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Letters nov2009 iconThis month Suzannah asks about corset mannequins, Laurie inquires about the different site look and Natalie wonders how adaptable the corset drafting tutorial could be.

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For Suzannah who asked about dress forms, everyone has their own preferences but I'd like to vote in favour of historical silhouettes! My two are actually modern remakes of historical figures, and the waist sizes aren't as ridiculous as you might think. One has a 22" waist (which can easily wear up to a 24" corset without looking "empty" and another has a 19" waist (which, yes, is *tiny* but due to the rest of the curves it too can happily hold a 23" corset without looking empty). 23" and 24" corsets are pretty ordinary really.

I know they might not strictly be "necessary", but I just absolutely love them! A bit like corsets, I guess :-D

I do pad out my larger regular dressform when displaying bigger corsets though. But really, you can't beat photographing the item on a real curvy human body!

Modern remakes of historical figures? Where on earth did you get those?
Lol, a company in the UK called Proportion London Ltd. have, amongst other things, a range called "Retrospective" which features silhouettes from 1875, 1888, 1910 and 1930 (the last one, clearly, isn't so appropriate for proper corsetry). They aren't cheap (it ends up about the same as buying antiques in reasonable condition), but they're stunning :-)

I have to say that the wonderfully helpful staff at the Fashion Museum in Bath actually directed me to Proportion London (and a few other alternatives) when I emailed them to enquire about display methods. It was incredibly good of them to answer my rather cheeky enquiry!

If you're after a rather more inexpensive form, then an american company has this little beauty..


with proportions of 34 21 38 (awesome!) for only $99 !!!!!!!

Total bargain. I am just waiting for a british company to catch on and start manufacturing or stocking these too....

grab them while you can you lucky US folks

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