Van De Velde - the family name whom own Primadonna, Marie Jo and Andres Sarda, have been designing and creating lingerie since 1919. They began by making bespoke garments for independent retailers and in 1940 began producing specific lines. But it wasn't until 1980 that they became a "Brand" as we know today. Their motto has always been "Fashion with Functionality".
Today a line of lingerie takes approximately 18 months...from concept to shipping. During this process 45 employees (including pattern makers, production engineers and material sourcing specialists) plus 6 designers and a brand manager embark on a journey of mood boards and fashion books. The material and lace is sourced from only the finest suppliers and then no less than 120 prototypes are made of which only 25 are then selected. These are then taken on a "Test Trip" to gain feedback from the commercial sector. From this: 32, 34, 36D models are made for the "Fit Test". Many wear tests are done to check the wear ability and wash ability of the product. Once these tests are complete, further sizes are created in the C cup and the E cup and the whole process starts again!
This is all done in Belgium where there is the freedom to make the alterations necessary before the product is finally signed off and technical books are made for mass production.
It's all in the detail. The technical drawings and material requests are all incredibly precise to ensure that each product is made to the exact specification to guarantee the fit. For example, 20 stitches must be present every 5cm to give the right amount of elasticity for that particular product.
Each product file that is sent for production outside Belgium is at least 45 pages long per line.
All materials are sourced from Europe and are tested in Belgium. No lace or embroidery is cut by robots, it is all done by hand. Production of each line takes approximately 2 months, all of which are checked by hand for quality control.
You will not find PrimaDonna, PrimaDonna Twist, PrimaDonna Swim, Marie Jo, Marie Jo L'Aventure or Marie Jo Swim in any department store. The Van De Velde Family and their share holders only sell to us, the independent lingerie specialists, because they know that we are the best in our industry. They want every woman to be fitted correctly in the best bra - their bra - for their body.
Foundations have to agree. PrimaDonna and MarieJo products are truly beautiful and practical and if you care for your lingerie and swimwear correctly, they can last for years, making the price of these garments much more inviting. Why spend £15 on a bra that doesn't fit, is uncomfortable - and therefore rarely worn - which will probably end up in the bin? Yes £87.99 is a lot of money, but if you come into store to get fitted properly (a free service that we offer) think this:
1. Is it comfortable? Yes!
2. Do I look slimmer and do my clothes fit better? Yes!
3. Is it beautiful and makes me feel special? Yes!
4. Is it worth the price tag? Yes!!!
This is not a statistic that we have discovered online, this is from serving and fitting ladies for the last 4 years. An uncomfortable and "cheap" bra is worn a couple of times before being relegated to the bottom of your lingerie drawer, destined only for the charity bra bin. A good fitting, high quality bra is washed and worn relentlessly until 1 day - normally 18 months later - it hasn't given up the ghost, but you just know you need a new one as you've literally lived in it.
Work it out "per wear" then you'll feel better: If you, like the customers we've spoken to, wear it every week (and this is only once, assuming you have other bras to work around) for 18 months, that works out than less than £1 per wear, compared to a £15 bra that's worn twice which is £7.50 per wear. It's all in the maths ladies...Invest in your chest!