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Lingerie Experts Twitter Q&A

BY STYLE EDITOR, ON 9 AUG 2010 13:08 NEW LAUNCHESCOMMENTS

B by Ted Baker model

Our B by Ted Baker model causes a stir in store

If you were logged into Twitter last Thursday, you may have noticed the flurry of activity on our @debenhamsretail feed between 1 and 2pm.

As part of our Twitter Takeover series, our resident lingerie experts, Head of Buying Annette Warburton and Head of Design Sharon Webb, were taking your questions on everything you wanted to know about lingerie. But just in case you missed it, keep reading for the Q&A in full and we’ve also posted some pics taken outside Debenhams when our lovely B by ted Baker lingerie model posed for the press and caused quite a crowd!

And just in case you’re unsure as to what the Twitter Takeovers are all about, they’re a great opportunity to pose your questions to the experts in the know, such as the lovely Annette and Sharon, Jasper Conran and Phil Vickery. We’ll be posting more details of the next guest soon, so be sure to keep an eye on the blog!

Q: In 140 characters, talk us through the lingerie design process…
A: Hi, 140 characters might be a little tight but I’ll do my best…we go to fashion fairs in the EU/US and look at the catwalks. Our designers work with buyers to agree key looks and colours/prints. Designs are then sent to global suppliers

Q: Why don’t you make large cup size bras in large back sizes too. Don’t stop at a 38″ – big boobs have big backs behind!!
A: We stock bras up to a 42 G back size in selected stores. We also have a Brand called Elomi up to 48 back size available online. It’s always worth getting a bra fit as well, to make sure you’re wearing the correct size.

Q: Any plans to make B by Ted Baker or Floozie in larger sizes?

A: Yes, we’re increasing bra sizes up to an E cup and possibly an F cup in all our designer lingerie. However due to the development time of bras this won’t be until next year.

Q: Plenty! How far in advance do you have to start working on collections?
A: We start initial colour and trend ideas one year before it arrives in the store.

B by Ted Baker model

Our B by Ted Baker model pulls in quite a crowd on Oxford Street

Q: Do you have any plans for longline bras?
A: Yes we have longline bras in Ted Baker – beautiful lace with detachable straps. You can find a B by Ted Baker longline bra here, this goes up to a 38 back.

Q: What’s the best bra option for wearing under white summer dresses that are often quite sheer?
A: Definitely a nude colour bra, as this won’t show up under white. We have some great nude colour smooth t-shirt bras from £8.

Q: So what are you working on now?
A: We’ve literally just started working on the Autumn/Winter range for 2011.

Q: Any tips on buying lingerie for girlfriends?
It’s important to find out what size she is – have a look in her lingerie drawer. Also note what styles she likes –cotton or lacy etc. Our sales advisors are very experienced at helping to find the right lingerie – pop into to your nearest store.

Q: Why don’t you stock sexy styles for 30inch ladies?
A: Our Ultimate range of cleavage enhancing bras start at a 30 back size A-DD cup – a great range of colours and prints in laces and satins, with matching briefs. Bras from £18.

Q: How long does an average bra fitting take?
A: Average is around 20 minutes, however our bra fit advisors will spend as long as they need to get you a perfect fitting bra.

Q: Out of curiosity, what’s the cheapest and most expensive bra that you stock?
A: Cheapest is Debenhams £8 bra A-DD or a 2 pack cotton non-wire AA-C at £10 (£5 each). The most expensive is a specialist Run sports bra from Shock Absorber at £36 – a best seller!

Q: Why do some size 36B bras fit me but not others? Why is there no consistency in sizing? V frustrating!
A: I know this can be frustrating but different bra shapes and brands can fit differently – just like a pair of shoes! Our bra fit service is complementary and our fitters are very experienced at finding you that perfect fit.

