Comexim: Tropical Garden

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Comexim. Comexim and Tropical Garden. What a perfect combination! I love Comexim for several reasons, and one of them is their willingness to alter your bra so that you have the perfect fit. The owner, Anna is a joy to work with, and she will customize a bra to fit you perfectly.

Something for those new to this brand: When you scroll through the size drop down menu, don’t worry if you do not see your size. They have limited sizes on the website, however you can email them with your order if your size happens to not be listed.  With that said, if the piece you are looking at is on clearance,  chances are that what is listed on the website is all there is. I have found that using a language translator to email Anna is the best way to communicate with her. I write my order and any special instructions in Polish at the top of the email, and then in English below that. I highly suggest that you keep your correspondence to the point, for lack of a better phrase. Unfortunately, Google Translator has proven to be somewhat of a joke at times. One word in English could be several different words with different meanings in Polish, and can cause quite a bit of confusion. Luckily, Anna sees a lot of the same alterations being requested, so between the Polish version and the English version, things tend to turn out pretty well. 🙂

Tropical Garden came in my second order with the following alterations: reduced cups, and a fix for some gaping material at both sides of the gore. This gaping was not noticeable under clothes but I knew it was there, and I didn’t like it. In order to explain what I was talking about, I sent some pictures to Anna, and she knew right away how to fix it. I have no idea what she did, so I call it the “Magic Trick”. 🙂 I ordered this bunch (5 bras in this order, and yes, they are all lovely) in an 80K, after my first order of an 80K and an 80L, both in standard cuts, to determine size.

This bra runs very firm in the band. I have noticed this with my Geisha as well. I think it has to do with the black material used for the band. I have read several blogs and comments under reviews that reflect the same thinking. I did have to wear an extender the first couple of times I wore this one, but it has stretched to fit firmly, yet comfortably on the loosest set of hooks. I have several  (ok, 26) Polish bras in my rotation currently, so this band will stay firm for awhile. The band currently measures 35 in. stretched, and 24.5 in. un-stretched.

The floral pattern is a wonderful, bright contrast to the black base of the cups. This is a plunge style, and gives a nice, rounded shape. These are considered to be “padded”, however, I think of them more as lined than padded. 

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The top of the cup is made of a black satin, which accentuates the black material and colorful floral print. I love bras that have more than one texture to them. I love bras that have all of the same fabric throughout. I love bras, who am I kidding? 😉 The inside of the cups is made of a black cotton lining. 

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Tropical Garden is currently listed at 120,00 PLN on Comexim, which roughly converts to $31.84 USD, depending on the exchange range, and not including the PayPal increase for the currency exchange.

Shortly after I received this order, Comexim went on vacation. I took that time to carefully plot my next purchase, and the alterations to the cup styles that I wanted. Also during this time, I noticed that my size has changed a bit. My latest order is in an 80J for the plunge styles, and 80K for the half cup styles. I will let you know how they work out once they get here 🙂

Until then, stay tuned for the other amazing reviews and posts that we have planned in the near future. 😉

~Tanzilove~

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Ewa Michalak S Paris Paris Set ~ Romance in a bra

When you are part of a group of 8 bra-crazed women, new bras are never a secret for long.  Just one new bra posted on  Ewa MichalakComexim or Anna Pardal‘s site incites a flurry of excitement that I can only liken to a group of 13 year old girls getting tickets to a One Direction concert!  And so on that beautiful Saturday morning, as I was taking a drive with my family and was informed by one of the girls that new bras showed up on the Ewa Michalak site, our excitement spread like wild fire.

Quickly scrolling through each page of bras, I feverishly searched for this new gem.  Oddly enough, the “new” bra we found was in the Outlet section where discontinued bras with limited sizes are placed (I believe it came out last year sometime but then sold out and they must have just had enough material for a few more).  And there she was…Paris Paris, this gorgeous dusty rose S style that was just begging me to scoop her up and make her mine!  To add to my justification that she must have been meant for me, there were only a few sizes left…one of which was a 65GG.  Being one who is horrible under pressure, I immediately threw her in my cart and proceeded to checkout before anyone else tried to steal her away!  I didn’t even look around for other bras to add to my purchase, which I usually do since the shipping cost doesn’t change and I find it a better “deal” to spread shipping & handling between multiple bras to be shipped together.  As if my luck couldn’t get any better, my beautiful Paris was also on sale for only 109 PLN (about $28 USD) with the grand total being 163 PLN (around $42.50 USD).  To top it all off, Paris was already made and just waiting to be placed in that little brown box and shipped to me, which it was first thing Monday morning.

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A (relatively) short week later, my beautiful Paris Paris arrived!  As with all of my Polish bras, she is even more beautiful in real life than in the pictures.  My first impressions: Paris isn’t at all an overly fancy bra, a dusty rose/pale purple with a slightly shimmery fabric, pale pinkish/purple lace lining the tops of the cups, matching straps and bow on the gore.  The bow is actually placed in an odd spot, more in the middle rather than at the top, which I didn’t really like it at first, but then when I put it on I realized it was kind of nice since the bow doesn’t get lost in my cleavage!  This bra is what I would call “romantic”, so I can see why she was named Paris 🙂

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Upon putting it on for the first time, the band seemed to be a little on the looser side for a 65 as I had to use the third row of hooks to get a snug fit (there are four rows).  I have been really struggling with if I need to size down to a 60 band lately and I think I could have easily used a 60 in this case.  The cups (though padded) are pretty soft and mold to my boobs really well.  Like all the Ewa Michalak S style bras, Paris came with removable pads for asymmetry.  I always remove my pads since I feel like they push the cups away from my chest creating gapping at the top.  I attribute this to the fact that my boobs are firm because I am all implant with very little natural breast tissue, so my boobs don’t mold around the padding like they would with natural breasts.  The gore tacks perfectly, though some women with close set boobs have difficulties with the S style tacking properly since the gore is a medium height.   Overall, Paris is a near perfect fit!

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One of the things I love most about Paris is that with my dark skin tone, it makes a very good “nude” or “neutral” bra for me.  And with it’s smooth fabric, I can wear it under any top and not worry that it looks “bumpy” at all.  Because of this and the fact that it is just super comfortable, it has quickly become one of the most worn bras in my collection.

