Smooth Sailing

Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou FrouTee: Heart On My Fingers

Jeans: Levis Plus

Shoes: Evans

Not a terribly inspiring outfit, but actually that’s not the point of today’s outfit!

Little (I suspect) known fact about bras: the support should come from the band, not the straps. Which means if you’ve got big boobs you need a good, tight band. And if you’ve got big boobs and are a bit squishy you’re going to have back rolls.

Years (and years and years) ago, before I started Frocks and Frou Frou, I discovered the Unbelievabra. Here’s my review on the Vogue Plus Size Fashion Forum, way back in 2008:

Oh My God, girls. I’m head over heels in love with my new Unbelievabra,
It’s like a sucking innie cami top whatnot with a built in bra, and it’s ohmigod comfortable, but what I LOVE is… NO BACKFAT! Hurrah! It gives you a really lovely smooth line, so I’m really looking forward to wearing all those tight tees and light knits that I couldn’t before because of the love handles. Pics for your interest:
Me, in my normal bra (after a long day, so it’s ridden up a bit, but still) vs me, in the Unbelievabra:

BA_11
They’re not cheap… $85, plus $20 shipping, but honestly; I’ve paid more for a bra that I’ve been less happy with.
Staci – the woman who developed the bra is extraordinary, and really goes out of her way to make sure you’re happy, and wearing the right size.

It’s been a few years since I retired my last Unbelievabra and just got a bit more creative with how I dressed (cardigans, layers, blousy tops and slips cover a multitude of sins) but I’ve never forgotten how comfortable and flattering the Unbelievabra was.

Recently I decided I wanted another. I’ve put on a bit of weight, and in my job I’m spending a lot more time sitting down. I was sick of the welts around my ribcage, the constant digging and adjusting. I have some amazing bras (Ewa Michalak is my boob-guru) but I still can’t wait to have them off at the end of the day.

‘Unbelievabra’ has been rebranded as ‘Shapeez‘, and the range has been dramatically expanded, but the product is still as brilliant as ever.

A Shapeez bra differs from a regular bra in the way it resembles a tank-top from the back. Made from a moisture-wicking lycra fabric it provides a smooth line, and support without cutting in. There are two lengths – a full camisole that can be tucked into waistbands, and a shorter piece that resembles a regular bra from the front, but curves down to cut off at the waist at the back. Other variations are differences in neckline and strap width, and molded foam cups, or seamless non-padded cups.

I ended up buying the Silkee Long and the Tankee Short both of which sport the lower back neckline and cut-in shoulders that make more suitable for sleeveless tops and dresses. They both take a bit of contorting to get into (how I wish the front-fastening ‘Demee short’ was available in larger cup sizes) but once on they are ridiculously comfortable, and you can see, they work a treat.

frocks and frou frouThis is me, wearing the Tankee Short, and as you can see the bra dramatically smooths the line of my back compared to my regular bra.

They’re still not cheap (between $80-$90) and International shipping is still fairly prohibitive ($45 to Australia), but you’re unlikely to ever find another bra with this much support that’s this comfortable and provides such a nice line under tight clothes. Consider it an investment.

Brrrgundy

Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou FrouDress: Hell Bunny via Lady Eleanor

Shoes: TUK

Belt: DIY

I’m not sure I can properly express how happy I am that deep berry red and burgundy is finally back in style and in the shops again. It’s such a delicious colour, and perfect for the cooler weather that’s finally starting to hit.

As I’ve been window shopping I’ve mostly been managing to avoid Buying All The Things, but I couldn’t resist this dress.

I spotted it at the A+ Market a month ago at a stall named Lady Eleanor. I was on a self-imposed buying ban – after all, I was there to clean out my closet, not add to it – but Lady Eleanor was right next door, and one of the girls manning the stand was wearing the dress, and it’s such a gorgeous colour, and then suddenly they only had one left, and it was in my size, and… well, as you see.

It’s a Hellbunny dress, which is one of those rockabilly brands that go up to a size 4XL. The 40’s styling works fine in a contemporary setting, though I could have done without the shoulder pads. The dress is made from a fairly thin crepe fabric that has a bit of stretch, but not enough structure to camouflage lumps and bumps, so I wear it with a slip underneath to smooth the lines. The button up front is purely decorative, which helps the bodice encompass The Rack of Doom, and the pleats at the shoulders help ensure the fabric doesn’t pull too dramatically.

The dress is called the Moira, and I think it might be an older style as it doesn’t seem to be on many websites anymore. It’s available in a striking cobalt blue here… but I think the ‘raspberry’ is better for my colouring.

The belt isn’t included, it’s one I actually made myself with a really pretty deco-esque belt buckle (you can find heaps on Etsy, I’m particularly obsessed with this one) and someĀ  velvet elastic ribbon. It’s hands-down the easiest DIY/remix project in the word, and a spectacularly effective way of adding some glam to a simple outfit without sacrifing comfort.