Currently Living: San Diego area, California, USA
Favorite bra: I love the Freya Deco bra (even though it doesn't come in my exact size)
I would love to own: A bunch of Ewa Michalak bras!
I became a fan of well-fitting bras when I was 19 and went from a 36DD to a 30G (current size 28H/HH). No more back pain!
San Diego, CA, USA
Pop 1.3 million
San Diego is a beautiful city. I love the weather and the fact that it's so close to the beach! The landscaping is beautiful and varied, with mountains, valleys, beaches, orchards, and desert all within driving distance of each other. However, it can tend to feel quite crowded in some areas (especially during tourist season).
The shop that most people tend to go for bras and fittings is Victoria's Secret, sadly. The last time I was there, they "measured" me to be a 34C/D! I see women and girls all the time wearing clothing and (ill-fitting) bras from VS.
A better option in terms of more sizes and fitting is Nordstrom. They, at least, carry 30 band sizes, and depending on the store, they can have several selections even in larger cup sizes. However, even Nordstrom fitters have not been the greatest at fitting me in particular. I go there every once in a while to try on bras in my sister size if they have any, and invariably the fitters will try to get me into sizes like 32G and 30G (because that's what they carry). During my most recent visit, the fitter declared some 30GG Freya bras "too big" in the cup, but when I actually tightened the band all the way and adjusted the straps, it was obvious that the cups were a bit small, if anything (along with the band being too big). If I left it up to Nordstrom, I would probably be wearing a size like 30G or even 32FF and wondering why I was still having back and shoulder pain.
San Diego also boasts an Intimacy store (one of about 15 in the U.S.). They do carry cups up to J or K, and a few band sizes of 30 in some cups. However, when I say "a few", I do mean a few. When I visited in April 2012, there was one drawer for 30 bands in E+ cups in the whole store, and I found just 2 or 3 bras above a G cup. I will say that they do offer to special order in bras that they carry that come in larger cup sizes, and they will alter down bands for you. Still, there was nothing that fit me in the store and few, if any, options for doing a special order for me.
The San Diego area also has a few small bra boutiques. The one I'd heard the best things about was The Enchantress, so I visited the store in March 2012. I was delighted that they carried 28 bands; however, they only carried them up to G cups. So close, but yet so far! I was also disappointed in the fitting at The Enchantress. I was wearing a 28GG that I knew was too small for me in the cup, but by the end of the appointment, the fitter had made me try on 32FF bras, told me that a 30 band was tight enough for me, and guilted me into buying a 30G bra (which, incidentally, is much too big in the band and too small in the cup for me).
To sum the bra shopping situation up: Despite the fact that San Diego/Southern California has better options than many other U.S. cities (namely, it is possible to find GG+ cups in larger band sizes here, there is a fair variety of 30 bands in many cup sizes, and it's even possible to find 28 bands if you're a G or under cup), ultimately I'm still unable to actually buy a bra in my correct size in a physical store. Generally, then, I'm stuck ordering online.
I've helped some of my friends find the correct bra size (both in San Diego and in East Texas, where I lived for several years). Yay for converts! However, most of them have needed to order their new sizes online as well. I'm sure some of my friends think I'm strange for my bra obsession and blogging, but I can't help it! ;)