Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Which Bra for What Outfit?

September is one of my favourite months because it's still warm but the beautiful colours of autumn start to emerge. Of course this signals the need for new dresses (in my world at least!) so I thought it would be a good time to remind you that different outfits look even better with the right bra!

I'm a bit of a Banana Republic devotee so I'm using some of the dresses I'm lusting after to explain which bras are good for different styles. xx

By the way, Banana Republic has a sale on for today only 25% off at checkout with code HAPPYBDAY

This is the bra I rely on to keep my boobs controlled and beautiful every day. It's ideal for dresses with sleeves or wide straps. Lightweight Wool Sheath Dress.

This is my favourite full cup bra, the Emotions Bra from Felina

I love textured materials, especially in the autumn and winter. The pale colour would benefit from a pale bra with a smooth cup that doesn't compete with the textured material. The Mad Men Lace Dress.

A great seamless bra for this dress is the X-treme comfort from Grenier.

Through my twenties I would have loved to have a plunge bra in my size but the industry hadn't quite caught on, so today I'm getting my fill of deep V-neck dresses with my trust bright pink plunge bra!! Silk Twist Strap.

My go-to bra for deep crossover dresses, The My Fit from Pleasure State.

I love the waist embellishment on this dress. A good strapless bra under a beautiful strapless dress like this is made even more dramatic with an accentuated waist - and I love the colour! Starburst Dress.

The Lolita from Le Mystere is a sturdy strapless bra made from beautiful material.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Big Boobs and Periods.

If your breasts become fuller before and during your period, you need a bigger cup
You’ve been blessed with some fantastic boobs and most of the time you can keep them under control but then once a month they take on a life of their own! For lots of women the arrival of their period can take their boobs from big to huge. I’ve got some physical and emotional tips to get you through this tricky part of the month.

If you experience this kind of bulging you need to wear a bigger cup during your period

Some women don’t experience any breast changes before or during their period, but for those who do your swelling is caused by water retention. This water retention is a side-effect of your body releasing extra oestrogen and progesterone hormones. The milk glands and ducts enlarge which means there’s some extra space for your body to store water – so it does. Your bra size can change by a whole cup size during this time. Considering that the swelling can cause your boobs to feel painful, tender or lumpy it’s a good idea to have bigger bras available for your period days.

Wearing a bra with full coverage during your period will keep you more comfortable

You don’t need to buy lots of extras bras for the few days when your breasts swell but one or two “period-sized” bras can make your life so much more comfortable. Wired bras are totally fine during your period, as long as they’re the right size – wires from ill-fitting bras poking into soft breast tissue is always harmful so make sure you know your size.

Just three minutes of gentle stretching or exercising can lessen period pain.

There are lots of things you can do to lessen the impact of your period, but I have three top favourites.

1) Gentle exercise (like stretching or yoga) helps to work out the cramps and distract the mind from the pain.

2) Heat helps to sooth cramping so keep a magic bean heat bag on hand that you can sling in the microwave then lie across your tummy or back.

3) Your blood can get thicker during your period, so to make life easier pour yourself a glass of wine because alcohol thins the blood!

So grab yourself a comfortable correctly fitting bra and a glass of wine and get through your time of the month with a bit more ease! xx

Thursday, August 18, 2011

How do you Support Full-Busted Teenage Daughters?

My Mum and I have a long history of BooB chats!
I am contacted almost every week by concerned Moms whose teenage daughters have larger than average breasts. Their concerns are “how do I keep up with her changing size” “where can I find affordable, supportive bras” and “how do I emotionally support her through these body changes and other people’s reaction to her”.

Firstly, you’re a great Mom for taking an interest in the breast welfare of your daughter. I've talked before about how instrumental my Mum's bra approach was to strengthening my self-esteem. Developing communication and awareness with your daughter about breast health, self-esteem and bras has a lifelong benefit so thank you to every Mom who gets in touch with us.

A teen's self-consciousness can prevent her going to a professional bra fitter. If you have a good relationship with your daughter you can help measure her at home or teach her how to measure herself by giving her a demonstration on yourself. If you’re seen to be comfortable with your boobs and know how to measure yourself, it will give your daughter confidence. Our Bra Size Calculator is also a good tool for young girls as it walks them through how to measure.

