Body Architect by Anya Kovacs   Body Architect by Anya Kovacs  

  Body Architect by Anya Kovacs  Body Architect by Anya Kovacs

Body Architect by Anya Kovacs  

Body Architect by Anya Kovacs

 

 

Body Architect

Anya Kovacs, South Africa (The Velvet Letter)

IG: velvetletter

Photographer: Ambra Photography & Makeup

 

The Design

This year’s entry was a happy accident - I was looking for a mermaid but I found a cathedral instead...

Stone arches rise up, merging and converging in hard, geometric patterns. There are no flourishes of fussy ornament, no gaudy paint to call your eyes from the towering temple. Only curves and angles to admire. Simple materials crafted into magnificently complex structure, rigorous discipline designs a swooping, soaring space that feels both airy and deeply rooted to the earth. Like a magic trick, all that stone, hanging high above your head. A cave for gods. A force of nature, tamed.

All corsets are inherently architectural: they must balance the force of the skeletal and muscular structures against the tensile strength of the fabrics they are made from. They use a skeletal system of steel or plastic to maintain smooth lines. Lines that flow so gently they belie the subtle force the corset applies to the body underneath. In corsetry, as in architecture, both form and function must be carefully balanced to achieve a harmonious result.

 

The Construction

I loved the Other Worlds theme* as I had a corseted mermaid that I was itching to make. I decided to make my mermaid anyway, just to be vaguely taking part in the competition and to make something that pleased me.

But when I made the first mock up of the corset dress that was to be the base of my mermaid, I was struck by how naturally architectural the garment was. It reminded me strongly of weathered gothic cathedrals, with soaring arches and sparse ornamentation.

There were also distinct Bettie Page overtones, which made my pin-up heart beat a little faster. I took a lot of inspiration from fetish corset dresses, particularly in their partial exposure of the wearer’s bottom, which I exaggerated, and in their deliberate restriction of the wearer's mobility.

I used my favorite method of construction: single layer coutil with 5mm spiral steels either side of each seam, enclosed in twill tape on the inside. No lining, just neat 1mm stitches and an exposed internal waist tape. Edges bound in black silk taffeta. Front zip closure with internal and external plackets for comfort (I love busks too, but they don’t make ‘em this long!) A combination of 5mm spiral and 6mm flat steel boning throughout, from rib to knee.

 

What was it like to compete this year? What would you say to someone who is on the fence about entering next year?

As someone who relishes ornament of all kinds it is pretty scary to submit something so pared-back. No covering ‘flaws’ with lace, or dazzling the eye with rhinestones here! It’s terrifying!

I love this piece and I'm grateful to the competition for giving me the push I needed to get going with the project. It's nice to have a hard deadline for a personal project - I have too many unfinished projects languishing sadly in my workroom!

 

Editor's note: Foundations Revealed Members were invited to vote for this year's theme from a choice of three options, which were taken from suggestions made by those who entered in 2018. One of the discarded themes was "Other Worlds".

Gravatar
galadriel
This is very beautiful corset, I am really glad you chose to take part when the theme did not immediately inspire you.
Gravatar
Anya
I will be trying to remember this for future years!
Gravatar
clockwork_faerie
Last edited on 01.03.2019 16:29 by Michelle Fitzgerald
So cool! I love the lace up back. And I'm super impressed you bound it with taffeta!
Gravatar
Anya
Taffeta is so lovely to work with as a binding! And I had some left over from another project;)
Gravatar
The shaping is glorious, and there is always something captivating about how lacing looks going of the curves underneath. Beautiful piece!
Gravatar
Anya
Thank you so much! Nothing quite like a loooong line of eyelits <3
Gravatar
kitty mortensen
Oh wow, it looks stunning! Great job, amazing finish
Gravatar
Anya
Thank you!
Gravatar
artoftheneedle
I love your take on the theme; your interpretation of going for structure like you do in every building. I see the fetish side of it, the Bettie Page, all those beautiful curves. And yes, I feel you as well.."simplicity" is daunting, because you need to be even more precise in your work. And you have managed it all <3
Gravatar
Anya
Thank you! I'm glad that I went for the smooth surface in the end;)
Gravatar
royalblack
This is beautiful, Anya!
I think that what you said about corsets being architectural in itself is very true and your design showcases that perfectly. Such simple and elegant curves and lines and perfectly photographed as well. Bravo!

Gravatar
Anya
Thank you Barbara - at times I felt like I was being too simplistic in my interpretation of the theme so I'm happy to know other people feel the connection!
Gravatar
jema
Chic, structural and elegant curves, I love the bold lacing detail and the time spent getting the pattern and shape just right to create that harmonious balance of structure and design :)
Gravatar
Anya
Thank you:)
Gravatar
lyrisdesign
Lovely work Anya, so smooth and elegant and sleek!
Gravatar
Anya
Thank you! It's a challenging garment to wear, but very fun watching people's reactions!
Gravatar
bernadettebanner
The construction of this is so smooth and the design so clever! As they say, 'business in the front, party in the back'!
Gravatar
Anya
I love that! I just need to arrange a 'private party' to shoot this without a dress underneath to really show off the lacing detail:)
Gravatar
This is a great shape and there are nice lines going on from the boning in the close up. I really like the idea of a corset skirt, I hadn't thought of it in these terms before. I'd also love to see how your mermaid corset worked out.
Gravatar
theperfecttouchvictorian
A body corset! Sigh. How perfectly stunning!
Gravatar
chesla
Wow! Stunning piece. Beautiful work :)
Gravatar
Anya
Thank you!
Gravatar
reiray
Wow, I love the effect the lacing creates! Absolutely amazing!
Gravatar
Anya
I know right?!? An application of a concept I learned from an old Your Wardrobe Unlocked article - for high impact pick one element/material and use it in excess. This has served me well!
Gravatar
lcostigliolo
What an amazing shape!
Gravatar
Anya
Thank you! I love how this is in some ways a cast of my body, but in other ways is altering my shape.
Gravatar
paulay71
Simply stunning, what shape.
Gravatar
Anya
Thank you! I can't wait to do more on different bodies:)
Gravatar
marloes dadswell
The back of this piece is sensational!!! I adore it!!
Gravatar
Your skill with the pattern is amazing, I am so intrigued by all the curves, lines, the neat stitching and of course the beautiful lacing down the back... <3 This really is crafted in the most perfect way and I think it is a stunning entry. So beautiful, I am really impressed and love it <3
Hide comment form

1000 Characters left