Ask The Expert: Va Bien's Marianne Gimble Answers Your Shapewear Questions

February 11, 2011 by Justine Schwartz
shefinds | Weddings

BRIDEfinds sat down with Marianne Gimble of Va Bien, a 30-year veteran in finding the perfect shapewear for brides. Marianne answered some of our burning bridal foundation questions:

I’m just starting out – what should I look for when choosing a foundation?

Choosing the right foundation for your body type and dress will be driven by the features of the dress, specifically: neckline, back, strap styling, cut design, and fabrics. A long list, but all are important. If the cut of the dress is form fitting, like a mermaid style, a shapewear piece that accentuates an hourglass figure will be best. Regarding fabrics, the main idea is to eliminate show-through:

For a thin, light-colored, satin dress, you’ll need something nude and seamless like this Fanny Fabulous High Waist Brief ($56)

How far in advance to my wedding do I need to get fitted for my foundation? And do I need my gown at the appointment?

Before the first dress fitting. You should wear it during each dress fitting and I do suggest bringing the gown to the foundation fitting, or at least some clear pictures (front and back). I also suggest buying a foundation that fits on the loosest hook if you plan to lose weight as the wedding approaches – that reduces the chance that it will have to be altered later on.

I’m on a budget. Are there any cost-cutting tips you can share when it comes to choosing shapewear?

The right shapewear will actually save you money by helping you fit into a discounted dress. If the dress does not fit perfectly, the foundation can help.

For a great deal, this Va Bien Smooth Couture Brief ($33.75, down from $45) is 25% off on Bare Necessities.

I hate wearing strapless bras. Have you found any that stay put?

Everyone knows the problems associated with strapless bras, such as slippage and drooping. Va Bien’s research and development team determined that the root cause of these problems was in the foam bra cup. Va Bien developed a patented process called Ultra-Lift, whereby three thin plastic stays are invisibly sealed within each foam cup – the stays, called “magic fingers,” hold the bust high.

The Ultra-Lift strapless bra ($55) is your best bet for the big day.

My body type is apple shaped – any tips? Also, I’m big-busted.

I would recommend a bustier for the apple or pear shaped woman, to create as much of an hourglass silhouette as possible. For the large busted woman, certainly something with extra-supportive bra cups – and if a strapless bra is not up to the task, a bustier can do an even more effective job holding the bust high, as the boning inside the bodice helps hold up the cups.

Create an hour glass figure with this Va Bien: Ultra-Lift Seamless Bustier ($75).

For more wedding day solutions, check out our guides to the best cheap wedding invitations, customized wedding favors, and strapless wedding dresses.

From Our Partners

Learn more about RevenueStripe...

From Our Partners

Learn more about RevenueStripe...


9 Mistakes Couples Make At Their Wedding

May 31, 2018 by Linda DiProperzio


8 Things Couples Should Do As Soon As They Pick The Wedding Venue

May 29, 2018 by Linda DiProperzio
Very important.


8 Ways For Couples To Save Money & Cut Their Wedding Budget In HALF

May 24, 2018 by Linda DiProperzio
You can thank us later!


Thanks To Meghan Markle, Halter Wedding Dresses Are About To Be HUGE: Shop Now

May 23, 2018 by Jessica Harrington
You don't need a royal budget to afford these.


15 Wedding Trends That Are In For 2019

May 23, 2018 by Linda DiProperzio


6 Products Meghan Markle Used For Her Royal Wedding Makeup

May 23, 2018 by Emily Belfiore
It's SO easy to copy!


6 Wedding Dresses That Look JUST LIKE Meghan Markle's Gown

May 21, 2018 by Lisa Fogarty
Fit for a princess!


7 Things Your Parents Shouldn't Do At Your Wedding

May 17, 2018 by Linda DiProperzio
We would have never even guessed these!


Meghan Markle's Reception Dress Is Going To Be Surprisingly Sexy

May 17, 2018 by Lisa Fogarty
All eyes will be on her.


Who Is Walking Meghan Markle Down The Aisle? Here's Everything We Know So Far!

May 17, 2018 by Emily Belfiore
We did NOT see this coming!


19 Wedding Trends That Are Out For 2019

May 15, 2018 by Linda DiProperzio
Kiss these goodbye.


All The Details On Meghan Markle's Gorgeous Wedding Veil

May 15, 2018 by Lisa Fogarty
She's going to look so elegant!


8 Ways To Surprise Your Groom & Make Him Feel Special On The Big Day

When it comes to wedding planning, the groom oftentimes takes ...


7 TMI Wedding Questions Every Bride Is Afraid To Ask (But Really Wants To)

Every bride has her list of worries about her wedding ...


7 Things Every Bride Forgets When Posing For Wedding Photos

You’ll no doubt treasure your wedding photos for a ...