Monthly Archives: May 2015

When the Under-wire in your Bra Breaks

When the under-wire in your bra breaks 
It is ALWAYS very frustrating, inconvenient… and aggravating when an under-wire breaks.

When the bra is an expensive one; it can escalate into a major problem for the wearer. A good bra costs upwards of $150. The only real comparison I can think of, that really measures up to a trauma of a busted under wire; is a tire blow-out. It has to be fixed/replaced, it’s going to be expensive, and it has to be NOW!

One of my clients was driving to work, in heavy traffic, when she felt the snap. After a frustrating morning at work; she phoned me and made the trip across the city during her lunch hour to drop her bra for repair and hurriedly purchase a new one. It’s an expensive and aggravating problem.

Why the under-wires snap 
When under-wires break; it’s almost always a re-occurring problem for the wearer; and usually not a flaw in the bra’s construction. When this tends to happen on the same side of the bra each time; it’s because of asymmetry of the body. Yes; most of us us have one breast slightly fuller than the other. This explains also, why your bra may constantly pull slightly to one side, buckle in the front centre, or need one shoulder strap to be a bit tighter. The larger the cups; the more stress this imbalance of weight and volume puts on the bra’s wire. Eventually something has to “give”

When the under-wire in your bra works its way out 
When the under-wire works its way out of the casing; it can lead to some interesting moments. If you’re lucky; you’ll notice it before you put it on.

I professor I know was actually giving a lecture when she felt “something strange” going on. She was embarrassed to look down and discover that the wire of her bra had snaked out of it’s casing and was forming a silvery metal crescent across her upper chest. Life is tough enough without moments like that!

Why underwires “work their way out” 
When the wire becomes lost; that is, when you pull your laundry out of the washer or dryer and find that your bra is now irregularly-shaped and somewhat flaccid on one side; it could be because of your laundering techniques.

Under-wire bras should NEVER be placed in the washer or dryer. That lost wire is likely sitting stuck under the agitator, and will soon manifest it’s malevolence by wrecking havoc on your washer. That’s double damage! The agitating motion of the washer causes the wires to “rock” their way out of your bra. Under-wire loss is only one of the nasty things that your bra can succumb to in the washer. Stretched and tangled straps, hooks twisted and ripped out, and shredded lace, are some of the others. 

You’ll be doing yourself; and your pocketbook a big favour by hand-washing your bras.

When your wires “bow out”  For fuller busted ladies, the weight and pressure of the breast on the wires may cause the wire’s shape to bow out. The cups slowly become shallower and wider, compromising the integrity of the bra over time. Replacing the wires can give you that ‘brand new” fit back, and, compared to the expense of a new bra; can be a very cost-effective solution.

In conclusion: Consistent good laundry and care of your new bra is mandatory to maintain its good fit and integrity. Reputable and high-end lingerie retailers will always repeat the mantra “hand-wash, hang-to-dry – no washers or dryers please” and they’ll add “don’t fold the cups into each other” (for molded cups). I would suggest you make the effort to heed your bra-specialist’s (you know, the place where you spent all that money) recommendations for laundry and care.

Sometimes under-wire failure is impossible to predict or prevent.; but a good bra lasts a long time; and replacing that errant under-wire is a very viable possibility, if the rest of the bra is in good condition.

Article Source: EzineArticles

Solutions to Common Bra Problems

Solutions to Common Bra Problems

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Lets look a few of the more common bra problems facing modern woman.

Biting, Stabbing Under-wires.

  I think everyone knows the solution to this common problem already!

  • Yes – Have those wires replaced! Your local tailor or bra repair/adjuster can do this easily.

Under-wires that dig into soft underarm tissue. Piercing under-wires can become very uncomfortable; and often downright painful. The main Cause for this “digging” is usually wearing the wrong bra for your body.

Get properly fitted at a bra-retailer. Have your fitter suggest, and show you some bra styles that really work for your body type, size and shape. Certain brands are perfect for some women; while on others, they are never quite right. Look for bras with shallower wires i.e. a less-defined U-shape, for a more relaxed fit.

Some solutions you might try are:

  • Gently nudge the wire closer to center of bra within its casing. Tack down the wire casing so the wire can’t float as far up under the arm.
  • Remove the separate wire stays from the bra’s side seams; for often it is that metal stay, rather than the wire itself presenting the problem.

