Blog: Leonie BarrieLack of support

Leonie Barrie | 3 September 2004

In a sample of 75 high-street bra-fitting services tested out across the UK, 59 recommended poorly fitting bras – including a 'push 'em up, stick 'em out' style moulded bra for a woman in her 80s! Bulging cups, loose underbands, cups that were too small, wires that were the wrong shape and wrong back sizes were all overlooked says survey organiser Which?

Bra-fitting services assume that each woman is one particular bra size, when in reality the size that fits best will vary according to style, manufacturer and fabric. To add to the confusion, the formulas vary from one shop to another. It’s the same with fashion, where retailers work to out-of-date size charts that rarely correlate from one store to another.

Hopefully this will change soon, with publication of results from the first UK National Sizing Survey to be carried out since the 1950s. Data shows that the average British woman’s waistline has increased by more than 6 inches since 1952, while hip and chest measurements have grown by about 1½ inches. The project should give retailers a clearer idea of what their customers look like and could lead to a change in sizing methods in an attempt to create better fitting clothes. It could also prove invaluable for the many overseas manufacturers who supply this market. Provided they all act of the information of course.


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