As promised I managed to dig out some photos of the three dimensional method of pattern drafting (as apposed to the 2D flat pattern drafting method we were discussing yesterday). I’m lucky enough to have an old school dress form thats a great starting shape for corset training corsets. I took the pattern in a little at the waist but it already has an unnaturally small waist so it was a great find – it was discarded in my art studio at university if you can believe that! I gave it a a loving home and a new lease of life. Keep meaning to cover it but it’s quite nice rough.
Anyway, moving on from my deep personal relationship with my dress forms! The pictures are pretty self explanatory – I started by marking the front centre and back centre then proceeded to drape material where I wanted pattern pieces and draw on, cut and pin in place on the dress form one by one. I then added marks to the corset pattern where the pieces joined so I could line the pieces up correctly when I joined them together. You also want to number your pattern pieces before unpinning, then transfer to paper, simples!
If you don’t have a dress form but do have a corset that you like the shape of then try stuffing it so it holds it’s shape, then using this as your mannequin. So now you know how, you can get cracking and design your own corset!
Today I’m having a late spring clean. Getting the sewing room straightened out for the marathon of corset making I have planned for the next few weeks. I’m also reluctantly getting rid of the ‘extra sewing supplies’ in my tin -
So for all those curious about my little corsetry and dressmaking room here’s my spring (summer) clean before and after -
Layla likes to lounge around in the sewing room when I’m in there, getting covered in bits of thread and trying to sit on my feet when I’m operating the sewing machine. If she had thumbs I’d put her to work but as it stands her job is largely supervisory. (She has her own facebook page too – Vampire Dog on account of her big crocodile mouth!)
Another Year at Corset Training & A Few Changes To Be Made
Well it’s a few days after my 28th birthday and give it a few months Corsettraining.net will also be another year older. So it’s a time of reflection for me and as the website nears 4 years old I’d like to step things up a notch…
Corset Designers & Corsetry Knowledge
There are a wealth of individual corset makers out there and the web gives us a chance to interact with each other across the globe; sharing ideas and solving corset construction issues. I’ve seen a lot of this on facebook as the Corset Making facebook group expands. I’d like to feature more work by the web’s corset designers and share more of the results of our online knowledge swapping on this blog.
HowToMakeACorset YouTube Channel
Another exciting development will be video blog posting. I have a camera and tripod set up in my sewing room now so I’ll be keeping a video diary of my projects and doing a few how-to’s here and there. Currently I’m editing the eyelet setting video to go with the eyelet tutorial pictures here, and another on binding bodice pattern tabs from this corset -
I hope to make a few of these video posts a week once I’ve gotten used to the technology! I’ll be hosting them on You Tube so keep an eye on my channel HowToMakeACorset but I’ll also do a blog post for each one so you can keep up to date with everything going on by following this blog.
I’m also going to start making corsets to order again soon. I’ve taken a long break from corset-making-to-order as it were, concentrating on how to make corsets educational materials and the printable corset patterns range. I’d like to get back to creating corsets for people to wear and enjoy alongside teaching the art of construction. I’ll be sewing up some example pieces to be photographed over the next month so that should keep me very busy and give me lots to video blog about! All very exciting!
The Corset Belt Sew-Along
Lastly I’m finally getting round to doing the video sew-along for the waist corset – you can download the free corset pattern here. It’ll be set over a few days so beginners can sew along for around an hour a day over 3 – 5 days. It’ll be a great gentle introduction for all the corset making virgins out there and hopefully a great social experience for our little corset sewing community.
So I look forward to sewing more and sharing more with you over the coming months!
Corset training, likewise referred to as waist training, figure training and the even more familiar tight-lacing, is at its most basic a technique for body modification. The waist and torso are formed using the external pressure produced by the firmly laced corset. The waist and surrounding torso are very slowly minimized over a long period – months to years, as the body slowly adapts to the shape of the corset design. The wearer needs to feel comfy at all times and any pain is an indicator that the corset is too tightly laced. As a general guideline it ought to seem like you are being tightly hugged, not breathlessly squeezed! It is extremely important to slowly progress with your waist reduction, as sudden reductions can trigger aches and pains.Read More»
When making a corset training corset or boned bodice you have to decide how you’ll have the front panels. You may choose to have a front closure such as the traditional nobs and loops busk (loops are affixed to a steel corset bone on one side, and on the other knobs are attached) or perhaps laces as your front fastening. You can also opt to sew your corset design front-closed. This is obviously less convenient when putting the corset on but makes for a dressier garment e.g. a beautiful wedding dress or something special for the senior prom!
When you design a corset pattern with a front closure, you still have laces to do up at the back, however you don’t have the trouble of undoing them all the way whenever you take your corset off (you merely loosen them just enough to open the front). This is obviously a massive time saver if your corset training daily. The traditional opening at the front is the busk (or sometimes a second lot of lacing) but there are a couple of other variations and modern options that I have seen utilized for corset making. Industrial strength zippers are a typical one, however they’re no where near as robust as busks. A fastening thats becoming more and more common is the buckle. These are often used as an additional fastening, more of a corset design feature than closure. The buckle attaches on one side of the front opening, the strap with the holes on attaches on the other. But buckles are always used alongside another, stronger fastening like a busk or zip, to offer extra support or simply for fashion.
If you’re not accustomed to sewing a front closed corset or maybe you’ve just purchased your first corset pattern, but are not sure exactly how to construct the front pieces for a closed corset? Well, it could not be easier. Your corset pattern will come as a set of pieces that will make up one side of the corset design. You just cut them all out of your fabric, then flip them all over and cut out the other side of your corset so the two sides mirror each other. When you make a corset closed fronted, you are basically cutting the two panels at the front as one big one. So you just take your front pattern piece and cut it out ‘on the fold’. If you’re not knowledgeable about sewing terms – ‘on the fold’ indicates to take the fabric, fold it in half, then align the pattern piece along that fold so the front edge is up against it. You can then cut round the pattern piece (but don’t cut the folded edge), then when you open it out you get your 2 front pattern pieces come out as one.
When you sew together your closed fronted corset with this double panel at the front, you don’t place boning down the center as you would in the case of a busk, zip or laces because it would not sit right. If you really wanted to however, you could include more boning in the panel, say if the panel was really wide or if it were a plus sized design in need of some extra support. To achieve this it would be best to sew 2 bone channels a small distance in from the pattern piece edges. Do this by eye, making sure they are symmetrical. Place the bones on your front pattern piece and move them in and out from the center to see exactly what position looks right for your corset training or bodice pattern.