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Now on to my dirty little secret…Though I am gaga over gorgeous bras, I am one of the cheapest women alive when it comes to what I wear below the waist!  Unless I am going somewhere fancy, I rarely care what my panties look like and about 99% of the time, they nowhere near match my bra!  But after months of watching Jelz and some of our other bloggers purchase matching bra and undies sets, I decided that Paris needed to be my first.  And being that Paris happens to be my lucky bra, it was no surprise that the matching stringi was on sale when I decided to add it to my next Ewa order (review of S Eden coming soon)!  At 29 PLN (approximately $7.50 USD) it would have been a crime not to buy them!

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Being that Ewa makes such breathtaking bras, it came as no surprise that my Paris undies were just as gorgeous.  I ordered a size 36 (the smallest available) and was a little concerned if they would be too big, but luckily they fit fine.  I could have gone down a size, but these are definitely wearable which is awesome because they are so darn cute!  The band is covered in the same lace as the tops of the cups of my Paris bra and there are stripes of pinkish ribbon on each side that match the little bows.  They really are quite beautiful!  And if I thought that wearing a beautiful bra made me feel beautiful and confident, wearing a gorgeous set amplified that feeling ten-fold!  It looks like this may just be the beginning of many sets to come!

Review: Anna Pardal Emeline

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Anna Pardal Emeline Classic Plunge

On my search for an everyday black bra I found a stunner!  Emeline is far from any ordinary black basic bra even though it can pass for one easily.  The first time I saw it on the Anna Pardal website I was in love and decided I had to order it ASAP and luckily for me Erica from A Sophisticated Pair happened to have a 30g in stock…in stock!  Do you know how rare that has been for me, a bra ready to ship in my size is pretty much non-existent.  I emailed her immediately and she sent it quickly (Erica provides amazing customer service btw).   When I opened the package, just a few days later, it was even more gorgeous in person but unfortunately for me it was a tad too tall and a tad too large.

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Since Erica didn’t have a different size for me to try and the new Anna Pardal styles were soon to be released I decided to reach out to Anna W. of Anna Pardal directly to ensure I got an Emeline thinking it would soon be discontinued and of course Sabine made it into my cart as well since I have no self-control lol.  I decided to try a 30ff and hoped that the unaltered size would work….sadly it was too small.  So I decided to send Anna pictures of the bras and ask her advice on what I should try next to get that perfect fit.  After telling her I loved the narrow gore and that the strap sort of dug into my narrow shoulders, she suggested I try a 30g with reduced cups and straps moved in 2cm and requested that the gore be made as narrow as possible and I also asked her to please add a pocket for an asymmetry pad to be inserted since I have one breast slightly smaller than the other.  Emeline arrived a few weeks later and you know that sound in the movies when the sky opens and you hear aaaaahhhhh, yep that’s what I heard as I tried it on and fell in love with this piece of Heaven.

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The fit is exactly what I needed and it is my most comfortable bra I own,  but that isn’t even the best part.  Emeline is a sophisticated, elegant and rich looking work of art and I feel amazing wearing it each and every time I put it on.

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Nothing can compare to feeling beautiful and comfortable at the same time and let’s face it there have been plenty of occasions when as a woman we’ve had to choose beauty over comfort….darn heels!

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The Emeline Classic Plunge is a lightly lined molded cup bra and while it holds its shape it isn’t stiff like other molded bras I’ve tried.  The 30 band is firm and perfect for my 26.75 inch ribcage measurement on the loosest of 4 hooks and the reduced cups are the perfect depth and height.  The fully adjustable straps sit perfectly on my narrow shoulders and are stiffer then other bras I own but once I found the correct adjustment they haven’t budged and feel amazing.  The narrow wires and projected cup give me the most amazing lifted shape and the perfect amount of cleavage, nothing over the top.  Thanks to the narrow gore I don’t have any problems for my close-set breasts and it tacks perfectly without pinching or digging.  So for fit, dare I say perfect…Absolutely!

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The bra is exquisitely made with high quality fabric and precisely stitched, even the bows are beyond elegant.  The antique peach flower print is subtle yet beautiful against the deep black background reminiscent of an oil painting.

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I feel incredible wearing this amazing bra, the shape is fantastic and is nearly seamless under a fitted tee.  It has become my favorite bra and I reach for it at least a couple of days per week.  If I want to dress up or just hang out in shorts and a tank top I feel beautiful knowing Emeline is underneath.

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I just can’t say enough about how impressed I am by this bra,  I love it so much and Anna has perfected her designs to suit all women of different shapes and sizes.  She is a true artist and even though she must be extremely busy she takes the time to respond quickly to emails and is so kind in her replies,  she truly cares about a perfect fit.  Somehow she created the most elegant, sophisticated and comfortable black bra that I have ever owned.  If you have been on the hunt for perfection, look no further…Emeline is still available in 4 news cup styles with the option of additional alterations for a small fee and if you subscribe to the Anna Pardal newsletter you will receive 10% off your first order at annapardal.com.  If you are anything like me once you look at the site Emeline won’t be the only item in your cart.  Have you tried Anna Pardal yet?  I would love to hear your thoughts!

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The Panache Sports Bra Review

I always thought a sports bra would be the easiest type of bra to find after having my BA. But as it turns out, this may not actually be the case. I try to exercise every day and have been making do with a cheap sports bra I bought from Kmart (an Aussie budget department store) in a 12DD (34DD). I usually wear a 6HH (28HH). Yeah. Clearly it’s time for an upgrade. So I looked to my much appreciated email pen-pal at Brava Lingerie, Becky, to see what she could recommend in my size. I was presented with three potential options and decided to go with the Panache Sports Bra, which through Brava costs AUD$79.95 and comes in a huge variety of colours – some of which you can see modelled here by the lovely Jelz (30G) and Baby (28H & 28GG) respectively.

 

 

 

I am a sucker for anything coral and so I fell in love with the coral/grey colour and as there were no 6 (28) bands in stock, I opted for an 8H (30H). The 8H however was far too roomy. It fit over my boobs but felt like a lot of bra, and not exactly supportive. I had since conferred with my fellow bloggers and discovered the sizing can be a little off in this range. So thanks to Brava’s free and easy return/exchange system, I was able to swap out my 8H for an 8GG with no problems. It arrived beautifully wrapped as always 🙂

 

But also as always, it didn’t stay that way for long 😉

  

I really do love the coral and grey combo of this bra. It’s bright and fun but still says “let’s get sweaty”. The material is pleasantly soft and extremely comfortable, and is punctuated by breathable fabric along both of the straps and the length of the centre gore. For a sports bra, it’s actually very pretty. I was also excited to note the J hook located on the left strap. It’s always handy to have the option to go racerback.

