Scantily Had: Curve NY – Lingerie Expo Has Few Offerings For Full-Figured Customers
I guess the adage “quality over quantity is best” was never truer than last week at the Curve NY Lingerie show at the Javits Center. It’s very rare that I can attend a show and swoop through the relevant booths in under an hour. I only attended on the last day and came an hour before closing. Funny enough, I still managed to see all the vendors of note that I needed to meet. Here is my analysis of the best of the undergarments I encountered in my brief (!) window of opportunity.
I went specifically to catch up with Jimena Rosas of Body Hush. She is delightful and engaging, and we had met at WWIN last season when I deemed her the winner of the shapewear category for my Who Won at WWIN recap. Their marketing materials are some of the most evocative and flat out gorgeous ones I’ve ever seen. I’m a sucker for a good lipstick mark and had me at the KISS on her logo. They are out of Canada and have a typically European approach to their product. Which is sexy and functional with just the right amount of styling detail to keep the look sleek and modern, very streamlined under your clingiest of garments.
Jimena greeted me with a big hug and a cold bottle of water. It was so hot outside, and I had biked over from the east side to the west side, so the water was much – appreciated and indicative of the fact that she knows what women want – and need! Her new goods were as equally as refreshing! Suffice it to say that she began with sizing that was all-inclusive, so she never added in extended plus sizes. She launched with Small through 3X right from the get go, so we LOVE her! Their tagline “Our Solution is Your Secret” is so charming, but if my big mouth has anything to say about it, the secret is out of the bag! Tell everyone you know that there is a new kid in town. Got to love a woman who fuses power with mesh and power with lace, two items that aren’t usually associated with power! Jimena rules the underworld in my opinion.
Besides all the panties, slimmers and shaping/slenderizing slips with light to firm control that I already love in her line, she has added a few show stoppers that are sure to be big winners this season. She reinvented shapewear as we know it and has now gone on to tackle the power cami. The Fantastik Tank is all that a girl could wish for. It’s truly state-of-the-art as it is a seamless tank with bio-crystals that reduce the signs of cellulite while holding you firmly in place. These bio-crystals are damn near space age in that they are activated by your body head that creates thermal waves that impact fat molecules all the while stimulating the development of smoother skin. Is that cool or what? It’s not inexpensive, but you get a lot more than just a shaping cami. AND, there is a sleeved version called the Arm Toner that is so much more than just something you wear under your clothing. This top is made to be seen, and deservedly so, with all that it delivers for your wearing pleasure. There are bio-crystals in this tank style, too, that help reduce the signs of cellulite and provide a real solution to eliminating arm jiggle. It holds the top of the arm flesh in place without squeezing or binding or cutting off your circulation. There are no bio-crystals in the arm sleeves, but that’s okay cause my tummy is getting a workout. Can’t say I want all my body parts worked on at once!! Talk about working those curves!!
A few aisles over was Elila (www.elilausa.com).
I had heard Asia Monet talk about her lingerie client but didn’t have the pleasure of getting to see the bra company and meet the owner, Ellen Thompson, face to face. The bras are beautiful and comfortable and the fact that they’ve been around ten years, and I don’t know of them is a doggone shame. It’s about time! They have a gorgeous handcrafted product that seems to blend the aspects of technology, function, and great bra fit knowledge all into the beautiful line of colorful and sexy lingerie. Elila stresses functionality and fashion and also seems to have an array of colors in their palette from which to choose. And the size range is impressive – Size 34-54 B through N cup sizes. That’s a lot of accommodation! The seams are strategically placed for structural support, and the materials are chosen to aid in the engineering demands. I love that the fabric is still very soft and pliable. Strong yet gentle….Not to mention, the beautiful Jessica Lavoie is all over their posters and campaign and YouTube videos. What a beautiful full figured model she is. I spoke to the very low key Ellen and have an appointment to swing by their showroom next week or so. I loved her bra measuring video using a time-honored system – very helpful and accurate. It explains the process of measuring for cup and band size thoroughly and succinctly and I now have a new source to teach from for my FIT class.
Over across the aisle was the fun and flirty Tutti Rouge (www.tuttirouge.com).
