Category Archives: Fit advice

Packing Solutions for Large Boobs

I hit the road this month for meetings, and to attend SheEO’s Purple Carpet event celebrating the final five funded ventures.

Work travel with an event thrown in is a challenge for any woman. When you’re a #fullbust IMG_1403#womeninbiz it can be harrowing. What happens if you lose your luggage (because of course you pack your PERFECT BRA!!) or spill something? Its not like we can just hit the mall and replace it!

Here’s a photo of me in the best (of the worst) white blouse from 15+ tried on the mall. I would feel very self-conscious wearing this to meetings! (& can someone please explain WTF those pockets are for??)

Here’s what I packed to make sure I’m covered for this trip:PackingPicFramed
1. Packable Puffer
2. Black Peplum Top – comfy as a sweatshirt with way more polish.
3. White Silk Utility Shirt – dress it up or down
4. Patterned Sheath Dress – zip up & go!
5. Dark Denim
6. Dark Trousers
7. Pencil Skirt
+ 3 pairs of great shoes
= at least 7 different outfits for casual, corporate and cocktails in a carry-on. Accessories give even more looks.
I wore my long coat on the plane to reduce bulk & keep warm on the usually freezing plane.

I use these awesome GoToob refillable bottles for my liquids. They’re silicone, come in different sizes, are TSA-approved and have never leaked.

What do you pack? Share your work travel essentials with us on Facebook or Twitter.

PS The patterned sheath dress is still on sale but only til Feb 29th. Get yours here!

To your success,
Melanie & Front Room HQ

Full-Busted Bra Sizing Guide

Fitting anything on top of our ample accessories seemingly requires engineering and physics to get them locked, loaded and looking great in an outfit.  Why full-busted women are treated like second-class citizens (at best) or freaks (worse) is baffling.  When it comes to bras and clothes, those of us in the Big Boob Club get screwed.  We’ve got great assets!  (and we look great naked.)

We’d love to sell our Front Room clothing by bra size but we can’t, for a variety of reasons.

  • Most women are wearing the wrong size, because
  • Bra sizing isn’t standardized and is seriously effing (and unnecessarily) complicated above a D-cup. We’re going to refer to UK sizing here because US sizing is even more screwed up above a D (DD, DDD, DDDD – because anything above a D is unusual??).

We wish bras were sized by volume! As in, how big of a handful are you? A navel orange, a grapefruit, a cantaloupe, a watermelon? A navel orange would be a navel orange, no matter the band size. But nooo, a D cup is a different volume of boobage depending on the bra size. A 32D is MUCH less breast volume than a 38D, which is why you hear about “sister sizes” = equivalent breast volume across band sizes.

Not all DD's are equal

Not all DD’s are equal

Confused yet?

We’ll start backwards. You’re wearing the wrong size bra if:

  • The back of your bra rides up (that is, it isn’t horizontal at the back). Your band size is too big and you need to size down.
  • The centre front of your bra pulls away (that is, it doesn’t sit flat against your torso). Your cup size is too small and you need go up.
  • You’ve got chubby armpits or “back fat”. Quite often this is compressed breast tissue that has been squished backwards by wearing the wrong size.
  • You’ve got quad-boob: the tops of the cups are digging in to the upper part of your breast. Definitely a sign for a bigger cup size.
  • Stand up with your arms at your side. Bend your arms to form an L. If your boobs are more than halfway down to your elbow, you need a new bra with more support to hike those girls up.  You’ll thank us when it looks like you’ve lost 10 pounds instantly.

Like finding great fitting jeans, the right size (leg length and waist size) is only the beginning.  Your shape plays a huge role as well (boob shape influences bra fit, just as bum shape informs what style of jean look best on you).

Bra fitting 101 – what size are you?
Bra fitting 102 – understanding “sister” sizes
Bra fitting 201 – what shape are you?

How to find the right size for your big boobs? It takes two measurements* to get started.

You’ll need a tape measure, a notepad and pen and to get nekkid from the waist up.

  • Bend over with a flat back, measure your bust at the fullest part. Write this number down (we’ll call this A).
  • Now stand up, exhale and measure snugly under your boobs around the ribcage. Write this number down (we’ll call this B).
  • Subtract B from A. Write this number down. The difference in your full bust circumference and your underbust will determine your size.

*Remember, this is only step one. This measurement will tell you what postal code of full-busted bra country you should be looking in. Perfect fit takes a little more investigation.

Don’t be shocked if you get a number in the high 20’s. That is your proper band size and just because the local mall doesn’t carry it doesn’t mean it isn’t legit.

Prefer video?  Watch here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Jk55ep4XUQ

Enter your numbers here: http://www.butterflycollection.ca/bra-size-calculator/ or use this chart

Bust measurement into cup size

Chart source: http://www.brasizecalculator.tk/

Don’t be shocked if you’ve gone up in the alphabet. This is your proper size. I’m not exactly sure where we got the idea that DD’s are huge, but they’re not.

