Bra chat with Panache

Knicker drawers, is yours bursting with vintage inspired prettiness or do you prefer to go for practicality? Panache have asked for my thoughts on bras, so here are some lingerie talk confessions.......

Q -  Be honest… how old is your oldest bra?
A - Errrmmmm, I did have a huge cull of bras a while ago - some of those were several years old, fitted badly hence why they never got worn. I think my oldest bra is still probably a couple of years old........ not sure if that is good or bad........I do have one or two faithful friends that have stood the test of time.

Q - What is your favourite colour underwear, and why?
A - Well, the colour I tend to wear the most is black, but my favourite colour would be anything involving electric blue. I'm also a fan of animal print. In fact I'd say most days of the week I'm wearing some form of animal print, it might be a scarf, shoes or it might be something you'll only see if I decide to show you.....

Q - What is a good fitting bra to you? What do you look at to see it’s a good fit?
A- I'm a bit of a 'want the moon on a stick' kind of girl when it comes to bras, I want good support, when your boobs feel like they are being well looked after, your posture is better, which makes you look better. Never underestimate the power of a well fitted bra. I appreciate a decent strap, pretty but flimsy is just not enough for the job in my case I'm afraid. I want practical and gorgeous, as should we all. When trying a bra on I ALWAYS put my top back on. Not everyone will get to see it without clothes on, so it's important to see how it's going to look  when I 'm dressed and that I'm comfortable with the shape and lines it creates.

Q- How often, or at what sort of occasions, do you wear matching underwear?
A - I used to be borderline OCD with this issue! I do still like to match, but it's not the end of the world if it doesn't. Dinner out that involves getting dolled up will still always be a matching underwear event for me though. It's all part of the getting dolled up for a night out. Matching or not I always want to feel that I've got nice underwear on. I'm not a grey cotton kind of girl!

Q- What is your favourite type of bra, and why?
A- Hmmm, tricky...... If I had to pick, I'd say something lacy that gave a good cleavage without being a plunge bra. I show a lot less cleavage now I'm in my mid thirties, so I don't feel I need a bra that dips quite as daring as a plunge! I'm much more confident in myself at this age, and prefer to flash a cheeky smile and wink across a crowded room than a flash of bosom! 

Q- So… naughty or nice? With the washing that is! Do you treat your bra to a gentle handwash, or do you let it suffer in a machine wash?
A- The only time I ever handwash anything is when the washing machine is broken!

Any surprises there or would your answers be similar?

Most people find jeans are the thing that's hard to shop for, but personally my shopping nightmare is often bras! As much as I'd love a bullet bra, at a 34 FF/G cup, when does a bullet bra become a rocket launcher?! I do have one nice Triumph bra which gives a soft point shape that's great for creating a sweater girl look but usually I'll just stick with a 'typical' underwired bra. I have a few 'go to' shops/brands because I know I can usually rely on for bras that are both functional AND pretty. I don't consider myself a lingerie expert, but I'm an expert on my own boobs (oo-er!) and after a few mistakes over the years ( for example if you buy cheap, you definitely buy twice when it comes to dressing ample boobage) I know exactly what I want from a bra, and big boobs mean big expectations.

When I was approached to review a Panache bra, I had high hopes. Being a brand I'd heard of but never tried out I was keen to see what the range looks like for the bigger cup sizes. Anyone who has ever found a gorgeous bra only to find it doesn't go up to your cup size, will know how annoying this problem is. Even some of the bigger retailers, who you'd expect to have a wide range of larger cup size options can be a let down. 

The Cleo range from Panache offers a good selection of both pretty and quirky styles, so if you want to step away from your typical blacks and whites then this could be a range worth looking at. If you've read my blog for a while you'll know I'm a huge fan of nautical colours, you can't beat a bit of red, white and, blue but I'm pretty much a lace/silk/satin material type of girl when it comes to undies. I decided to try something different when browsing the Cleo range though and opted for 'Darcy' with it's nautical shades of red, white and blue. 

Picture from Panache website. 

The Panache website describes this style as: 

An exciting, new and unique quirky heart print collection exclusive to Cleo. Darcy is a pretty padded balconnet bra with statement red embroidery and contrast fully adjustable strapping. A contemporary style offering great uplift and shape from a D-H cup.

 But what did I think?

Firstly I liked the pattern, I think it looks like hearts and fluttery eyelashes non? The material also felt nice and soft and smooth, meaning it's been good to wear under close fitting clothes. However apart from thinking 'nice pattern' my main thought was uh-oh quite thin straps and then looking at the back I thought that only having a width of two hooks could be an issue. Whilst I have many bras with only two hooks, I have to say that my preference is to have three hooks......... so how did this bra cope with the load?..........

Well it felt pretty good straight away, I personally prefer a slightly padded bra - even at my cup size! Not because I feel the need to look even bigger, but because I like the shape a little padding gives and on a cold day (or the arctic temperatures of the air conditioned office) I never have to worry about nipple issues! Whilst the straps look thin (and when I say thin, I mean the typical width of strap you might expect on a bra that's less than a D cup) the material is ribbed which seems to give it super powers, as the support was definitely there. At around £25 it's a good price for a good product in my opinion.

So a pretty bra in a large cup size without industrial size straps - that is always going to be a plus. The hook issue also wasn't a problem really and I certainly felt comfy. Would I prefer three hooks though? Yes, probably, but that wouldn't be a deal breaker. Panache seems to have put a lot of research into ensuring us D plus babes get function AND style. The other thing I love is that as the Cleo range has such a selection of colours and styles, the super thing is that if you try one and know you like it, then it's easy to build a nice lingerie drawer knowing that you'll have a choice of bras that  you'll feel good in and can rely on!



  1. Oh this is nice, I personally prefer cutesy patterns like this over lacy styles, but it's quite tricky to find nice 'young' patterns when you have big boobs! Will be sure to look at this range now though!

  2. eeek, I daren't even think how old my oldest bra is *blushes with shame*

  3. These Ribbed straps sound interesting, the one thing I hate about having big boobs is that I often have to wear bras that have such wide straps, especially in the summer when I'm wearing a dress or a vest top. I long for pretty bras that also offer the support I need.

  4. Love this brand, pretty and supportive. Well worth the money. Jessie

  5. I'm so over cheap bras. As much as they look nice they just don't give the right support and often they don't flatter the wearer either. They may look pretty but when you're more than a B cup you need more than just pretty!

  6. Those sound great straps!

    My bugbear is straps that cannot shorten appropriately for someone who has a short body. There's no point having a supportive bra if it's either round my waist or the straps slip off because they are loose. People always want to stick lace over the front bit, I would prefer clean lines and full adjustment.

  7. The straps seem to hold everything (a-hem) quite secure, I've never had an issue with the straps being to loose though. I also quite like a bit of lace. Bra shopping isn't always easy!


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