 

My first moment of terror came when I really looked at the gore. It is wide, high and appears pretty unforgiving for a close set gal like me. The idea I presume is to provide solid separation and therefore maximum support while working out. Which would be fantastic, if it fit.

It actually is a decent fit. It looks awesome on (if I do say so myself) and unlike the H cups which swam on me, the GG’s give the perfect amount of encapsulation.

  

I was very impressed with the side profile. You wouldn’t have to worry about this looking pointy or squashy under a top, it gives a great round and uplifted shape.

The band is snug but not as snug as I would like, which I should have expected as it is a band size up from what I normally wear. But being a sports bra I thought this might not matter. However it seems I was wrong, as to get the firm feeling I like I’ve already got this on the second set of hooks (of which there are 3 in total).

  

So it all seems to be going rather well so far, don’t you think? Well so did I, until I looked directly down. And shock horror, the gore floats. It doesn’t even come close to tacking between my close set cleavage. I can almost see the bra trying to come in at that point, but it just cant do it, so instead I can see right through to my toes. Sadface 😦

I could just deal with it and wear it anyway. It’s still a great bra in my opinion but I just don’t think it works for me. I could always try a 6GG or H perhaps and see if the tighter band helps pull everything in. But after more chatter with my blogging buddies I don’t think so. They have reported the same issue with the floating gore in a variety of sizes. This is a real shame, but one which I think is just an anatomy thing and not an actual fault of the bra itself. This bra would most likely be perfect for ladies who are not so narrow, projected and close set. Which means for me that the sports bra quest will continue – watch this space for more adventures to come! 🙂

Zathiya Lingerie – A Wonderful Find

I had the pleasure to meet Aisha, the owner of Zathiya Lingerie in my quest for the alluring and exquisite S Turkusowe Kwiaty from Polish lingerie designer Ewa Michalak. I will be posting a review about that beauty soon, and the adventure that I embarked upon to add it to my collection ;). Since then, I have had the pleasure to build a wonderful relationship with Aisha. When I asked her to allow me to write a feature on her and her store for our blog, she didn’t hesitate. Below is my interview with this amazingly sweet and helpful woman, with whom I share a passion for Polish bras.

What influenced you to get into the retail lingerie business and how did Zathiya come to be?

Zathiya came about from my own experiences in finding bras for my fuller bust. Growing up in Ghana, I’d never owned a pretty and comfortable bra. That is, until I came across a Bravissimo shop in London in 1999. When I moved to Texas several years later, I quickly discovered that bras outside the core size range were something only specialty stores carried. Though, the specialty stores I found catered more to the plus-size range than to the full-bust range. My frustrations grew when my internet searches for bras or bathing suits in my size often came up with little-to-no desirable results. I was not only looking for a bra that fit, I was also looking for something pretty that would truly complement my figure by giving me a great shape. I figured I was not alone in this situation, so I decided to make full-bust bras more readily available in the U.S. to anyone who might see this as a benefit.

Where does the name “Zathiya” come from?

Zathiya is a derivative of the Hindi word “sathiya”, which can literally be translated to mean companion, lover or “friend”. It is my hope that my customers will find something they absolutely love in my store – be it a product or an overall good experience.

How long has Zathiya been open?

Zathiya opened officially in January 2015.

Do you have a storefront, or are you strictly online?

At present, we are an onlineonly boutique.

How do you find the majority of your customers?

The majority of our customers visit us by direct referrals from current customers, online ads and word-of-mouth.

What is the best way to contact you?

Please feel free to send me an email directly with your questions: aisha@zathiya.com or call: 409-242-0046

What makes you stand out from other lingerie retailers?

We are one of the very few businesses in the U.S. that carry the Polish brands Comexim and Ewa Michalak. We especially want to alleviate the process of shopping for full-bust lingerie by personally connecting with our customers and understanding their current issues in shopping for full bust pieces. It can be a daunting process, especially when you are new to or unfamiliar with the brand. We want you to help us help you. Do not hesitate to contact us with your questions.

Mimi Demi Bra by Comexim
   Mimi Demi Bra by Comexim
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SM Kusidelko by Ewa Michalak

How often do you get new merchandise?

We try to move stock every 2 months and stagger buying for the different brands, so we that we can have new styles in every month.

Are you able to special order if someone is looking for something specific?

Yes, we are able to special-order items for our customers, but the options vary by brand. Comexim offers various alterations and customizations of their standard bras at any time. This, of course, depends on availability of the materials. We can also special-order Ewa Michalak styles, depending on availability.

What is your favorite thing about your job?

One of the things I really enjoy about my job is helping people find a fit they are comfortable in. I love that I can sometimes use my past experiences to help others find a bra solution.

What is your favorite thing about the lingerie industry?

Speaking as a consumer, I can truly appreciate how information made available by lingerie bloggers has helped me in making my lingerie buying decisions. As a retailer, I have had the opportunity of networking with some of these lingerie bloggers and I continue to appreciate their hard work.

What is the most common question that your customers ask regarding bra fitting?

Most customers contact me for sizing help. To be able to help, I ask for as much information as possible – what they currently wear in other popular brands, what their measurements are, their preferences, etc.

What is the most common problem that you see regarding bra fitting?

From talking with my customers, the most common problem I have come across is shape compatibility. Sometimes I use visual aids in my emails to help with explanations.

What is your favorite thing about Polish bras?

I have never really been a fan of the flattened, splayed look that some bras give. My favorite thing about Polish bras is in their inherent design with the narrow underwires and the projected look they offer.

Do you have your own personal favorite Polish bra? If so, who makes it and what is it?

What a difficult question! I don’t have any one favorite, but there are styles I like better than others. For example, I love the Comexim Basic bra. It is, hands down, my all-day, everyday bra. My other current favorites are Comexim Jacqueline, Ewa Michalak S Turkosuwe Kwiaty, Ewa Michalak S Diamente and a customized Anna Pardal Typhoon.

