'Shapewear' range flattens to deceive
It started with Bridget Jones's larger-than life, slimming knickers. Now in a shift from underwear to outerwear comes a range of clothing with built-in slimming panels to suck you in -- in all the right places.
'Shapewear' has become one of the big growth areas on the Irish fashion retail scene as women sensibly re-work their wardrobes, shape up and slim down to fit into their favourite LBD in their closet.
Fashion innovator Heather Thomson is moving the goalposts and instead of concentrating on lingerie and 'secrets beneath', she has taken her slimming microfibre technology and factored it into work and party clothes.
Discreet panels under the arm and down the side of jackets nip and tuck in the silhouette while strapless summer dresses have concealed panels that create that slimmer, sexy silhouette. Like having a dress with a built-in corset or tummy-tuck.
Heather -- a mother-of-two who previously worked with Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce on their fashion ranges -- has designed a series of jackets, blazers, dresses and separates with slimming panels which go on sale next spring.
The New Yorker shot to fame after she invented the patented Yummie Tummy in 2009, a T-shirt with a control panel over your tummy which proved an instant hit with new mums.
Heather was in Dublin yesterday to unveil some of the prototypes from her Just Yummie clothing range -- available at both Brown Thomas and Arnotts.
"I call this whole area the 'coredrobe' so you can have wardrobe essentials that shape you and give you style," said Heather.
The entrepreneur accuses the lingerie sector of having "fallen asleep at the wheel" and after patenting her technology she now uses the shape-slim-lift concept in T-shirts, camisoles, bustless slips, briefs and leggings and across various fabrics from cotton to stretch silk charmeuse.
"We are hung up on red-carpet looks but it takes eight hours to prepare and look like that. It just isn't reality, it is an artform and we are real people, not airbrushed," she said.