Under-wires that dig into the breast-bone at the center front.

Wire pressure at the center, between the breasts, might also be caused by wearing wrong style or shape for your body. Some women have ribcages that protrude slightly; and very little body fat to provide cushioning from the curved-in wire on balconette and demi-bras. Bras that are cut lower in front, like a plunge styles, are a better choice here. A bra fitter would suggest the brand that carries the best style choices for you.

Some solutions you might try, are:

  • Choosing bras with wires that are lower in the center front – like a plungestyle. Stay away from balconettes and Demi’s that have deep U-shape cups. Plunge bras are lower in front.
  • Alteration: Have the center front padded from the inside with soft fabric, this will soften the amount of pressure and provide some cushioning.
  • For a quick-fix, pick up some moleskin from the foot-care section of the drugstore. This soft felt-like fabric provides a smooth cushioning, and has a peel-off sticky backing which you can easily position and apply yourself.

The bra that rides up at the back.

When your bra’s band is too large, it will by nature, ride up in the back. This in turn, forces the cups to fall lower in the front: tempting you to shorten the straps to compensate. This is a losing battle; and often occurs when the bra is the wrong size, or the band has been stretched from repeated use or improper laundering. The only real solution for that bra is to reduce the band size.

The band can be resized by a bra repair/adjuster. A portion of the band is cut out, and the hook closure re-attached. Your bra will fit like new again!

Sliding Bra Straps.

When that errant bra strap migrates down your shoulder, making its presence known, and spoiling the look of your outfit, you just wonder – “Why can’t anyone make a bra that fits me?” Not only does it spoil your look; the insecure feeling is distracting and annoying.

There a few reasons why these straps don’t stay in place. Some of them are: the straps are set too far apart, the wearer has sloping shoulders, or the bra band is too large. Let’s look at some of the causes and possible solutions.

The straps are set too far apart.

This could be a style issue or a size issue. If this tends to be a recurring problem; you might try avoiding balconette and Demi bras. These bra fashions tend to have wide-set shoulder straps by design, to provide a wider open neckline.

It could also be due to sloping shoulders, or the bra’s band being too large.

Here are some solutions you might try.

Alteration

Have the straps moved closer to the back’s center. This is fairly simple to do, if the back’s band is straight; otherwise it requires extensive structure modification.

Center Back Clip

Look for a specially-designed center clip. This clip is attached to the bra straps at the back, bringing the straps together in the center. This is an effective solution which is fairly simple to use. Extensive use over a long period of time will compromise the bra’s structure though; since the straps are being stretched, stressed and distorted.

A Hide-a-strap converter

This is an elasticized band that wraps around both straps at the back, cinching them closer together. It is very effective; however it can be quite difficult to apply by yourself while the bra is being worn; and is therefore not a practical solution for daily wear.

Silicone Shoulder Pads

Silicone shoulder pads sit beneath the bra’s shoulder straps and fold over; encasing them. They are great for women with fuller and heavier breasts (F-H), since they broaden the “footprint” of the strap and ease up on the deep shoulder intents caused by the strap’s constant pressure on the shoulder. The only downside of these Silicone pads, is their high visibility under slinky and spaghetti-strap fashions.

Strap-Stay!

A miraculous little strip that attaches to the underside of the bra’s strap. It remains concealed beneath the strap, keeping the strap in place with its non-slip surface. Strap-Stay! can be worn with any bra that has flat elasticized straps; but will not work with smooth spaghetti strap styles. Its comfort and convenience make it a staple for any lingerie wardrobe. Not all bra problems can be fixed without replacing that bra; but many can. It is always important that you are wearing the correct size and style for your individual figure. Our bodies do change; with weight fluctuation, exercise and lifestyle, child-bearing and age. With the many size and style options available today, there is no need to be miserable in your bra.

Continue reading Solutions to Common Bra Problems

Why Bra-Repair is Such a Difficult Task

Why Bra-Repair is Such a Difficult Task – And Why You May Not Want to Tack This Project Yourself.

Bras are expensive.

You want to get it right the first time, and not weaken the bra further; or even ruin it. If you get it wrong. Be sure you know what the full job entails before shopping for the bra parts.

Some knowledge and expertise is a must.

