Sunday, March 18, 2012

Rinnakkaiskoot osa 2 / Sister sizing: a new approach part 2

Ewa Michalak

 Kirjoitin aiemmin rinnakkaiskokojen teoriasta. Perusajatus oli, että koska kuppikoot ovat suhteessa rinnan alta mitattavaan ympärysmittaan, sinun täytyy ympärysmittaa vaihtaessasi vaihtaa myös kuppikokoa saadaksesi saman tilavuuden kupissa.

Yleensä sanotaan, että jos vaihdat ympärystä yhden pienempään, sinun tulisi vaihtaa samalla kuppikokoa yhtä suurempaan. Näin ollen saat saman tilavuuden kuppiin. Kirjoitin aiemmin Lumingerien pitäjän kirjoittamasta tekstistä, jonka mukaan näin ei ole. Saadaksesi saman tilavuuden kuppiin sinun tulee ottaa kaksi kuppia isompi vaihtaessasi yhden ympäryksen pienempään. Koon 75B rinnakkaiskoko ei siis olisikaan 70C vaan 70D.

Löysin Ewa Michalakin sivuilta mittataulukon, joka tukee tätä ajatusta. Vaikka teksti taulukon alapuolella ohjeistaakin ottamaan vain yhtä kuppia isomman, mittataulukon mukaan sama tilavuus on kahta kuppia isommassa.

Tämä hämmentää minua. Monet sanovat yhden kuppikoon lisäyksen toimivan hyvin, kun ottaa yhden ympäryksen pienemmän. Olen nähnyt sellaista itsekin. Toisaalta se ei mittataulukoiden valossa tunnu loogiselta. Olen myös huomannut, että tiukemmassa ympäryksessä kuppikin istuu tiukemmin: pienetkin kuhmurat, kainalotissit ja tuplatissit näkyvät paljon selkeämmin, kun ympärys on tiukempi. Tämä ei siis tunnu oikein loogiselta.

Joka tapauksessa tärkeintä on tietenkin ymmärtää ottaa edes se yhtä kokoa isompi kuppi, kun ottaa pienemmän ympäryksen. Mikäli se ei istu, suosittelen kyllä ehdottomasti kokeilemaan myös kahta kuppia isompaa, sillä ainakin mittataulukoiden mukaan se olisi tilavuudeltaan saman kokoinen.

 In English: I wrote about a new approach on sister sizing here. The basics were that according to Finnish webshop the common rule of going one cup up when going one band size down is wrong and that you should go two cups up to get the same over-bust measurement.

Based on my recent experiences I don't really even understand why the one-cup-up seems to work for many women (and I'm not sayng that it doesn't, I've seen it happen!). I find that when you have a looser band you can easily get away with a bit too small cup or a bit wrong fit. When you switch to a tighter band, the cup sits tighter and you can easily see the possible overspill and all other fit problems. So, I can't even explain why this works if the one cup up offers a SMALLER cup than the bigger band and one cup smaller bra.

Well, I got more evidence about this new approach. I was browsing through Ewa Michalak's website (waiting for the BP bras anxiously...) and noticed the measurement chart above. Ewa does give the old advice BUT when you look the size chart it isn't correct. For example, the bust measurement in 70G is 101,5. The 65GG has a bust measurement of 99. So, if you follow the common rule you get a smaller cup. The same measurement, 101,5, is in a size 65H. So, one band down, two cups up. 

The text under the chart is also wrong. The 65DD is 86,5 cm and 70D is 89 cm. Instead, the 70C has the same measurements as 65DD.

This is all so confusing. I'm not saying that there is something wrong with the old rule; I'm just saying that I don't understand it based on the size charts.


  1. You know, I do think there's something off about Ewa Michalak's system. When I ordered bras from there last year, I tried using the size calculator and the chart, but they gave me two different sizes, with the chart putting me about two cup sizes larger. I emailed customer service about it and they told me to trust the calculator, but in retrospect many of the bras I ordered were too small in the cup and I would have been better off following the chart.

