Friday, March 13, 2015

1901 Corset or "There's no such thing as too many bows!"

This has been sitting around for ages waiting to be photographed and blogged, but since I still haven't gotten the rest of the outfit all finished I just never seemed to get around to it. It's a nice little break from posts about maternity sewing though, so we'll just run with it. This was my first real corset making venture, and I have to say I really enjoyed it. I like doing things that are super structured, and I love all the little fiddly details like flat felling seams, inserting grommets, hand stitching binding, etc. My mom thinks I'm nuts, but someone has to like that stuff, right? ;)

Anyway, it's the 1901 corset from Corsets and Crinolines. I really didn't have to make too many adjustments as far as size goes. It's been a long time, so I can't remember all of the specifics, but basically I just added seam allowances to all of the pieces and subtracted a little width from the hips so I didn't have to mess about with hip pads and things underneath. I can get a pretty good shape with a couple of petticoats and little bustle pad under the skirt. If I ever make myself another outfit of the period/another iteration of this corset I'll probably leave the hip width and go for hip pads to get that really extreme s-curve shape, but for now I'm happy with the shape I've got with this one. I hadn't originally intended on making it quite so flamboyant, but once I got started I couldn't stop with the springy, cupcake decorations. 




It's a single layer of coutil, with spiral and flat steel boning inserted into applied channels, so it's actually pretty lightweight. If I do make myself another one I think I may skip out on adding the seam allowances to the pieces, or at least make them smaller, because while this one fits, it's actually a tad on the large size. It laces all the way shut really comfortably with just a couple of inches reduction in the waist. It really needs to be about 2 inches smaller to get the fit spot on. I could probably make it work with the original corset measurements and some hip pads almost perfectly.


The yellow I used for the binding and the garter straps was bias that was leftover from the baby quilt I made for my son, and once I decided I wasn't going for all white, I figured it would be nice to use some stuff up as well.




The channeling on the inside is not perfect, but I'm happy with it for a first attempt. The couple of minor issues I ran into were mostly due to the fact that I wasn't marking things carefully while I worked on the two sides. I've actually got one more piece of boning to insert in the hip on one side, but I had to wait for a new bone to arrive and wanted to get the rest of it finished so I went ahead and attached the binding, leaving a little opening for inserting that piece once it got here (which I still haven't gotten around to of course). I also intended to floss the ends of the channels, but never got around to that either. At this point I don't know that I'll ever go back and finish that. I definitely want to try my hand at it on my next corset project (way down the road). The next one will probably be an 1870s style to go with the 1871 gown I have been planning on making for eons. When I'll get around to doing any of that I don't know, since I have to make ALL the underwear for it before I can start on the dress itself. I have the fabric, though, and that's what matters!



I'm hoping to be back with a couple more posts before the baby's born, but we'll see how things go. I'm going to try and squeeze in at least one more major sewing project before then, and I've got a sweater on my knitting needles right now. Have a good weekend!

14 comments:

  1. How pretty! It makes me think of lemon sorbet. ^^

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    1. Thanks! Lemon sorbet sounds really good right about now. :)

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  2. its stunning. and so beautifully made

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  3. How breathtakingly beautiful! I couldn't agree more, just about regardless of context, there really is no such thing as too many bows, especially when it comes to timelessly gorgeous undergarments like this magnificent corset.

    ♥ Jessica

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  4. Absolutamente impresionada, sin palabras!!! No es solamente la delicadeza del producto final con esos tonos tan suaves sino todo el maravilloso trabajo que hay en el camino para llegar a él. Me inclino ante ti....

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  5. I've just found you through We Sew Retro and I'm loving the inspiration of your blog, especially this corset. My first corset kit has been sadly stashed in its parcel bag for way to long. And its gorgeous work like this that made me want to try one in the first place. Thank you for such a wonderful prompt! (And also for your lovely comment about my dress on WeSewRetro! :-)

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    1. Thank you, Janene! I really love your sense of style, and I'm flattered you've found my work inspiring :)

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