over to Curvy Kate HQ in West London for a blogger party to celebrate the lingerie brand’s 3rd birthday.

It’s safe to say there are very few brands I love as much as Curvy Kate, and this was exactly the kind of fun night I’d expect from them. There was pass the parcel, ‘pin the bra on Lauren’, bubbly, party food and a sneaky peek what’s to come from the brand. It was a chance to meet or catch up with loads of amazing bloggers – some new faces like Kitty, Callie, Hanna and Jess, some gorgeous girls I’d met before like Lilla and Cheryl, and Becky, who I’d virtually adored for a very long time and couldn’t wait to meet in person. Here we are with the birthday cake.

Aside from the fact they make very pretty, competitively priced lingerie in my size, I just love the Curvy Kate ethos. Their advertising has such a strong positive message. The brand doesn’t hire professional lingerie models and airbrush them beyond recognition. The girls you see in the catalogue and shoots are customers. And they’re always smiling – there’s no pouting allowed!

Many of you have probably heard of the brilliant ‘Star in a Bra’ competition, which is run annually in the UK and now in the USA and Australia to find these new models for Curvy Kate.

What I love about Star in a Bra is that it’s not just a clever marketing stunt. The women who take part in the competition aren’t just used for one promo shoot and then forgotten in favour of professionals a few months later. The winners (and often the runners up too) become part of the Curvy Kate family. Winners from years ago are still modelling frequently for the brand.

Some of those models were at the party – 2011 and 2012 winners Lizzie Haines and Sophie Morgan, along with 2012 finalists Alice Rose Rayman and Charlotte Upton.

Lizzie, Alice, Charlotte from Curvy Kate (she designs the bras!), Sophie and Charlotte

There was such a sense of fun and feeling of friendship amongst this group and the Curvy Kate team. These models are brilliant. They’re all stunning beyond words, and though none of them are above a size 12 or 14 they are all different shapes, with fleshy bits, varied proportions and perhaps even a few stretchmarks and a bit of cellulite here and there (though I didn’t see much on show on the night)! It was so refreshing to see models messing about, having fun, not feeling the need to “stand up straight and breathe in” (I can’t be the only chubby child raised on THAT advice?) and think, just for a second, ‘hmm, their bodies kind of look like mine’. In ten years of working in this industry and attending events I have never felt like that, and it’s a surprisingly powerful thing.

As well as meeting the models we got a sneak preview (in the flesh, natch) of a few of the designs that are now available or coming soon from Curvy Kate. The big star of the night was Entice, shown here on Charlotte and now available at Debenhams.

You wait until you see what colour this is coming in for Spring / Summer!

Retro / Vintage, Swimwear

Super swimwear for 2012 – my latest bikini and swimsuit picks for all sizes

It’s SUMMER, guys! And you know what that means. Holidays, hot weather, and the possibilty of having to strip off the layers and flash a bit of flesh. Despite not being a willowy size 8, I’ve never really had a huge problem with stripping down to swimwear in the Summer. To be honest, I’m less bothered about the amount of flesh on show and more worried about the inevitable “you’re so PALE!” comments. Perhaps being such an English rose (ha!) helps to detract from the cellulite…but it also helps to have a killer swimsuit or bikini to draw the eye in. I tend to favour very feminine, vintage-inspired designs and anything with frills or spots. My favourites this year are a mix of frilled swimsuits, cool modern styles and bikinis that make the most of a voluptuous figure. Here are just some of my favourites…

Red or Dead ‘maps’ two piece bikini £36.50 at Amazon – I’m so sad this is yellow (one of the colours that just looks terrible on me) because not only do I love the frilled skirt for hiding that diggy-in hip thing anyone with a bit of flesh will always get with a bikini, but also because I absolutely adore the London map print. So cute, and so apt for a Londoner on tour! Red or Dead make some of the best retro-inspired swimwear on the market right now, and this is my fave for 2012.

