All posts tagged: Augusta Stays

The Augusta Stays

How to add more bust space in the Augusta Stays

When Amber & I created the Augusta Stays pattern we decided to have two different fit blocks, to make fit easier straight off the pattern. The ‘Straight’ fit has a 10” difference between un-corseted bust and corseted waist, and is best for those with less bust-to-waist difference, or those desiring less waist compression. The ‘Curvy’ fit has a 12” difference between un-corseted bust and corseted waist, and is best for those with more bust-to-waist difference, or those desiring more waist compression.  However, we know that isn’t going to accomodate everyone: the body comes in an infinite variety of fits! Take Priscilla: she’s wearing the Theatrical Augusta Stays in size 38 Curvy. As you can see, Priscilla has a tiny waist and a lot of bust, and the stays aren’t quite accomodating that bust. (note: these stays were not made for her – dressing up in them and the photos was a spontaneous event during a costume weekend) If she were wearing the Historical Augusta stays we could loosen the lacings to provide space, but even …

The Augusta Stays: Inspiration, or a survey of 1780s stays

Rather than basing the Augusta Stays on one particular pair of extant stays, we took inspiration from a number of surviving stays, to create a stay pattern that reflected the most common and popular features of 1780s stays. Amber used her experience in mantua making and stay fitting to pick boning layouts that would be most flattering and comfortable on a wide range of bodies. She also chose design elements that adapt well to the modern alternatives to historical materials, and construction methods that are moderately easy: good for sewists attempting their first pair of fully historical stays. Here are some of the stays that we looked at to inform the Augusta pattern. Each features the partial front lacing, scooped neckline, and forward thrusting silhouette of the 1780s, but there are subtle differences in boning layouts, tab design, strap fastening, and fabric and finishes. I will admit that not much of this pair made it into the final pattern, but I still love the fabulous colour, and it did influence our tab shapes:

Five for Friday: Questions about the Augusta Stays

Today’s post is all about the questions we’ve been asked about the Augusta Stays. Can you wear them for different decades? What else could you use to bone them? Can they be made front lacing? What about strapless? And why did you include a theatrical version? 1. The Augustas are dated 1775-1789. Could I wear them for 1750s or 60s? How wrong will they look? We’ve got a lot of questions from people wondering how well the Augusta Stays will work for other decades in the 18th century. The Augustas were drafted to create the fashionable forward-thrust of the 1780s, and incorporate all the most common elements of 1780s stays: a very narrow front point and wide front bust, sweeping side bones, partial front lacing, and a high back. This combination of elements creates a specific silhouette: one particular to the date range we’ve given. However the cut and boning layout we chose means it is possible to change the shape of the stays with padding and additional structure while you wear them. The lack …