A Sty'ch In Tyme



What is a corset?

  1. A Brief History of the Corset.

    A coset is a Victorian undergarment that both pre and post dated the bra. The first corset-like devices came during the Elizabethan era, when everyone, including Queen Bess, was trying to mimic her small waist and flat chest. These devices were called "a pair of bodies" and is believed to be where we get the term bodice. Before that the look was achieved with a under-dress called a kirtle and a lot of binding. The bust of a 1500's century garment is NOT like the dress warn in The Tutors!!!! No "tits on a plater". 

    The Catholic church was in charge and sexlessness was the look of piety. Flat chests as in lay a straight edge from neck to hem.

    The pair of bodies look was very fashionable from the 1500's through the 1700's, the neck line kept getting lower until lovely little mammary mounds were allowed to show. After the America and French Revolutions the "pair of bodies" look was loosing favor for a more natural look, a bra like "clincher" was introduced. During the Napoleonic age the look was, "3 months pregnant and the neck line to the areola" (try getting THAT past the censers today).  Soon after Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo a more bound look was coming into vogue and a corset as we know it was on the horizon. Hourglass figures with nipped waists and festoons of fabric at the shoulders and skirt. Anyone who has seen ANYTHING with the American Civil War knows this look. This was the beginning of the Victorian age and the age of the corset.

  2. What a corset is.


    A corset is an item of underwear that is designed to suport most of the torso and produce a particular look through slight to dramatic body modification. A corset must have 2 things for it to be a true corset.

    1) Boning. Boning is the most important thing a corset has. This helps the garment to maintain it's shape and maintain your shape.

    2) Lacing. Good strong lacing is importing to keeping the garment closed and fitting properly.

  3. What are the types of corsets?


    There are three catagories of corsets, everything else is either lingerie or "lace up" clothing.

    1) Fashion or Costume Corset. This is a type of corset that is sold to look pretty or be warn for only a few moments. It has boning and lacing, but the boning is not enough for shaping the figure. NEVER TIGHT LACE in this type of corset, you can do damage to both the garment and yourself. The materials for these types of corsets often include, feather light or ridge-line boning and small hook and eye closures. The lacing stays on these corsets should touch.

    2) Stage Corset. Corsets for stage, screen, ballet and opera are closer to a traditional corset, with one major exception, they are not designed for tight cinching. They allow the wearer to breath properly for projection, singing and dancing, all very aerobic sports. They can reduce measurements up to 1 inch and the lacing stays may touch. The materials for corsets often include spring or ring steal boning and industrial hook and eye tape closers.

    3) Tight Lacing or Traditional. Tight Lacing corsets can reduce your waist as much as 12 inches or more, with the proper training. Like all things the cinching should be done over time and slowly. Much like dieting, one inch a month reduction is safe. The materials often include steal boning and a busk, a metal, two part plate with hook and buttons for closing. The lacing stays MUST NEVER touch, if they do you are either laced DANGEROUSLY TIGHT or it is not the right size. a 2 inch MINIMUM gap needs to be between the lacing stays.

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Custom Clothing

  1. What is the difference between "Custom Clothing" and "Ready to Wear"?


    Ready to wear clothing is made by a manufature with a standardized pattern size. It is designed to fit the "average" person with the designers "ideal" measuerments for the garment. There is no standard in the clothing manufacturing community as to the measurements of a particular size, for women. Which is why one brands size 10 fits perfect and another's size 14 is right. Men's clothing, on the other hand is sold by waist/inseam or neck/sleeve measurements and are pretty close to accurate, unless you are shopping on the S-XL racks.

    Custom Clothing is built of a pattern that is made from your personal measurements. It is made to fit you ALONE. The waist will hit you in the right place, based on your measurements. The sleeves will fit you like a glove. Custom clothing will fit you better than anything you can purchase off the rack.

  2. How do I take the measurements?

    Here are a few really good links to get you started on the measurements that will be needed to make your custom clothing.

    Sew Neuu


    Dummies . com

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