When I was younger, I’d go down South to visit my grandparents every Christmas. Aside from the weather, the Apple Jacks, and the all-you-eat early-bird specials, there was the shopping. Aventura, Boca Town Center, Galleria Mall, Pompano Fashion Square. They all had one thing in common, aside from Burdines: Victoria’s Secret.
One of the highlights of each trip would be my annual Vicky’s Secret excursion with my grandmother. My Bubby would install her plus-sized self in one of the fitting rooms – preferably with a snack – while I grabbed as many 34-B bras that I could find. At first they were simple: nothing too lacy, nothing too showy and absolutely no falsies! I’d bring armloads of bras and start trying. One after the other, until she’d find herself at the bottom of a sea of underwear – and underwire. We’d bring them back to Palm Aire and I’d model them for her underneath my various t-shirts and dresses.
This went on from my teens until well-into my twenties. Sure, I erred on the nippy side, but I didn’t care if my headlights were showing. Heroine chic was all the rage. And while I couldn’t compete with the waifs, I certainly had the chest for the tops I liked.
And then I tried on a WonderBra.
Well! Helloooo ladies indeed!
Victoria’s Secret? Out. Marks and Spencer? In.
And so it went. I lived in London and the Florida trips became more sporadic. I still went and we still shopped, but I’d moved on from Victoria’s Secret. A large and in charge Marks & Sparks bra fitter had helped me to see the light – not the headlight. I was loyal to my bras. And they were loyal to me.
And then I got pregnant. And breastfed. Repeat three times. Lovely babies. Lovely boys. Less than lovely boobs despite my fabulous M & S underthings. They helped me through the ups and the downs. And the further downs. Until I noticed there was an awful lot of…room…in them there cups. It was time. To reinvest.
And then a few weeks back I found myself staring into an enormous pair. It was a Victoria’s Secret window and it was huge – as was the bust. Or was it? I stepped over the threshold and let myself go. Shopping American Style. Claire guided me to the bra area. Vivian whipped out her tape measure and got to work. Lynne ushered me into the fitting room. With a bra box. And a t-shirt.
This was not my grandmother’s VS.
Gone were the rummaging through tables and rifling through drawers to find my size, shape and colour. No more undressing mannequins to find a bra that wasn’t fuchsia. This was civilized.
Inside the bra box was each and every bra in the Victoria’s Secret arsenal. In black. The idea being you try ’em all on and find the ones you like. And that like you. Then you ring the “service bell” and they get to work finding your choices.
25 minutes later, I emerged, head held high, tits even higher. Leopard-lined and seamless, biofitted and bombshelled, there were some new bras in town!
The icing on the cake? I was the same size as pre-children. A little lower, maybe, but with the new boob technology out there, who cares? Comfy AND sexy were no longer a contradiction in terms. No fuss, no muss, no knives.
Their latest bra is The Plunge – guaranteed to add two bra sizes for “hourglass ooomph”. A boob job for $45! If my Bubby could see me now….