*whispers to self* I am not going to engage in “couple inches of fabric” debates when it comes to bra sizes on Twitter today. 🙏🏾

If you want an example of how many pieces are in a bra, go here:

thelingerieaddict.com/2021/03/underw…
When you’re looking at a bra, remember each seam, each strap, each closure represents an individual piece.

Here’s an example of an Elomi bra. Comes in band sizes up to 46 and cup sizes up to JJ. Unfortunately, Nordstrom, whose photo this is, does not carry the entire size range.
However, it’s a good, well-lit photo for illustrative purposes which is why I’ve used it here.

Let’s start w/ the cups. That’s a 4-piece cup. You got 1 on each side so you’re already at 8 pieces.

A bra like this has to support, so you’ve probably got mesh backing the lace.
Let’s say only the bottom and side panels have mesh reinforcement. 2 cups, that’s 6. Added to the 8 before, that’s 14.

The bra cups aren’t just hovering separately in space. They’re connected by a gore. That’s 15.

The gore probably has mesh backing too. That’s 16.
Obviously this is an underwired bra, so let’s add that to the total - 18.

You’re not putting the underwires in raw; they go in underwire channels. 20. I don’t know if this bra has side boning. If it did we’d be adding 4 here (2 bones + 2 channels), but I’m unsure so we’re not.
The cups gotta attach to something and that something is called a band. So 22 pieces.

That band definitely has another layer backing it for strength. 24 pieces.

This isn’t a strapless bra, and straps are made of 2-pieces of elastic sewn together. So 4 straps and we’re at 28.
The band gotta close in the back. Hook and eye closure makes 29 pieces.

There’s also a piece of elastic running along the lower part of the band (stretch!). 30 pieces.

What use are straps, I ask you, without adjusters? This bra has a J-hook as well so add another 2. 34 pieces.
I’m getting tired. 😂

There’s elastic on the top sides and back of the band. 2 on each side. 38 pieces.

Oh wait, is that picot trim I see? 40 pieces.

And I almost forgot about those two rings. 42 pieces.

And three labels, because I want to stop now, brings us to 45 pieces.
Someone just showed me an interior view so I regret to inform you I’m not done. Reinforcement along those cup seams, 3 on each side, is 51.

Okay, now I really am tired. I played myself. 😩

Point is, there’s a lot of pieces and a lot more going on than “a little bit of fabric.”
There’s a definite possibility I’m off here by 2-4 pieces because the bra isn’t in front of me, but I think the takeaway still comes across.

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More from @lingerie_addict

6 Apr
A lot of people have sent me this clip, and she’s correct. You just want to keep in mind that 1) any bra size given via formula is a starting point and 2) you should still check the size chart as some bra brands use the +4 method (adding 4 to band measurement) instead of +0.
Let me tag bra goddess @SourceDuMal in here right quick.
If you want to know what your bra size actually means go here:

thelingerieaddict.com/2018/08/what-d…
Read 7 tweets
6 Apr
The BLM Paradox applied to fashion:

Saying garment workers deserve fair wages, is not saying that you don’t.

Everybody deserves fair wages. My focusing on the fashion industry isn’t a slight to you and your labor. The fashion industry is just what I talk about.
Praxis is being able to take these theories and apply them to more than one place. Because it’s all related.

For example, undocumented immigrants do much of our garment work. Their labor is often exploited (as in, employers pay them 5¢/piece) b/c their undocumented status (1/2)
Makes it too dangerous for them to pursue legal recourse.

Recognizing that someone in the garment industry can work an entire week and only make $300? Intersectionality recognizes that privileges are layered and interactive. You can have privilege on one axis and not another.
Read 5 tweets
5 Apr
Let’s talk about the word “overpriced” here, and why it’s more problematic than saying “this is out of my budget.”

“Overpriced” implies the value of the labor is low or that it costs more than it should, when the truth is most garment workers are underpaid for their labor.
This is because most of the cost of a garment comes from labor. Humans, even severely underpaid humans, take up the bulk of design and production costs. Many, many hands touch a piece before you ever buy it.
Is something “overpriced” when, under a system of fair wages, it would actually cost 3 or 4 or 5 times as much?

Or is it underpriced but still outside of your budget because your wages are also depressed?
Read 5 tweets
5 Apr
I want to shift the conversation on ethical fashion away from solely buying things. Yes, that’s important, but it’s not always an option for reasons ranging from affordability to lack of brand transparency. BUT. There are things we can do that don’t cost any extra money.
When the conversation on ethical fashion narrows down to, “Can you, personally, buy this thing?,” the real point - which is ethics in the manufacturing/retail/production side of the fashion industry - gets lost.
“This sewist is being paid pennies per hour to work in a LA sweatshop so this famous brand can continue to sell PVC pants for $10,” should not turn into a conversation with a central focus of “I deserve PVC pants.” Even if the latter is true, it distracts from the primary issue.
Read 4 tweets
5 Apr
I should be asleep, but I want to address one of the most pervasive “gotcha” myths when talking about fashion production and that’s, “The expensive stuff is made in the same factories as the cheap stuff so that automatically means the more expensive stuff is overpriced.”

NO!
It is so incredibly boring, mundane, and typical for a factory to be able to make a range of garments at a range of price points and for those more expensive price points to be entirely justifiable.
A simple bra with 20 pieces, is going to take less time to make than a more complicated bra with 40 pieces. Labor (i.e. time spent on construction) is the most expensive part of manufacturing and production. If you make fewer bras, those individual units are higher priced.
Read 8 tweets
5 Apr
People will spend $50 or $100 or $200 on their hair and then call a bra “overpriced” and “unaffordable” for the same amount.

Obviously, you should spend what you like on your hair, but I often think about how labor and expertise is valued in some contexts, but not others.
No one would tell their stylist, “It’s just a pair of scissors.” Or “It’s just a little dye.” Or “It’s just a few braid packs.”

But it’s fine to say, “It’s just a bit of fabric” for a bra.
If you eat a meal in a restaurant, you’re not gonna tell the chef, “It was just some noodles.” “It was just some broth.” “It was just some chicken.” You understand that there’s transformation involved as well as expenses beyond the raw materials.

The same is true for a bra.
Read 4 tweets

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