We’ve been wanting to do a lingerie story at the Atelier for awhile now.
Nothing seems more French to us than lingerie. Even the etymology of the word, lingerie, is owned by the French as the word is taken directly from the French language, “lingerie” meaning undergarments.
French undergarments (or lingerie) were so superior to the American version that we began using lingerie to describe an elevated, sophisticated, more luxurious undergarment than what was found under our everyday clothes. To the French, this elevated elegance is simply the standard.
So you can imagine how thrilled we were to partner with Lingerie Française, an association who knows all to well about the unique and rich cultural heritage of French lingeries as they represent fourteen different brands of French lingerie! Obviously we had to try on all fourteen flavors ;)
And we couldn’t do a lingerie story without involving our French, patron saint, Garance. She gamely answered a few of my naive American questions all in the hopes that one day I can master the French allure of lingerie.
Garance, you have impressed upon me, multiple times, that the French are just outright better at making lingerie. Why do you think that is?
We have a lot of different brands that offer a lot of beautiful options at different price levels. Usually the stores are pretty welcoming, there is a whole atmosphere that works.
And as far as the lingerie itself, I have never found anything comparable in the world, be it for the fit or the quality of the fabrics and cuts. It’s like everything is considered – the look, the fit, how you feel, how it makes you look when you’re naked, how it looks under the clothes…
When I go back to France, I jump on lingerie!
What was your first lingerie purchase? Did you purchase it for yourself or with someone else in mind?
My mom bought me my first bra, telling me it was very important to wear one everyday if I wanted to keep my boobs up. So far, I am happy to say she was right!
I always buy my lingerie thinking of me and of my boyfriend, even though I have never been with a man who really cared about lingerie, they want to take it off!
Biggest mistake you’ve ever made buying lingerie?
I think I learned too late that when buying a bra, you always have to try it with a white t-shirt on to see all the flaws, and how it makes you look. When you have more generous breasts like myself, an ill-cut bra can add a few pounds to your silhouette! So to me, I believe you always have to try and be ruthless. Comfort and looks are non-negotiable.
Can you wear the same lingerie with two different partners — or should you buy new lingerie with each relationship? What are the rules?
Weird question, but funny! I guess I naturally change pretty often. Usually, I just decide a bra is over and I throw it away. So I have to replace it. Trying to stay away from the ratty lingerie look (come on, we all have a few skeletons in our closet!!!).
What is a style or piece of lingerie you would never wear?
No, I like to try everything.
What pieces(s) of lingerie should every woman own?
I think a few beautiful pieces, a full body piece, something a bit more sensual than the everyday look is good to own.
Who benefits more from lingerie? The woman wearing it or the person she’s trying to impress?
It’s a question of taste. As with everything, it is how lingerie makes you feel that’s important.
Most embarrassing thing that’s ever happened to you while wearing lingerie?
I guess it’s the classic, making a huge deal out of it, trying on a million of ensembles to find the perfect one, going on a hot date, and realizing the man didn’t even have a chance to see it.