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29 January 2013 @ 12:10 pm

A few months ago, I posted my mockup progress on a 1890ish corset. I actually all but finished it back in October and wore it as the support layer at Steamcon. I had the binding machined one one side, but wore it without hand stitching it down on the inside. Worked great under my Victorian dress, looked awful by itself. A few months later I finally finished that binding, and can show it to you guys :)

Yay Shaping!

Just as a quick visual summary, below are my first and second mockups.

Mockup #1Mockup #2 Dark Side

Adding the busk and other proper boning (instead of thin zipties) made a huge improvement in the overall fit.  Big surprise right?  :D

Center FrontLeft Front

I think there is still a tiny bit of tilt to the busk, but not enough to bother me.  I thought that the busk would be tricky to get in, but after checking out How to Insert a Busk by Sidney Eileen, and trying it myself, it was no problem at all.  Yay for easy sewing!

Right Back

I got most of my supplies from Farthingales, including the nifty lacing tape.  I honestly did not want to deal with grommeting, so I was thought that the lacing tape was a very clever alternative!  And it worked perfectly.  The only problem is that I did not figure the extra two inches it added in my patterning, thus the tape took up the amount of space I had intended for the typical 1-2" lacing gap.  I can lace it closed very easily, and have enough room/squish to lace it down more, the corset as it stands is just too big for that.  I'll remember it for next time.


I am very proud of how neat the inside is, especially compared to my first one.  It's two layers, thin but strong brocade outside and canvas inside.  The bones are all spiral except for the front pair next to the busk and back next to the grommet tape.

Binding DetailExtra Bust Boning

The top of the bust line end up a bit too big, so before I bound the edge, I put a small and mostly invisible dart next to the bone that goes directly over the bust.  That dart made it fit so much better, and I haven't found any issues with it yet.  The tiny bit of additional bust boning is just made from small plastic zipties. 

Day 23 - New CorsetI feel pretty!

I love how I feel in it.
No back-muffin or bust over spill at all.
Even though there are improvements that could be made next time, I am very pleased with the overall shape of the corset.
I can wear it as an excellent foundation piece for Victorian costuming, which is what it was primarily made for.
I can also wear it under modern clothing, like above, although it takes a special outfit, and even then isn't completely invisible.
It's a very comfortable garment.
Even though I didn't make it as an outerwear piece, I still think that it came out rather pretty.

Cons/things to improve next time:
No lacing gap, and a smidge too large.
The waist proportionally can be a tiny bit smaller.
The lacing strip does not match the fabric (I might be able to dye it though?)
Sturdier fabric might be good, and may reduce some of the slight wrinkling.
The very bottom of the front does not meet.

Bust: 36"
Waist: 26"
Hips: 38"
Length of Center Front: 15.5"

Cross posted to my journal.

unclrashid: tailsunclrashid on January 29th, 2013 08:39 pm (UTC)
Very nice shape!

For your next one, you could put the lacing strips on the inside of the corset if you make sure the bones are not in the way of where you want the stiching line to run. Line them up with the edge of the lacing strip matching or just inside the edge of the corset back opening, You would probably need to hand tack the edges of the strip to the corset in a few places. This would limit your options for lacing in that you would have to lace it before you put it on, close the busk and then tighten it up. You probably couldn't adjust the lacing much withouot taking it off. Alternatively, you could make little cover flaps from the brocade and sew them on just past the edge of the lacing strips, and add snaps to hold them over the white strips. You might only need 5 or 6 snaps per flap, rather than one in between each lacing hole.
tristage: firehorsetristage on January 31st, 2013 02:09 am (UTC)
What a great suggestion for the flaps. Very inventive.
Beespoke: pic#115796906beespoke on January 29th, 2013 09:36 pm (UTC)
Very pretty and fits you very well! Some things that I might do to fix the areas you are not completely happy with. (And this may be overkill, but I say, bone, bone and more bone. lol) Panel next to center back could use several bones. 1/4" flats or spiral, whichever you prefer. Not only will this give more support, but will also (and I say, probably) give you more of a lacing gap, as the bones will take up the corset a bit. Hip areas: Add some bones there too. You could insert some 1/2" bones and would probably (again, I say probably) give you a much smoother hip area. ) Also, make sure your bones are reaching all the way down to your bindings on bottom, especially hip areas. If there is a gap, your bindings will ride up a bit and will wrinkle there. (I realize that you have hand stitched your interior bindings and you have done a marvelous job! At the risk of blood drops - been there, do that, you would need to redo the bottom binding for all of these suggestions to work.) Finally, the simplest fix of all, when your bottom bindings don't meet exactly at center front or center back, undo them, make sure that your bottom edges without bindings are perfectly the same length and rebind. Do one side first, and then make a mark on the other side exactly where you have stitched the previous side. Voila! Patience and persistence wins the game. :)
Beespoke: pic#115796906beespoke on January 29th, 2013 09:39 pm (UTC)
P.S. As far as the lacing strips, I've never used them before so have no idea. Dying is a great idea I would think. Investing in a decent grommet press and making your own is the way to go long term though. Just IMO.

P.S.S. I LOVE how you've boned (corded?) the outside of the bust area. Very nice touch!

Edited at 2013-01-29 09:42 pm (UTC)
liten_sakliten_sak on January 30th, 2013 01:20 pm (UTC)
That looks lovely and gives you a nice shape! What worries me though is that I have used lacing tape a lot when doing mockups and they look like they are the same kind you used. After a few uses the eyelets have popped out in a few of them, they are so small and fragile. I hope yours hold up better! Otherwise there are some neat tools out there for setting eyelets without having to use a hammer if that´s what´s intimidating you.
tristage: firehorsetristage on January 31st, 2013 02:11 am (UTC)
Unfortunately I have had the same experience with the lacing tape in my mock ups, but hopefully that won't be the case here.
Anna: Margayrabid_bookwyrm on January 31st, 2013 06:22 am (UTC)
Very nice! Indeed, what a difference the right stuff makes.