Do you have any hot, up and coming tips or advice for our readers?

If you love Polish bras, stick around with Zathiya. There are new Polish brands coming, and we are very excited about that!

What would you like our readers to know about you and your store?

We welcome all questions/comments/suggestions/criticisms/ideas etc. As a young store, we can really benefit from feedback from our customers.

Please be sure to visit Zathiya Lingerie, and let Aisha know that Tanzilove sent you. You wont regret it! Her customer service is amazing. She is quick to respond to your emails, and she truly does want to help you get your hands on (and your girls in) the best fitting bra for you 🙂 Aisha and I are working on another project as well, so be sure to follow and stay tuned!

My Beloved ;)
My Beloved 😉

~Tanzilove~

 

Anna Pardal. Lux Lingerie For All Women.

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As you may know by now, in my quest to find the perfect fitting bra, I was thrilled to find Polish made brands like Ewa Michalak and Comexim.  I love them both equally, for different reasons.  It’s like my kids.  I could never choose one over the other.  Well, apparently my bras imitate life, and I have a 3rd Polish bra child to cherish and adore.

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Anna Pardal is a luxury line of Polish lingerie that has teamed up with Comexim to bring high quality bras and panties to women of all sizes.  They use only the finest Spanish and Italian fabrics and lace to produce some of the most beautiful undergarments I’ve ever seen.  The marriage of the Comexim fit to Anna Pardal’s beautiful fabrics and designs are an absolutely perfect union!

I recently interviewed Anna Wroblewska at Anna Pardal to get more insight on this wonderful collaboration.  I learned so much about her (we share a love of Sophia Loren!) and her business.  Put on your sexiest bra and read on!

 

 

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  1.  What influenced you to get into the lingerie business?
    It all started hunched over a friend’s laptop in her apartment. She walked past me and said, “Anna, your bra is way too big.” I was totally confused, and that was when she opened the door for me into the magical world of bra-fitting. It was an instant passion. Discovering the perfectly-fitting bra was like a magic cape for me, something that made me feel like the most fearsome, sexy, and self-assured version of myself, someone who knows who she is, how valuable she is, and what she wants. I thought, “There is no way that so many women out there don’t have this.”
  2. How did the brand, Anna Pardal, come to be?
    I came to a moment professionally when I knew I wanted to build something of value, and as I started sifting through the things I loved and what my mission and goals in life were, lingerie presented itself as the obvious answer. As the concept took shape, it became apparent that what I had on my hands was a global boutique with far-reaching positive consequences for both myself and others, a place to where one can find gorgeous lingerie and discover the beauty, sophistication, and sense of luxury that comes from perfect fit (and staggeringly beautiful Southern European fabrics!).
  3. How long have you been designing bras?
    I started in 2012! It’s just a few years, but I feel like it’s been a lifetime. It’s impossible to express how much you learn when you just dive into your dream and learn how to swim.
  4. Where do you find inspiration for your designs?
    I am a huge quote collector (you’ve probably noticed this on the website and newsletter!) so I am very often inspired by the wonderful things that other people have said — especially people who have made it their business to craft beauty from the world. For this collection, I kept coming back to this particular photo of Sophia Loren. She is the picture of elegance, sophistication, and good humor. sophia
    I also take a great deal of inspiration from the people around me and the people who I work with, namely my family, customers, and colleagues. Individual customers email me with wonderful wish lists and colors they love, and retail partners like Erica Windle of A Sophisticated Pair provide a sharp eye and the kind of good humor and partnership that makes you excited to get to work every day.
  5. What makes you stand out from other lingerie designers?
    We listen. There are no preconceived notions at Anna Pardal, and I seek out as much feedback as I possibly can from our customers, working constantly to adjust our designs, our fit, and our styles to meet those needs.
    We’re also unique in terms of style and fit. Our patterns are very unique compared to everything else on the market, in terms of the luxuriousness of our Italian and Spanish fabrics, the sophisticated and yet approachable styling of our collections, and the immense sense of comfort that I want people to feel when wearing our designs. This is all about tireless efforts to improve fit for every customer. I think too much of lingerie is focusing on “fixing” or patently ignoring the immense and wonderful variety of human forms — it is my mission as a person and as a designer to bring an unshakable appreciation of oneself to every Anna Pardal customer.
  6. How often does your company come out with new designs? Between our first and second collection we waited TWO YEARS! This was actually intentional. It’s very important to me to grow a sustainable and wonderful business that represents the ideals I care most about, and to get to the point where we could release the second collection — in a way that felt right — took some time. But from here on out we want to do two per year minimum 🙂
  7. Are you the sole designer in your company, or do you have other designers in your company that help with creating new styles as well?
    I work closely with Anna Matczak of Comexim, who manufactures our bras. She is an absolute wonder woman when it comes to fit, styling, and tailoring, and she has an amazing eye for beauty and detail — all of which make her an inspiring and wonderful colleague! I also lean heavily on my partner in love, life, and business, Ronald Oliver. He’s a menswear designer and the force behind the brand Oliver West, and we influence each other’s work quite a bit.
  8. How many people work for Anna Pardal?
    Aside from our suppliers, agents, etc., we are officially two Annas, not including Anna Matczak of Comexim! (Anna is a very common name in Poland 🙂 ) The “other” Anna is the person who makes it possible for me to focus on nurturing the business. There is also a huge sphere of unofficial partners and collaborators — from fabric manufacturers to agents, customers, and advisors, there are many minds involved in the making of a beautiful product.
  9. Where do you find the materials and fabrics that you use to make your bras and lingerie?
    All of our fabrics are Spanish and Italian. Being in Poland is wonderful on this front, as it’s so close (I was based in South Africa before)! We are actually going to a big textiles trade show in Milan next month — I can’t wait to see what we come back with.
  10. What is your favorite thing about your job?
    I absolutely love it, LOVE IT, when women say to me that they’ve never felt more comfortable, more beautiful, and more sophisticated in a bra. I always think back to one of my very first customers, a wonderful young woman who I fitted in person. She felt so self-conscious about her full-busted figure and was struggling with back pain, and when she put on the perfect sized Anna Pardal Milk & Honey she actually started crying with happiness and relief. I get chills just thinking about it! It was so incredible to see her stand a little straighter , walk a little taller, and really take ownership of herself as a woman. I always tell people: “If something doesn’t fit, it’s not your fault. It’s the garment’s fault.” And yet it’s so easy to think that it’s us, not them. We must never believe that we need to tailor ourselves to fit our clothing in order to be beautiful. No. Our clothing must be tailored to us so that we can truly relish in and express our individual beauty and light.
  11. What is your favorite thing about the lingerie industry?
    I have a very romantic notion of lingerie. It’s not just underwear and it’s not just about being sexy or providing a structural foundation for your outfit. It’s a metaphor for so many ideals that I think are wonderful and important — self-care, confidence and self-assurance, mastery and knowing thyself. The idea of relishing in yourself and seeing yourself as the work of art that you are.
  12. What is the most common question that your customers ask regarding bra fitting? The most common questions I see typically revolve around the cup. Determining whether a cup fits or not can be a complicated task, as you have not only the shape of the wire to take into account but the shape and size of the cup and how it relates to the size of the band. A bra is a subtle piece of engineering! It’s important to remember that you should essentially breathe a sigh of relief when you’re wearing the perfect fit. No tugging in the band, no weird pressure points, no difficulty breathing and nothing smushed or gapping. The band should be smooth and straight, the breast tissue fully encased but not trapped. And it’s always a good sign when you see yourself in the mirror and say, “Wow!” 🙂
  13. What is the most common problem that you see when you are trying to fit someone for a  bra?
    It’s a bra-fitting proverb at this point that most people wear too-large bands and too-small cups, and it is indeed common. This is not the customer’s fault of course — historically speaking, options have been very limited! But the bigger problem is the effect that those limited options have had on us as people: we tend to walk into lingerie purchases with this horrible sense that there is something wrong with us, that finding something beautiful and perfect and comfortable is an impossible task. Not true! It is so important to me that women experience the opposite feelings when buying Anna Pardal — empowerment, delight, and true self-appreciation. Like I say again and again: If it doesn’t fit, it’s not your fault. It’s the garment’s fault. And we’ve built our business on the belief that garments can and should be tailored to the customer.
  14. Where can our readers purchase your products?
    We sell our collections online through our website, www.annapardal.com, and through third-party retailers. You can see a full listing on our site!
  15. How do you find the majority of your customers?Most of our customers come to us by way of lingerie blogs, our retailers, and bra-fitting forums. We have been fortunate to develop wonderful relationships in the industry that make it possible for us to always meet new people and get more and more perfectly-fitting bras into the world.
  16. What is the best way for potential new customers to find or contact you with any questions they may have regarding your products?
    I can be reached directly via email on anna@annapardal.com. I get a lot of emails so it can take a few days reply, but it’s very important to me to help each individual customer find that perfect bra.
  17. What is your favorite thing about the bras that you design?
    I love that they are beautiful and unique without being overwhelming. When I think of our designs I think of a subtle, sophisticated aesthetic. I design to highlight and underscore the beauty of the wearer, and I think the restraint and subtlety of our styles provide the perfect supporting act to each individual customer’s light.
  18. What is your personal favorite design that you have created?
    Oh that’s a tough one. For styling, I am totally mad for Hibiscus and every time I see Florence I go into a tizzy. But what I’m most proud of is our cup styling. It took a lot of hard work to get an understanding of fit throughout our formidable size range (work that continues every day!) and developing that knowledge into the Nuance, Sophisticate, and Doyenne cup styles was a labor of love and devotion. I am so proud and excited to be offering them.
  19. How many bras do you have in your personal collection? (Are they all your own line?)Oh dear, that’s a hard one to answer. I usually wear a pretty edited number of bras day to day, but I keep many on-hand. I had a baby last year which completely sent my sizing into a whirlwind, so I learned to keep the “perfect fits — for now” in the drawer and the backups nearby. Our bodies are living and breathing, and we must accommodate their shifting tides! Everything, however, is Anna Pardal.
  20. Do you have any hot, up and coming tips or advice for our readers regarding the Polish Bra/Lingerie industry?
    It might be because I live under a mountain made of bras, but the most exciting thing for me right now is our new cup styles. By incorporating common size and fit requirements at different points in the size range, I’m hopeful that we can make perfectly-fitted bras more accessible and easier to buy. Can you imagine? A few clicks, and the perfect fit being made to order just for you! This is my dream.

