When I first encountered Bravissimo back in 2008, my exposure to full-bust bras was limited to beige minimizer bras, and my exposure to matching lingerie sets was limited to Victoria’s Secret. As a result, exploring the Bravissimo website was literally life-changing– I was astonished by the range of colors, styles, and shapes in D+ sizes. I had literally never seen lingerie so beautiful, colorful, and sophisticated outside of the core A-D size range, and I spent hours poring over each page of the website. Before I’d even placed an order, Bravissimo changed the way I thought about my body. I can safely say that if Bravissimo did not exist, there’s a good chance this blog wouldn’t exist either.
Interestingly, as many, MANY brands have recently embraced sensual, boudoir-style lingerie with fervor– last year it felt like every single press release name-checked “bondage” or “50 Shades of Grey”– Bravissimo’s inventory (the styles they purchase from brands like Freya, Fantasie, and Panache) and their own in-house designs have started to feel safe, sweet, and a little predictable. And hey, my perspective is hugely skewed from the norm: I look at a LOT of lingerie each and every day. I love the shape and fit of Bravissimo’s in-house designs (although in my experience the cups do run small compared to other UK brands, which is something I really wish they’d fix), but the current collections don’t really match my personal style (so. many. ditsy. prints.). I miss some of the feel of their inventory mix from 5-7 years ago– there were plenty of cute, cheerful styles too, but I remember sassy sheer-cupped bras by Miss Mandalay and Freya, elegant satin-and-lace collections, and daring black lace basques by Masquerade. The Boudoir Beau collection is a great example of recent changes– I loved the first few versions, featuring interesting colors with an overlay of black or ivory lace, but the more recent collections (purple on purple and red on orange), have left me cold. It’s hard to fault a store because they don’t happen to suit your personal taste; after all, Bravissimo have been in the full-bust business longer than most, and surely they know their customers and what sells well for them. Still, lately every time a new collection drops, as one did on Monday, I can’t help but think to myself “oh, they bought THOSE styles? Huh.” (Although I do love the new floral print for Jasmine, gimme.)
All THAT being said:
If you think I don’t want this a whole lot you don’t even know me at all.
This collection is excellent and ticks so many of my boxes. Rich color? Check. Sumptuous, unique embroidery? Check. Satin side-sling? Check. G+ sizes? Check. Nice deep suspender belt? Check. Reasonable price point (a 3-piece full-bust lingerie set for under $100)? Check.
I bought myself some lingerie for my birthday last month and now all my money is gone, but I kinda feel like all it will take is one late-night margarita to make me impulse-purchase this little number.
Have you tried Bravissimo’s half-cup styles before? Holly loves them, but advises that they can run a full cup size small. I can’t tell whether Sophia is padded or not, but I’m hoping not, just because it’s my personal preference. I also really hope this style is a sign of what’s to come later this year in time for the holidays– while this set looks comfortable and practical for everyday wear, it would also make lovely special occasion lingerie. What do you think?