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underwear shopping


Personally, I’ve always found a strange sense of satisfaction to be had in whittling down my wardrobe. Alone or with friends, I’ll happily cast aside layers of unworn garments until a pared down core of well loved outfits remains.

The words ‘capsule wardrobe’ hold no fear for me and I have a sneaking respect for people who take Polaroids of their heels to attach to the outside of shoe boxes to help them find the relevant pair in a hurry.

The back of my underwear drawer, however, is where, until recently, you’d find the expensive mistakes from my past, like the Rigby and Peller bras that were kind of fine unless you actually tried to move in them, at which point they’d dig in everywhere, up to and including areas of the body that you’d swear weren’t even in the vicinity of their pesky underwiring.

These rash purchases sat uneasily alongside the safest of repeat buys made on the basis that if I’ve bought from your lingerie company once and you’ve failed to cut off the circulation to anywhere vital or ruin my day due to waves of extreme bra-related discomfort, then I will basically keep buying from you until the end of time, such is the depth of my gratitude.

I’ve always liked the idea of having an immaculately ordered underwear drawer, in much the same way that I aspire to owning more than one well-fitting pair of jeans, but in reality, the prospect of going jeans or bra shopping inevitably reminds me of just how many ways there are for jeans and bras not to fit (so very many new and interesting ways!)

By a strange coincidence, just as I was starting to think that perhaps I’d reached an age at which I should be able to handle underwear shopping with marginally more poise than Father Ted when he gets stranded in a lingerie department, a senior Digital PR and blogger whose writing I’ve really enjoyed this spring asked if I’d be interested in writing about underwear. She gave me a simple brief: pick some women’s lingerie and write about it. There was even a deadline, giving me no excuse to procrastinate.

I ordered a Beija London set, which arrived tissue wrapped in the prettiest of packaging. It was stylish, beautifully finished and elegant and it was also oh-so comfortable. It also served as a tiny timely reminder that sometimes it’s worth facing your fashion nemesis – whether it’s jeans shopping, bra shopping or perhaps bikini buying that fills you with dread. Because somewhere out there there’s a pair of jeans that’ll fit just as well on your waist as they do on your hips, a bra that you’ll be able to forget you’re wearing, and a bikini that’ll be a joy to wear.

So here’s my wish for you: May all your bras be stylish yet comfortable, may all your jeans have been designed by someone who’s vaguely acquainted with the female form, and may both parts of all of your bikinis fit equally well.

Oh, and if your wardrobe or underwear drawer isn’t filled with stuff you love, I’d highly recommend The Life Changing Magic of Tidying by Marie Kondo.

Still not ready to tackle your underwear drawer..? Might I offer an entirely unbiased recommendation to read my blog – perfect for a bit of leisurely procrastination!

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