Simply Chic
By Vivien Fellegi

An Owner's Bra-vado

Simply Chic, an elegant lingerie store, seduces the customer with rack upon rack of underclothing from Europe and the U.S. There are lacy red bras to make you feel alluring, snug-fitting white training bras that keep breasts in place, and seamless grey T-shirt bras that offer a smooth look. Further back there are silky black and red teddies, bright costume jewellery, and trendy tan handbags.

Owner Henny Varga presides over all this bounty. “Lingerie isn’t about sex. It’s about being a woman,” says Henny, tapping her fuchsia fingernails purposefully on the counter as she makes a point. She is formally attired in a dark blue blazer and black heels.

Henny discovered a penchant for lingerie as a young woman, when she began indulging in high quality bras and robes. She thought about opening up her own business selling women’s wear but, instead, got her first job at a bar in a hotel.  “It was fun, every day different people came in,” she says. But after a few years she resented having to manage young people who didn’t share her strong work ethic. So when a vacancy opened up in a property on the Kingsway, she marshalled her bravado and opened Simply Chic.

The people skills Henny honed in her previous job come in handy at the lingerie store, where she prides herself on her knack for service.  “We small stores care,” she says.

Every woman has to be happy and proud of what she puts on. - Henny Varga, owner
Henny Varga is the owner of Simply Chic.

A Good Fit

Simply Chic has turned out to be a good fit for Henny. She can nail a customer’s bra size with just one glance, but she enters the dressing room with the client to ensure that she’s right. She says a perfectly fitted bra should be snug around the rib cage, and its straps should pop when you insert a finger underneath.

Henny also fits mastectomy patients; she selects a silicone breast form, which matches the natural breast, and inserts it into a pouch in a special bra. “When they find the right one, they look like they did before,” says Henny. “Their eyes just light up,”

Wearing the right bra is critical for comfort, says Henny.  An oversized bra pulls on the chest muscles, but if the bra is too small, the supporting wires can dig into the bust. “When it fits it doesn’t hurt,” she explains.

Simply Chic, an elegant lingerie store, seduces the customer with bras, swimsuits, jewellery, and handbags from Europe and the U.S.
Simply Chic, an elegant lingerie store, seduces the customer with bras, swimsuits, jewellery, and handbags from Europe and the U.S.

Bosom Buddies

Today business is booming at Simply Chic. Often Henny has come to know three generations of customers. Many have become bosom buddies – she even sends birthday cards to some clients.  Sometimes husbands come in alone to treat their wives to lingerie. Henny knows the women’s sizes and tastes, and discreetly helps them choose the right gift.

Henny, too, is thriving. What she enjoys most is helping women feel comfortable in their bodies. “Every woman has to be happy and proud of what she puts on,” says Henny.  One woman whom Henny had sized properly told her “I could kiss you, I look so good.” These compliments make everything worthwhile. Henny adds, “If women’s self-esteem goes up, that’s very nice.”

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