Thank you for sharing it with us! Very good article!
Thank you. I recently experimented on behalf of a customer, her third toile. The modern corset were copying is quite slanted on the side panels so I was keen to read up on the theory/science of grainlines in corsets.
Brilliant article, thank you, Caroline! This may be a stupid question, but do the grainlines in your new Elsa pattern reflect what you wrote in the article, or will I have to modify them accordingly? Thanks!
Hi - yes they do!
Thank you for your wonderful article, very enlightning. This shows that we clearly have a lot to learn still from the past :)
One thing was not completely clear to me from your article. What is the difference between corset 1(control) en corset 2? I didn't really understand your description of how you determined the grain lines there and how it was different from pattern 1, and I couldn't see the difference really in the pictures.
p.s. On my pc photo/figure 6 was stretched in the width, it's okay when you click it though.
Hi Carolien, so, firstly sorry if it wasn't clear! Corset 1 = panel angles and sg exactly as the Symington sketch so they are angled increasingly from cf to middle and then back to vertical at the cb. The waistline is not horizontal on the panels as they are laid out on the page - it is as fig 4. Corset 2 = panels more vertical/sg exactly perpendicular to a horizontal waistline. Corset 3 = wl drawn on the panels as they are laid out on the page and sg drawn perpendicular. This is to demonstrate how the sg is shifted when the corset is made up - the actual wl is not horizontal like this - it actually causes the indicated sg to 'tilt' towards the cf so the sg becomes negatively angled. This created the worst wrinkling and is a lesson to check wl's on historical patterns carefully and not make assumptions based on how they are laid out on the page! In summary - the difference between corset 1 and 2 is that 1 has it's sg at 90 degress to the wl and corset 2 has it's sg at varying angles.
Eeeek sorry - wrong way round - corset 1 has varying angles, and corset 2 has all panels at 90 degrees to the wl.
Hi, thanks for the article. I have just done my first draft of a Symington using Cathy's instructions. Right at the end she draws the grainline perpendicular to the horizontal wl. To me this equates to your Case 3 above in that the pattern pieces 3,4,5 & 7, when placed on the sg of the fabric slope towards the CB. In your Case 1 when those pattern pieces are placed on the fabric they slope towards the CF. In Case 2 they are neutral, but effectively have no slope towards the CB and thus the result is better than Case 3, but not as good as Case 1. Not sure if those using the vertical grainline draft as per Cathy's example have experienced wrinkling in their corsets.
Its hard to understand how you derive the new waist lines in Fig 4. It looks like you start at CB as by the time you reach CF the waist line is significantly higher on the body when compared to Fig 3. I have done it differently and when oriented my pattern pieces slope towards CB but far less than done Cathys way.
Thank you so much for documenting this experiment! I've chosen a Symington as my first corset and was very confused by the slanted pieces since everything I've learned says the waist should be perpendicular to the grain. It was helpful to see both why they do this and how historically it may have differed. I also have an idea of how to alter my mock-up if I do see wrinkling! I'd love to see another of your experiments with sway back, as I also have that issue.