Now Playing: Town Shop
Topic: Beauty Thoughts & Reviews
Every now and then, yours truly, working mom moi, gets sprung from her daily life to go shopping in Manhattan. Just two short weeks ago, moi stimulated the economy of New York City but dropping a Benjamin for two brand new bras. The best thing about getting the new bras was that I finally had a professional bra fitting. Over the last two years, my body has gone through a lot of changes. I dropped thirty-five pounds, got pregnant, gave birth, and regained twenty-five of my lost pounds. Needless to say that yours truly's breasts have been up and down more than Britney Spears' moods. So, after spending the last year cramming and squeezing into ill fitting bras and trying to measure myself to no avail, I decided to splurge on a professional bra fitting.
You can get bra fittings at Victoria's Secret, JC Penney, Macy's or any department store, but the results are iffy. Taking a cue from TLC's What Not to Wear and Bravo's Tim Gunn's Guide to Style, I took a trip to the world famous Town Shop on the Upper West Side. The bra and shaper boutique was no bigger than my apartment, but was much more stylish and better organized. After standing in the middle of the floor like a deer caught in the headlights, a young fitter came up to me and offered assistance. She led me to a fitting room, told me to take off my top, and asked me what type of bra I wanted. "Under wire and nude," I replied. (A sister needs lift!) She took a peek at the tag of the bra I was wearing, tugged a little on the straps and band, and left.
I was left in the fitting room staring at a floor to ceiling mirror under gentle fluorescent lights. Under those conditions, staring at your body seems like a lifetime rather than five minutes. I cringed then poked, sucked in, and pinched my torso in every possible contortion to appear thinner under the lights. Finally, I sighed, exhaled, and said "This is my body now, and I need to accept it." It helped that I had a nice fitting pair of dark indigo jeans from Target.
The fitter came in with a handful of bras, helped me into most of them, and showed me how to adjust them. She pointed out that I was indeed wearing the wrong size by 2 full band sizes and 1 cup size. She showed me where the under wire should fit me underneath my breast and arm pit. She also advised me not that the adjusters on the strap of the bra should never be higher than my shoulder blades. (If it is up near the curves of my shoulders, it's too high.) After nearly 40 minutes of asking questions and trying on bras, the fitter told me that I fell in between two sizes. Depending on the manufacturer, I'm a 38D/38DD or a 40D. Wow! I have porn star breasts. Who knew?
I purchased two black lace numbers by Grenier bras (so much for the plain nude ones I originally requested). I wore one out feeling both physically and mentally uplifted since I no longer had the uni-tummy-boob. My annual gift to myself for every year I get a tax refund will be to go to Town Shop, get a bra fitting, and buy 2 new pretty well-fitting bras.
During my day out, I also stumbled onto some other great places on Broadway bewteen W. 82nd and W. 86th Street. I am a sucker for costume jewelry, and I found another one of those awesome costume jewelry stores that seem to be popping up all over Manhattan. Temptation (2285 Broadway @ 82nd Street; 212-579-4887) featured great plastic, wood, and metal fashion earrings and spring scarves. I was tempted to pull out the plastic and purchase away, but I resisted. However, the next time I walk into one of these stores I'm just going to say "f**k it." The choices are overwhelming and I can't stay in there long enough to make up my mind and stay within my budget.
(On similar note, try an accessory store called Brookwood inside the subway station at W. 42nd Street/Port Authority. It is selling the most beautiful, awesome, and unique ethnic inspired jewelry and scarves. Nearly everything in the store is $5-$10. My favorite items were the oversized colored-lucite bracelets and the cooper-colored metal bracelets. There were some very pretty over-size gemstone rings that would be perfect worn on the thumb, pinky or fore finger--my new favorite places to sport rings.)
For reasonably price desserts and teas, try Edgar's Cafe at 255 W. 84th Street between Broadway and W. End Avenue. All the desserts were delectable and under $7! The service was a little slow, but the edibles all but made up for it. It is in the first floor of a building where author Edgar Allen Poe used to live. When you sit down to it, there's a huge oil painting of Edgar staring out at you while you sip your coffee. Is that a heart I hear pounding in the floor?
Next time, my pictures of New York City's biggest geekfest--NY's Comic Con! I loved it and was in my element.