Full Bust Bra Fit for Our Online Shoppers with My Bra Concierge

When you send us your measurements and bra size, we love sending you a bust-friendly shirt to fit. But when your waist measures 33" or less and you tell us you're wearing a bra with a 36 band, we wish we could send you a new bra, too!

That’s because your band is probably too loose, and in this post, we explain why a loose band is a bad deal for a big bust. We run into this so often that we bring a range of bra sizes to in-person fittings for our button down shirts for busty women.

Here’s the difference that the right bra made for a recent full-busted customer with a 31" waist and a 40" bust. In both photos she's wearing a size 8L shirt. The only difference is the bra. By switching from a 36DD to a 32G, she didn’t have to go up a shirt size!

Victoria’s Secret and most department stores don’t carry the small-band-large-cup combination that fuller busts need, so if we can find a reputable lingerie store in your area, we’ll tell you about it. Unfortunately, sometimes the closest store with a good bra fitter for a big bust is hours away.

That’s why we’re thrilled that My Bra Concierge, the online bra startup that we wrote about in May, is now live. We recently tested their service and came away with great-fitting bras we never would have tried otherwise. Here's why we're happy to recommend My Bra Concierge to our customers:

Bust-Friendly Fittings in Midtown this #WhiteShirtWednesday (and Thursday!)

We're excited to get back to where it all started. Nine years ago, founder Darlene Campbell was working as a corporate attorney in Midtown Manhattan, dreaming of creating button front shirts for busty women who wanted all the power markers of a classic white shirt without the power detractors of baggy shoulders or a safety pin. This Wednesday and Thursday, she returns to Midtown with dream shirts in hand.

You'll find her at Gabrielle Carlson Studio, where designer Gabrielle Carlson has a singular mission: "Beautiful clothes, in your size." Using exquisite fabrics, Gabrielle creates elegant garments for women of all shapes, and we are thrilled to be part of her mission this week.

Visit us for a fitting this Wednesday and Thursday, July 20 and 21, between 10 am and 6 pm. Gabrielle Carlson Studio is located at 501 Lexington Avenue at 47th Street.

Large Bust Finds on the Bra Spectrum

Here’s a guilty secret: we asked lingerie store Bra Spectrum to host our June pop up shop because we have been wanting to try their hard-to-find brands for years. So between bust-friendly shirt fittings for our large-chested customers, we had our own fittings into the amazing bras of Corin and Nikol Djumon. Manufactured in Poland and Latvia respectively, these two brands are worth a trip to any store that carries them.

You can tell that Corin is serious about bras for large busts because they provide their very own busty mannequin to display them. Of course we’re super proud that our size 12M fits her!

  

 

Both companies produce their version of a spacer bra that is slightly minimizing and produces a seamless look under our classic dress shirts for large busts. If you’re looking for the security of fuller coverage, we recommend the Corin Virginia (on the bottom).

Book Review: Earning It (and Executive Presence)

When Joann Lublin’s book Earning It launched last fall, I couldn’t wait to read it—and not just because it pictures a woman wearing a classic white shirt on its cover. Lublin interviewed 50 female executives for her book, and I wanted to know everything about their rise to the top.

The book covers such a wide range of real issues that any reader is sure to relate to at least one woman's story. Perhaps most refreshing is Lublin's own admission of mistakes she has made in her career. My only frustration with the book was that I wanted more from each storyteller. Reading it felt like attending a panel discussion where one panelist captured my attention, but the moderator had to give equal time to everyone on stage. It raised mulitple questions without the benefit of a Q&A session afterward! Fortunately, many of the women interviewed have written their own books, which Lublin lists in a helpful bibliography.

As a company that helps busty women dress for leadership, Campbell & Kate's review wouldn't be complete without highlights from the chapter on executive presence. Here are our favorite pointers.

Power Up or Power Down? Large Bust Dressing with Purpose

As you might imagine from a company inspired by the powerful look of men's crisp white dress shirts, we're all about the authority that our shirts impart to large-chested women. However, sometimes you may want to go in a softer direction.
 
