A love of know-how

16 May 2019

Lingerie still requires a certain expertise, particularly for women who have a bigger bust and are looking to retain their femininity.
They rely on specialist know-how that provides them with the comfort they need to feel free in their day-to-day lives. But exceptional lingerie is for women with smaller breasts too, looking to enhance their body with the finesse of detailed design.
Though we are seeing a preference for minimalism, revealing only the materials and cuts, there is still a loyal pool of «old-fashioned» consumers with a fondness for the sophisticated embellishments of the major fashion brands. Let’s not forget, lingerie is here to be enjoyed.

Interview with Patricia Cadolle, Cadolle Director

Have you noticed a change in bras?
Patricia Cadolle / Have women’s busts changed since bras were created? I don’t think so. Breasts still need just as much support, and this is the primary purpose of a bra. We’re still talking about a product that adapts to a specific need. The real question is whether there has been a shift in values and, thus, the liberation of women, reflected in what they choose to wear.

Are women more “liberated” now?
P.C. / I think that the bra has experienced, and has always been part of, women’s liberation since its creation by the house of Cadolle in 1889: it placed itself as the liberating answer to the corset, like tights were to stockings. After this liberation in terms of clothing, what remained was to shift our values. This is yet another chapter, with new expectations from women in terms of the bra that shouldn’t simply be functional, but also beautiful, because today, we show it off, and not just in the intimate sphere.

Have you adjusted the style of your designs in light of these expectations?
P.C. / For us, women’s breasts in 2019 are the same as those in 1889: extremely delicate and sometimes extremely heavy. We can’t ignore the number of seams needed to support a woman’s breasts. This is the baseline of the corsetier’s trade. We provide support, and then embellishment, respecting a certain expert craftsmanship that comes from just the right touch. Though our machines and materials are more modern than those used by my grandmother, the gesture remains the same. This, in itself, defines the style of the piece. We use the technological progress of our age alongside the technical prowess of venerable manual craftsmanship.

What is the value added by corsetry?
P.C. / The goal is not to have a “luxury” positioning, but rather one centered on well-being: when a woman slips on a bra, she should no longer feel her breasts. She should, more than anything, feel good about her body, without pre-formed molding that removes her unique identity: with molded bras, you have the same breasts as everyone else.

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