I’m really happy to be writing this brand overview now (well, abbreviated one). For one thing, Elomi and I have both expanded our sizes (zing!) so now I can wear the brand, and for another, it’s just getting so danged GOOD. I feel pretty confident saying that, for the most part, women who wear sizes 30-38 D-G (UK) have some really solid style and shape options across a wide price range, but for women in other “niche” size ranges, there’s still a little bit of market catch-up (check out Erica’s Open Letter to Manufacturers for her analysis of some of the major market gaps). Right now, Panache’s Sculptresse line feels like Elomi’s primary UK competitor in the full-figure/full-bust market, and Sculptresse … well, I’ll be diplomatic and say that I feel like Sculptresse is still finding her feet. Elomi, on the other hand, moves from strength to strength.
Because the brand and I are new to each other, I’m mostly going to focus on some of my favorite, stand-out shapes and styles that are available now and from the last few seasons, and I’m not going to touch on swimwear (although I will if people would like more info). If you have a favorite style that I didn’t cover, please do share it!
As a reminder, full-figure, in the lingerie world, generally refers to bras in a 36 band and higher, and full-bust generally refers to bras with cup sizes over a D or a DD. Elomi bras begin in a 34 band, and most are available through at least a 46 band. Coordinating knickers are available in sizes M-4XL.
I always have to remind myself that Betty is considered a “basic.” It’s SO FREAKING CUTE.
Betty is both a continuity style and a fashion style for Elomi, and it’s easy to see why. A four-part plunge bra in a fun polka dot trimmed with rose embroidery, Betty offers a classic shape and a “safe” (yet beloved! (by me)) print. This season’s turquoise is pretty and playful, and I love the new blush continuity color that’s planned for 2014. The Betty collection also includes a babydoll in black, which offers full-figure full-bust customers a flirty, sexy lingerie piece that NONE of Eveden’s other brands have managed. Yet (hint, hint, Freya and Fauve. Get on it).
Rita is a four-part full-cup bra with a J-hook on the straps so that it can convert to a racer-back. Available in white and a frankly alarming Honey color (the color is strong and unusual, and coupled with the SHINY SHINY satin it’s, well, it’s a whole lotta look), as well as seasonal fashion colors, Rita isn’t the most daring of bras, but it offers incredible comfort, shape, and support. The racerback conversion option is awesome, and it’s something I’d love to see on more bras. It’s fashion-friendly, as it keeps bra straps from peeking out under sleeveless tops, and some women find they feel more lift and support from straps that are closer-set, rather than the wide-set straps of some balconette bras.
For being a full-coverage bra, Rita still comes across as sleek and streamlined, with the beautiful scallop detail that many have pointed out echoes Huit’s popular “Cupcake” bra. I’d love to see this design filter across the other Eveden brands, particularly Freya.
Caitlyn follows the same four-part cup shape as Rita with the same shining fabric, but instead of scallops offers peacock-feather-like embroidery on the top of the cups. Again, it offers really great support and comfort, but with the prominent horizontal seam across the cups and the fuller coverage, it may not be a go-to fashion style for many.
“Amelia” is a new, re-cut version of “Hermione” (Elomi’s answer to Fantasie’s “Rebecca” seamless spacer-fabric bra). Spacer fabric, unlike the stiffer foam molded cups of a bra like Freya’s “Deco”, consists of two light layers of fabric with a layer of air between them. It offers the same smooth, molded, seam-free look, but it’s incredibly light and breathable. Amelia features a light lace outer sling for shaping, and it goes up to an HH cup in some band sizes. It’s a wonderful option for women who want the look of a smooth, seamless bra with a more flexible, supportive fit than they find in some other molded options.
Maria is Elomi’s brand new special occasion range, and it represents a huge improvement over its continuity occasion range, appropriately called, well, “Occasions”. The latter is heavily boned and embroidered and looks dated; the former is deliberately old-fashioned in a sophisticated retro way. The range includes a strapless bra, convertible basque with detachable suspenders, a brief, and a thong, and is available in a beautiful ivory and striking black.
This collection is one of the only strapless lingerie options up to an HH cup currently in the market (up to a 40 band only; cup sizes scale back as the band sizes increase, and the last size is 48E). It’s certainly much lovelier than Elomi’s other strapless range, “Smoothing”, and since I didn’t get a great fit from Smoothing I’m intrigued by Maria. As it’s brand-new, there aren’t too many fit reports, but Erica at A Sophisticated Pair has found that some customers find the cups shallow at the bottom, without enough structure in the sides of the cup to direct the breast tissue forward. I’ll be interested to see how Maria does for Elomi, and whether the shape changes at all over time.
Spring/Summer 2014 will see this gorgeous ivory babydoll added to the Maria range. It was one of my favorite pieces I saw at Curve– just lovely.
Oh Roxy. Roxy, Roxy, Roxy. After all of my pleas for a non-padded G+ longline bra, you finally arrived, and I loathed your print. It just wasn’t .. pretty enough? Sophisticated enough? Elegant enough? Kitschy enough? to really hit any of the notes I like in my lingerie drawer.
That being said, from a construction point of view, Roxy knocks some of her full-bust competitors out of the park. A super-deep band with boning for support, strong powermesh for shaping, and unlined cups for those of us who loathe padding, the shape and fit make this bra the one I most want to see succeed.
“Megan” is the revamp of the style for Spring/Summer 2014, and while the print is better, it still seems a little safe and juvenile to me. This is a daring shape, Elomi! Give it a print or lace or colorblocking or SOMETHING that’s worthy of it!
I can’t think of ANYTHING in the full-bust full-figure market that compares to upcoming Imogen.
The black and bronze half-cup and full-cup bras are sexy and gilded-age elegant, but it’s that boned waist-cincher that knocks the whole look out of the park. It’s the antithesis of the boring, frilly frumpiness that occasionally creeps into the full-figure lingerie market, and I want the whole ensemble desperately.
In some ways Izzy feels like Elomi’s answer to Parfait or Tutti Rouge. The bright, sassy colors, the sheer dotted mesh lace over satin, and the ruffle trim along the sweetheart neckline all remind me of some of the newer brands’ girlier, frillier options. While I’m glad Elomi also offers more subdued, sophisticated collections, seeing a product like this in the lineup really delights me, because if I’d worn Elomi as a teenager, I’d have been thrilled to bits to have a set like this.
A bright purple babydoll feels pretty, young, and flirty, and 2014 will see Izzy return in a dazzling red Lollipop shade with turquoise trim (April 2014).
The styles I covered here are a mere sampling of the styles Elomi has to offer. While they’re doing a great job of curating a a sizable collection of basic shapes for the full-figure/full-bust market, they’re also pushing some really great fashion options in a huge range of colors, shapes, and styles. The next year will see basques, waspies, babydolls, and even an answer to Freya’s Deco juggernaut: new range Bijou will come in beige and Pansy (purple), featuring a molded plunge bra up to an H cup. I’ve been increasingly impressed with the strength of the most recent collections, and I’d love to see even more sizes (particularly larger cups in the larger band sizes) for future seasons.
What do you think of Elomi’s latest styles? Do you have a favorite?
Holly covered some of her favorite styles from Elomi’s Spring/Summer 2014 collection at The Full-Figured Chest, and Erica covered the Autumn/Winter 2013 collection for A Sophisticated Pair (don’t forget about her amazing special order policy, if any of these collections caught your eye!).