And shame on major magazines for continuing to perpetuate the myth of bra sizing, as recently as Elle’s July 2015 boob issue (their title, not ours) noting bra sizes on celebrities Alessandra Ambrosio (34B), Kim Kardashian (34D) and Kate Upton (34DD). I don’t know what their actual sizes but there is a very slim chance teeny tiny Alessandra has a 34” underbust measurement, much less Kim or Kate.  Think about it:  Alessandra maybe wears a size 26-ish jean – if she were a 34″ at the ribcage, she’d be shaped like an inverted triangle (she’s not).  BTW – Kate Upton’s agent touted her size as a 34C when I spoke to him just over a year ago. Um, no.

Back to sister sizes. As with all clothing, bras fit differently across brands and even between styles. You may need to go up or down depending on fit.

If the 34FF is feeling snug only in the band, head up to 36 and down to an F (bigger band, same bust volume). Snug in the boobage and loose in the band? Head down to a 32. (smaller band) The sister size for 34FF is 32G so you’ll need to go up to a GG to get the extra room.

Sister sizes

Sister sizes

Chart source

For extra credit, do the quiz at bratabase to learn if your boobs:

  • Have a small root or a large root? Certain underwires may be too wide or too narrow.
  • Close together or further apart?  You’ll need to watch the width of the centre front (gore).
  • Off to the side? Bras with side sling can bring them front and centre (slimming!).
  • Fuller on the bottom or the top? If you’re full on top you’re often prone to the quad-boob effect while full on bottom has a hard time with puckering.
  • Narrow or sloped shoulders? That strap slippage may not be due to fit. Balconettes will be problematic due to their wide-set straps.

You care because these differences are what makes certain styles fit better than others. (Just like knowing if you have a full bum or a flat bum will determine what fit of jean works best for your shape.)

We’ve just skimmed the surface here. For a robust discussion (couldn’t help it), see this reddit

Our favorite places to buy full-busted bras (not affiliate links):

  • Butterfly Collection – they know boobs. Just ask for help if you have questions.
  • Bravissimo – great service, even from afar. Ask questions about sizing via email and they’ll help you out.  Have their own line of lingerie and swimwear.
  • Herroom – a somewhat helpful universal bra sizer (getting back to the boob volume idea) across brands. The fact that it stops at D (D7, D8, etc.) is beyond idiotic but we applaud the idea.

We’ve started a Pinterest board of our favorite bra styles.  Check it out here: https://www.pinterest.com/morefrontroom/lingerie-love/

New to Front Room?  Want more content like this?  Want early access to our sales, pre-buy opportunities for upcoming styles and *free return shipping? Get on the list here for your all-access pass.

The Rant! (or: Will it really fit??)

Occasionally I’ll ask a member of the Club* if she has any troubles finding clothes.
(*you know, the BBC?  The Big Boob Club.)

The response (a.k.a. “the rant”) goes pretty much like this:

Oh. My. God.  You have NO idea how hard it is to find clothes that fit properly! 

If it fits me in the boobs, it is huge everywhere else.  It if fits my shoulders, the girls are busting out.  I spend a small fortune in alterations buying clothes too big and having them taken in!  Don’t even get me started on the bras and my shoulder dents.

I get the same response over and over again.  In fact, I’m pretty sure I remember you saying the same thing to me.

When I told you that Front Room is making tops to fit your bust and your shoulders, your response was great!    I think it was something along the lines of “I want it now!  Please?

But I bet there’s a part of you that’s thinking this is too good to be true.

Tops that will fit your big boobs and not be huge on your shoulders and waist?

Dresses with underbust seams that actually fall under your ample bosom, instead of cutting the girls in half for a lovely quad-boob effect?

V-necks that go low enough so it doesn’t make your boobs look droopy, and high enough to be office appropriate?

Yes, Virginia.  There is a Santa Claus.

Yeah, but I’m more blessed than most you say?  Good.  We’ve designed our clothes to fit up to a 10 inch difference between your full bust and your underbust.  That’s about a JJ in UK bra sizing (or DDDD in the strange US sizing).

Hold on.  My friend isn’t that big, will she still be able to wear Front Room clothes?
Absolutely.  Our knits should drape well on the DDs/Fs of the world quite well.  The silk tops might need to be taken in slightly at the bust, it all depends on her body shape and boob distribution.

Our size chart references your full bust and underbust.  We leave out the waist since pretty much any body shape can have big boobs.  We’ll provide fit commentary on each item so you know whether that particular style will work for your shape.

size chart

Will I still need to go to the tailor?
Probably not.  Consider though: the reason the gents (and Hollywood stars) always look so good is that their clothes are tailored to their precise measurements.

We’re firm believers in the power of a good tailor to make clothes look their best on your body. (You’d be surprised at the difference a quarter inch makes in strategic places to take a garment from good to great!)

We’ve designed our seams and strategically placed our zippers to be able to accommodate tailoring, should you choose a nip and tuck for a truly made-for-you look.  Again, entirely your choice.

We’re beyond excited to get the first collection to you in this spring!  Stay tuned for more details.

To your success,
Melanie & Front Room HQ
More than clothes, confidence.™

New to Front Room?  Want more content like this?  Want early access to our sales, pre-buy opportunities for upcoming styles and *free return shipping? Get on the list here for your all-access pass.