Thursday, March 21, 2013

Vowels Are Crunchy

I spend more time eating my words...

So, after more than a year of avoiding Bratabase, I've succumbed to its call.

For starters, let me tell you what put me off for so long:
  • It's not an attractive interface. There's a kind of cognitive dissonance in using an ugly platform to database one's most beautiful underthings.
  • When it first started, there was very little data to be found. I do realize that the idea behind the site is that people like me (and specifically like me - lingerie addicts who like dealing with measurements) add the content. It's a give-and-get modality. The truth is, until now I haven't been able to see past the ugly (maybe cuz there was not much else to see).
  • I didn't feel the need to connect with the "bra community" in this context at this level of detail. Mind you, in the last little while I've observed how helpful it seems to be for people to speak about bra fit and their experiences on platforms such as these (subreddits, anyone?). I've had two discussion platforms for many years (my everyday life, wherein I torture people with info on bras all freakin' day, and my blog via which I proselytize routinely).
Change is good though, so they say, which brings me to my current perspective:
  • I own a lot of bras. Sometimes I can't keep them straight. (OK, that's not true about keeping them straight - I wear them all (25, currently) on a regular basis and I keep them well-organized.) Here's the thing, I have a sample of bras that doesn't seem well-represented on Bratabase currently - the super expensive category.
  • Furthermore, as my size and shape may change, it's very useful to have a database of measurements and fit information to which I can refer. Then, if I "regress", I'll have lots of detail at my access.
  • The reason I wear bras that fit is because I've had access to the resources that make it possible. I should pass that on in as many ways as I can.
  • The place is no longer a ghost town. OK, I know, I'm not going to win any awards for early adopter, this time, but I wasn't psyched to hang out in a dingy room on my own (metaphorically speaking). Now there's much more functionality, more conversation and more info. It inclines me to participate.
  • Bratabase is actually offering something that no other platform does (as far as I know) - very detailed, measurements of many kinds (including three-dimensional) on every bra it profiles. That means, if I (or someone in Iqaluit) want to know if a bra, to be purchased online, will fit, I can refer to such ephemeral - but useful - info as cup depth and wire height. You can even determine what breast shape is optimal for what bras, so that you don't waste time on something that isn't ever going to work because the gores are too wide or the wires too narrow.
  • The full bust, narrow frame market is increasing in numbers. Maybe that's because we're ever more out and proud. Maybe it's because - due to environment or evolution - there are more of us all the time. The point is, the mainstream (aka department stores) has not evolved at the same pace and so many of us are forced to purchase online. I'm very fortunate - I live in a huge city with numerous options within walking distance. That lady in Iqaluit does not. As a result, the majority of us really are at the will of the resources that give us critical information about fit.
Don't get me wrong. Nothing is ever going to be as good as going into a store, trying on a bra, getting someone else's opinion and walking out with the perfect set. But till we can all afford to do that, we've got to do the next best thing. At the moment, it appears that's databasing.


  1. Love the title for this post, very amusing.

    I haven't used bratabase. The pictures of the wide variety of breast shapes is pretty cool.

    1. I couldn't decide if this title was completely incomprehensible - so thanks! :-)

  2. Finally! I seem to be unhelpful on there, seeing as I seem to buy only discontinued bras (it's like my superpower), and also because I'm still learning what works for me and what doesn't. You, on the other hand, will be an awesome contributor! :-) Be sure to let me know your handle so that I can 'follow' you.

    1. Ha! I want to keep my blog separate from my bratabase account. Email me and I'll give you my bratabase handle.

  3. I just signed up for Bratabase while eating lunch and then realized that I can't measure myself topless at my desk and that I have no idea what most of my bras are properly called (I know brands and sizes, but not what model). So, I guess I know what I'm doing tonight. ;-)

    1. Hilarious! It is a challenge to measure one's breast depth at the office. But I hope that you will have a chance to enter all of your bras into the database. It's quite satisfying!