Wednesday, March 25, 2009

my love affair with Molded Cup Bras

This is more because I'm bored and don't feel like doing any research :)

I used to swear against molded cup bras for anything other than strapless needs. I thought they would just make my boobs look bigger, and before I learned to love the twins, that was the last thing I wanted.

Even my first few shopping trips after getting fitted, I avoided molded cups. The first one I bought was a strapless, the kind with removable straps, from Fantasie (I love it). But then, on a trip to Intimate Designs, I was looking for something to give me more show-off cleavage. I tried on a molded cup bra from Fantasie (see a theme?) and was surprised and what it did for the twins. They looked amazing! Super perky, perfect separation, and less nippleage in the cold! Suddenly, my relationship with molded cups went from hate to love.

I now own the matching panties and thong for that molded cup bra, as well as the same thing in another color. I ended up with 2 more molded cup bras from that store before all was said and done, and one that I bought online.

So now, I know molded cups are a wonder for my twins, but that's because of the shape of the girls. I am pretty comfortable in underwires, for one thing, and have rather full breasts. But the key is to always try on your bras before buying, and don't be afraid to try on something new, something you didn't think you would like.

Different styles of bra will fit different styles of boobs. Great example is the Dream Tisha whatever from Le Mystere. I tried it on, and hated it instantly. Not for the molded cups, but because those cups came up high on the sides and cut into my armpits. I know I have a very short torso, but that was a little ridiculous. When I finally got fitted at Dillards, the girl helping me said she hadn't seen anyone look good in the bras I was buying, until me. We theorized that maybe those bras, made by Chantelle, were structured to fit a smaller torso, while the Dream bra fit a longer torso.

So bra shopping takes a lot of trial and error. Try it on and see. Or if you do order online, make sure they have a decent return policy. I've seen it recommended, many times, that you should order a couple sizes of the same bra, if you can, when ordering online. Just return the ones that don't fit. Of course, this doesn't work with all of our budgets, so I only order online if I already have the same bra and can check the size.

Wow. So this post ended up a little longer than I expected, and took a bit of a different twist. That's OK.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The History of the Bra

I have done a tiny bit of research on the history of the bra today. Turns out that women have noticed a need to support their breasts, especially during work or sports, since the ancient Greeks or earlier. Some sites say the bra can be traced back as early as 2000BC.

Of course, we all know bras have been seen in many forms over the years. Apparently the Minoan women of ancient Greece wore bikini-like clothing when participating in sports. Some societies emphasized the breasts and exposed them, while others kept them covered with loose cloth.

The bra as we know it started more as a replacement for uncomfortable corsets. Many of the sites I checked out credit France for the first bras, as well as the name which is short for brassiere, meaning support. While you always hear that men designed the first bras, the oldest US patents for bras, or breast supporters, were given to women. Men were more likely to be the designers of corsets, with their heavy steel construction, but women made the bras. In fact, ever wear a Warner brand bra? Their original bra patent was purchased from Mary Phelps Jacobs and consisted of silk handkerchiefs and ribbon. Warner is also credited with introducing the alphabet system of cup sizing.

Another bra pioneer who introduced cup sizing was
Ida Rosenthal, creator of Maidenform. She believed in getting girls while they were young (training bras) to keep their loyalty as they aged.

Considering how much we complain about bras, a look at bra history really shows how far we've come. At least we aren't expected to wear corsets (although some people still choose to). We aren't expected to hide them, or completely expose them, depending on the fashion whims. We get to choose how much or how little they are exposed.

We also are lucky enough to be around for the expanding cup size revolution. Before Ida and Warner, bras were made in small, medium and large. Then came A, B, C and D, and eventually AA and DD. Now look at us! We have Gs and even Ms if you look hard enough. We have large cups with small bands and small cups with larger bands. We have so much choice in our bras, from utilitarian nylon and cotton to barely useful lace.

Before I close, I will post some links of the sites I checked out on bra history. I found them in a simple Google search using the term "bra history".

Saturday, March 21, 2009

new profile pic

I would just like to take a moment to credit my lovely profile pic. It was taken by one Lawrie Brown. You can view more of her work here: Check out the laundry series.

Welcome to my Crusade

Pronunciation: \krü-ˈsād\
Function: noun
Etymology: blend of Middle French croisade & Spanish cruzada; both ultimately from Latin cruc-, crux cross
Date: circa 1708
1.capitalized : any of the military expeditions undertaken by Christian powers in the 11th, 12th, and 13th centuries to win the Holy Land from the Muslims
2: a remedial enterprise undertaken with zeal and enthusiasm

I've always been inspired by real bloggers. Not just people who use their blog as a journal, like I have before now, but people who actually use their blog to send information to the people. The only problem I've had is finding some theme I could passionately blog about without getting bored.

So I've decided to try a blog about one of my obsessions - bras. Yes, bras, over-the-shoulder-boulder-holders, brassieres, boob pockets, whatever you want to call them. Bras.

Now don't expect me to just post about bra fashion and vicky's secret and all that crap (her secret is silicone by the way). My passion is for properly fitted bras and bras in a wider range of sizes than most American department stores would dream of carrying.

Let's start with how I got into this obsession...

I have my mother's chest, which equals big. About 2 or 3 years ago, hard to remember now, I was getting rather fed up with the 38DDs I was wearing. I couldn't wait to get my bra off when I got home from work each day. My twins actually hurt when taking the bras off. So I started doing some online research.

I figured out that I wasn't wearing the right size of bra, but how could I find anything bigger than a DD? The answer was Dillards and Nordstroms, at first. I checked a bunch of sites and asked around in my LiveJournal community for big chested women, and figured out about what my size should be. Then I went to Dillards and started trying on bras. I let the girl there help me, but I had pretty much found my size - a 36G.

I left Dillards with 4 new bras, all the same style but different colors. My life changed that day. No, really, it did. Even my husband noticed that the twins didn't hurt when I took my bras off.

Then I found my favorite bra store, Intimate Designs in Independence, MO ( My friend Laura referred me, and I am forever grateful. Not only do they have the most amazing selection of bras in my size, but you get a personal fitting each time you go in, and they will alter bras to fit you perfectly! This is ideal for women who have a more noticeable size difference between boobs, or any other body issues which make finding a good bra difficult. They even carry swimsuits and some sexy lingerie.

From there, the obsession began. I have always been a people watcher, but now I will critique how a woman's bra fits. I've even convinced some of my friends to get fitted, and a few were surprised at the size they ended up buying.

Since my initial fitting, I have lost some weight and now where around a 34G to H, depending on the style of bra.

At this point, you're probably wondering what the point of this blog would be. Well, I want other women to learn to love their boobs the way I have learned to love mine, and a huge part of loving my boobs came with finding pretty bras that make my boobs look good. My plan is to fill this blog with info on bras, how to fit bras, and even what I have learned on altering bras. I will try to do bra reviews and bra store reviews, and maybe just some funny bra stories. I will share all I know and learn on caring for your bras and your boobs.

I also want women to not be afraid of their breasts, and help stomp down the myth that big breasted women are stupid. Yes, the stereotype does exist.

But we will save that for later posts. I think I've said enough for today.

the Bra Crusader