Bra shopping: serious Marmite

I’ve been in possession of a serious Kelly Brook-like rack since I turned 15. Bra shopping – for the likes of the well endowed me – is torture.

It could date back to my first bra shopping experience – at M&S in the 1970’s – I was with my dad (single parent – poor him with three girls to shepherd through puberty). So embarrassed was I that I grabbed the nearest one I could in my size – it was lime green and I was teased mercilessly at boarding school for it.

There was one shopping reprieve – back in 1995, when I lived in New York , I discovered a parallel universe to the tape measure, glasses and sturdy shop assistants in London at dept stores.  I was in the East Village, a veritable den of”frumas” ie the religious Jews that inhabited said place. I wandered in to a tiny and beautiful lingerie store and the rather large male attendant with curls and a cuppal on his head, sitting in a stool at the counter,  took one look at me and said “30 FF madam – I’ll bring you a selection.” NO TAPE MEASURE! NO FOLLOWING ME INTO THE CHANGING ROOM! Utter relief. These bras were manna from heaven – support, lift and beautify gems: jewels. They made my boobs resplendent: 1950’s pin-up style – a shape I still adore.

When ML suggested last week that we – in our 50’s it-was-time-again to get a bra fitting – I worried deeply that the same old Dept store Are-you-Being-Served schtick would apply. But heaven is now in London….at Selfridges. Where they also believe only in visually sizing you up – tape measure be-gone.

We popped in on a quiet Friday afternoon and my sweet assistant Fiona at the Body Studio  just looked at me and declared me a 30GG. How does that happen? Why am I one minute in the F category and then flung to the G. Seriously, I cannot profess this too much – IT DOES NOT MATTER WHAT THE SIZE ON THE BRA SAYS. Rather like being a size 8 it is all a load of nonsense dreamt up by retailers meaning practically nothing to us mortals. Try things on, see if they fit – if they emphasise your beauty like a goddess for God’s sake – buy them! I walked away (super weirdly) with the same bra style as ML (in an inflated size obvs) – the Fantasie Mae full support. Because it was beautiful, utterly supportive, came in a huge array of sizes and is a bra I know I will go back to time and time again.

The Fantasie Mae Bra set

Why? Because it does what it says on the tin – makes the most of exactly what’s God Given. For me,a bad bra makes me feel self conscious. This, on the other hand, makes me feel delighted with what’s mine. Bountiful is Beautiful and, as my husband says, Hell Yeah Baby!

Love Jane x  (Fantasie Mae £49  Selfridges)

Like Jane my go-too bra-fitting was always M & S and it’s trad tape-measure service.  I thought I was a tawdry 34b ever since.   While my daughter (19 years old) owns a vast range of bras, in every colour & padding variation, my collection is pitiful.   So when I was invited by Fantasie to trial their lingerie for my social media – I leapt with  joy.

So we booked an appointment in advance, and off we trotted on a sunny Friday afternoon.  It was pure girlie fun and after trying on a wide selection I was thrilled to discover I am in a whopping 32DD! Oo-er – look at me!   The Mae bra fitted like a dream – pushing me up & nipping me in with shape defining precision – I went for the Sienna red with this matching camisole set below!

Fantasie Sienna Red Camisole and French knicker


The Fantasie range is expertly cut to give incredible support and a really strong silhouette.  They go from a 30C to a 38 DD  and have a gorgeous ranges of chemises, matching knickers and also swimwear.

The Selfridges Body Studio fitting experience is excellent.  You do need to book a time slot in advance, who will whizz around the store collecting a fabulous selection of treats to try.  What’s not to love.

Thank you Fantasie – love Marie Louise x


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