Briefs

By HOLLY JACKSON

Teresa Arthur Photography as seen on Lingerie Briefs

I’ve been thinking a lot about big life changes lately. This isn’t surprising, since I’m moving across the country this week! Now that the chaos of packing up has mostly worn off, I’m finding myself excited about the upcoming autumn season and all of the new beginnings that come with it. As a result, it seems fitting that I’m writing about maternity bras this week, since they always are associated with new phases of life and big changes.

What I have learned over the past few weeks is the value of quality basic bras and how they provide the backbone of your lingerie collection. The bras I took to make the long transition between houses were all good basic t-shirt bras and sports bras – which is exactly what Wacoal has released as part of their new maternity offerings. These are the types of bras that everyone needs at any stage in life, especially when navigating the new territory of becoming a mother.

The Underwire T-Shirt Nursing Bra by Wacoal is the perfect basic t-shirt bra for women who are nursing and learning to adjust to new routines. The spacer cups are decorated with pretty lace and the flexible underwire offers familiar t-shirt bra support without feeling uncomfortable – or causing mastitis or plugged ducts. Easy open clips make nursing easy but the cups also stay in place until they are pulled down, giving customers extra coverage when they are navigating nursing in public. This band has five hook-and-eye settings to help adjust to changing figures. The bra comes in band sizes 32 to 38 and cup sizes C, D, DD, DDD, G.

The Wire Free Sport Nursing Bra by Wacoal ensures that new mothers can still exercise comfortably while feeling supported. It has an internal frame for extra support and a mesh lining that helps keep customers cool while working out. This bra is designed for medium-impact activities, so it’s perfect for everything from summer walks with a stroller to yoga classes. This bra comes in band sizes 32 to 38 and cup sizes C, D, DD, DDD.

This is a great basic line for expecting mothers that comes with the Wacoal commitment to quality and smart design. Stay tuned as the brand adds a 3rd style later this fall.  Sometimes you need serious support when you’re going through new life changes, even from your bras!

 

 

 


By ELLEN LEWIS

Every season, caddy corner to the Curve show, is The Lingerie Selection: A boutique trade show hosted by its founders, Maggie Gillette and Melissa Franchi. Entering its 5th year as an alternative venue for  indie brands, it has been anchored since its inception by Maggie’s and Melissa’s collections, The Giving Bride and Nevaeh.  Also on board this August, were Loulette, Hesper Fox, Edge of Beyond, Violet & Wren, Evgenia and Nubian Skin. The event was sponsored by Skarlett Blue.

The Giving Bride as featured on Lingerie BriefsThe Giving Bride

What makes this enclave so sweet is not just the champagne and cake pops centered in a very intimate venue, but also the fact that the buyers who attend are genuinely interested in taking the time to see these collections and learn from their creators about the passion that drives them. In tune with the current propensity of many small brands to sell organically, this show could be compared to a wholesale pop up store. In fact, The Lingerie Selection Studio hosts brand driven mini events throughout the year.

Nevaeh as featured on Lingerie BriefsNevaeh

These are entrepreneurs whose products are often sewn locally (NY, London, etc) sometimes bespoke or by hand and all of whom have taken root in their particular channel. Of course, I attended. As a merchant, I find the show inspiring, a discovery process seeding the artistry inherent in lingerie design.

Edge of Beyond

Evgenia

Evgenia

Evgenia

Loulette

Loulette

Loulette

Loulette

Nevaeh as featured on Lingerie BriefsNevaeh

Nevaeh as featured on Lingerie BriefsNevaeh

The Giving Bride as featured on Lingerie BriefsThe Giving Bride

The Giving Bride as featured on Lingerie BriefsThe Giving Bride

The Giving Bride as featured on Lingerie BriefsThe Giving Bride

Hesper Fox as featured on Lingerie BriefsHesper Fox

Hesper Fox as featured on Lingerie BriefsHesper Fox

Violet & Wren as featured on Lingerie BriefsViolet & Wren

Nubian Skin as featured on Lingerie BriefsNubian Skin

Nubian Skin as featured on Lingerie BriefsHesper Fox

 


By ELLEN LEWIS

Skin Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsSkin

In the past, I have interlaced swimwear impressions in the Intimate overview I post following the CurveNY show. But this market there seemed to be more brands showing beachwear warranting more discussion about the category. Swimwear is a natural segue from the lingerie channel: there are similarities in fabrics, fit, and now function. Swimwear is experiencing the same crossover effect as Intimate Apparel, not only in women’s wardrobes but also in the talent that creates it.  Considered a predominantly seasonal business, its lifespan has expanded in recent years, occupying floor space year round in some retail stores. I, for one, am floored by the number of swim and beachwear stores as compared to lingerie shops in warm weather climates. Beach design has always been a source of lingerie inspiration.