During her growth period your daughter should measure herself, or be measured, every 3 to 6 months. This may seem like a lot but the changes can be a whole cup size every three months and being in the wrong bra (spilling out of it) can be embarrassing for a young girl.
A bra like Lucy is supportive, affordable and age appropriate

Lots of Moms think that they need to get their daughters into sports or minimizer bras to disguise their size. I NEVER recommend minimizer bras as they are harmful to the breast tissue and give the wearer a spread-out look that makes you look much bigger than you are. I recommend that teenagers should have a good sports bra but day to day bigger busted teenagers should wear well fitting bras.

Cost is of course a factor when children are growing into young adults. If your daughter is up to a D cup you can find great sales at the Bay or Nordstroms (their fitters are by far better than other high street stores). If your daughter is over a D cup then online stores like ours offer money off coupons all year round, just email them and ask for their recent discounts. The expense is a huge consideration, but the emotional foundations you lay down for a young woman by ensuring she is in the right bra last a lifetime.

Despite their protests at not being understood, teenage girls are looking to their Moms to learn about body image. In one of the saddest reports I’ve read this year, children as young as six were criticising their bodies and wanting to be thinner. Teaching your daughter that her body is beautiful and something she should cherish and look after is the best defense against the onslaught of media and peer pressure.The sudden emergence of boobs is a weird thing (I went from braless to a 32C in 6 weeks!) but with communication and reassurance at home you can make it easier for your daughter to transition from girl to woman. xx

Friday, August 12, 2011

Some of my Favourite Big Boob Blogs

Since we started Butterfly Collection I have met some incredible people both in the flesh and online. I have learned so much about bra designs, fitting and brands from women across the globe. Here are some of this week's best blogs from some of these brilliant women!

Swimwear and Lingerie
Swimwear and Lingerie blog is one of the best resources for lingerie and swimwear information from hundreds of sources. The always informative and slightly cheeky writing always makes me smile. Check out this week's blog "Wear Lingerie in Your Size...Duh!"

Thin and Curvy
No this isn't an oxymoron, this describes a huge number of women. You can be slim and have fantastic boobs and hips!! Of course being these proportions comes with its own fashion frustrations and Thin and Curvy helps you to navigate those. Check out this week's blog "Is Banana Republic's Mad Men line Curve-Friendly?"

Invest in Your Chest
One of my go to blogs every single week, Invest in Your Chest is a combination of fashion advice, empowering advice for women and opinion pieces. I am a BIG fan of this week's blog which explores why so many women are being kept away from smaller bands, bigger cups (right up my alley!!)xx

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Mammoir of a Busty Breastfeeding Mom

Elisabeth's book available at Amazon

This week we are incredibly fortunate to have the author of bOObs: a guide to your girls, as our guest blogger. Elisabeth writes Mammoirs about life as a busty woman that are empathetic, enlightening and entertaining for all women! 

When Christina Aguilera appeared on the Ellen Show shortly after the birth of her new baby, she didn’t hide her swollen, lactating breasts. Ms. Aguilera proudly rocked her bonus cleavage. I wish I’d felt the same way about my breasts when I first travelled down the nursing path. Well-endowed from puberty, I hoped my first pregnancy would place the emphasis on my growing belly -- not my chest. But where I carried my weight in my expectant condition couldn’t be ignored, or covered with ease.

Learn more at
In the early 1980s, my pre-baby 34DDs were a rare sight. It was difficult to find the pretty, feminine bras I longed to wear. Lingerie department saleswomen would direct me toward the back wall, where I found a selection of stiff, white, wired grandma bust supporters. Market demand for bigger bra sizes has since radically changed these options, for both regular and maternity wear. Although Victoria’s Secret doesn’t go past the DD mark , other manufacturers have stepped up to meet the fashion needs of a more busty demographic. The downside? Increased engineering support drives up production costs, which are passed on to the consumer. Women must spend more time and money to find the proper gear for ample breasts. Purchasing temporary nursing bras can stress out our clothing budgets.

