Panache Cleo Marcie Balconette Bra
Ever since seeing Lena Dunham in that bold, unashamed yellow Zac Posen dress I have entered a phase of intense yellow craving. Despite my vampire pale complexion I suddenly decided I desperately need that yellow dress as well as some bright yellow sunglasses, a yellow backpack and of course yellow oxford shoes. With heart full of sorrow I have to admit to currently owning none of these.
You can therefore imagine my excitement when I saw the SS14 preview for Cleo, a brand I have previously somehow… omitted. Not on purpose, it had a bit to do with my disappointment with Freya (which I would consider the equivalent of Cleo in the Eveden world) and their poor fabrics, as well as with Cleo’s slightly too girly designs. However even overlooking the colour (which let me assure you is VERY DIFFICULT!), I am incredibly pleased with the fit and design of the bra and satisfied with the material.
Yellow is a wide term. You can have lemon yellow, canary yellow, mustard(y) yellow, pale yellow, neon yellow… you get the drift. Now, to get one yellow, which will be none of these and be simply YELLOW – not too pale, not too warm, not too bright and just a block colour must have been quite a challenge. Upon ordering this beauty on-line I was a bit unsure; bright colours usually suit darker skin most and in ads (at least on asos, curiously enough panache didn’t get that message) are understandable most often modeled on gorgeous black ladies. I definitely applaud the industry for finally noticing that racial diversity in modeling is not only favourable in terms of human rights and the world we live in but also in terms of marketing (so we can hope it will stick around and become something that is automatic)! Pictures can be misleading too and lighting changes colours ad absurdum! I was therefore very curious to see if Panache made the impossible happen and created a yellow bra that will also compliment pasty white. Great news – they have!
One paragraph should be more than enough for raving on a colour. The Marcie bra is an old veteran for Cleo as it had come out in many colours in the previous seasons and is one of the brand’s staples. The bra is underwired and unlined, making it an ideal piece for the summer. The cups are made of three sections, the lower two consisting of two-layered mesh (surprisingly gentle, considering the price point), with embroidered polka dots. Yay! The upper section is lace in exactly the same yellow as the polka dots creating a beautiful full cup. The cut is really quite a masterpiece as the shape it provides from profile is super rounded – which with my very soft breast tissue which easily fills up any crevice creating fun(ny) shapes at times is no easy feat!
The band features two hooks but due to the secure fit of the cups and the band the bra is overall very secure and supportive. The equally yellow (…I apologize) straps are fully adjustable with the front part being lightly underpadded and the back part elastic. The otherwise entirely yellow yellow yellow bra is adorned with a simple dark magenta bow with a cute yellow (…) button at the fairly high centre gore, where the two underwires meet.
The numerous reviews on Marcie usually mention the possibilities of initial (and misleading) gaping on top especially when slouching shoulders – I agree. Otherwise I would say the cups are spot on. The emphasis lies on really adjusting the bra properly – all the scooping etc. so the underwires sit exactly where they are supposed to. Once they are settled though, you can pretty much forget they are there and there will be no embarrassing adjusting of your brightly coloured bra during the workday.
Fit & Feel
I was truly amazed by the fit as the other unlined bras I currently own are usually made of much sturdier material. The Marcie is so light and breathable! The cups are spot on on me (in 30H) and true to size with the underwires sitting flat on the sternum. They were also my only worry as their ends don’t seem to be particularly padded and ended up digging in a bit at the most unexpected place – at the gore. I very gently bended them away from the ribcage (just a fraction really) so as to avoid any angry marks and discomfort.
The band is really quite tight – significantly more than Fauve but also more than Masquerade or Panache Superbra. I am definitely only wearing it on the last hook but it is comfortably tight rather than smothering. Overall it is one very stable, comfortable and supportive bra!
Ok, there goes all the praise but… there is unfortunately a but. I was very excited to find the yellow Marcie would come out as a babydoll. I was 100% set on snatching it up as soon as it would leave the warehouse (…ok and ship all the way to Central Europe) until I saw that the back is for some unfathomable reason left open. I have no idea why and it really breaks my heart.
Similarly I am very unconvinced about the frilly panties. They are sort of the epitome of why I haven’t had any bras from Cleo so far. Frills can be fun for sure. But I am not a particularly frilly person and unless they suggest 30’s cabaret in Berlin or a Gatsby party or something along these fairly vintage, preferably black, lines, they are not for me. Yellow frills? No thank you. I think I will end up getting the panties anyway, hopefully on some sort of deal and cut the frills. Until then, farewell..!
Overall I am very impressed and very excited about the yellow Marcie! It comes in a mightily impressive range of 28-38 D-J. It looks great and I am looking forward to wearing it under some pretty see-through tops to really work the colour.
At the same time it works as an ideal everyday bra under any T-shirt as it creates a rounded, up-lifted silhouette. It is comfortable, cute and fairly cheap. My perfect summer bra!
P.P.S.: Does anyone perhaps have a pair of those Cleo Lucy unfrilly panties they don’t want anymore..?
Panache Cleo Marcie Comes in an impressive range of 28-38 D-J in both the bra and the babydoll!
Retails at £27 for the bra and £14 for the frilly brief
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