It’s not that it’s so tricky – it’s just long, and tedious, and surprisingly physically demanding.
First you cut out tons of little pieces – my favourite corset pattern has 10, and you need at least a front and a back of each, though I often use as many as four layers of the same piece.
The corset I’m currently working on is 4 layers – a fashion fabric, two layers of ultra-fine coutil (I find that two layers of fine makes a nicer corset than one heavy layer), and a lining fabric.
When working with four layers, you have to flat line every single piece, so that one layer of coutil and the fashion fabric become one, and one layer of the coutil and the lining fabric become one.
Then there is the fitting in of the busk, which isn’t easy, especially if you do the proper way (which I do) without punching any holes for your busk buttons.
After the busk goes in, there is the pinning – so many pieces to pin together, and many of them have curves, and you are pinning through all those layers of fabric. My fingers get ‘pin burns’.
Still, I love making corsets, and this one is quite pretty.
It’s silver twill-satin (synthetic I’m afraid), lined in the same orchid foiled cotton that I used for Emily’s corset.
I’m making it just in case I need a different corset for the new model for the Juno gown for my next Pompeii to Paris talk.
And also, I just like making corsets.
I stopped taking pictures when the light got bad, but I’m still sewing, so I have more done than I can show you.
In fact, I’m doing so well that as long as my fingers don’t get too sore, I may be done with the corset by the end of today. And of course, I’ll post pictures when I am!
Yes, corset making is hard. The progress looks great so far 🙂
Beautiful artisan work. (craftsmanship? craftspersonship?) Making corsets makes me feel like a real artisan, your work looks incredible. Looking forward to the rest of it.
Your work is very neat and belies the physical effort taken to do it! That is the hardest bit. Where to pin when your material shows pin marks, curving the lamination of panels, forcing grommets into holes, preventing the fabric from being marked or soiled. These are just a few things we have to live with! My wife lets me do the physical bits and does the fine work herself, nice work if you can get it!
It’s really pretty fabric. Corsets make fabrics look even more magical, and you have such a good eye for a corset fabric 🙂 Clever Dreamstress! xo
…Awww … thanks!