Skirted swimsuit with piping detail £38 ASOS
– I have the plan black version of this swimsuit from last year, but I’m really excited to see they’ve bought the shape back this year with added white piping. It is without a doubt the most striking swimsuit I’ve tried – I truly believe it looks better on a curvier figure than on a slim one, so I’m sad ASOS only make it up to a size 16. Hopefully a Curve version is coming soon, because this deserves to be worn!

Curvy Kate Caribbean bikini top £32 and briefs £17 at Simply Yours – Let’s talk about how excited I am that Curvy Kate have branched out into swimwear! I’m a huge fan of their lingerie; it’s comfy, stylish, affordable and available in a good range of sizes, so getting all that in swimwear too is a big deal. At Simply Be you can get the bottoms up to a size 20 and the top up to a K cup in some band sizes. There’s also a tankini if you prefer a bit more coverage.

Kansas bikini top £34 and frilled brief £28 Freya – I was blown away by the quality of the swimwear at the Freya press day. So often when you get DD+ swimwear, style and trends have been sacrificed in the name of fit. But Freya manage to combine both, and I love their retro-inspired ranges. A lot of pieces have frilled bottoms, high waists or skirted bottoms. For 2012, Kansas is the new kid on the block. The pale blue gingham is a nice change from polka dots, but still has that vintage touch. It hits stores / online in July, so get your reminders set now!

Blue floral frill swimsuit £38 Floozie by Frost French at Debenhams – I know a lot of you will probably turn your nose up at an adults swimsuit that looks just like the ones worn by 5 year olds in the 80s (go on, you know you had some frilled florals). But I love my swimwear cutesy, and this is about as cutesy as you’re going to get. Just add cats eye sunglasses and chunky wedge sandals to complete the look.

Marilyn swimsuits in royal blue $102 Pinup Girl Clothing – If it’s good enough for Dita Von Teese, it’s good enough for me. I’ve spoken a lot about Esther Williams swimsuits on here before (and I own one of the bikinis) but if you fancy a proper 50s inspired swimsuit from elsewhere, Pinup Girl Clothing is the place to go. This royal blue is my absolute favourite, but the Marilyn comes in plenty of other colours too.

Black parrot print Pacha beaded bikini £26 River Island – Though I’m not exactly the Ibiza-dwelling target market, I really love the River Island / Pacha collaboration, mostly because of the immense amount of co-ordinating pieces you can get to go with all the swimwear. Want a strappy beach maxi, or a one-shoulder scarf dress? No probs! And the bikins themselves are pretty cool too. This frilled parrot print one is my personal fave, I love all the beaded frills.

Blue rio print one-piece swimsuit £34 Topshop – This swimsuit is the complete antithesis of my usual style, but for some reason I just love it. So much so I’ve used it in outfit picks before, and I’m sorely tempted to treat myself before they sell out. I love that it could easily be worn as a top in the evening on a beach holiday, tucked into a pair of shorts. The only thing that would make it better is if the print were Las Vegas, not Rio!

Fifties swimsuit £49 Boden – I don’t own a thing from Boden, but I do think their swimwear is really pretty and very good if you want something with a little more coverage than most younger stores give. The fifties swimsuit comes in various prints and has ruching down the sides to streamline and make the most of a good waist. There’s also a lovely polka dot bikini / tankini set that you can mix and match depending on how confident you’re feeling!

Espana ruffle one-shoulder swimsuit $148 Monif C – If you’re plus sized and tired of all swimsuits being ridiculous skirted floral numbers and ugly, frumpy designs, Monif C is the designer for you. The one thing her designs are not is boring! I love the one-shouldered Espana, which has boning and powermesh for a great fit, and ties to adjust for the right fit on the leg. This design also comes in red.

Green floral padded bikini top £16 and frilled bottoms £12 Next – Green is a really great colour both tanned and pale skin, making it a great choice if you’re off to sun yourself, and I love this shape which really makes the most of those ‘assets’. A padded bikini top works for any cup size; it pushes up smaller boobs for a bit of a lift, and it shapes and holds larger ones for a great shape. Next swimwear also has the benefit of being really good quality – this will see you through more than one Summer if you take care of it.