Fitters claim that women wear up to six different bra sizes in their lifetime. My mammaries morphed that much over one nine month period. Experts also agree that a woman’s cups can double during pregnancy. That’s all good if you’re moving from an A or B to a C or D cup.  My girlfriends with smaller breasts were overjoyed at the prospect of their extra boobage. But it’s a whole other story when you start climbing up the alphabet cup toward a G, H, I, or beyond. I dove into bra cup denial when expecting my first child, praying that my belly would eclipse my ever-expanding bosom.

Lauren Nursing Bra from Royce
My bigger bust prevented me from taking advantage of all the perks offered to most expecting moms. The grocery clerk rarely asked if I needed help with my cart, because my chest made it less certain that I also carried a bun in the oven. Size also didn’t matter when it came to breast milk production. Carrying most of my extra weight up top didn't mean I was filled to the brim and wouldn't face supply issues. The transformation of my areolas was another big surprise. Similar to an over-inflated balloon, my nipples flattened out and disappeared into widening breast flesh. This led to challenges for my baby, as he had difficulty latching on to a level surface.  I would look down at his perfect, angelic face while he nursed, stunned that the circumference of my breast exceeded that of his newborn head. Larger breasts also required breastfeeding positions outside the typical babe-in-arms scene that appeared on most nursing guides.

Imagine my surprise when two subsequent pregnancies led to totally different breast experiences. No baby or boob growth was identical. Sometimes it was easy, and other days more difficult. I may as well have embraced and celebrated whatever happened to my chest – much like Christina Aguilera. Breastfeeding presented me with a whole new dimension to boob ownership, no matter how long I nursed or pumped. I will forever treasure the small window of time when my sweater puppies nourished and sustained a new life. That’s pretty amazing, whatever their size. 

Elisabeth Dale is founder of and author of bOObs: A Guide to Your Girls, a humourous and informative book about breasts. Please visit to read and share other breast perspectives or mammoirs, and learn more about supportive gear and garments that have earned The Breast Life Seal of Approval.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Butterfly Collection on Urban Rush

It's been a fantastic week with lots of personal fittings and a TV segment on Vancouver show Urban Rush (check out their YouTube Channel). The hosts Fiona Forbes and Michael Eckford were great and really understood that Butterfly Collection is trying to change the way big busted women think and feel about their bras (and themselves!) Check out the video below.

Michael did particularly well trying to be an informative interviewer but couldn't quite resist the temptation to put his head in one of the bras!

Thanks to everyone who got in touch after seeing the show. I am always so privileged to hear your personal stories about being a big busted woman. I hope you all have amazing weekends! xx

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Learning How To Tune Out Body Expectations

Birth of Venus - her curves were celebrated (and enhanced!)
The way a society defines 'Beauty' is always within a cultural and historic context. Right now we're experiencing a thin-bias in North America but at different points in history we're been biased towards other shapes. If you’re a size 16 today then you would have been a Rubenesque Super Model in the 17th Century. Some African cultures revere curves because it’s a sign that you’re healthy and sociable. Throughout Greece’s history curvy women have been praised for their sexual appeal and beauty.

Society's version of beauty is transient and not as real as seeing the beauty in yourself regardless of what anyone else says you 'should' look like. It's hard but try not to let the media’s ‘standards’ dictate your own expectations of yourself. Obsessing about not being something (a certain size, or shape or weight) can make you forget about all the other things you are in life, a great friend, a talented professional, humorous, kind. If you want to feel better about yourself then tuning out the expectations of others is a good place to start.
Regardless of your size you have to be proud of the body you have right now so that you can nourish it to help you achieve your physical and emotional goals. You need to be good to your body by feeding it well, dressing it well (including wearing the right bra of course!) and loving it. Nurturing yourself today means you can be in a better place tomorrow, hating yourself won’t help you get anywhere good. 

I’ve spoken a lot about the importance of self-esteem in relation to body image. No matter what size or shape you are, you must have some inner fortitude to rely on that says “I am a good person living a unique life and I’m grateful for this body for helping me to do that.”

Remember that love is more powerful than hate and that applies first and foremost to the way you treat yourself. If you treat your body with disdain then it can never yield anything positive. If you love and respect yourself then who knows what can blossom. xx