Bespoke Clothing: Fact or Fantasy pt. 2

As I mentioned in my previous post, custom-made or “bespoke” clothing should involve taking a client’s measurements, using the measurements to generate a pattern for the client, fitting and sewing the garment—a process that should be completely done in-house. In the case of lingerie particularly bras, many custom bra vendors do not do any or all these steps.

Anyone thinking of going to a bra boutique that claims to offer custom bra fitting must understand that almost all these boutiques fit a client to a ready-to-wear garment. The process here is that if a bra of a particular brand does not fit, the bra fitter at the boutique will get the client to try on bras from one or more different brands in the hope that at least one of them will fit.

The problem with this approach to bra fitting is that the chance of finding anything off the rack to fit is extremely rare. A lot of women think that only those with large busts have this problem. This is not so. Many small busted women have just as many problems finding properly fitted bras. Some fitting issues are unique to an individual, such as uneven breast size. However, most fitting problems are due to the fact that a bra manufacturer uses a pattern block to fit a particular model that they choose to represent their intended customers, and then grades the pattern to generate all the sizes that they intend to manufacture.

Even if your cup size is exactly the same as the manufacturer’s model, your other proportions are not going to be. For instance, your breast shape, torso shape, and breast tissue will not be identical to that of the model. Keep in mind that your proportions involve far more variables than just these three. So when you try that ready-to-wear bra, it will not fit you. To make things worse, a ready-to-wear bra manufacturer grades their pattern block; so all the proportion issues remain, and in many cases they get worse for the very small and very large sizes.

In order to generate a well-fitted bra pattern, more than 12 measurements must be taken. If your breasts are uneven in size, even more measurements must be taken. In addition, many other details have to be considered. No ready-to-wear bra manufacturer could possibly get those measurements right to properly fit the range of customers that they are targeting. The reason is that bra fitting involves more than breast size fitting, and without seeing each customer, it is impossible to properly fit ready-to-wear.

Since bras are closely fitted to the body and often worn for extended periods of time, it is even more important that women who wear bras get properly fitted. The result of not doing so is significant health problems.