Brown and white leaf-print bikini top £8 and bottoms £4 George at Asda – This is my favourite bargain bikini of the season. Teaming a bit of cool neon with a classic print, it’s a great one for showing off a tan and the shape is very classic and works on a variety of body shapes. I also applaud George for going up to an E/F cup too.

Tummy control scoop neck wrap swimsuit £29.50 Marks & Spencer – Ignoring the ‘tummy control’ element of this, I just love the unusual wrap design and clever colourblocking that make it a bit different to a classic plan swimsuit. I also really like that it comes in a longer length, making it a perfect choice for tall women who want something a bit unusual.

DD+, Lingerie, Tried & Tested

Tried & Tested: Curvy Kate ‘Tease Me’ lingerie review

I was very excited to recently be invited by one of my absolute favourite online retailers, BraStop, to be part of their Fuller Focus group. I’ve shopped at BraStop for ages and I love their dedication to finding great brands for bigger busts, and the fact they hunt for new reader models every month, letting their customers show off the different sets brilliantly and never airbrushing their pictures. Being part of their reviews team is a great honour, but before I began my official duties, I was sent a special set from one of their key brands – Curvy Kate – to review for this site. They obviously did their research into the styles I love, as the set I got was their very best retro-inspired favourite, the ‘Tease Me’…

Tease Me is a longstanding Curvy Kate favourite – what makes it so special is that it doesn’t really comply with the usual stereotypes of DD+ lingerie. There are no thick straps or full cups, no frumpy prints, white lace or wide back bands. The bottoms aren’t the usual predictable boring briefs or diggy-in thongs, either.

Instead, you get a lace and ribbon trim balconette bra with a tiny bit of subtle padding (for shape and support, rather than adding any more fullness) and retro-style bottoms with frills across the back and detachable suspenders. There’s also a frilled thong for those who prefer. This set is just like the stuff that comes in ‘standard’ A – D sizes, but with the benefits of being created by a brand that really understands how to fit for the larger bust.

I tried the set in the Black / Almond colourway, which was a lovely fit and very comfy. I know a lot of women have trouble with balconette bras but I actually love them as I find the deeper central panel is more comfy and gives a better shape. I did find it came up a bit big on me though, and the top of the padded cups sat out from my chest a bit. Dramatically shortening the shoulder straps made a big difference, but if I got this set it in another colour (and it comes in plenty) I’d definitely go down a cup size so the cups sit completely flush to my body at the top like they do on the model above (who is, coincidentally, one of my fellow Fuller Focus panelists, Lauren Colfer – isn’t she gorgeous?).

The real selling point of this set as far as I’m concerned is the lovely briefs. I’m not a thong fan at all. I love a pair of big pants, but I like them to be cute and retro, not frumpy and mumsy. These are perfect. Still hipster, not high-waist (which can dig in a bit) but with frills on the back and lovely details.

I’m so happy about the amount of lingerie that’s no available with suspender clips / belts. I remember trying to find a decent (cheap) suspender belt about five years ago and the only nice ones I could find were from speciality vintage lingerie brands. Now stockings are enjoying a bit of a renaissance, there’s plenty of choice which is brilliant for fans like me, and the little clips on these bottoms are a lovely touch. They’re easily removed too, if you’re more of a tights girl!

Overall, I really like this set. It has real style and doesn’t feel like standard, boring DD+ lingerie. I’d say the bra comes up a bit big (go down a cup if you’re between sizes) while the briefs are true to size. Running up to Christmas, I’d recommend nabbing it in the Emerald colourway for a bit of a festive feel!

Disclosure: The lingerie was provided free of charge for review purposes. However, all thoughts are my own and I was not paid to publish them.

