It doesn't help that I've upsized my bra size (unfoundedly, apparently) in exactly the same time frame during which I've eaten next to nothing (due to sickness). Thing is, even if I hadn't been eating next to nothing over the last 5 weeks, the bras I've bought are easily 2 sizes to big in the cup and one back size. I'm prepared to accept that I've dropped a cup's worth of volume and a back size. No more than that.
How, then, can this be? Well, it's hard to say exactly, but I'm pretty sure the Gem fits large and loose and the same thing goes for the Fantasie staple bra, a fact I conveniently forgot in my efforts to buy the right size. Note to online bra shoppers: if you a) buy a couple of small-fitting bras on the heels of reading b) 10 lingerie blogger posts wherein those bloggers have recently increased in cup size to good effect, it's possible you will be thrown off track.
So now I've got to send 90% of my Figleaves order back for either full refund (that hideous Panache cami) or different sizes (the too-small soft cup I bought carelessly in the wrong size and 2 of the 3 other bras - the Gem (temporary sob) and the beige basic).
I'm writing this moments after sustaining the disappointment, to give you the real deal.
This is inconvenient. This is anticlimactic. This is irritating. Based on returns, this great deal is a less great deal, though still a far better one than if I had bought the same loot online without the discount codes, to say nothing of buying in a local boutique. (Note, the return may not cost as much as it might have otherwise because I've still got the first batch of returns sitting on my dining room table, as I haven't been well enough to get to the post office. I did email Figleaves customer support and request an extension in light of my situation. Point is, one consolidated return might cost less than 2 small returns. Or not.)
I want to focus on the good in today's parcel (which sure as hell isn't delivery time, which was two weeks from the date of order):
- The gem undies are true to size to slightly large in fit. As they're a Brazilian-style thong, I'm choosing to stick with the tactically-purchased size L. In truth, the M would work as well. As many ladies talk about how Freya undies are too small for them to wear comfortably in their size, this may work out well for lots of peeps. The style is lovely. As is the colour and fabric. I can't comment on the bra because I believe the smaller size will have slightly different construction and will use fabric differently than the one I bought. Bra manufacturers often change the construction and elements of textiles at a cusp size (to increase support). Apparently, the size I bought falls into that category for this style. But I have to warn you that the bra fits largely in back and cup. I'm toying with the idea of sizing down a back size and 2 cup sizes though I'll likely go down a back and one cup to be safe.
- The Arabella bra, that sexy standard, fits fine - though it's loose in the back and on the loose side in the cups. I believe this bra just has a loose band (given the sheerness of the fabric), so consider down-sizing the band and upsizing the cups, to get a firmer fit. As I'm at a particularly slender moment, that may not persist once my appetite returns, I don't want to send this one back. Sure, it may be that I just don't have the stomach to return every fucking thing I've bought this round, but I'm weighing my options (haha) and I don't want to downsize the heck out of everything in haste. Remember, I modulate through a variety of small changes in size and shape within a given year or two.
I'm one of those people who's been known to begrudge her intense love of food, especially as I move into that perimenopausal moment known for temporarily changing one's body composition. But, as I haven't had interest in pretty well anything edible in some weeks, I have to tell you that possession of appetite is undoubtedly one of the most wonderful elements of the human condition.
I remember, during my pregnancy, I was as sick as a dog. It depressed me so profoundly that I briefly considered abortion. Needless to say, with that thinking I was not in my right mind, given that my pregnancy was planned and I wanted a child. (To clarify: I completely support a woman's right to choose.)
Appetite is life's great, optimistic urge. Like sexual desire, it possesses us; it compels us to satiety. Appetite is a defining feature of existence. And when it vanishes, even temporarily, the world becomes grey.
I say this now, and I mean it (at least from where I'm sitting today): I would rather have appetite - and struggle to maintain the self-discipline I often resent as beautiful food calls to me - than effortless slimness as the result of no-desire. Don't get me wrong, I want slimness and appetite, but this illness has helped me to clarify the contradiction somewhat more fully.
Hmmm, I must be feeling like crap if I've deviated this far off base.
To close the loop on the online shopping, I'm not surprised by the results of the second Figleaves parcel given what I learned from the first one, and given what I've written above. And, although this experience has yielded perhaps my "worst results ever" (in terms of fit and returns etc.), this is how it goes. Not every shopping trip brings immediate success. If you take some chances, you may have to redouble your efforts - though with each purchase (and specifically within one purchase/(potential) return cycle), you learn and ameliorate the challenge.
BTW, this is as bad as I ever feel about this sort of online experience. It's clothing, after all, not world peace. I hope my re-sends will be perfect fits. And, of course, I'll keep you posted. Does this in anyway undermine my interest in continuing to buy lingerie online? ABSOLUTELY NOT. I've had far more successful experiences than unsuccessful ones, and even those lacking in immediate payoff yield a good final outcome, because I see the process through. Also, I've still saved a whack of money. And got excellent customer service. And purchased great brands that will look terrific when the sizing's managed. So really it's all good.
Thoughts or feelings?