Bra-repair requires knowledge and expertise. A bra is unlike any other garment you’ll wear. A well-made bra is a structural work of art and design. Every element of that bra has a purpose, and each of these parts work together to form this marvellous little foundation garment. The repairer needs to fully understand that design structure and basically should know how a bra is constructed – all the steps; from cutting pattern pieces to attaching the last hook. Only then, can she troubleshoot the problem and fix it.

Bra replacement parts can be expensive and difficult to find. I live in the city and can not find the correct wire sizes locally; forcing me to order in bulk.

Bra-repair requires Precision. Wire replacement is a delicate task because you have to get that machine needle very close to the wire, without nicking it. If your sewing machine’s needle hits the wire: it snaps, and you can begin re-threading your machine using a new needle.

You need fine, yet strong stitching

The stitching has to be fine, because you’re working with delicate fabrics in a tiny amount of space .

The stitching also has to be very strong, because the bra is going to continue to work under a lot of stress, and you don’t want the stitches to tear.

Damaged areas need to be reinforced. If there are already compromised seams; the fabric around them has to be reinforced before the new wire is inserted.

If the wire has stabbed through the casing; then the casing needs to be reinforced; sometimes patched so the wire won’t find it’s way out again.

You need fine yet strong needles The needle has to be strong; yet fine enough to pierce the many layers of fabric surrounding the wire. Your first attempts will probably cost you a lot of needles.

You’re working with a stretchy fabric. Your bra is made of mainly stretchy fabrics so it can adjust to, and support your body. It the repair-stitching is not also stretchy; the seams will break when you wear your bra.

Other Considerations when replacing a bra’s underwire

Reinserting the same wire rarely works.

Often the wire was able to work its way out though the tight weave, only because the plastic cap came off the end. You need a new wire. If the wire has been stretched or twisted, it will never be the same again; so it needs to be replaced.

You may have to replace both wires

On larger cups, you usually need to replace both wires, because the other original wire will have bowed out from pressure and will not have the same shape as the newly replaced one. This means that the another replacement will become necessary in the near future.

You may be wearing the wrong size bra ~ If you’re wearing the wrong size bra; which many women are; your bra is having to do double-duty, and the wires are being “pressured” unnecessarily.

In conclusion: I would suggest you take the time to figure out exactly what the problem is before attempting to repair a bra yourself. Be sure you have all the  materials you’ll need, on hand. If you have any doubts; and especially if the bra is an expensive one; seek the advice of a professional.

© Maralaina Holliday 2015 All Rights Reserved.

Building a Bra Wardrobe

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Building a Bra Wardrobe

Instead of having just one bra, that you wear everyday until it finally fights back or gives up; why not build a “bra-wardrobe”? Buy only good quality bras that you love, and that will have a “star spot” in your closet. You’ll slowly, one bra at a time; build a beautiful collection of bras in different colours and sizes, that will last for years. It’s the wiser way to invest!

The idea of a “bra wardrobe” often begins to take seed when a woman resignedly walks into the lingerie shop in search of a replacement for her “old friend”, who is failing her. Continue reading Building a Bra Wardrobe

Spring Clean-up for Bras

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One or two good bras that really fit, are worth more than a dozen torn and ratty ones in the drawer…on any day.

Unworn bras in your drawer only serve to remind you of past mistakes. Who needs that!??And, you really only need one “really comfy old” bra for gardening anyway

Salvage any “favorite” bras by replacing under-wires; re-size those that don’t fit right; and toss the rest. If your bras are of good quality and have been treated kindly, they are probably well-worth a visit to your local bra-repair service.

© Maralaina Holliday 2015 All Rights Reserved.

Choosing a Gift of Lingerie for Your Lady

lingimg_5885CHOOSING A GIFT OF LINGERIE FOR YOUR LADY

One of the greatest challenges faced by modern man is entering the lingerie shop to purchase a gift for his wife. This act; when done with loving intention, is one of the most endearing moves a man can make. For the man; the privilege of selecting a gift of lingerie gift000818crf1somehow signifies a “right of passage” into the intimacies of her real world.

His First Venture into the Lingerie Shop. For the average male; not only is this “bra paradise” unfamiliar territory; but his very presence here seems to proclaim Continue reading Choosing a Gift of Lingerie for Your Lady

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