Fancy that, I’m sat on my sofa getting ready to write this blog with The IT Crowd on in the background and this happens…
Well, it seems that my fitting post has hit a nerve with so many of you! I am very much enjoying the feedback and the fact that John Lewis have already sent me a few responses.
Let’s hope that they stay true to their word, I would hate to think that this is being treated as a trivial matter.
In an ideal world this is how I would like everyone’s bra fitting experience to go in EVERY STORE. A girl can dream, indulge mine…
Upon entering the lingerie store/department it would be nice to be acknowledged by a member of staff within a few minutes. They don’t have to come over and try to sell something but just make me aware that they have noticed me so that I feel welcome – buying lingerie is a personal and sometimes an embarrassing thing to do for some women. When I ask for a fitting I would like to be given one or at least be offered to be booked in for one in the near future, bearing in mind that it may have taken a lot for me to pluck up the courage to even do that as I may be shy and ashamed of my body.
When I go in for the fitting I would usually expect to keep my own bra on and be assessed in that. There should not be a tape measure in sight! The fitter should ask me what size the bra is and how long I have had it for whilst checking how loose the band is and how I am sitting in the cups. I would then expect them to bring me several sizes around what they think I am, for example, if I am in a newish bra that is a 32 and I am already on the tightest hook and I am spilling out of the G cups then I’d like to be brought some 28HH/J and 30H/HH backed bras to try on. If they do not have such sizes in stock then I would like to be given a rough idea of what I may be and politely told that unfortunately those sizes are not currently in stock and maybe they could order some in for me or advise where I might find such sizes. Making a quick sale that then doesn’t work well for a woman is not as important as gaining the respect of the customer who will not forget such excellent service and will recommend it to others.
I would like the fitter to pull on the band, adjust the bra straps and ask me to try my top/dress on over the top of the bra so that I can see what kind of shape and look I am given and what the cut of the bra is like. The fitter should explain about the function of the bra. They should tell me how the band is there to give the majority of the support and that is why a tight firm band is necessary or else the shoulders will take the strain and this will cause aches and pains and discomfort. A loose band will ride up at the back causing the cups to sit lower at the front and making the wearer hunch over. They should explain how yes it may feel very tight and uncomfortable at first but bras need breaking in (just like shoes!) and so it may take a few wears before it becomes less noticeable. The straps should be tightened enough to give a good shape but not so much that it pulls the cups up onto the breasts. The underwire needs to sit under the breasts and the central gore flat between them. I would want the fitter the make sure I am completely happy in the bra that they have fitted me in and stress that my size may differ from brand to brand, but thanks to the tips they have given me I should be able to fit myself until my next fitting in a few months time.
You wouldn’t sell a car to someone who didn’t know how to drive it and yes, that may be a drastic comparison but it should apply to bras. They can be the difference between a women hating or loving her body, between considering surgery or celebrating her curves, between having crippling back pain or walking tall. Bra fitting is not a matter that should be taken lightly and not something that should be undertaken by women who don’t really understand every aspect of a bra and what it can and cannot do. It’s not asking for too much as shops like Bravissimo and Leia can do it and do it well so come on the rest of the high street, if this 23year old waitress can do it then so can you! Increase your size selection, brush up on your knowledge and make us proud of our perky perfectly encased breasts, no matter what size or shape we are!