Clothing, Uncategorized

Fitting Room Adventures: Pepperberry

Pepperberry is the recently relaunched clothing range from underwear afficionados Bravissimo. Available in sizes 8 – 18 in three bust sizes (curvy, really curvy and super curvy) it aims to cater for women who’re fed up of having to buy a size bigger to accomodate their bust. As a DD/E cup, I own a couple of dresses from the old Bravissimo range (bought in the sales!) and they’re a beautiful fit, but in general the range had a tendency to be a bit frumpy and boring at times, so I was excited to see what they came up with in this new incarnation. I’d heard whisperings that there was a bit of a 50s influence, and the image above (the first to be released) definitely supported that idea…

So off I trotted to Bravissimo’s Oxford Circus branch to take a look at Pepperberry for myself.

Sadly, I don’t really think on close inspection that it’s that different from what Bravissimo were offering before. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but for such a dramatic relaunch I was expecting more than a couple of token 50s dresses amongst all the usual jersey and satin. It’s still very much aimed at an older consumer looking for a working wardrobe and the odd formal frock, and a lot of the dress shapes are almost identical to ones the brand has been offering for years. There’s quite an emphasis on basics (like well-fitting jersey tops, shift dresses and lightweight jackets) and all the lengths are very classic and practical. None of this is a problem, but it’s not particularly exciting either.

For example, I tried this blue bow detail dress, which I think is very pretty, but even on my 5’7″ figure, I just feel it looks a tiny bit out of proportion and verging on the mumsy. I stood in the fitting rooms looking at this for ages trying to decide if I liked it or not. I love the colour, I love the fit around the bust, but it’s just that tiny bit too long. However, this one gets a definite thumbs up for anyone who’s 5’8 or above and busty – finally a dress that doesn’t finish around your bum!

I also tried on the coral shift dress in a heavy stretch satin with a diamante trim belt (£69). And let’s just say this was not quite so successful! I think this is one of the duds of the range, which is odd because it’s very similar to a Bravissimo dress I own. Alas, never before has a dress managed to look too small AND too big on me at the same time! I think the problem is the bust darts, which point up and outwards, giving me cone boobs, and the belt, which doesn’t stay where it’s supposed to be (and sits far too high up for my liking). But never fear, for there’s salvation just around the corner…

Quel surprise! The dress I ended up falling in love with was the one I’d first seen in that original promo image. I do love a good 50s sundress, and words can’t express how well this dress fits – it hugs my waist, but doesn’t pull at all around the bust, and because there’s a full skirt, I can get away with the 12 (Curvy) without it pulling around my hips like the red dress above. As I stepped out the fitting room to see this in the bigger mirror, there were two other women trying it on, both completely different heights and weights to me, but it worked for all of us. I can tell this is going to be one of the stand-out pieces from the collection and I actually think that purely for the fit, it’s worth the rather steep £55 price tag. Unsurprisingly, this is the frock that came home with me at the end of the day!

Overall, I think Pepperberry is heading in the right direction, but a few more directional pieces wouldn’t go amiss next season. There were a few other pieces that stood out that unfortunately weren’t in stock in my size that I would like to go back and try. The two-tone floral jersey dress with a deep V neck looks gorgeous in real life, and the Full Fifties Dress is also a big seller and comes in a lovely duck-egg blue. I also have my eye on the red notch neck shift dress, which is very Victoria Beckham-esque.

I’d also like to see them expand their size range: 8 – 18 is not particularly inclusive and I’m sure there’s a market for these items in plus sizes. Maybe next year!

Buy Pepperberry in selected Bravissimo stores, or online by clicking here.

Disclosure: Pepperberry allowed me to take home one item of clothing free of charge. However, I was not paid to write this feature and all the opinions are my own.

DD+, Lingerie, Retro / Vintage

Winter Wishlist: retro-inspired lingerie & nightwear

My list of the best places online to buy reproduction vintage and retro / rockabilly style fashion continues to be one of the most popular pages on the site every month, so I know plenty of you reading have been as seduced by this style as I have.