Is there anything else that you would like our readers to know about you and your company that we have not already covered? [please feel free to add any additional information that you would like to be included in your feature]
As I mentioned, for me lingerie is a metaphor for all of the ways in which we can truly relish in and care for ourselves. One thing I’m doing on that front is our new weekly newsletter, where I’m sharing interviews, stories, and experiments in how we can build beauty, nourishing rituals, and a timeless sense of glamour and presence into each and every day. I’d love it if you would join us! You can sign up here — and get 10% off your first order!

Florence

As Anna said, what makes them different is that they listen to what their customer wants and needs.  In answer, they recently launched a new collection of fits and fabrics that have all of us at AEE so excited!  Some of the changes include:  G+ cups see a narrower-set strap and reduced cups; 26-32 bands feature a lower gore; and 38+ bands a higher gore.  Check out all the new styles here and order some immediately.  You won’t regret it, but you will be hooked!

xo Treschic

Ewa Michalak BM Landrynek: A Coral Dream

BM front shot

 

The BM Landrynek is the first BM style bra from Polish lingerie designer Ewa Michalak that I have tried. I wasn’t sure how I felt about the style, because it looks so full coverage on the website. However, Jelzzz, Gogobee  and I agreed to make this a pact bra, meaning we were all going to purchase it and give it a try. Several of my fellow bloggers and I do this often. We are all so different in shapes and sizes, that this is a good way to see what styles work for each of us.

This particular pact came about because we were in love with the colors at first sight, but not so sure about the style. I prefer less coverage, while still getting as much support as possible. I am also relatively new to wearing non-padded or unlined bras. I always felt that I needed that extra padding and lining to get a nice looking profile to my breast shape.

I did some research before ordering this one. The Ewa Michalak website describes this bra as:

An unpadded bra with a higher bridge ideal for medium neckline. 

Gathers the breasts in a way they do not stick outside the contour of the body.

Lifts the bust giving it a rounded shape with a subtly marked peak, which adds a little lightness to your silhouette.

