This is the fourth corset I’ve ever made, and the second for myself. The first two were very scruffy underthings for theatre, following a pattern, and the third one for myself was so bad I took it to bits for the parts.
This is the first corset I have made which fits my somewhat tricky shape in a flattering way. It's also my first hand binding and my first go at flossing.
I was originally going to embellish with black velvet seam ribbons, but I liked the fashion fabric so much (and was pleased I got all the seams straight) that I decided to leave it plain and have a go at black flossing instead. The fabric is crepe-backed satin, and has the most wonderful lustre which makes me think of moonlight.
The corset has two layers, one of cotton coutil, one of poly crepe-backed satin, with black silk flossing. I went for a black lacing panel as I think it has more impact and makes it a little less “wedding”. It has 12 panels, a spoon busk and 30 bones, using artificial whalebone. I also went for using sewn on boning channels. I also attempted to cover he busk, but the satin stretched slightly so this wasn’t quite perfect.
I drafted the pattern using Cathy’s drafting tutorial on FR, and have used so many other articles to inspire and guide me, not least Nikki’s seam article, Laura’s boning channel article, Jenni’s boning type article, and Andrea’s flossing articles! I went for a Victorian low bust shape as I am planning an 1860’s outfit in the near future.
I loved working with white fabric, which is something I never thought I’d say, and using black for embellishing, even if just for flossing, makes it feel very smart and “finished”. I’m very pleased with the fit, there’s no overspill at the top and it feels very comfortable. It was originally drafted with a two inch gap, but we got it fully closed during photographing, and I was still comfortable.
As a last comment, it’s a miracle that this corset exists at all. When I had cut out all of the panels, I had to clear my workroom to have a new radiator fitted, and the plumber managed to spill an entire mug of coffee all over my white satin…. Turns out coffee washes out of polyester satin a lot more easily than out of cotton coutil. Thank goodness for Vanish!