The right lingerie is the finishing touch to your vintage-inspired look, but I know the classic bullet bra may be one step too far for some (if it’s not, go to What Katie Did right now). Luckily, plenty of more modern brands have now turned to vintage for inspiration. Here are some of my current fave more modern takes on vintage luxury undies and nightwear. Throw away your cotton 6-pack of knickers and flannel PJ’s and get yourself something gorgeous instead…

Long Vintage Silk Chemise £80 La Senza

La Senza has come a long way since the time it was the place to find 3 brazillian knickers for £10 and pajamas with ‘Sexy Chick’ on. The lingerie has slowly moved more and more upmarket, and the store offers some amazing pieces up to a G cup / size 18. Granted, I’ve picked the most expensive item on the entire website (typical) but there are plenty of more affordable bits and bobs in the ‘Pure Luxury’ section that you might be surprised by.

Olive Silk Elizabeth Bra (£79), Skirted Knicker (£54) and waspie by Ayten Gasson

I know this set is incredibly expensive, but I couldn’t resist including it after seeing it in the flesh at a press event recently. Its by Ayten Gasson, who uses pure silk trimmed with vintage Nottingham lace in her handmade creations. These are not mass-produced pieces that everyone will find under the tree at Christmas, they’re pure luxury with real vintage touches, and if you love this style, this is the brand to treat yourself too. Plus, there are a few beautiful pieces in the sale if you click here!

Gok Wan Mesh Longer Line Bra £32 and Deep Brief (£18) by Simply Yours

I’ve lost track of the amount of times I’ve looked at this set and thought ‘should I get it?’. My experience with the Gok Wan range so far has been brilliant. I love the way this range genuinely makes shapewear look sexy…plus it’s in my favourite animal print! As a final brilliant touch, the awful patronising names have gone – no more ‘banger booster’ or ‘curve controller’ – just proper descriptive names for these new designs, which go up to a 42 band, G cup, and size 32.

Virginia bra (£80), briefs (£55) and suspender belt (£70) by Mademoiselle Fred at Fairy Gothmother

Another pricey set, but a beautiful one from French lingerie brand Mademoiselle Fred. If for you (or your other half…) Christmas undies mean red and sexy, you may as well do it with a touch of Burlesque glamour! The shorts come with frilled sides, which are really pretty, though the thong is probably a better bet under the suspender belt (which I think is the best bit). Just add some fabulous fully-fashioned stockings (try Stockings HQ for them).

Leopard print panel basque £35 at Evans

This gorgeous little basque first made an appearance on this site back in April when I spotted it at the Evans press day. Now it’s in stores and an amazing retro-inspired option for those ladies needing larger band sizes. It goes up to a 46 in the band in C- E cups, and is the perfect choice for something sexy but shaping under a party dress. The matching bra and knickers were born to be worn under a trouser suit for a bit of underwear-as-outerwear glam.

Sway with me raspberry silk bra $125 and tie briefs $95 by Toadlillie on etsy

Toad Lillie lingerie is “Inspired by vintage couture gowns of the 30s – 50s” and this set definitely has vintage charm about it. I love the high-waisted bottoms with their ruched sides. I also love the fact that these sumptuous handmade pieces go up to a 50″ hip (though 32-38 A-D is less inclusive for those of us blessed with bigger boobs). If you want something truly special, you can’t beat the personal service you get from etsy craftspeople.

Floral and mesh longline bra $35 and knickers $30 by Banbee on Etsy

The knickers from this set caused quite a stir when my mate Jane featured them on Domestic Sluttery, but I’ve had the seller bookmarked ever since. Everything about this set screams Beyonce ‘Why Don’t You Love Me‘ – a music video that epitomises this modern take on pin-up girl underwear. What’s not to love? Even the price is good compared to Beyonce’s Dolce & Gabbana alternative.

Shapewear, Special Ranges, Tried & Tested, Uncategorized

Tried & Tested: Gok Wan ‘Curve Controller’

It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of shapewear. I love the 1950s nipped-waist silhouette and wear a lot of wiggle dresses that benefit from a good foundation (and no VPL). That said, I see shapewear as a smoothing, shaping garment, not a miracle fix. I don’t really subscribe to the whole ‘magic pants will make you thin’ idea – this is about creating a shape with the curves you have, not making them disappear completely!