The cups are made of fine elastic lace in neon-coral colour with white underlayering. The tops of the cups are made of elastic lace, thanks to which they adjust to the shape of breasts, even if asymmetrical. Bows on the center gore and straps in turquoise.

The bra is designed for women who prefer fuller coverage, the cups go round the breasts keeping them in place.

Perfect for soft and less firm breasts.

Fully-adjustable straps in turquoise

If in doubt about the size, try the smaller one.

I sized down like the site suggests, and ordered an 80G. When I first tried this bra on, I thought, “Ok, no way did I need to size down.” It was firmer in the band than I was used to, and while I wasn’t exactly getting quad boob, I could tell it was a bit of a squeeze. My breasts felt a bit compressed.  

The first time that I wore this bra for a day, I used an extender, as I did not want to ruin the lace. I found that this made a world of difference in the fit! The shape I got was more rounded, more lifted, and less compressed and minimising in appearance. The next time I wore it, I did not need an extender. The bra had stretched to fit my body. The band was completely comfortable on the loosest set of hooks, the cups hugged my breasts perfectly and this bra feels amazing to wear.

BM Angle

 

On to the “technical”  stuff: The lace is backed by sheer mesh for extra support in the cup itself. 

BM Inside of Cups

BM Mesh Back

 

The top of the cup is made of the same lace, but the mesh backing is a stretchier material, therefore allowing for the top of the cup to perfectly mould to your upper breasts. The Ewa Michalak site says that this bra is perfect to help hide asymmetry, and that is absolutely true. The image below shows the lace at the top of the cup being stretched.  The image below that shows the lace unstretched.

 Stretched:

BM Lace Stretched

 

Unstretched:

BM Lace not stretched

 

When this bra first came, I could not get over how gorgeous the coral color was in real life, how exquisite the lace pattern was, and to match it with the teal straps and bows? Perfection!!!  (*as a side note, the straps are the same color as Ewa Michalak’s S Kwiaty bra). *Please note that due to different lighting, some images appear to be more pink in tone. The Landrynek is not pink.

 

   BM Lace WingBM Straps and bows

BM Full back

 BM flat

 

I never thought that I would be able wear a gorgeous lace bra without padding and still be able to get this uplifted, round, perky look. Ewa Michalak has made this a reality for me with the 3 part cup construction of this bra. As I understand it, in the larger the cup sizes, there are 4 parts, or sections, to the bra, so that no matter what cup size you are, you are guaranteed to get the classic Ewa Michalak shape that they are known for. This one is a win for me, and I couldn’t be happier with it! I definitely see more BM styles in my future 🙂

~Tanzilove

 

Bra Obsessed – Ordering Polish Bras in Canada (and an exclusive discount for you!)

So, you’re Canadian, eh? There are lots of great things about this great country of Canada.    We have Timbits.    We invented hockey.  We get our milk in bags.  We keep Canadian Tire money in our kitchen drawers.  We know what a touque is and we own them and wear them sometimes too.   – and that was just my short form joke list of great things about Canada.

What I want to talk about today though is how to get a fabulous Polish bra right here in Canada.    Of course you can order direct  from Poland, but be aware of a few things first:  our customs limit, meaning the value of the product that you are entitled to receive before duty charges can be levied, is only $20.00.  Obviously, you need to know your bra size in whichever Polish brand you are looking at (it isn’t the same as your non-Polish size and it is even unique to each company and sometimes even each style within each company).    And finally, return postage charges to mail a non-fitting or unwanted item back to Poland aren’t cheap.    It all seems pretty risky and daunting.  Which is why I’m so happy to let you know that you can actually order your Polish Ewa Michalak, Comexim and Anna Pardal  bras and panties right here in Canada, with free fit advice, hassle-free exchanges and no customs woes  through Canadian based Bra Obsessed.  I have had the pleasure of using  the services of Bra Obsessed since my own Polish bra obsession began.   In fact, I have even been so lucky as to have had Bra Obsessed’s lovely owner Jaimie over to my house on a few occasions and have had the privilege of in-person fitting services, marathon try-ons and sneak peeks at up and coming releases!   In this blog piece, I am giving our readers an opportunity to get to know Bra Obsessed via the following interview with Jaimie.

What influenced you to get into the retail lingerie business? In short: Polish bras!  I have always been obsessed with finding a great fit.  I have also always been obsessed with pretty things that make you feel great.  I have tried hundreds of bras for myself (literally, I really am Bra Obsessed!), but was never truly satisfied with them.  When I discovered Anna Pardal, Comexim and Ewa Michalak there was no going back.  The fit was exactly what was missing for me and they were so gorgeous.  I wanted them all!   I would no longer put up with my sad, droopy or boring bras when I could wear these beauties. I was so excited about them that I started telling all of my friends.  Soon I was ordering bras for my friends, helping with sizing advice and walking them through the process.  They were all so happy with the bras and I was amazed at how women of all sizes really loved them.   It wasn’t just my “hard to fit size” (I know, I know, insert sad violin sound here) that worked great with these bras, they worked great for everyone!  After a while, word was getting around, and I had people approaching me to help them order a bra.   I loved every moment of this. I was, however, frustrated with how expensive it was to send bras back to Poland when they didn’t fit. It was also hard when one style could fit so different than another.  I discovered I was very impatient and hated waiting for the bras to be made and shipped.  So I decided to follow the advice of my friends and family to jump in and make these brands readily available for Canadians.  My goal was to make the whole process quick and easy.  Easy to order and get sizing advice. Easy to return or exchange.  Also quick to ship because I would keep many styles in stock.

How did Bra Obsessed come to be? Along with the above answers, I credit the support of my husband and friends to push me into this.  It was already my passion but I had to hear “you really need to do this for a living!” from several different people before I was confident enough to take the plunge.  I was already spending my evenings analyzing fit requests and researching brands, so it seemed right (and exciting) to make my obsession my job.  I had seen the need, and I filled it.

How long has Bra Obsessed been open? Bra Obsessed is brand new, having just opened about 8 months ago.

Do you have a storefront, or are you strictly online? I do have a store.  At the moment it is very small, and attached to my home but eventually I plan to grow.  In the meantime, since much of my job is mobile it works great.

How do you find the majority of your customers? Being brand new, most of my customers I get through word of mouth.  I find  that if I put in the extra effort, and let my customers know that I really care, they will tell their friends. I also get many new customers through my bra parties.

