Ladies, am I the only one shocked to find that that largest cup size in Agent Provocateur available to girls of all back sizes is a DD? Sure, if you're 'average', between a 32 or a 36 you can go up to an F, but naturally skinnier girls who need a 30? Or bigger boned girls who need a 38? Not a chance. Fine there is an argument that certain styles do not give enough support to certain sizes, but there are plenty of brands (many of whom I've listed below) who make slight alterations to their styles, for example giving them slightly wider straps, so that girls with every back and cup size can enjoy their beautiful designs.
Photo by Ellen von Unwerth
It is not just Agent Provocateur. Calvin Klein only go from a 32, and up to a DD. I believe Topshop are similar. I really don't think it is fair that slightly skinnier or slightly bigger boned, or those girls with a more generous cup size are not allowed to buy the same beautiful pieces as some of their more 'regular' sized peers. The problem is, while this seems to be a minority problem, I can't see mainstream brands sitting up and taking notice any time soon. However, I have found some pretty great brands out there whole make beautiful lingerie for those of us who don't fit the sizes both the high street and high end brands are trying to force us into.
Freya is my favourite out of all the sites and brands I'm listing in this post. They stock both basic and beautiful bras and lingerie sets (as well as swimwear) from a 28 to a 40, from a B cup to a K cup. Their lingerie is also of excellent quality and their styles, some of which change every season and some of which are part of a core collection are all beautiful and well made with lovely little design details. The most prevalent place on the high street you can buy Freya is in Debenhams, but you can also shop in Fenwicks, Selfridges and Bravissimo, and this is just places where I shop and I have seen Freya stocked.
Panache make lovely lingerie, but what I really love about them is their swimwear. Another problem those of us who don't fit the norm have is shopping for the perfect swimsuit or bikini that you can actually swim in, fits properly but looks absolutely gorgeous on you too. I have road tested their styles by swimming intensive lengths, and I would not even consider buying my bikinis anywhere else now - shopping for swimwear where you can shop by bra size is the way to go! You can get Panache from Bravissimo (see below), on Very.co.uk and in some department stores, including Fenwick.
While there are actually a couple of Bravissimo stores, I love Bravissimo for mail order as they offer free returns if you're not happy with what you've ordered, and you can try things on in the comfort of your own home without the horrible glaring lights of sweaty changing rooms while you are out shopping. They stock a great range of brands such as Freya and Panache, as well as their own beautiful range. I also love the models they use in their catalogues, none of them are stick thin but they still have beautiful figures. They make you feel good about shopping for lingerie rather than inadequate or uncomfortable that you can't shop in Topshop for your bras like everyone else you know.
Like Bravissimo, Figleaves is also a fantastic place to shop online. They stock lingerie, hosiery, loungewear and swimwear from many fantastic brands, have fantastic customer service and have a lot more choice than Bravissimo. The only qualms I have with it is shopping on the website is not as nice as you would experience at Bravissimo. Their sale is truly excellent, I have got so many great bargains there!
After reading this post, Leia was recommended to me by my best friend Kathryn (who is soon going to be writing a few posts for this blog, so keep an eye out!). Leia is just like Figleaves and Bravissimo that they stock lots of different brands and cater for girls of almost every size. She also informs me that your order comes in very beautiful packaging!
Rigby & Peller, the famed lingerie company by appointment to Her Majesty The Queen comes in at the priciest end of the places I've listed here, and if I ever start earning enough money I'm pretty sure this is where I will start to shop. They have almost every size you could possibly think exists from an off the rack lingerie company, but they also do bespoke orders so in reality you could actually have any size you wanted. You can shop online, or they have stores in Westfield White City, Chelsea, Knightsbridge, or Mayfair if you are based in London, and in Bluewater (an absolutely gorgeous store, the only one I have been in) and in Cambridge. Recently Sherin was invited along to go behind the scenes on the photo shoot for their new campaign the other week, and I love the way they used women who work in Rigby & Peller in the shoot - I can't wait until the campaign goes live!
I've decided to include Boux Avenue in this post because, though I don't really know much about them or their quality but I have heard some really good things on various blogs, and I recognise that all of the options I have listed above are on the varying side of pricy - Boux Avenue is a bit cheaper! They stock usual lingerie sizes, but have a great DD+ section. They also go from a 30 back to a 40 back, so they recognise that there are girls of all sizes out there, and rightly so! They have several stores around the UK, but not one in London yet, but I'll be sure to pop in their store the next time I'm in Bluewater and report back!
A two questions for those of you who do not fit the conventional 32-38, A-DD: do you feel put out or upset that there are so many places on the high street and top designers such as Agent Provocateur, Calvin Klein and Dolce & Gabanna that don't cater for you, and where do you like to buy your lingerie?