In the past I’ve tried – and been impressed with – pieces from the previous Gok Wan collection for Simply Yours. I was recently offered the chance to try something from the new range, and I jumped at the chance to see what they’d done to improve it.

After trying the corset and the slip last time, this time around I decided to go for the bodysuit, called the ‘Curve Controller‘. I went for the black, which has a nude trim and animal print detail, but it also comes in nude and turquoise.

My first impressions were that, once again, the product was high quality (to match the fairly high price tag). A lot of thought has been put into the construction to make sure it works for larger sizes, and the detailing gives it a bit of edge. Though you’re never going to want to slip it on for a hot date, the body looks less matronly and a bit more alluring than some shapewear, and the nude trim is a nice touch. The back has a long hook-and-eye fastening which is tricky to put on, but works well once it’s fastened to keep everything in place. There’s also ruching down the bum to hug curves – great under trousers or very fitted dresses.

The powermesh inside is the bit that does all the hard work, helping to create a smoother line under clothing. Luckily, it does this without feeling too tight and sweaty. It’s constrictive, yes, but it’s not like wearing a corset – you can still slouch a bit and because it’s a bodysuit, you don’t get the irritating roll-down (or fleshy overhang) you might get with big knickers.

For the redesign, the powermesh (which was hot pink in my older pieces) comes in animal print. I guess this is a bit of a marmite design detail. I love a bit of OTT glam so it gets my vote, but others might think it’s a bit much, and I’m not so sure it works on the turquoise version. But the main thing to consider is that it doesn’t show once the garment’s being worn, so it’s just a little bit of fun!

I was glad to see one of my least favourite elements of the previous range – the jingly bell on the centre of the bust – had been ditched in favour of a little ‘G’ charm. It’s meant to stand for ‘Gok’ of course, but since we share the same initial, nobody need know that!

The other good news, for me at least, is that the style of the bra on these pieces has also been changed. It’s gone from a plunge to a balconette, which I find a much more comfortable shape. However, I did find the cups on this body to be a bit big and quite…pointy! Once I was in it was fine, because the cups are smooth, have small half-cup pads and maintain their shape, but I think I could have easily gone down a cup size, maybe even two.

A close-up of the cup and internal powermesh

The body itself runs fairy true-to-size, bearing in mind it’s shapewear so it’s meant to be tight-fitting. That said, it comes in cup / back sizes rather than dress sizes, and if you’ve been measured for a bra somewhere like Bravissimo where they fit very close to the body with small back sizes, you may wish to go a band size up or fastening up the hook and eye closure will be a nightmare. I went up one band size and the fit was perfect (though that may go some way to explaining why the cups were a little big).

The final consideration with this body, of course, is the gusset. It fastens with a hook and eye mechanism too, which I have to say is the biggest problem for me. It’s a complete nightmare when you’re in a public toilet trying to contort yourself to fasten it! I would have much preferred good quality poppers or press-studs, though I understand why the hook and eye has been chosen. As shapewear is so fitted, there’s a lot of pressure on the seams and joins – poppers may well have just popped open all the time, and the hooks do hold it securely. It just takes some getting used to. And I definitely wouldn’t recommend it if you know you’re going to be out drinking!

I’ve worn this body a few times now, mostly under close-fitting dresses to give a bit of a smoother outline down my torso. It’s comfortable, it does the job it’s supposed to and it never budges. On the downside, it’s quite hot (rest assured it will not be worn to any Summer weddings if the weather continues to be as beautiful as it has been) and the hook and eye gusset takes a lot of fiddling to get used to.

However, overall, I think the pros outweigh the cons by a huge margin and if you need something to wear under a dress with a close-fitting waist, it’s really good for creating a bit of an hourglass look. It comes in big cup and back sizes and is really well made to suit a more voluptuous figure.

Disclosure: Simply Yours sent this product free of charge for me to review. However, the review is honest and I was not paid to publish it.