Take, for example, the executive who let us sit in on her speed styling session with preeminent style strategist Carol Davidson at our pop up shop in April. The executive told us that during contract negotiation sessions in Japan, she was asked to sit in the same chair every time she entered the conference room. What was so special about that chair? It wasn't at the head of the table. It wasn't more comfortable than the others. No, it had been altered to a lower height than every other chair in the room! 
 
You see, the shorter chair gave this very tall executive the same seated height as everyone else around the table. In a culture that values conformity, a simple furniture adjustment helped her blend in. Because her goal was to close the deal rather than stand out, she went along with it.
 
Clothing can be used to the same effect. To amp up her presence in a Campbell & Kate shirt, Carol suggested that the executive pop the collar. To dial it down, she could wear it flat and roll up the sleeves.
 
    
 
 
 
 
Carol pointed out that accessories such as glasses can change our effect on others. For instance, the executive might want to wear more bold statement glasses to make an impact in front of a large group but selected more undertated frames to convey a more approachable message in a one-on-one coaching session.
 
Intrigued, we asked Carol for examples of other pieces that work this way.

Coffee Cups and D+ Cups at Bras & Brunch

If there's one thing near and dear to a busty woman's heart, it's the garment that she wears closest to her large chest. So it was only natural to host a Bras & Brunch event at our pop up shop last month!

Velaire Elliott and Jen Baker, co-founders of the exciting new startup My Bra Concierge, flew in from opposite coasts just to help each guest discover her best size and style. If you'd like to help Velaire and Jen prepare for their launch, please complete this survey!

Of course the guests of honor were the gorgeous bras. The Soraya by Elomi was a big hit, especially since it comes in 32-40 DD-JJ.

Longline lovers were big fans of this Freya Fancies version that goes up to an H cup in 30-36 bands.

From Desk to Dinner and Down Again

We have BIG news for women with big busts: Campbell & Kate is having its first Manhattan pop up shop at the Of Mercer flagship store from April 6-9. To celebrate, we've styled our shirts with a few key pieces from Of Mercer's desk-to-dinner collection.

Sheath Dresses that Flatter a Busty Figure

Of Mercer has great sheaths that look amazing on women with large chests. Some of them, like the Bryant and Bedford dresses below, can easily accommodate a G cup.

  

(Wonder what our model is reading below? You'll definitely want to read our review of it in our next blog post!)

Full Bust Bra Flashes Can Be Fashionable!

When we showed you how to layer this loungewear look last month, we promised to share a great sports bra for busty women who want to wear ultra-wide armholes without broadcasting a beige bra.

Introducing the Lynx ladder back sports bra. Not only does this bra look fine under wide armholes, it looks FABULOUS in back. Women with a large chest can now wear back-revealing athleisure tops instead of sticking with standard bra-covering tees!

While the ladder back only comes in black, Lynx offers cross back and racer back options in GREAT colors and patterns.

Big Bust Blues You'll Be Happy to Sing

Of all the colors we offer, navy has never been at the top of our list. We should have known better. When a customer ordered it for the first time, we were blown away by the sharp and versatile result.

Now we're so obsessed with dark blue that we couldn't help but see it everywhere at yesterday's trade show. Which of these bras for a large chest would YOU choose to wear under a navy shirt?

Gossard

Big Bust Layering by Example: One More Time!

For the past month, we've been showing you how to build a polished look from a comfortable base. We even revealed stylist Christina Frik's formula to take you from working from home to running around.

Today's look begins with a striped tunic over leggings. Don't even worry about the ultra-wide armholes. These are usually off limits to busty women who don't want to flash their bras at the world, but we've got a great sports bra to share with you in our next post.

Next, Christina uses a grey blazer and one of our button front shirts for large busted women to add structure and polish to the look. Instead of ankle boots, she's chosen knee-length boots. When it comes to proportion, her rule of thumb is to pair "low" shoes with low hems (like a knee-length dress) and high boots with high hems (like this tunic).

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