Boux Avenue Chloe Bra and Shorts Set in 28G

I ordered the Chloe Lace Balconette Bra in Coral in UK 28G and the corresponding Lace Shorts in a UK 8. This bra is priced at a very reasonable £24 and  there was a special offer running whereby you could buy the bra and knicker set for £25 - pretty genius deal in my opinion because I never usually buy matching underpants with my bras.
The yellow tag is a small piece of ribbon with the size printed on it. Pretty useful if you're trying a bunch of bras on in a shop!
Boux avenue has only recently started to venture outside of the bra size matrix (32-38 AA-DD, the sizes most commnly sold by UK and US retailers), so I wasn't expecting the bra to be scaled amazingly as I bought it - especially in their smallest band/largest cup combination of 28G. The bra is sold in sizes 28-36 A-G, 38 B-G.
At the checkout, I was pleasantly surprised to find a choice of either free "eco-friendly" packaging or free gift wrapping. I went for the gift wrapping so you all could see what it's like!


As you can see, the box it comes in is well presented and I think the petals are a nice touch. What disappoints me is the way the bra was packed. When will companies learn that squashing one cup into the other is a bad idea? I understand it saves space but it can really damage a bra. Surely it'd be much better to fold the bra by the gore and use some kind of stuffing so the cups keep their shape?

I almost want to give it some tylenol...


Onto the bra itself. Although I'm not hugely into overly traditionally feminine underwear, this bra really appealed to me with its vibrant (but not tacky) coral colour and subtle but interesting lace design.
I really liked how the lace continued onto the back of the bra - not something I expected at this price point - as I feel that it makes a bra come across as thoughtfully designed. The strap design is fresh for the full bust industry, and I like the rose in the middle of the bow on the gore.


Technical details: The bra is a three part padded and seamed cup with the high gore and fuller coverage typical of 'balconettes'. It's underwired and has plastic side boning. It is a full banded bra with fully adjustable straps.

The bra isn't of the highest quality - the materials don't feel luxurious but they're certainly not inadequate and the quality is pretty much as I expected at this price point. I do like the metal hardware though, it always make a bra feel stronger, more ready to take on the day. The lace itself is quite itchy, the inner lining feels a little cheap and scratchy too, as well as the foam being oddly stretchy? Is that a thing? The foam on the cups curls out some due to a seam on the edge of the cups, giving the impression of gaping where there is none. The lace just below the gore is sewn onto itself, permanently folding it, which doesn't bother me too much, but it does make the bra look cheaper and quite asymmetrical.

The delicate strap design with two smaller ribbons attaching to the cup is cute but it really is delicate. They're only attacked with a few stitches in the centre which warp the strap fabric outwards and look like they could snap or fall out at any minute.

See how much it's pulling on the centre of the strap?
This definitely contributed to me returning the bra as I didn't feel secure or even really safe in the bra.

Fit of the bra:

The shape from the side is quite boxy and minimised, which I'm not really a fan of.

The cups are a bit of an unusual shape. While the wires are surprisingly narrow (a good thing for me and my incredibly narrow roots!)*, the cups have a lot of room in the outer halves and not at the centre near the gore. This pushed my normally very centre full breasts out to the side, causing my arms to hit my boobs and rub against the cups (which was quite uncomfortable with the scratchy lace when not wearing a top).

*Edit: While on paper the wires sound quite wide, they are pretty firm and don't widen much when wearing at all. Most wires, especially bands like Freya, will widen by a few mm when worn, but these don't, really.

It looks like there's some gapping here but really it's just that the cups are curling outwards. You can see my boobs bursting forth out of the middle!
While some people like this fit aspect, it doesn't mesh well with the shape of my breasts and ultimately I need much more room in the centre, which is why the gore doesn't tack.
The cups don't have that much depth at the bottom of the wire either for a seamed bra, but the apex depth isn't too shabby.

However you can see how much the bra is riding below my inframammary fold due to my requirement for lots of immediate depth (I must note now that a wire fitting in my inframammary fold perfectly is almost impossible due to a rib flare, but well fitting bras can get very close). You can also see just how narrow I need my wires to be!

The cups are also very open on the top, which you can see best in the 45 degree shot above. As I'm in between a G and a GG on a 28 band this suits me quite well and stops my breasts spilling out, which leads me to believe the bra was designed to "fit badly, well", as this can hide a too small cup (like it does on me).

The band is slightly snug for a 28, stretching to 27.7", but on the tightest hooks it doesn't ride up on my 25.5" underbust. If I kept this bra I would have to alter it (like all of the 28s I own).

I believe this bra would work for a person with a moderately narrow, tall shape with outer fullness, not requiring much immediate depth, average overall projection and who has the sewing ability to reinforce the straps.

Bratabase Measurements:

Fit of the Knickers:

I found the shorts a little snug for a UK 8, if you're in between sizes perhaps size up. The pants are entirely sheer lace except for the gusset, which starts quite low down so only wear these if you're not afraid to have your bits partially exposed. I can't vouch for the comfort of the lace as I tried them on over another pair as I am returning them because the bra doesn't fit.


I like the aesthetics of the bra, but the scaling and cup shape could do with some work to fit a larger number of breast shapes or even a more common combination of breast shapes. I don't feel cheated out of my money in terms of quality but the strap issue isn't something I can overlook, even at the relatively low price of £24. I wouldn't recommend the set to most people needing a moderate to significant amount of bust support based on this, but I haven't been put off buying from Boux Avenue again.

14/08/16 Update:

I contacted Boux Avenue's customer service primarily about the strap issue, and I got a response in two days saying that my feedback has been forwarded to the Lingerie Technicians, so if anything further comes from that I'll let you know.