DD+, Lingerie, Tried & Tested

Tried & Tested: Curvy Kate Lingerie


When it comes to bras that fit, I’ve resigned myself to the fact that only a handful of brands can really cater for the fuller figure. All of them charge upwards of £25 for a decent bra, so buying pretty new lingerie quickly ends up costing a fortune.

So I was happy to discover, who offer all the brands I’m familiar with (Panache, Kalyani, Freya etc) along with one I didn’t – Curvy Kate – with discounts all round. The money off ranges from a couple of quid to around 50% off, and with one Curvy Kate bra on special offer at £10 this week, I thought it rude not to give it a go…

I have to say I was thorougly impressed. First of all, with BraStop’s service. I didn’t specify next day delivery, but I ordered the bra in the afternoon, it was dispatched within hours and it was on my doormat when I got home the next day, prettily wrapped in tissue paper beneath the plastic shipping bag.

The bra itself was a real surprise. For £10, I wasn’t expecting much (I didn’t note the £26 RRP at the time). Even Primark charge £6+ for its D+ bras and I’m used to paying around £30 for Panache and Kalyani, but the quality was on a par with those other brands I’m used to. The choice of style is limited (there are about 6 bras in the range, all fairly similar) but each comes in loads of colours and prints so when you find the one you like, you’re set!

Like most of us, I vary between a couple of sizes depending on the brand, but I decided to go with the smaller back size on this occasion given that Curvy Kate is a specialist brand and they tend to be slightly more generous around the band than high street D+ ranges with their padding, frills and over the top detail.

I was right to do this. The bra I tried was called Portia, and I’d liken the fit of it to similar styles from Panache – the cups are quite wide and the back is fairly generous (if you’re between two sizes, go down as there’s quite a lot of stretch). Most importantly, it’s incredibly comfortable. I often find the bones start to dig in after a day’s wear but with this I couldn’t feel a thing. The straps didn’t slip at all, and nothing itched or rubbed. All in all, I was suitably impressed. It’s great to discover another brand that fits and flatters, especially one so affordable.

Prices on BraStop for Curvy Kate range from about £12 up to £16 and right now there’s free shipping with the code JAN10PAY. I’m definitely going to be investing in a few more!

I paid for the bra and received no incentive to write this. I just loved the brand!

Clothing, DD+, Dresses, Featured, Sale shopping

Boob-friendly dresses from Bravissimo

Bravissimo has long been the secret haunt of girls with D+ boobs. Stocking all the big brands that cater to larger breasted ladies (Freya, Panache, Kalyani, Masquerade etc) in loads of back sizes (not just large, but small) and providing a measuring service that’s second to none, I know ladies who’ll sing the praises of this shop ’til kingdom come. In fact, I’m one of them! The Bravissimo angels can lift and support even the biggest boobs and sell pretty, not frumpy designs. And as if that wasn’t enough, they also sell special big boob clothing!

Offering up standard UK dress sizes with three choices of chest measurement – curvy, really curvy and super curvy – these clothes aim to avoid that annoying gape or pull that you find on the chest if you squeeze your D+’s into standard sizes. This is particularly useful on dresses and v-neck tops, which often end up revealing far too much bra as the standard cups strain on larger chests. Instead, you get custom-cut coverage, but without having to go bigger elsewhere. Lots are super-fitted and ruched at the waist for a gorgeous hourglass shape, too. The selection of secret support tops and nightwear is also great – after all there’s nothing worse than saggy boobs in bed!

Sizes go from an 8 – 16, so not particularly great if you’re a plus size, but with the generous cup sizes on these babies, you might well be able to fit comfortably into a smaller size than normal, meaning size 18s shouldn’t rule the range out if they have a store nearby where they can try on.

Right now there are various items on sale, including the lovely 40s style spot print dress’ for £39 and the fluted sleeve dress for the same. Outside of the sale, get a bit of Summer daytime chic in the incredibly flattering nautical striped jersey dress for £45.