Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The weird, the wonderful, the bullet bra!

Note: I admit it, I've been quietly wondering whether I should post this blog for days months, the prospect of complete strangers (and worse, family and friends) extensively critiquing my chest causes a sick rumbling in my stomach and a tickle at the back of my throat. However, upon researching, there appears to be little else out there on the internet and I thought, maybe, just maybe, someone else has the same queries I have.

After years of consideration, I have taken the plunge and purchased my very first bullet bra. The What Katie Did L6035 Padded Bullet Bra in Peach.
At first I was confused. Padded? Padded? Where is my padding? Where is the huge squishy device that in times of disaster could be used as a make-shift pillow? Where is my chicken fillet, or at the very least, chicken drumstick?
Then it dawned, the padding is there, just a little more subtle, a little more discrete. Within the layers of satin and cotton in the What Katie Did padded bullet bra, is a sort of soft foam. A gentle covering over the entire breast, not just a single lump of styrofoam.

My second impression was disappointment. Oh no... did I get the sizing wrong? Ordering online this is certainly a possibility (however carefully you double check measurements). I seemed to be squishing and squashing everything in, but at all the wrong angles. It was not uncomfortable, but I started wondering if I was doing it right.
Having only just tackled the inconsistent sizing of modern day lingerie, it seemed a cruel prank so stick me with a new, more confuddling system!

So I stopped, I took a step back and looked.
 It looked odd.

Without any surprise, I found my beau was not a fan. With, what I imagine was considerable effort, he pulled one face followed in quick succession by another face to hide the first. In an attempt to disguise the distaste, he went for a look of curiousity. Following on from a previous conversation we'd had that day (about the modern breast shape and the bullet shape of the 1950's), he said in a timid voice "I know it's probably just because I'm used to them, but I like the melon-boobs better".
A small dimple in the centre of my chest hinted at cleavage once there, and in its place stood two decidedly haphazard cones, arching (much to my dismay) in a considerably less perky fashion than imagined.

See, unlike the picture above, my bust was not pointing upwards but sort of downwards, in a deflated kind of manner.

I blinked, I looked away, and then I looked once more.

And strangely, things became a lot less bizarre. With a deep breath I pushed my shoulders back and saw the perkiness I'd always desired. It didn't seem odd anymore to be wearing traffic-cone-esque breasts, but instead, I felt overwhelmingly feminine. My posture appeared stronger and my d├ęcolletage, if not larger, simply appeared more... apparent (and not in a bad way).

I decided to give it the test under vintage clothing, because ultimately, that's what I bought it for.
Deep breath, slip the first dress on, a loose 1940's number... hmm... mildly impressed. Not blown away by the difference, but it did give a bit more structure to the billowing blouse.
Dress number two, a gingham 1950's dress.

And... Wow!

 Now I understand what people are talking about. It's not jaw-dropping, but there's a slight change that gives the whole look more shape, more figure. It's as if someone has restructured the foundations of a building and now, the archetecture sits perfectly. Darts in the chest sit perfectly, and the whole dress just seems to look... more authentic, more true.
So here's some pictures to show you what I mean..

 Without the bullet bra.
 Bullet Bra Roulette, can you pick the bullet?
(left without, right with)
With the bullet bra

 Without (above) and with (below)

 With (left) and without (right)

 Without (above)

 Without (left) and with (right)
Without (above)

So, the Bullet Bra! Weird, but also wonderful.
For me, despite the intial shock and awe, it has become a wardrobe staple. Though I don't wear one everyday (as I don't have the patience or money to wear vintage everyday), bullet bras are perfect for adding extra shape to 1950's dresses and creating that hourglass silhouette.

Bullet bras: be perky, be proud!

Other bullet bra blog posts:

Hope you enjoyed my bullet bra encounter! If you have any questions or advice, write them in the comments below or email me! If you want to see more posts like this (maybe on the girdle or different bullet bra brands) let me know!!!


Shasta said...