What is the best way for potential new customers to get in contact with you? Emailing me is always best (bras@braobsessed.com).  Much of my job (and my life) is on the go but I usually see my emails right away and try to respond as soon as I can.

What makes you stand out from other lingerie retailers? This is a tricky question.  First of all, I’m new in the market so who am I to question retailers who have been in business for decades?  I would never want to put any retailers down.  Honestly though, I really love what I do.   I have seen how people light up when they look in the mirror and like what they see.  I want every customer to experience this boost.  And I work hard to get the perfect fit so that customers can feel this great.  I will not sell something to the customer just because they may be willing to buy it.  I really do talk customers out of certain purchases.  After all, how can they trust me if I let them buy something I know won’t work for them?

What is your favourite thing about your job? Hands down it’s helping people gain confidence.  I mentioned this on my website, but time after time I see people put themselves down when they do not fit into their bras.  But nothing is wrong with them!  Everybody is beautiful in their own way!  Most people do not fit into the mainstream sizes sold, and that certainly does not make them weird shaped or misfits.  It means that something is wrong with the mainstream lingerie companies! Some of the feedback I have received has really touched me.  I have customers tell me how instantly their back and neck problems disappeared when they wore the right size.    The ones that touched my heart the most though, are the customers that say they never felt pretty or sexy.  Wearing the proper size though, has helped them to love themselves, even to the point of being comfortable calling themselves pretty or sexy.   Nothing beats helping people see their own beauty.  It is so satisfying! Secondly: If you asked me years ago what my dream job would be, it would be to design lingerie.  So to now be heard from Comexim and Anna Pardal in design choices and fit adjustments is FUN!  Eventually I would like to design my own line of bras, panties and bikinis, but… baby steps. Third: (I know, I know you asked for one thing, but I seriously love so much about my job!) I now have a legitimate reason to buy all the bras. “I need to sample them all so I can know how they work.  It is really for the customers Hun”.   I know you fellow Bra Obsessed are a bit jealous of being able to use that reasoning on your husbands, sorry!

What is your favourite thing about the lingerie industry? A  whole industry devoted to secret pretty things.  How exciting is that!  I think wearing a sexy or pretty bra and matching underwear when no one else knows leaves you feeling powerful. It’s your little secret that makes you own your day.

What is the most common question that your customers ask regarding bra fitting and if you are answering online, how do you help to answer the question? What is my Polish size? This is a tricky one because they all fit so differently, even within the same brands. The information I need to help people is the following: What is your snug and relaxed ribcage measurement? Do you prefer a very snug band or a bit more relaxed? What is your overbust measurement while standing up? What is your overbust measurement while leaning over at a 90 degree angle? What are your best fitting bras (size make and model)? What style and colors do you prefer?  Bold or Neutral?  Lined or unlined? Also any pictures of people wearing their best fitting bras helps a lot too.  I completely understand if people are uncomfortable with this.  If they do not want to send a picture that is absolutely fine, we will work around it. It really does help me to figure out their size though.  The picture helps me to see if their current bras have any fit issues, what shape breasts they have, and what styles would be the most compatible for them.

What is the most common problem that you see regarding bra fitting and again, if you are responding online, how do you help to fix the fit problem?  First and foremost I see too large of bands, meaning the customers are carrying the weight of their breasts on their shoulders.  I also see people  bubbling over the cups.  People really need to swoop and scoop, jump around, lean over and shake while they are trying the bra on.  Many people after doing this realize that they need to size up one or two cup sizes from what they would initially buy. These are tricky things to fix online as I need to trust the customers that they are truly testing the bras while they try them on.  That is where it helps when people send pictures of the fit as well.  A picture both from the front and from the side help me to assess.

Tell us about your bra parties and how they work. They are a blast!  They are much different than an average sales party.  They end up just being a fun girls night out.  I start off explaining the basics of fit.  Everyone at the party can come to me one at a time and have a private fitting in a separate room.  Most of the time they can leave with their bra in hand, and the other times I will special order it for them. I offer the host 50% off one bra and 10% of the nights sales towards any other items.   The host will invite 5 – 25 of her friends over who are interested in getting fitted.  I travel anywhere within 1.5 hours from London, Ontario.  Many people come to these parties having no prior education about proper bra fitting and leave feeling much better about themselves and fully supported in their new bras.  This is what I really love about these parties, I get to help so many who would never have asked for bra fitting help in any other situation.  Did I mention we usually also drink wine?  Like I said, these parties are relaxed and above all fun!  (Again, my job is to talk bras while sipping wine???  Pinch me, I must be dreaming!)

What is your favourite thing about Polish bras? The shape of course.  I can’t even put on my old droopy east/west facing bras anymore.  I am comfortable, I am really uplifted, I have great cleavage, and let’s not forget they are so pretty!  No more boring beige domes for me!  Here are a couple of before and after photos to compare the shape of a Polish bra (in this case it is a Comexim in both) vs. the shape of an average UK bra sold at specialty lingerie stores.  The difference is astounding.

before and after clothed.2                                before and after picture

Do you have your own personal favourite Polish bra? If so, who makes it and what is it? Oh that’s so hard to choose.  They all have their own benefits in different ways. Anna Pardal has the rich and beautiful fabrics.  For Anna Pardal I love my Hibiscus, that fabric is just so beautiful! Comexim is the most comfortable by far.  For Comexim I am still partial to my Pantera.  It’s been around a while but I still love it. Ewa Michalak padded bras give the highest uplift, and the SM cuts have some very sexy options.  For Ewa Michalak I would have to say that it would be a tie between the sexy SM Czarna Mgielka and the new and super fun S Przeplatanki.

Do you have any hot, up and coming tips or advice for our readers? Rats, I wish I had a hot tip!  Comexim has some amazing new bras coming out this fall, but you readers probably already know that. Some advice though: Be aware of size fluctuations.   It is common for breasts to fluctuate even a cup size or two throughout the month.  If this is true of you, it may be beneficial to own a bra in a larger size for these times.  Nobody wants to be stuck with the dreaded quadboob at these times. Also, most people do not have perfectly symmetrical breasts.  It is common to be a whole cup or two bigger on one side.  Again, there is nothing wrong with you, this is normal!  Buy the bra that fits your bigger side and use cookies on the other (not Oreos silly, I knew we were both thinking that!).  Ewa Michalak has quite a few bras that come with asymmetrical pads, and Anna Pardal is now offering bras with inserts to put pads in for this very reason.  So be aware of your size differences, and use the cookies when needed.

