So for SS16, Parfait released the most glorious color way of Charlotte possible. It’s a lovely, black and white photo-realistic print, it’s the piece I was most excited about in this entire season. To be honest though, I never expected to buy it or review it. I’ve reviewed Charlotte before in the dusty rose coloryway and lets just say it was a disaster. It’s one of the few bras I’ve had trouble wearing long enough to take pictures of. So I was pretty resigned to living vicariously through the reviews of other bloggers who fit into Charlotte well. This set was firmly in the “fantasy wish-list” category.
This past week though, I visited my parents and took a visit to a local boutique: Belle Mode Intimates. I’ve never been in a brick-and-mortar full-bust boutique before, and I must say, I was very impressed. The owner and fitters were very knowledgable and passionate. Best yet, they fit me correctly and came up with a size of 24FF/G. I’m really happy to see that Belle Mode is giving women correct sizes even when they fall out of the store’s range (28AA-50K). I highly recommend a visit if you’re in the DC area! They have a lovely, wide selection and the prices are very similar to online.
Anyways, back to my story about Charlotte. While I was at Belle Mode, I noticed that they had the new color way of Charlotte and I took advantage of the opportunity to try it out. I must say, I was expecting disappointment. Sure enough, Charlotte didn’t work at all in either 28E or 28F. I had basically given up hope when the fitter brought me a 28DD. Which, if you read this blog, you know is far from my normal size. But of course, it fits like a dream. There have been some significant (and positive) changes to Charlotte’s fit this season!
Look at this pattern, this fit, the beauty! I’m obsessed with photorealistic prints. Anyways, in comparison to Dusty Rose Charlotte, the new one has narrower, deeper cups and a narrower gore. I believe the straps might be slightly narrower set as well. This bra is actually one of the narrowest ones I own. It wants to be a Polish bra, which I’m incredibly excited about because Charlotte is so much more accessible to American women. It’s fairly affordable brand new (I picked this one up for $38) and it’s a US brand stocked many places with good returns. Now, it’s definitely worth noting that this bra is a 28DD when I’m normally a 28F volume. The cups here definitely run large, but they do close off a bit so Full on Top shapes may not be able to size down 2 sizes like I did here.
So you can see here that the cup shape is quite similar to a Comexim plunge. It’s a relatively high apex projected and narrow cup. The exterior side slings you can see are purely decorative. The foam of the Charlotte is much too firm for them to actually be able to do anything. The cups are 4.45 inches (11.3 cm) wide and 8.5 inches (21.6 cm) deep. Those are really unusual numbers for a padded bra (especially a 28DD), but I double checked and came up with the same results! The cups are 5.25 inches (13.3 cm) tall. There’s a good amount of center projection here, and the gore is much narrower at the bottom than in previous Charlottes.
So side profile here is again pretty similar to Comexim with a high apex that contains most of the projection of the bra. This gives a very uplifted silhouette that looks lovely under a t-shirt. Sorry, I forgot to take a picture of that! You can see here that I could use a tiny bit more room in the cups, but in the next size I had a lot of gaping. There’s less immediate projection than I would prefer in a bra, but that’s true for me in basically everything but the CHP. The firm foam Parfait uses means that the cups aren’t folding over or pushing down yet on me. The wires are firm enough to stay put without being killer-wires-of-death. **Cough Panache**
I actually forgot to take a picture of the back of the bra, but it’s a standard, plain black mesh back. As I’ve mentioned before, I strongly prefer bras with interesting backs, so this was a bit disappointing. This color way of Charlotte runs more true to size than previous ones. The band stretches to 27″, which feels loose on me but is quite tight for a 28 band. This means that YMMV on whether you want to size up in the band or not. I’m comfortably on the middle hooks here.
This is just another shot to show how similar the new Charlotte is to a Comexim plunge. It’s craziness. Seriously, projected American ladies go try this bra! Short rooted and full on bottom shapes will need to size down, up to 2 sizes. Full on top and tall rooted shapes may still want to size down one cup, because the depth on this bra is crazy for the size range! I would not recommend this color way to wide-rooted, shallow shapes. If that describes you, you’ll do better in one of the older Charlotte colors (and yay, they’re even cheaper!).
I’m rarely truly surprised by bras, but this one absolutely shocked me in how much it’s been improved! Yay Parfait! 🙂 It’s now an amazing option for narrow and projected ladies who are unable to order from Poland.