Maison Lejaby Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsMaison Lejaby

There were some definite statements, parallel messages to those revealed in the Lingerie selections: the intention of yellow, spicy shades  touched by brights, of course black and pale pastels as a counterbalance. Animal prints, vivid tropical florals and cover ups easily worn beyond the beach. More size options reaching large cup sizes and offering a woman choices she never had before create opportunity for bra fit stores.

Empreinte Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsEmpreinte

Freya Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsFreya

Skin Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsSkin

Empreinte Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsEmpreinte

Maison Lejaby Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsMaison Lejaby

Skin Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsMaison Lejaby

Fantasie Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsFantasie

Panache Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsPanache

Lise Charmel Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsLise Charmel

Lise Charmel Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsLise Charmel

Antigel Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsAntigel

Antigel Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsAntigel

Pour Moi Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsPour Moi

Rosa Faia Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsRosa Faia

Jolidon Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsJolidon

Parfait Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsParfait

Parfait Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsParfait

Corin Swimwear 2020 as featured at Curve NY on Lingerie BriefsCorin

Panache

 


By ELLEN LEWIS

Only Hearts Animal Print as seen at Curve NY for Spring 2020 as featured on Lingerie BriefsOnly Hearts

Curve NY wrapped up last week and as I always do, I spent 3 solid days at the show. It was definitely more robust, with an interesting layout and meaningful seminars. I received healthy feedback. The mainstream brands dominated the venue showcasing their current product perspective. For my part, there was a definitive macro message: Comfort first and foremost: in bras, shapewear, panties, and particularly lounge. Simplicity dominates design.

Technology is a game changer affecting every aspect of Intimate Apparel Development: fabrics, trims, cups, wires, and construction like this example of Le Mystere…

 

Sustainability, Inclusivity, and Transparency are the current call to arms.

 

I still believe in personal interaction, working with resources to build partnerships, touching the merchandise for authenticity. With all the current conversation about the growing importance of personal participation (just look at the millennial and rising Gen Z mantra) I think being there still trumps all. The show does not attract as many indie brands as it could, but those that do present are reinforcing continuity to established retailers. It depends, as always on the brand’s vision. Social media is certainly a welcome respite for new labels and has far reaching relevance. But social media is evolving as the quest for genuine substance grows stronger. There is still nothing like hands-on experience.

Lifestyle accessories including hangers, slippers, hats, socks, hair ties, fragrances, skin care and CBD oil integrate into the Intimate industry.

Teen needs begin to be addressed with brands like Royce & Fillandises Lingerie.  Swim offers expand.

Here are a few of my micro observations beyond the macro trends: yellow and orange dominate the color palette. Think Spicy counterbalanced with cosmetics. Greens follow. Blue and pink stay put (after all it is Lingerie). Brown is on the horizon. Lightweight fabrics, sheer laces, graphic lace patterns, florals, large and small, and animals everywhere, as well as tie dye are key. Men’s emerges, Bridal is big (despite what I’ve heard to the contrary). The Sports and Maternity offers grow in importance as the quest to recognize  woman’s sense of well being in all phases of her life gains momentum. Less we forget, beautifully crafted lingerie remains critical to the category, often providing an exquisite element to a ready to wear fashion statement. And speaking of fashion statements, the bralette continues its fusion into women’s wardrobes.

I culled the following images from over 600 photographs. As with any candid situation, especially with an amateur, perfect imagery was not always the result. I could not use every shot. Stay tuned for Swim next week.

COLOR & LIGHT

Clo Intimo as seen at Curve NY for Spring 2020 as featured on Lingerie BriefsClo Intimo

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By ELLEN LEWIS

Skarlett Blue Siren Bra as featured on Lingerie BriefsSiren

I might be dating myself, but I still believe that building a brand requires three simple edicts: Slow and Easy, Stay in Your Lane and Superior Product Value. You can market the brand message in all the innovative channels available today, mainly social media saturation and that approach can work for a while. However, charisma fades if there’s no substance behind it. That takes time, focus and character.  That’s why; I seldom react immediately to a brand proffering essential intimates without a waiting period. I like to see continuity, consumer reaction, and product expansion take root.

Skarlett Blue Minx Bra as featured on Lingerie BriefsMinx

I’ve followed the Skarlett Blue label since its inception, written about its initial mission to offer the young modern woman unapologetically sexy essentials. Successful styles anchor this collection that was conceived on a minimal style selection until key sellers could be identified and expanded. (In fact the best-selling Minx bra will increase its size and color offer this September from 28-40, A-H cups).  But it’s the careful layering of seductive basics each season that is informing a growing consumer base.  This month the addition of the Siren bra, designed with a sheer molded lace over a tulip cup and a scalloped lace edged neckline will join the Skarlett Blue family. Available in sizes 30-36, A-DDD cups, it is a lightweight everyday t-shirt bra with a touch of allure.  It plays elegantly within the Skarlett Blue mantra, playful, provocative and priced to sell.

“A Big Business Starts Small”  ~Richard Branson

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