This one is for the ladies…
I am a creature of habit. Once I find a product that works for me and is convenient to acquire, I don’t often change my buying habit. Bras are a great example. For years I have purchased the same bra in various colors from Macy’s. Shopping for bras has to be at the top of a very short list of things I hate shopping for. Right next to bathing suits and mattresses. Bra shopping at a big box store is particularly horrible, but once I knew what size and brand worked for me, I would simply run in and grab what I needed and run back out. Luckily, since moving to Old Town, my bra shopping experience has changed. I’ll be honest, I am a tiny lady. Support is not what I am after so much as “enhancement.” Last week, I stopped into Bloomers on my way to Mishas for coffee, of course, and was delighted with what I found. For full bra fittings, Bloomers will suggest that you hit the Full Cup (a shop whose name implies that I might not find too many options, although I plan to check it out). But Bloomers’ incredibly helpful staffperson had me put on a couple of bras so that she could check the fit and help me figure out exactly what size I am. The shop has two companies in particular that are great for the “wee ladies:” Wacoal and Itty Bitty Bra. They both offer “enhancement” and make a nice looking bra with cute little lace accents or a smoother model for wear under sheer fabrics.
I have to say that the customer service alone was enough to get me to change my shopping habits. When was the last time that I had someone help me find the right bra size while shopping at the mall? It is amazing how fast and convenient shopping at a boutique is when you can get some help with your selection! I was also excited to find new brands that I haven’t seen before. All in all, I spent a total of 10 minutes in the shop and had found a new bra line and figured out my real bra size and purchased one bra and ordered two more in another color. Not too bad for a coffee break…
By Nancy Purves Pollard of La Cuisine
My daughter Tatiana got married in Ascoli Piceno with over 100 well dressed Italian men and women in attendance. How to dress as the prospective suocera (“mother-in-law” in Italian) with suitable chicness was easily accomplished right in my own neighborhood.
Nancy in one of her new ensembles!
First stop: Donna Lewis at 309 Cameron Street (703 548 2452)for a serious investment in clothing that I could wear to the wedding festivities and the rest of my life. Chris Lewis primarily uses Belvest in Italy to do suits and dresses. We went through books of swatches of beautiful fabrics and chose a deep blue herringbone linen and a black and gray seersucker. He had both a shell dress and slacks made to go with two classic jackets. Plus one yellow sleeveless shirt in linen and a fancier black silk one. I wore these constantly throughout the two week trip.
Next stop: The Shoe Hive. I was so worried about losing luggage that I picked up a dandy gray and black canvas and leather bag by Sequoia at Shoe Hive, in which I stuffed some wedding clothes, just in case… Once I had the outfits squared away, the rest of me needed to be fitted at The Full Cup. After my uplifting experience, those too got packed in my anxiety bag.
Having been told by the sister of the bride that she did not want to see her mother running down the hotel in bare feet and tee shirt at night, I picked up a cool night shirt and Patricia Green slippers along with the best panty hose I have ever owned (they never once had runs).
Earlier at The Shoe Hive, I had gotten some cool dark gray wedges which also went into my anxiety bag. Then I went to Hysteria next door, and picked up a blue patent leather clutch for the Big Day. All the better to be prepared to sit down in a café for an aperitivo after all the stress. Finally, a quick trip to Bellacara for a Bliss and Frederic Fekkai fix, plus some cool Sue Devitt make up including some very racy eye shadow.
I didn’t lose my luggage, didn’t need to shop in the duty-free store at the Charles DeGaulle Holding Tank, the wedding day was gorgeous, and the mother-of-the-bride was molta chic!