Their booth design had me at hello with Felicity Hayward as the fleshy femme fatale with the retro appeal and the funky and edgy aesthetic of their line. The hashtag #illegalcleavage should tell you all you need to know. This is lingerie that looks as good as it feels and wears equally as well. You know you’ll love a brand when it’s logo is a scrawly signature in lipstick with the “O” in the word ROUGE substituted by a heart! They have that cheeky sense of whimsical humor in everything they do. It just is so, well….uplifting! And isn’t that what you want your bra to be!? The models all are posing with luscious cakes, sensual strudels, donuts with sprinkles and icing eclairs. Curvy crullers, I get it…. It’s a lot of “eat dessert first devil may care” attitude that may wreak havoc on your glucose levels, but I bought into the glamorous Betty Paige style. Their collections have names like High Hopes, Carpe Diem French Bliss, Sparkly Party, and Frivolous Fun. What’s not to like?? Check out #tuttirougelingerie on their Instagram page with it’s Russ Meyers inspired “Faster Pussycat Kill Kill” motif and VA Va Voom, hubba hubba sensibility. It’s a delightful dose of exceptional eye candy. This is lingerie for that special Valentine’s Day date or honeymoon or amorous vacay or just for girls who want to have BIG fun. Tutti Rouge was an excellent diversion, and I loved the energy in their booth. You know they have a LOT of laughs with their witty Britty winks and nods to prudishness everywhere you look.
What can I say about this booth except if you need any accessory that complements a standard bra wardrobe, this is the brand to come to. They feature all sorts of add ons but also if your clothing is too revealing, you need Fashion Forms for those backless, strapless, adhesive bras that hold and mold and show nary a strap in the process. Push-up pads, cushions and discreet pedals with bra extenders and low back straps for those cut down to there dresses. We don’t need the buy pads; we have our natural cushion, thank you. But if you need a little extra junk in the trunk, they got your device! Enhancers, push-up pads, and cups. It’s all here. Probably the most useful and popular item for the plus size gal is the Body Sculpting Backless Strapless bra with the adhesive side hold. It goes up to triple D cup, so that’s pretty ample. I must admit this is a much more elegant and sophisticated option than those Frederick’s of Hollywood Baywatch contraptions of yore. Check them out atfor more information and photos of all their accessories.
Built on a foundation of technology and innovation, Curvy Couture is a one-stop shop for all your lingerie needs. They have bras for every occasion and realize that with different styles of clothing and weather comes different needs for the bra you’re wearing. The breathable cotton bras look so comfortable, and the T-shirt bras are great everyday bras. It was worth perusing the site as I felt a sense of community and the product came to life for me when I saw they had a Curvy Girl of the Month contest. I read the stories and empathized with many of the winners who poured their hearts out with an authenticity that made the Curvy Couture brand resonate for me. I plan on getting to know them a little better and exploring their site in greater depth. Just a swoop by the booth was not enough, but I’m glad I grabbed their card and got to get underneath their mission.
Last but not least is Tia Lyn (www.tialyn.com)
Tia Lyn Lingerie
I arrived at the booth as they were striking the scenery, so it was not an ideal way to scope a brand. Also, I saw two of my former Runway the Real Way models, Morgan Whitney and Sarah Whitney (no they aren’t remotely related!) and had a few photo ops with the models who had worked all three days and their feet felt the wear and tear of standing for hours in heels. Notice they have their flip flops on in this shot! I was pleased to find out that Tia Lyn exists and is a size 2X like myself! She designs for a 2x size and then modifies the pattern to fit other sizes from small through 3X. The collection is for the more sophisticated woman who is as beautiful underneath as she is on the outside. I love the Signature Chemise, and the gorgeous Core Button Slip is such an individual piece. No wonder Tia Lynn was the winner of the international CILA Awards for Best Plus collection.
The booths may have been limited, but the selection and variety within them were not. The products all were functional and fabulous, sexy and enticing. Not a granny panty or a functional “Playtex” type bra at any of the booths. This truly was novel and distinctive lingerie to serve a wide range of tastes and ta-ta’s…!! I am looking forward to even more selection, but for now this is a great representation of how far we’ve come in servicing the curvy customer. It was a very well spent hour! See you at the next event I cover. Hopefully during New York Fashion Week Plus! The summer flew by, now onto the fall weather and fashions!