What Did I do to Ring in The New Year …

Courtesy: Town Shop, NYC

… purchase a new bra! It may surprise you but it was the best gift I could give myself. It had been a year since I bought a bra and it was time. You know that feeling when your clothes don’t look as flattering as they should and you are not sure why? Or the moment when you just don’t feel as stylish as you would like? When that happens, it is best to start first from the inside and work your way out. And just like a surprise visit from an old friend, I found myself in my old NYC neighborhood, staring at Town Shop, established in 1888 and perhaps the most famous lingerie shop in New York – and where I first learned about the importance of the right-fitting bra. A bra may seem like a subtle change but it is as vital as any element when shopping for clothes. We tend not to think about it but nothing does more for your look than wearing the right bra. I walked in to find Eddy – one of their extremely knowledgeable fitters, who spent time with me determining my size and fit.

Eddy helped me find a bra and explained to me what every woman should know: “Bras are a necessity; they are not an option. Women will spend money on shoes and handbags, but neglect to invest in their bras and undergarments. They go to Target and K-Mart to save money, but don’t have the right fit.” Here are some tips for buying a bra:

– replace your bra after a year

– if possible, have someone help you with the fitting. You need someone to measure you; not just for your cup size but also for your ribcage circumference. A fitter also knows which bras are made for which body type

– try on a bra with your top. This is crucial because you want to see how the bra looks with your clothes (you want to like the look!)

– invest in a good bra. Don’t just go the fast, cheap route

I left Eddy and I could feel myself standing taller with my shoulders back and the best posture that I have had in a long time. Good posture is key to generating a positive self esteem and confidence from the inside out. I can’t think of a better way to start the New Year. Please do it for yourself, too! Happy New Gear!

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Courtney says, “Swoop and Scoop!”

Find a good bra fitter, like Courtney

Find the right-fitting bra and a knowledgeable fitter, like Courtney

When you’re wearing the wrong bra size your clothes don’t look right. You become so hard on yourself and your body image takes a hit. But when you try on the right bra and see what you have been missing and how your clothes should fit, you realize that it’s not you. It’s the bra!” ~ Courtney Auchter

When I heard Halle Berry this week, talking about French women and the close attention they pay to their lingerie, I took a long, hard look at my own bras. I have written about the importance of a good-fitting bra and I certainly stand by my words, but somehow, I lost my own way. I have been wearing the same bra every day for far too long. It was time for me to do something about it.

Wearing a v-neck tee by Splendid I took myself to Nordstrom, the right destination for professional bra fitters. Once there, Courtney Auchter took care of me from start to finish. As she and I entered the dressing room I remarked that I was embarrassed to show her the state of my bra. Courtney was sweet and understanding; there was no judgment. She began by measuring me and we went from there. Continue reading

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Halle Berry wants American women to be a little more Scandalous!

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Halle Berry: “I think I have a pulse on what American women want.”                                             Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Today is a big day for Oscar-winning actress, and now entrepreneur, Halle Berry. She is launching the iconic French lingerie brand, Scandale Paris, and teaming up with Target (in select Target stores and on Target.com). Why lingerie, and why now? Berry discovered the 80-year old brand while shopping in Paris, fell in love with it, and wanted to give it new life, globally. Says Berry: “I am excited for the U.S. debut to be at Target and to launch the brand globally in 2015. I look forward to giving more women the chance to enjoy what European women have come to love for more than eight decades.”

Because on a basic level, Berry understands the importance of a good bra. And she wants American women to feel as good about themselves from the inside-out as French women do. As Berry says, “What I’ve learned about French women is that they always look like they’re not going to be caught in the emergency room not prepared. With their clothes off, they’re going to look fabulous! I think that’s really important. And when you can bring it, this kind of quality at a good price, every woman can have a collection of it. You don’t have to have one bra that you just wear until it’s dead.”

I understand the importance of a good-fitting bra, too; I wrote about it on TFIO two years ago. And yet, I am still one of those American women wearing worn-out bras and underwear. And I would not want to be caught in an emergency with my lingerie! No way. So, this news is a wake-up call for me. This week, I am heading to find a good-fitting bra or two, and will share the fitting process with you. And who knows, I may end up at Target myself. After all, the price point for the Scandale Paris 10-piece collection ranges from $7 – $18. Now that’s Scandalous!

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Rivka says, “I see every woman as a star!”

Rivka with her husband, Sam

Rivka with her husband, Sam

What I do is not about clothes.” ~ Rivka

Rivka Grubb has been blessed with really good eyes; eyes that see things that help women feel and be their best selves. Not simply a fashion stylist or a fashion consultant, Rivka is more like the vehicle that strips away the black coal, to reveal the “diamond” that is the woman underneath. Rivka told me that it all began when she was a young child growing up in Israel with a doll make-over! Here is Rivka

I was born in Israel and grew up there, until I moved to The United States when I was 13. My father was a furrier; my mother was a Paris-trained dress-maker and designer. They both worked from home. My father worked with fur pelts and my mother worked with people who had the money for custom dresses; she designed dresses for these women. From the time I could crawl around the floor, I was surrounded by pieces of fur, silk, brocade, ribbons, and buttons. As a young child, I had a doll. Not a fancy Barbie Doll, but a plain, Ruth Doll. With Ruth, I began to play with the fabrics in my house: I gave her a fur stole, a new dress, and accessories. My mother says that when I was four years old, and I brought her the new version of Ruth, I looked at her and asked, ‘Doesn’t this look better?’ And I have been doing this ever since! I guess you could say that it is in my DNA. It’s in me. I have both the knowledge and the God-given talent to see things and know how to translate them for others …

What women need to know is that they are attractive just as they are. They have more inner beauty than they realize and it is possible to go from good to better, to shine through beyond. When I work with a woman for the first time, I ask her to look in the mirror and start with what she likes about herself. Women are so disapproving of themselves and it is essential to identify with the good things, first. Only then, can she accomplish a higher level of confidence … Continue reading

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Support from an old friend

The Town Shop: my old friend

It was time. It had been well over a year since I bought a bra and I was sorely in need of a change. You know that moment when your clothes don’t look as flattering as they should? And just like a surprise visit from an old friend, I found myself in my old neighborhood, staring at the shop where I had first learned about the significance of the right-fitting bra. I have spoken about the importance of a good fit. It’s as vital as any element when shopping for clothes. But I haven’t gone deeper, or should I say closer, to the real you. And that means a good-fitting bra. We tend not to think about it but nothing does more for your look than wearing the right bra.

So, here I was – with Eddy – who began to tell me what women need to know. First, says Eddy, “bras are a necessity; they are not an option.” You need a good foundation. In fact, says Eddy, “Women will spend money on shoes and handbags, but neglect investing in their bras and undergarments. They go to Target and K-Mart and save money, but don’t have the right fit.” Here are some tips for buying a bra:

– remember to replace your bra after a year Continue reading

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I love comments. Feel free to share yours