I first tried the Freya Deco Plunge back in late 2014 when I was in the 30G/GG or 32G size range. I was desperate for a t-shirt bra and the Deco is so well-loved in the bra community that I was excited to find it at my local Nordstrom. It was one of the first bras I tried after becoming familiar with my more accurate bra size, so with the help of a patient fitter, I tried a Deco in every color and sister size she could bring me.
It was a disaster.
I had never felt such an uncomfortable piece of boob hardware. The cups were way too tall for my torso and short roots; too shallow for my moderate projection; and too wide for my body. The cup edge wouldn’t lie flat and curled outwards. The 32-band was too loose and the 30 way too tight. I felt like I was wearing a straight jacket made of protective safety foam. I tried everything to get a good fit. I swooped and scooped in all directions trying to balance my boobs in the cups. But if I moved too quickly, they would slip right out of the plunge the first chance they got. I struck the Deco off my list, and with it, the “plunge” style of bras altogether as incompatible with my soft tissue and inner fullness.
Fast forward about a year and a half, and the Freya Deco went from being a bra that I could never wear to a staple of my bra wardrobe. How did that happen?
A Deco by any name
First, I was trying the wrong Deco. Unbeknownst to me at the time, there is more than one style of Deco Plunge bra, and if the original or classic Deco doesn’t work for you (as it doesn’t for me), one of the other styles may. I believe that this is a well-known fact about Decos, but since I avoided the style for a long time, I only discovered it quite recently.
There are two main Deco varieties. The original Deco Plunge (pictured above) in continuity colors like black and beige, and styles like the Honey, Charm and older Ashlee, Taylor, and Hatty, are all basically the same cut. They are best for very full on top shapes and don’t handle a whole lot of projection or very soft tissue well. They are also not great for short roots, with a tendency to leave empty space near the strap and gaping along the top. The top line of the cup can also have problems rolling outwards and not lying flat under a thin knit, defeating the purpose of a t-shirt bra.
The other variety includes all Deco styles with fabric binding/trim along the edge of the cup. Deco Vibe, Darling, Shape, Rebel, Spotlight, Delight, Debut and discontinued Flamingo, Cobalt, Lagoon, Honey in Topaz, and Crystal, all have the trim, as well as a few limited fashion colors that are discontinued. Whereas my very soft tissue had no chance with the classic Deco Plunge, the binding on the edge (as seen on my Deco Vibe pictured below) makes all the difference. The stitched edge makes the cup more closed off on top so it fits closer against the top of the bust, making this variety of Deco more suited to even to slightly full on top shapes, and a bit more accommodating to short roots and slight-to-moderate projection, although strap gap and gaping can persist. The binding is more likely to cut in on tall roots.
I’d like to say that all the newer Decos with the binding are the same exact fit, but they’re not. I will likely post some reviews in the near future discussing some minor differences. Ultimately the materials contribute as much to the fit as the cut does. The Vibe, in particular, runs tight.
Boobs and body proportions
I have a hypothesis as for the second reason why I have better luck with the Deco Plunge now than I did a just over a year ago. As a petite female, it’s not surprising to me that I can’t often find bras that fit well, because I can rarely expect a great fit from any type of clothes off the rack unless they come in petite sizes. Standard size proportions are usually “off” for me because I’m shorter than average. Petite clothing ranges adjust proportions accordingly, so that my knee falls at the actual knee portion of a pair of jeans, instead of somewhere in the thigh; or so the waist of a dress doesn’t hang around my hips. I get by okay with t-shirts because I like them a little longer; tank tops are a nightmare because the armholes are usually way too big. Deep necklines are also a culprit.
Bras are not entirely different. Someone with a tall torso, tall shoulders, or tall roots will have a very different Deco experience than I will with my short everything. For instance, I usually have to tighten my bra straps nearly all the way. For my Deco Vibe, that means that the J-hook connector actually sits at the front when not connected. I can forget about bras with half-adjustable straps.
Put simply, a Deco in 30GG (the size I once needed for adequate volume when my breasts were larger) is too much bra for my frame. The wires are too wide for my chest and reach up too high at the sides; the straps are wider-set, too; and the cups far too tall. A lot of women in larger cup sizes who are on the petite side (read: short in stature) will have trouble with the way bras are typically “scaled up”. The same is true in larger band sizes.
However, since losing weight and dropping to a 28G/30FF, the volume at my new size is right for my boobs while not simultaneously being too overwhelming on my petite torso. The wires are much narrower in this size range, resulting in the Deco becoming more compatible with my body because everything is scaled down. This is why I have 3 Decos in my current bra collection, and why I no longer automatically dismiss bras that didn’t work for me before.
Now, that is not to say that the Freya Deco is a perfect fit for me, because it’s not. The cups are still a smidge too tall near the strap. However, I find that the newer styles with the trim prevent the center spillage I got with the original plunge even after wearing for a full day and being fairly active, although I have to scoop & swoop towards the outside. My short roots are the only problem area, causing some strap gap and chafing of the outside edge of the cup towards my armpit. The binding prevents all gaping when standing, but still gapes when slouching or sitting forward, which is a combination of my breast tissue type and the unavoidable fact of moulded cup bras.
Bra sizing is complicated because people and boobs come in all shapes and sizes. Manufacturers can’t fit all sizes and shapes into every bra. But having short roots and shoulders combined with very soft tissue is by far my greatest fit complication. If Freya made a Deco Plunge in size 28G-petite, with reduced cup height, I think I would have the perfect, everyday t-shirt bra for life.
Are there any bras that are almost perfect for you if you could just change one thing? What is your most common fit issue? Let me know in the comments 🙂
Freya Deco Plunge info-hub on Reddit (2016)
Freya Deco: A Hate Letter, by The Petite Collegiate (2015)
Petite & Plentiful Deco guide (2013)
Freya Deco bra family weekly discussion on Reddit (2015)
Freya Deco Vibe review by ProperlyFitted on Bratabase Blog (2014)