Product Review: Tia Lyn Cami and Chemise
Bust-friendly lingerie is not exactly easy to find. Whether it’s showy adult costumes or upscale designer pieces, the emphasis trends toward the Small-Medium-Large trinity which leaves those of us with fuller busts or curvy lower halves feeling ostracized. Tia Lyn hopes to change this with her gorgeous, vintage-inspired slips, chemises, and camisoles. At the Curves Expo, I had the pleasure of meeting Tia myself, and she is a delightful, friendly person who emanates passion for her work.
Recently, fuller-bust brands like Curvy Kate and Elomi have been expanding to include babydolls, camisoles, and bustiers as part of their collections, most of which are available in bra sizes and contain what is essentially a built-in underwired bra. While I am not opposed to owning an underwire lingerie piece, I love the idea of something wireless, particularly because it’s more comfortable for lounging or sleeping. Enter the Tia Lyn collections. Most of the pieces are rated up to a UK G cup with some of the models at the show boasting an H cup. Naturally, the higher the cup size, the less support provided, but I could not help myself from trying the line, especially when I saw the teal and chocolate 9401 Chemise and 9301 Camisole from her Core collection.
In for a penny in for a pound, right? I had to add these adorable 9601 Hipster panties to the mix:
Since reviewing three items can easily lead to confusion, I am going to address each piece individually rather than utilize my typical format; however, I do want to note that I ordered all of these items in size “Medium.” Let’s begin with my favorite piece: the Chemise! First, I adore the word “chemise.” Just saying it makes me feel sophisticated, but wearing one is even better. The Tia Lyn Chemise uses a single hook-and-eye closure in the back as well as some added structure in the front to provide support for fuller busts. Ornate chocolate lace with the hint of copper adorns the upper portion with strategic cut-outs and sheer panels adding an understated dose of sexy. The inlaid teal and chocolate roses contrast perfectly for a traditional vintage vibe. On the lower half, a dreamy satin fabric in vivid teal pops against the brown accents to create a luxurious color palette.
As much as I love bright colors and high contrast, I also enjoy darkly romantic lingerie pieces which make me feel, well, like a grown-up. When I put on this chemise, I feel like a woman. I feel sexy and confident, like I could glamorously sashay across the screen and pose seductively in the doorway a la Elizabeth Taylor. That may not be the sensation everyone experiences, but for me, it’s pure decadence. The soft fabrics, the slinky nature of the bottom, and the hip high slits on each side only enhance the rich appeal. Meanwhile, the back is quite daring with a lot of exposure, but the sheer lace panels aid in accentuating the natural contours of the body.
Considering I am a HH cup and thus technically outside what Tia recommends for the garment, I am receiving some pretty impressive support. Is it the high, rounded profile of my Comexim bras? No, of course not. Nevertheless, I do not feel like I am sagging or lacking in support either. My only complaint is that as much as I like the lacy straps, I’d love to see something more adjustable, particularly for petites. I think it would be interesting to see lingerie designers build a wireless bra frame into the lingerie piece and conceal some of the front and strap pieces with the lace or opaque fabrics.
Price is another consideration with most retailers placing the piece between $79 and $90, making this a more expensive investment. With this in mind, the quality of the materials and the craftsmanship of the chemise completely justify the higher retail price. I honestly feel like this is superior to Freya’s chemises which are in the same cost ballpark.
With the bar set high because of the Chemise, I was expecting to love the camisole. Sadly, I hate to admit I did not love it, but I always strive to be candid in my reviews. Utilizing high quality fabrics like the chemise, the aesthetic of the camisole is gorgeous. With the added coverage of the opaque design, I can envision this with a bra under a blazer for evening cocktails. However, on my body, I feel like the design created extra bulk around the curves, and it was hard for me to get photographs I liked—unlike with the chemise where I had to painstakingly eliminate images. The horizontal nature of the rose and leaf prints thickened my waist whereas the chemise used angled design features, cut-outs, and color-blocking to craft a truly stunning and slimming piece. Maybe these problems would be fixed with a smaller size as the issue only became more apparent when I was taking side shots, but I worry there would not be enough space in the small for my breasts.
Nevertheless, I have seen this piece on models at Tia Lyn’s fashion shows as well as at Curves, and it looked fantastic. I think the camisole is perfect for ladies with a straighter figure where it can contour tighter. Furthermore, if you carry extra weight in the tummy region, the thicker materials conceal lumps or bumps exceptionally well. Like the Chemise, the support for a fuller bust was better than expected, but I felt like the chemise was more of a showstopper for me.
While not technically part of the review, I also want to give Tia Lyn a nod for her work to embrace plus-size women with her designs. Not only are they incredibly flattering across sizes, but they still remain supportive. Below are a few pictures from the fashion shows. These women look absolutely gorgeous!