I'm so glad you posted this -- it might be the final push I need to finally try a bullet bra myself. Atomic Redhead also recently posted on this subject (along with other vintage undergarments) here:

Sarah said...

Shasta I'm glad you enjoyed the post! I really enjoyed Janey's (Atomic Redhead's) post on bullet bras, she seems to really have the whole concept down! A vintage pro in my opinion x

Janey said...

I feel so honored that you included me in your post!

I love that you included with/without pictures. I contemplated it myself, however, as a recovering anorexic, I did not want to put myself through what might be a difficult situation regarding "criticizing" my body.

Posture is a big part of wearing vintage, and you mentioned that perfectly in your post and how it worked in your favor.


Treacle said...

Wow, what an informative post, and thank you for including The Lingerie Addict! I'll definitely refer my readers here when they're wondering "what the point" of a bullet bra is.

Renata H said...

Thank you so much for posting this Sarah! I've been pretty nervous about investing in one...

Miss Tallulah Porkchop said...

You have just inspired me to wear mine more. Looks bloody fantastic on you, my darling.

Katie Thomas said...

Yikes! Going straight to a padded bullet bra is rather ambitious as it really is pointy! We would normally recommend bullet bra beginners to start with a none padded version and build their way up, which breaks boyfriends into the idea gradually.
So pleased you appreciate the difference under vintage dresses: the reason I had to design one in the first place.

Sarah said...

Good point Katie! Thank you so much for reading and commenting on my blog, I feel very honoured! Padded may be ambitious, but I think it paid off! Plus, boyfriend seems to be taking the change well :P

Anonymous said...

Great blog & great pictures! Your bf will get used to the bullet bra I am sure!

Emma Litton said...

Lovely! I tried that same style a while back when I was on my honey moon in LA when I could go to the boutique. I felt it was too pointy then, but I really love how it looks on you and I tempted to give it another try!


Jessica Cangiano said...

What an excellent, well written account of your experience with the iconic bullet bra. I got a similar reaction from my mister the first time I showed him one (with me in it), too, but once the clothing went over top, he was fully on board! :)

♥ Jessica

Shannon said...

The pictures are very helpful. Thank you for sharing this with us!

Kristian said...

Thank you for posting this. It was very enlightening, and the difference in the pictures really underling the point. The difference of the bullet bra is subtle but definitely there and you look great in all those dresses!

Anonymous said...

You have some amazing clothes and amazing combinations! I have to say, I've come across many people who do vintage (inculding myself- I *try*) but you're absolutely beautiful! No homo :P

wardrobeexperience said...

those dresses love the bullet bra... and i love your collection of dresses.

Adele said...

Wow - they really do give such an authentic shape. I would love to invest in a good bullet bra but I fear that my boobs are too *ahem* generous and it would look a bit in your face and maybe even a bit scary!
This post has really made me want one again though... Ooooh decisions!

Also, how have I only just discovered your blog?! You officially have a loyal new follower :)

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Anonymous said...

Those bras are really weird but it creates a nice effect when worn under the dress. Nice. Hope there are D bras size for those.

norafinds said...

Ooohhh great recommendation! I wanted to purchase their bullet bra but ended up with the Cone Bra. Thought I'd start with something subtle! It's not padded as well and similar to your experience I thought I ordered the wrong size! I really need to try it under my dresses as I haven't done that but now I really wanna get the bullet bra! Especially cos they're having a sale (but I'm on a shopping ban... sad sad sad!!)


Ritu Gupta said...

Very nice post... thanks!

Irving Morgan said...

Bullet bras can look a little odd at first. However, its awkward shape is really designed to give you a perfect fit, especially for certain types of clothing. You just have to wear it properly. Anyway, it really looks good on you! It made you look more confident wearing those vintage-style dresses. Cheers!

Irving Morgan @ Your Plus-Size Bra

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Tessla Rabin said...

In the yellow dress wgere you're sitting on the eyes never made it to the bra, got stuck on those gams. Wow!