    1. Oh, good to know that the calculator and the chart don't give the same size!

      If I remember correctly, the calculator put me in a 100G which is what I wear now in EM bras. I still get too much armpit bulge (the cup is too small/narrow) and after 6 hours or so the wires also start digging in. So, I don't really know if the calculator put me in a too small cup or if the wires are just too narrow, but something isn't working at the moment. But I still love EM bras because of the shape and uplift they give! :-)

      But the phenomenom in sister sizing isn't just EM's thing. I've seen it in other charts, too. So something's clearly not adding up. I've been thinking about how the cup volume is determined. If 70F and 65G have the same overbust measurement, do they necessarily have the same cup volume...? I'm really bad at math, so this is an impossible task for me to solve. :D

      Oh, I'm sorry for my long and incoherent answer for your comment. Didn't mean to confuse you with my babbling. :D

    2. Thanks for sharing this with us. I've been wanting to order from EM for some time now, but haven't yet done it as I too have been wondering about the difference between the calculator and the size chart.
      So would you say it's safest to trust the calculator with the band size but the size chart with the cup size?

    3. I would say, measure and use their chart. Pick a band size closest to your measurement, and then your cup size. Your first time, you should always be ordering a few different sizes just to see which one fits best. And, since EM sells those nifty bra extenders for cheap, I would get one or two in say, nude and black so you can try on bras that are too tight in the band, either wear that way until they stretch out or to see if the cup would fit on a larger band. EM bras really are fabulous, I prefer them to any other brand and just wish the shipping and communication wasn't such a hassle.

    4. And BN, I think the whole "sister size" thing is much more complicated than we make it out to be, namely because of underwires. The reason you can't just go into a store and buy a 44DD and alter it down 5 band sizes is that even though the volume might be the same, the shape isn't (I've tried, trust me).

      My biggest problem, for example, is that my boobs are very round, with a lot of projection. My breasts also sit high on my chest. I need much smaller, shorter underwires than most bras give a 34HH because those bras give a more squashed, flat shape. When I have to hike the bra straps up to get the underwires to sit where they should, the underwires dig into my armpits and the sides of the bra run into my shoulders and show under anything sleeveless.

      My point is, a sister size may give the same volume, but it's not like a patternmaker can just re-use the same cup and underwire and extend a band to make new sizes. It's more complicated than that because every part of the bra has to stay proportional to the woman. I think that's why sister sizes are so tough to find in the first place, especially given how much the cup and band work together to determine fit.

      Sorry for the novel there.

    5. Loving your novel! :-) It's good to have someone here who actually knows something about patterns instead of me just guessing. I'm so glad you share your knowledge with us.

      I've somehow thought that they use the same size (width and length) wires on sister sizes, but I've know idea where that thought came from...

  2. Yeah, I have to always go by my UK size instead of her calculator. So I haven't paid much attention to the chart. That being said, I think you're right. Well, at least, if the band is too loose then you can't accurately judge your cup size.

    However, I think that generally the sister size thing works IF you were to know your correct size already and then go up one band size/down one cup size and then take in the band (or if you were in between two sizes and wanted a slightly looser band).

    I actually made a post awhile back explaining this with some math and some figures. If manufacturers actually follow that that's another question entirely. :) (at the bottom)

    1. Haha, when I wrote this post I was hoping you had some idea about the math behind this all! I still didn't understand any of the math figures, but I trust you when it comes to calculations. :D

  3. When putting your measurments into EM calculator, you have to measure your bust in the bend forward position - and I am sure you all know about it:) So when you look at the chart and use this measurment - it should tell you correct size of a cup.
    I've got 106cm in bust standing straight and 113 in bend forward position. Undrebust 77cm. So, what is the size from chart for me? Correct size 75h/hh (unfortunatly I'm beetwen sizes).
    If I would use my measurment of 106 cm, size would be 75g, way too small.

    My UK size is 70gg/h or 75gg. If I would use it buying EM bras, they would be way too small.
    I'm waiting for BP too, but I don't like the first White Nina model.

    1. I'm a pretty steady 32H/HH in british sizes and EM's calculator puts me in 75G with my measurements 77 cm underbust (loosely) and 106 bust when bent forward. However, when I look at the measurements people have listed in Bratabase, 70H/HH seems to be closer to what fits me in other brands' bras.
      I took the plunge yesterday and ordered my first Ewa Michalak. I decided to start with the 75G, hope it fits.

    2. Don't worry about the band. My 'tight' underbust is 71 and my loose one 77 and I still wear a 75 in most Ewas. I'd check for you which one I have in 70 but I am not home right now.

    3. I received the bra today and while the band is indeed quite fine, the cups are a tad too small, or rather my bigger breast spills just a bit over the cup and I just h-a-t-e the quadraboob effect, no matter how small it is. :( So I have to exchange the bra. *sigh* One thing about EM is that their returns/exchanges policy seems quite complicated.