What would you like our readers to know about you and your store? Most of all that I really care about finding my customers a great fit.  My bras are shipped from Canada so if you are ordering from Canada you will not be charged any duty and if they are in stock you will get them fast.  I usually ship out the same or the next business day. The more information my customers give me the more I can help them.  I currently have a small run of sizes of the Anna Pardal Hibiscus Classic and the Florence Sophisticate Balconette being made for the store.  So there will not be long waits for Anna Pardal bras either.  If you want to special order a size I can easily add your size to my current order as well.

And readers, now for the exciting part.   Bra Obsessed is generously offering a special discount exclusive to our readers!  Enjoy 10% off your purchase using the code enhanced10, valid until August 21, 2015.  Remember, if you don’t see what you want or your size on the web page, just shoot Jaimie an email at bras@braobsessed.com and she will take care of you promptly.  This could be your chance to get your hands on the beautiful and rarely seen Ewa Michalak SM Wanilla set as seen in my review here!  Happy Shopping!

Ewa Michalak sm Wanilla review (and how you can get one too!) (and a discount code!!!)

I am an addict.

A Polish bra addict.  And every serious addict likes to have a reputable dealer.  A dealer who knows her stuff, who knows what you want and knows how to get it for you, who knows what will fit you well and what will look good on you.  A dealer who instinctively knows when you will need your next hit.  My dealer is Jaimie at Bra Obsessed.  She is right here in Canada where I live and so she is able to get me the goods hassle-free.

Just as I was beginning to get that itch, that craving, that deep driving need for a new Polish bra, I received a cryptic email from Jaimie.  She said that she had an sm Wanilla on its way to her in my size.  With matching panties.  Was I interested?  WAS I INTERESTED?  Heck, I didn’t even know what a Wanilla was, but of course I was interested!  I NEEDED it!  Over the next few days, as I waited impatiently for my Wanilla set, I joked with my fellow junkies here at An Enhanced Experience.  What was this Wanilla?  Was it something so plain, like vanilla, that it was called Wanilla?  Ewa Michalak never disappoints.  My dealer never disappoints, so I knew I’d love it, whatever it was.

Just a few days later, and lo and behold, my package arrived and I was able to share some pictures of this very pretty set:

Wanilla.1                        Wanilla.2                              Wanilla.3

And the matching panties.  These are size 36 and fit me nicely.  They don’t ride up at all and are very comfortable.

Wanilla.4                            Wanilla.5

 

All of the extra detailing makes them so special and pretty.  My co-bloggers were all just about dying from jealousy.

 

Wanilla.7

 

Now, some pictures of me wearing the bra.  As this bra is super sheer, I opted to wear nipple covers for these photos, and since they still didn’t look right, my frontal shot has had a little rosette addition for your amusement.  This bra is in size 70FF.  I do prefer the feel of a 70 band in the unlined bras, though I can generally do a 65G in lined styles.  I have owned this bra for some months now and the present band measurements are approximately 24″ unstretched and approximately 33″ stretched hard.   Note the very rounded and lifted profile.  This is what amazes me about Ewa Michalak’s unlined bras and I love them for that.

 

flowers         047

 

Before I share a few photos of me in a plain t-shirt, I want to show you how the seam work on this bra has been done all  on the inside so that the exterior of the bra lays as flat and as smooth as possible under clothing.  Smart, isn’t it?

039

 

And finally, a few clothed pictures so that you can see that great, rounded, uplifted shape and with such minimal seam show as well.

 

051                                    050

 

So there you have it.  Ewa Michalak’s beautiful, simple, sexy sheer, useful-as-a-nude sm Wanilla set.  I love it.  It still isn’t available on Ewa Michalak’s website but I’m willing to share my dealer  contact info with you.  You can contact Jaimie by email at bras@braobsessed.com and ask for a set like mine in any size you’d like.  You can order a thong for the bottoms, if you prefer.  Anything that is not in stock can be ordered for you.  Shipping costs are noted on the web page.  Request a shipping quote if your are outside of Canada or the U.S.   You can also check out her web page at www.braobsessed.com and you can find her on Facebook at Bra Obsessed.    And finally, until August 21st, you can use the code enhanced10 to enjoy 10% off your purchase.

Ewa Michalak S Siódme Niebo

I saw this beauty on the Ewa Michalak site the first time I went there to see what all the fuss was about.  Siódme Niebo translates to Seventh Heaven, which is totally appropriate in my opinion

eng_pm_Biustonosz-S-Siodme-Niebo-679_7

eng_pm_Biustonosz-S-Siodme-Niebo-679_9

I loved it immediately.  I’m a big fan of almost any shade of blue and this icy shade is no exception!  When I placed my first EM order, I narrowed it down to bras that were available to ship immediately, and sadly the Siódme was knocked out of the running.  I frequently perused my fellow blogger Youmee’s forum album of polish bras, and when I saw it on her, I had to have it no matter how long it would take to get here!  Fortunately, because she already owned it, she could give me some pointers to get the right size.  This one in particular has a very stretchy band so I ordered a 75H instead of my usual 80GG, and it fits perfectly.  I love this bra on me as much as I did on Youmee (other than being jealous of her killer tan!) and I’m so glad I was able to get it.  It has all the components of the S style, giving a lifted and round appearance with a moderate height gore.

Here is is on one of my follow bloggers, Tanzilove who is my official boob twin, being almost identical in size and shape.IMG_3653

IMG_3654

Baby also owns it, and although it is a in a cup size that is a bit small, she looks amazing in it too!

IMG_3655

IMG_3652

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also ordered the matching stringi (thong) and I love it as well!  it is seriously one of the most comfortable thongs I own.  The material is so soft and stretchy, and I never have the urge to ‘adjust’ it.  It does come up a bit higher in the front than I’m used to, but I really love the retro style and details.  The back has lace that lays very nicely over your booty and makes it look kind of like a cheeky style, which I love.

IMG_3598
Stringi front view
IMG_3599
Stringi back view

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All in all this set is a 10 out of 10 for me.  If you’d like to get your hands on it, click here before it’s gone!

xo Treschic