Friday, January 7, 2011

Wedding Corset. part 2

These are the changes I made to the pattern based on the first fitting.  I added 1.5" to the top and the bottom. I didn't have to move the waist or reshape the bust area. Yeah!!!!  I did have a few issues making the curved areas nice and the seam allowances line up, but after it was sewn, it worked out well.
I taped tracing paper where I needed to make the changes and used a measuring tool that kept the 1.5" for me so that I didn't have to constantly look for the right spot. A hem guide, a piece of sturdy paper/cardboard cut to size would work too.

As you can see, I made a dot every half inch or so to accommodate the curve. I did make the little flat area on the right a bit long. It should've maintained the 5/8" seam allowance, so I need to practice my grading. :-)

The curve on this one was a little trickier because I didn't want to have the curve make the cup area smaller so I just straightened out the line instead of following the natural curve. For the little jut-out....I did a million dots and then connected them. 
It worked!!!!

I had the same grading issues with the bottom, but I did fix it before I cut the pattern to size. No worries though, you trim and clean up the lines before you bind it. Thank goodness!!! :-)

After I had sewn all the pieces together  
( see part one) , I opened the seam allowances and stitched one side down to use as a temporary boning channel. I will be sewing both sides down on the straight seams and using bias tape as the boning channel on the two very curved bust seams. The seam allowance bunched up too much for my liking.It doesn't show on the outside and it will get covered on the inside, but I am a bit of a perfectionist, okay, anal. LOL
 The boning should be about 1/2" shorter that the length of the boning channel. You will have several different lengths in one corset. the more bones, the more sizes.

There are several kinds of boning. Here are the two main kinds. Spiral steel and spring steel. These are both quarter inch wide. You can buy them pre-cut or by the roll and and attach your own ends. I am lucky enough to have a place that sells corset supplies, so I can take the corset in and try the boning before I buy it. There are several online suppliers: Sc City Dry Goods, Lacis, Farthingales 

 As you can see, the only difference in the boning is that the spiral steel is very flexible. If your corset is long, you don't need a truck load of support or you will be very active, spiral is the way to go. Shorter corsets, the spring steel is fine. Unless you go to the half inch size or have a really rigid busk.
I know many a costumer that uses plastic electrical ties for their boning. 

 The left side has spiral boning in it. Notice how it follows the curves better. The right side has the flat, spring steel.  We decided on the spring steel for better support. The bride did a lot of hopping and bending to make sure which she preferred.

The front with the alterations. Good coverage. No gaposis and no curling edges. All and all a very nice fit. Once fully boned, the wrinkles will disappear. 
This part is the base and will be covered by two more layers of fashion fabric. Yes, you can make a corset with just one layer of fabric.

The back.
Compares to the last fitting, the back opening is larger. The boning really took some stretch out of the fabric and the added height and length changed the outline. We decided to add one inch on each side to make the opening smaller. there will be a privacy panel to cover the skin that is a contrasting color so she wanted a pretty wide opening. She also likes the hour glass shape and did not want me to make the sides parallel to each other which is what most corset makers try to achieve. ;-)

The altered center back. Notice how I tapered the ends...I know, I know, that parallel thing again!!! I just HAD to even it up a little!!! :-)

In the next installment, I will show you how to sew the boning channels, buy the boning (field trip!!) baste the fashion fabric ''in the ditch", grommet placement and binding.


  1. Very cute new background! Sorry I didn't get back to you on that sooner. Ain't LeeLou aweseome? Awesome job on the corset too!!!

  2. I would change out the blue, but I LOVE the crowns!! Just need a few line drawing of corsets instead of butterflies and :-)

    I feel pretty good about the corset myself!!
    Each time I do one, I get braver.!

  3. It's not really blue. It's teal :)

  4. You say potato, I say tater. It's b-l-u-e baby!