Goodbye Masquerade

I’d heard that Fauve and Masquerade are being discontinued by Spring 2015. I wasn’t quite sure how and what to believe there or exactly what was going on, but I thought I’d buy myself a black Rhea just in case…and sure enough, the style was listed as Discontinued on HerRoom, as were other Masquerade styles. Several other sites are running low on stock.

I should also add that I tried on the Orla and found it ran a band size small and at least one cup size small. Scooping in a 34G left me with overspill, so I’d need two cup sizes up. Otherwise it seemed suited to me, but I wasn’t sure how I felt about the color.

Panache Black is apparently a follow-up to Masquerade and I’m guessing will contain very few styles. Maybe they’ll reissue the Rhea, maybe they won’t. On the chance that they won’t, I bought a Rhea from Amazon and will buy an Amor in my current band size shortly. Zulily even had a few Masquerade styles like Harem and Athena for sale yesterday. So, long story short is buy Masquerade while you can. My assumption is that luxury full-bust lingerie is difficult to sell, so there’s risk in producing a lot of styles. I know I have a hard time spending $90 on a bra plus $35 on the brief unless the bra blows my mind.

I thought I’d shout out to my favorite Masquerade styles over the years:


Dreamy vertical seam shape, I had the graphite version and missed out on the black (more fool me), but it was also offered in white-and-berry.


I’m still not sure whether this bra technically works for me because I’m bottom-heavy, and it probably doesn’t quite get two-cakes-on-a-plate, but I love the way it looks on me. My favorite version was the mulberry and graphite color.


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This bra works for most shapes, I believe. Subtle, sophisticated, rich colors. I think this is the best use of shiny and matte I’ve seen together.


Many Masquerade styles seemed too lacy or fussy for me, but sometimes they hit the nail on the head. Dear readers, what have been your favorite Masquerade styles over the years?


Inventory turnover, a look at intriguing fall selections

It’s a sad thing that bras only last less than a year- gravity fights wires and seams, and bands stretch out. Thus the contents of my drawer change every six months or so.

I have eight bras I wear consistently, five of which are Freya Decos. Another is a sports bra (also Freya underwire), and I have two Masquerade bras (Delphi, Rhea) as well. The rest of my drawer is wearing out (CK Emily, Panache Porcelains) or I’ve had trouble fitting the cup (Freya Taylor, CK Tempt Me, Parfait Jeanie). I’m in the process of donating/listing all of those.

What does this say to me? It tells me I have more than enough enough Decos (I got them all on eBay or through exchange) and that I don’t like fabric bras. I haven’t given up, though: I ordered the Panache Confetti from Breakout Bras to try on. How many fancy bras does a woman need? My Masquerades are in good condition but I still want more- I find them beautiful and give amazing shape. They are not the most practical under clothes, though.

Eight isn’t too many, right? Right? Here’s my Most Wanted list for pretty stuff- I tend to keep a new bra every six weeks, so it’s a little above replacement level.

Masquerade Rosetti

Contrast satin leads to interesting geometrics, and I love red.


Masquerade Amor

I’m a bit concerned that the model doesn’t appear to fill the bottom of the cup here. However, I love myself some jewel tones. Sweetheart neckline plus dart and V-shape is not something I’ve seen appearance-wise before.

Panache Sport

My Freya Sport will give out in a while as it is well-used. I’ve been curious to try the Panache sport for a while- I love molded cups and encapsulation-type bras, so I should get this before my other sport bra dies!


Cleo Leila

Absurdly girly for me, but I do like that shade of purple and that shape (vertical seams for the win!).

Masquerade Delphi review

I’ve been rather taken with the dark gray/raspberry coloration of the Masquerade Delphi from a year ago, and finally bought one on eBay in my size.

The bra is padded, and there’s one vertical seam in the middle. This pushes the breasts into it, and thus gives a forward and projecting shape, moreso than anything else I have tried. The band is continuous, offering good support despite having a thin band with only two hooks. Straps are halfway adjustable in the back. In the front they are much wider and a soft satin, though I don’t think I’d call them padded.

Panache decided to overlay some satin with similarly colored patterned mesh. The pattern is black and reminds me of Italian vine artwork, very subtle. There’s  a dark purple contrast in the embroidery which adds a shot of color. The gore has a jeweled center, adding to the feel of this as upscale boudoir bra. Not bad for $45 after season, when they just come out they are over $80. The top of the lace/mesh and the seam can show through tops.

The band is on the tight side and the cups are open at the top. I’m shallow profiled, so I don’t easily get Marie Antoinette cleavage, but this bra does a heck of a good job. Some days there is a little gap at the top, but if I attempt to put all my migrated tissue into the bra it’s an excellent fit. If you’re between sizes, order up a band. The straps adjust short enough for me (often a concern) and the satin is comfortable, although wide.
I found the brief coordinates to either run large or have a loose rear. Perhaps the style, but it tends towards wedgies on my lack of bottom.

This is femme fatale lingerie. Where’s my Mercedes? Any shirt I can wear it under I most likely will!

Between band sizes? Looking for stability.

My underbust measurement is between 30.5  and 31 inches depending on how tightly I do the tape up.  I’ve lost a kilo or so in the past three months, and my three Panache Porcelain bras are now all going on the tightest hook after two hours (bra stretches during the day), and they are about a half year old.  The newer black Deco (32)  is stretching out pretty fast, so I’m not sure how long it will last with my current measurements.  I guess I could try putting on a few pounds, but there’s no guarantee they would go to the underbust.  My 32 Curvy Kate is also stretching out a bunch after less frequent wear over five months.

Anyway, time to go shopping again!  I’m still not sure I could size down to a 32 in the Rhea, but it seems a bit late since I can no longer find a mulberry one in 32G online.  I’ve ordered a Deco in 30GG to test that, but I will probably need to buy an extender for the first few weeks.  In the past year I’ve learned a lot- I’ve found Freya bands are a bit looser than Panache, and my shape isn’t quite round enough for many Freyas/Fantasies, nor wide and shallow enough for most Curvy Kates.    I can fit into a non-molded bra, but greatly prefer shapes generally given by them.

To review: Panache Geneva bikini, Curvy Kate Emily, Freya Deco in several sizes once I get the 30, Curvy Kate Tempt Me, Freya Mystere bikini set once I actually wear it.

To finally get my hands on: Masquerade Delphi, Affinitas Charlotte and Jeanie.  I know the Charlotte comes up tight and small, but would a 34G be too loose?

What bands have you found to be most stable?  I hear good things about Ewa Michalak but am leery of the sizing/return issues.  On the other hand, I just moved and rent is several hundred dollars lower a month…but I need to pay off moving costs!