Marie Jo is the younger sister of PrimaDonna. Designed by a team in Finland that is dedicated to the creation of beautifully detailed and expertly engineered pieces, Marie Jo lingerie features refined designs for today’s fashion conscious women.
Marie Jo maintains a panel of women of all body shapes and cup sizes to ensure the highest standards of fit and function. Each Mary Jo item receives 25 to 30 minutes of hands-on quality assurance before leaving the warehouse.
With many styles and designs to choose from, the Marie Jo Avero (the famous “daisy” bra) is by far our best selling item at Ela. We have one of the largest Bay Area collections of Marie Jo lingerie in an enormous range of sizes, styles and colors.
Marie Jo L’Aventure is a sub-brand with designs intended for the young, or young at heart, at moderate price points that reflect the same quality standards as the Marie Jo lines.
Andres Sarda lingerie was founded in the early 1960’s in Barcelona, Spain, and quickly developed a reputation as one of the most beautiful and sexy lingerie lines in all of Europe. From the outset, Andres Sarda targeted the woman with a mind of her own looking for luxury, quality and comfort combined with innovation sensuality and a daring color palette. The designer also designs exquisite swimwear.
Several years ago, the Andres Sarda line and design team was acquired by the Van de Velde Group in Schellebelle, Belgium, the parent company to the PrimaDonna and MarieJo brands. Van de Velde has wisely retained the Sarda design and fashion flair, while significantly expanding the range of available sizes and dramatically improving the sophistication and functionality of the actual bra designs to support fuller figures.
While we always carry a wide range of Sarda lingerie and sleepwear in our boutique, we can also now special order sizes, designs, and colors directly from Van de Velde on a personalized basis, taking advantage of the company’s advanced electronic ordering and production system, which is virtually unique in the industry. As we sell one of the largest volumes of the entire range of Van de Velde lines in California, we maintain an excellent working relationship with the company, with significant benefits for our customers.
There is no finer lingerie in the world. The company was founded in the 1950’s in France’s capital of gastronomy, Lyon. Fittingly, Lise Charmel lingerie is literally a feast for the eyes. For more than half a century, the company has built its identity and reputation by offering the most beautiful lingerie available and prides itself on constant innovation.
Today, the Lise Charmel Group encompasses four individual brands: Lise Charmel for the fashion connoisseur; Eprise with the same fabrics and fashion forward designs for the fuller figured woman; and Antigel and Antinea, which is aimed at a somewhat younger customer with a more moderate budget. Regardless of age and shape, the Lise Charmel woman is a woman of high expectations who wants the perfect fit, the best materials and the highest quality available.
Lise Charmel was among the first in the industry to use guipure (those without a backing) and elastic laces using the finest silks and other fabrics from Switzerland and France. Lise Charmel designs also incorporate special design and construction techniques that are unique in the industry. Designs feature rich embroideries, opulent fabrics, soft tulles and fine attention to detail. In short, Lise Charmel lingerie is designed to please the most refined tastes, and devoted to the service of women who love fine lingerie.
We carry a full line of Lise Charmel lingerie and exquisite sleepwear, which we replenish as much as four times per year. We also work to ensure that we carry a broad range of colors and designs for every occasion. Case in point, the Lise Charmel bridal collections are the highlight of our store.
PrimaDonna has existed for more than a century. Since its inception it has sought to design perfect-fitting lingerie for naturally curved women who take a fuller cup. Available all the way up to a J cup, PrimaDonna gives women the right support, always fits perfectly and creates an elegant female form.
Because of the functional requirements of supporting larger breasts, PrimaDonna bras are complex garments, carefully engineered to provide the correct balance of comfort and support. A single PrimaDonna bra can consist of more than 40 pieces, and can take from 30 minutes or more to stitch a completed garment. Cheap bras have fewer than half the parts and typically take at most 10 minutes to stitch.
While famous for fit and support, PrimaDonna also features beautiful materials and a spectrum of colors and styles. 10 years ago, the brand introduced the Spacer bra, constructed with a unique material that produces an attractive shape without making the bosom appear larger. The Spacer rapidly wicks away perspiration, making the bra comfortable on hot or busy days.
PrimaDonna offers bras suitable for everyday use, as well as fashion lines suitable for any special occasion. The company also introduced the Twist line, which emphasizes lined foam cups, young styles, and a range of colors and prints.
The designer also recently introduced its new PrimaDonna Swimwear collection. Women requiring large cups can now take advantage of PrimaDonna’s legendary fit, quality and gorgeous designs at the beach and at the pool. Once fitted at Ela, custom ordering can provide beautiful swimsuits for women with cup sizes up to J.
Mimi Holliday is a line created by British designer Damaris Evans. Starting from her kitchen and a 5,000 British pound grant from the Prince’s Trust in 2001, Evans created a lingerie brand now found in 37 countries. In England herself, the eponymous Selfridges introduced Damaris lingerie to great acclaim (and a first ever waiting list for lingerie). How British is Mimi Holliday? Well, let’s just say that one orders “knickers” when one wants panties.
Mimi Holliday is a diffusion or 2nd line from the Damaris empire. The line is designed for younger women in search of frilly, flirty, ultimately feminine underwear in beautiful silks and laces, and at a price point that fits most everyone’s budget. As Damaris Evans describes them: “…my designs are luxurious, fun, interesting, cool and essentially, functional.” We could not have said it any better.
One of the only lingerie designers we can think of to have been asked to serve as a major museum’s guest curator (at Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum), Marlies Dekkers hit the fashion world like a bomb with her first “undressed” collection in 1993. We bought our first Marlies Dekkers pieces soon after opening Ela, and were among the first boutiques in the US to carry her lines. We love the refined, edgy look and the exquisite and sophisticated design, engineering and construction that beautifully fit just about every body on the planet.
Worn by celebrities on both sides of the Atlantic, The Marlies Dekkers signature collection of lingerie designs has become iconic. As an early pioneer of the “innerwear as outerwear” trend, Dekkers’ designs are seen nationally and internationally as trendsetting, innovative and pioneering.
The Aubade brand was founded in France more than a half century ago and has become known for one of the most successful, fashion-forward lines in the entire industry. If any of our lines can be described as “sensual,” Aubade would be the first to come to mind. Still designed and manufactured in France, Aubade maintains long-term collaborations with Calais makers of the famous leavers lace and Swiss embroiderers to create lingerie of elegance and distinction.
The Aubade customer learns to love the refined sexiness of the lines, and the way that the lingerie can totally change the overall appearance of the clothed body. Aubade is the very essence of refined French lingerie. We carry a wide range of it, and also selectively offer Aubade swimwear.
When we first opened Ela, we carried several lines of Italian lingerie. Sadly, many of these were too small to survive the great recession. Valery, headquartered in Torino, Italy and still owned by the same family, has been with us from the beginning, and is thankfully still in business. We love the brand’s lavish use of fine Leavers lace and beautiful Italian fabrics. We carry both the lingerie lines and Valery sleepwear. Valery is entirely designed and made in Italy, and is found in the best national and international boutiques. Valery conveys a special feeling of luxury.