Q: Any recommendations for a bra for a backless dress that doesn’t include those sticky pad things? I’m allergic to them!
A: We have an inexpensive fix. ‘The Natural Low’ Back Converter £6, which you attach to your bra to give a backless solution.

Q: What is the best way to wash your bras?
A: Always check the care label. Many of our bras are now machine washable however some bras will be hand wash only.

Q: What’s the best way to avoid an embarrassing VPL in a tight outfit?
A: We have a fantastic range of Debenhams Invisible briefs and shapewear – you need never have a VPL again!

B by Ted Baker model

Posing with the B by Ted Baker campaign imagery

Q: What can we expect in store this autumn?
A: We have some fabulous new ranges in Ted Baker lingerie – Oversized Florals, modern photographic prints in rich colours. Also Reger by Janet Reger has a luxurious range of silks and embroiderys in jewel tones. Finally, J by Jasper Conran Sleepwear in soft drape-y fabrics with contemporary styling and beautiful prints.

Q: We’re off to the ball but my dress has just one shoulder – what type of bra?
A: Either a strapless bra – the Wonderbra Ultimate strapless stays up as long as you do! Also Wonderbra Multi Plunge bra can be worn over 100 ways – including one shoulder.

There were so many questions on the day that we ran out of time! But here are a couple of cheeky extras that Annette and Sharon have kindly answered for us:

Q: How important is it for lingerie to reflect the current fashion trends?
A: It is important. outerwear shapes affects what you wear underneath i.e. strapless bra under a strappy maxi dress , invisible knickers under skinny trousers . Lace and cosmetic colours were seen on the SS10 catwalks and reflected strongly in the Debenhams lingerie ranges.

Q: What % of Debenhams bra sales are the ‘bigger’ cup sizes (e.g. DD and beyond?)
A: Over half our bra sales are DD cup and above.

Q: Which maternity knickers/bras do you recommend?

A: Our range of Miriam Stoppard’s Nuture, Modern Maternity lingerie specially designed for all day comfort and support. Cup sizes C-G from £14. We also offer maternity tights in sheers and opaques – 2pk £10

We also want to say a thank you to our contributors, who included the lovely @bitchbuzz, @myfashionlife, @diamondcanopy, @fabsugaruk and @bangsandabun!

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  • Carol

    I have been reading and following your lingerie tweets etc, however, can you advise on the Mastectomy post surgery lingerie, If you are using a model for the disabled, why cant you use a model (a real women, not a stereotypical stunning slim model) for post surgery bras.
    I wear two breast prosthesis (after double mastectomy), and I support ladies who have had mastectomy and wear prosthesis and how to feel sexy again when wearing lingerie, however, the lingerie we get offered is still very boring and neutral, yet all we need is a pocket in the cup, why cant we have red, chocolate, jade, blues and feminine lace, why do we get the usual “triumph doreen” styles, when we want to look sexy and not cover up, just because we have prosthesis does not mean that we are to be pushed to one side….

    I want to work with the designers of debenhams on better feminine lingerie for women wearing prosthesis, and body image is a huge issue for us, I also use a walking stick, due to chronic pain condition, however, I want Debenhams to make me :
    Feel sexy and confident in your fashions, whilst wearing breast prosthesis and using a walking stick, because at the moment people only see the walking stick not what I am wearing,,,!

    thanks and hope to hear from you soon
    Carol

  • http://blog.debenhams.com Jenny, editor

    Thanks for your comment Carol.

    We stock Royce lingerie online, modelled by the brand’s new face of Caress, Kelly Short. You may recognise her from the series ‘How to Look Good Naked’.

    See the imagery on site at Debenhams here:

    http://www.debenhams.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/prod_10001_10001_152010203460_-1

    We’d definitely recommend making an appointment with one of our personal shoppers. The feedback we get from ladies of all shapes and sizes – each with their own insecurities – is that our personal shoppers and bra fit specialists are very sensitive to their needs and can really help find the clothing to boost their confidence.