[I purchased the Giselle bra, suspender belt, and brief from Figleaves under my real name with my own money. Figleaves is not affiliated with this review. Fiore generously provided the Tempesta stockings for review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.]
I’ve been so impressed with Figleaves’ continued expansion into in-house labels, and after writing about the Figleaves Boudoir collections earlier this Fall, I decided to try a set out for myself. I did a little mini-shopping spree at Figleaves for my birthday in September, and one of the sets I picked out was the Giselle bra, brief, and suspender belt. Giselle is one of the few collections that’s actually available in my current size (32GG), and I liked the classic pink-and-black color scheme and the sophisticated, special-occasion feeling of the design.
Giselle is plunge bra that, although it appears to be a cut-and-sew on the website, is in fact a molded cup: the inside is perfectly smooth, while the outside features decorative seams and detailing. The set is heavily embellished: the lining fabric is a deep berry color overlaid with black-and-berry floral lace, with contrasting black vertical lace stripes on the bottom of the cup. Black velvet bows and black lace trim the fully-adjustable straps near the shoulders, with a matching bow at the center gore, and stretch lace is placed so that it extends past the edge of the cup, softening the neckline. The band of the bra fastens with two rows and three columns of hooks and eyes. The same fabric, trims, and laces repeat on the coordinating brief and suspender belt. The seat of the brief is edged with the black-and-berry floral lace (so pretty!), and the suspender belt fastens with two rows and three columns of hooks and eyes and has four slim suspenders. A final opulent touch? The sliders on the straps and suspenders are all gold-toned.
I ordered my current most-commonly-worn UK sizes, 32GG and 14/L. My grief when Giselle arrived and turned out to be a molded cup was PROFOUND. The only good thing about a molded cup bra is that it doesn’t show under clothes; when you then go and put frills and such all over it, you have eliminated its only purpose in life! (I apologize to those of you who do actually genuinely like molded cup bras, we can still be friends). The thing is, I don’t usually get the best fit from a molded cup, because in my size I usually need the shaping that only comes from a seamed bra. Sadly, my fears were founded: while the band feels true to size compared to other UK brands, and the cup volume is correct, the cup is too shallow to really fit my shape well. The center gore floats slightly off my sternum, and I usually have to adjust the bra slightly throughout the day. Despite these issues, there are things about the fit I like: it’s a true plunge style, which means it doesn’t show under low-cut tops, and the cups are fairly tall at the sides, which means my breast tissue doesn’t spill over the edges of the cup throughout the day (plus I really like the cleavage it gives me).
The briefs are LOW-CUT, goodness me, particularly in the back. I don’t have a particularly curvaceous derriere, but I was still taken aback by how little coverage there is. That said, the low rise means that there’s more bare skin between the suspender belt and the brief, which is fun and flirty. Speaking of the suspender belt, it runs big, my friends. I exchanged my Large for a Medium, and I don’t really wear a Medium in anything. This is definitely a fashion suspender belt: the fabric is lovely, but it’s very lightweight with plenty of stretch, and the suspenders are delicate and not designed for heavy lifting. If you plan to wear the suspender belt all day (as opposed to just in the bedroom), the best way to ensure it stays on your body is to fit it to your waist (if that’s your narrowest point), not your hips. My original size Large slid down to my hips almost instantly, even before I tried it on with stockings; the Medium is a much better fit.
Even though the center gore doesn’t tack perfectly, I find myself wearing this set on an everyday basis more than I expected to. The plunging front is great for wearing under low-cut tops and dresses, and furthermore, it’s just so darned pretty! I know some lingerie folks are strongly against four-strap “fashion” suspender belts with plastic fasteners, but while some are, admittedly, flimsy, I’ve worn a few that stayed put and held my stockings up just fine, and Giselle is one of them. Wearing the suspender belt also helps kind of keep everything in place so the waistband of the briefs doesn’t roll down under my belly, so thanks suspender belt! I would prefer it if the briefs had a slightly higher rise, but I understand the appeal of this set is its wow factor, not necessarily its wearability.
I notice new design elements every time I wear this set– the pink ribbons over the suspender fastenings, the velvet bows on the suspender belt, the contrasting lace, the embellished straps. Even though I’m annoyed that the cups are molded, which feels like a cop-out, the other design elements are so well thought out and well executed that I can almost forgive it. The level of detail at a fairly low price point (less than $50 for a full-bust bra) gives this set a lot of bang for your buck. I suspect the impetus behind the design came out of the gorgeous stretch lace, because about two weeks after my order arrived a new piece of the collection popped up on Figleaves and made me scream for having placed my order too soon: MATCHING STOCKINGS.
Now look, Fiore was kind enough to send me this beautiful pair of their Tempesta stockings, and they really are great. The quality is lovely, particularly considering the low price point (only $8.95), and I love the dotted line of the backseam. I also really like the look of the super-sheer denier, the material feels soft to wear, and they haven’t snagged much at all after several all-day wears. The graphic lines of the Tempesta stockings’ design contrasts nicely with the floral lace of the Giselle collection, and the length of the stockings (a little shorter on me than I’d usually go for) suits the long suspenders really well.
We wants it, precious.
BLACK FRIDAY OFFER: Use code “25FORYOU” to get 25% off this set and more at Figleaves this weekend!
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Bra, Brief, and Suspender Belt: Giselle by Figleaves Boudoir ($48, $32, $39, respectively). Plunge bra available in sizes 30 C-GG, 32 B-GG, 34 A-G, 36 A-FF, 38 D-F, suspender belt in sizes Small-XLarge, brief in sizes 8-18 (UK). Figleaves Boudoir is a UK brand, so the cup size progression goes B, C, D, DD, E, F, FF, G, GG. Coordinating styles available include a basque, thong, and stockings.
Stockings: Tempesta stockings by Fiore (c/o) ($8.95). Available in sizes 1-6.
Photos: Studio Rezin