I must put a disclaimer at the beginning of this post: The following words pertain to what is termed “foundation garments” by the more lady-like among us. If any gentlemen would be offended by the discussion of women’s underclothing please be advised to stop reading now.
Let’s have a frank discussion on the problem of brassieres. I’ve seen all the internet ads concerning the supposed “fact” that women’s bras have not changed in design in over 100 years. First I would hazard to disagree. The innovations are there: breathable fabric, no seam cups, flexible wire and no wire options, stretch fabric in every part of the garment, special “petals” to smooth the look in cold environments, strapless that actually stays in place, push up and minimizing models, and of course the invention that made my life so much easier 30 years ago – a nursing bra that could be managed with one hand! But that’s not what I wanted to discuss even if it really gripes me.
The problem is the “life span” of the average bra. Most of the bras sold, without regard to price paid, have about 1 year. You might be able to eek out a few more months by hand washing and line drying. Still it is a terrible and sad day when a comfortable one bites the dust. This is a tale about my oldest and most comfortable bra and the extraordinary measures taken to prolong its life (a story of life support of sorts). You see I washed it in the machine. I made the mistake of tossing it in with a couple of Sparky’s T-shirts. Now he has a couple of very old and raggedy shirts that have some sort of sentimental value that prevent him from tossing them. He wears them for painting and mowing the lawn. Anyway, a hook on my bra got snagged on his ratty t-shirt causing the hook to get pulled out of shape. After untangling the unholy mess, I considered my options. One, I could just toss the bra or two, attempt to reshape the hook and hope for the best. I opted to repair the mangled hook. The hook was bent back into approximate position. I wore the bra for another 6 months.
But this does not have a happy ending. There was one little part of the hook that protruded and over time wore a hole through the fabric where the “eyes” of the hook are located. This was a painful and constant irritation. I attempted an additional modification of the hook trying to get the poking part back into alignment. It didn’t work. So I moved my attachment up another notch. This worked for a time, until it didn’t. Now with 2 holes I was forced to attempt surgery. I just happened to have another bra that had a different problem that I retired into my scrap bag. (Who knew that the elastic would be valuable?) Anyway I attempted to do a hook transplant. This may have been the first transplant of its kind – ever!
It has been nearly another 2 months since the surgery (and a little over 1 year since the unfortunate washing machine incident) and the unspeakable has occurred. I discovered that the seam holding an underwire has separated. I’m calling it. I’ve had to bid that favorite adieu. And this is why I have such a hard time paying $75 for a piece of clothing that, God willing, no one will ever see!
On a happier note the lockdown/shutdown/social distancing/isolation/pandemic on the employment front has been lifted (but I’m still distancing and wearing a mask). I have 2 jobs scheduled that should make a little spending money. That means I’ll have a little money but nowhere to spend it!! (Well not entirely true, since Goodwill is back in business with limited hours and a mask required and no dressing rooms.) I plan on taking advantage of the spring cleaning that everyone did during the lockdown!