Just before Christmas I treated myself to not one, but two vintage lingerie sets, both with leopard print detailing. Happy Christmas to me! For someone who hasn’t really been into the whole animal print thing before this was a rather odd move, but I did think reviewing them side by side would make a great blog post, so how could I resist!
What Katie Did Eartha Review
I had seen the What Katie Did Eartha set on their website and was intrigued by the cathedral bra with its unusual boning on the cups. I preferred the more classic Claudette style with its peach power mesh and eau-de-nil satin but when I visited Collectif at the beginning of December and saw the Eartha set in the WKD concession I was in love.
Both sets consist of the same pieces, bra, knickers and suspender belt and I always have to buy the complete set. I mean, it would be rude not to! The Eartha set is made in black power mesh and satin and is trimmed with a dark leopard print sheer nylon.
Each piece is very 1950s looking, with the bra and knickers being heavily influenced by the lingerie of this time. However, the suspender belt has actually been adapted from an original piece and has a very authentic feel about it. The shape is not anything like you’d see in a modern day suspender belt. It has two deep Vs at the front and the back, which are all trimmed with the leopard print and the four clips are attached to the bottom of each V. Although I much prefer six clips, I will say that this holds up your stockings very well as long as you get them just in the right spot. This took a little bit of fiddling around but it’s worth doing to make sure you’re not constantly tugging at your legs all day.
The bra is a feat of engineering! The centre V is set quite low, which is unusual for vintage style bras, but is a godsend for those of us who like to show off a little bit of cleavage. The cathedral shape is created with boning either side of the cup that then runs into the strapping at the top to create another V-shape. This helps to mould the breasts into a pointier shape than a normal bra would.
This boning was very popular during the 1950s and was an in-between shape to the cone bra and the bullet bra. I, personally, cannot wear a WKD bullet bra as I just don’t get the right shaping. I believe this is to do with the fact that my boobs are quite big and are very rounded and, because the fabric is quite flimsy, there is no support to easily mould them into the bra shape. The cathedral shape, however, does the job perfectly.
On top of all this, the bra has circle stitching on the lower cup, as well as underbust shaping and wide, concealed elastic around the bottom edge. This gives amazing uplift that some other vintage style bras don’t give. The whole thing basically pushes you up, separates the breasts and moulds them into a subtle point. What more could a vintage gal want from a bra?
And if you have one of Stop Staring’s Timeless dresses I would highly recommend getting one of these as the shape it gives you is exactly what the bust line on the dress needs (something I have struggled with for a while!).
The knickers are very similar to the rest of the WKD range, however, I find these don’t cut me as much around the top of the thighs, something that irritates me about the others. They have a satin panel down the front, a V shaped piece of leopard print either side, and the rest, including the back, is black power mesh. This is fairly sheer, although it is not obviously so, but it does give you good support. My only gripe about these is when you have the suspender belt on top you can’t really see any of the detailing, which is a shame.
I love this set and have already worn the bra quite a lot as I love the shape it gives me. I will say, though, that I am a 32DD and my boobs spill out into the centre V a little. The model in the top picture is, apparently, also wearing a 32DD but hers don’t do this. I’m not sure if this is because of the shape of mine or because I would need a larger cup size (which they don’t do in this range). However, What Katie Did have recently brought out the Valerie set which also has a cathedral bra, and does have larger cup sizes, so I may just have to order myself a 32E to find out. Of course, I’d probably then have to buy the rest of the set!
Kiss Me Deadly Leopard Van Doren Review
The Kiss Me Deadly Leopard Van Doren set caught my eye when KMD released their upcoming Spring / Summer season shots from their photoshoot way back in April and this particularly stood out for me. The set was unfortunately delayed in production but I swore that I would purchase it as soon as it came out as there were only going to 100 sets made.
If you own or have tried on the black Van Doren set from Kiss Me Deadly then you’ll know what to expect from this set. The design is taken directly from the classic range with the added leopard print detailing.
I already have the six strap black Van Doren suspender belt and it is the one I wear the most. It is so comfortable and so supportive that you barely notice you’re wearing it and it can be mixed and matched with so many other pieces. One of my favourite combinations is my Joanna’s Wardrobe Grace bra, Van Doren suspender belt and What Katie Did black French knickers. It creates such a gorgeous vintage look.
I know I’m going to end up wearing this one just as much as it can be mixed with any other black pieces for a more subtle animal print look. The leopard print detailing is only featured in a large centre panel at the front and then the rest is made in an opaque black stretch nylon.
The bralet features leopard print foam padded cups which give you a much rounder shape to the cathedral bra but still give you a little bit of a retro look. The back panels are made from black power mesh which, along with the thick elastic trim around the underbust, give you just enough support.
All KMD bralets come in small, medium, large and extra large, rather than cup sizes. I find that the medium is too small for me and my boobs look very squished in them, even on the widest hook setting. However, the large (of which I have two others!) are just a smidgen too big but are still tight enough to make me feel like I’m not going to fall out of them at any second! I would definitely recommend trying two sizes to make sure you get the right fit if you are, like me, and in-between size.
The knickers, however, are my favourite piece of this set. Whenever I look at them I go all Julie Newmar or, perhaps, Eartha Kitt! Meow! They are so vintage looking and I just love the print so much. The shape is pure pin-up and are much higher in the waist than many of my other vintage style knickers, yet they just don’t look grannyish at all. The whole front is made in leopard print and is finished at the top edge with a cute little bow.
However, on the back is a sheer black mesh, which is very stretchy, yet is much more see through and is less supportive than the Eartha kickers. This gives them such a saucy feel about them as there is no hiding in these! Once you have the suspender belt on top you get a glimpse of both the leopard print and the sheer mesh which I definitely prefer.
I have to say, I love this set too. They are both very different, the What Katie Did set being more sophisticated and authentic in terms of vintage styling, but the Kiss Me Deadly set is just so much fun and is very versatile. I can see myself getting a lot of wear out of both of them, and I can see myself mixing the Van Doren set with so many other pieces of lingerie I already have to create different looks.
I would highly recommend either but it obviously depends on what sort of look you’re going for. However, if you’re considering the KMD set you better act fast as it is already selling out!