måndag 2 februari 2015

HSM #1: Foundations

The Challenge: #1 Foundations
Fabric: Medium weight cotton canvas
Pattern: Truly Victorian 1903 Edwardian Corset
Year: 1903
Notions: Polyester thread, grommets, cotton bias binding, steel busk, steel and plastic boning from stash
How historically accurate is it? As far as I know, the pattern and shape is very period. It is also very period to use the extra padding in the top that I needed to put in... I'm only interested in getting the right shape for the outer garments, so I just followed instructions in the pattern, and used what I had at home.
Hours to complete: 10-20?
First worn: Not yet, as I need outer garments first...
Total cost: around 30 $
And the staring-face picture:

In its finished state, the fit of the corset seems good enough. There was some some confusion along the way thou. The pattern stated that this kind of corset could not, and should not, be fitted with a mock-up, as the point of the corset is to shape the body and change the posture, and all the boning is needed for that. So I promptly ignored that advice, made a mock-up, put a fake busk (a wooden ruler...) in front, and saw that the fit was really weird. The hip and waist was good, but it was way too big over the bust. I re-took the measurments, and they were correct. Mysterious.

I then realized that I should probably do as the pattern said, threw away the mock-up, and made up the corset properly. It was still just as big. Is was very common back then to use padding in the top, to get the large pidgeon-bust, but this seemed a bit excessive. Fortunately, it was possible to make a dart in the bust cups, to make it a bit closer to me. I still use padding both over the hips and at the bust, to create more curves without having to sqeeze the waist. I'm not fond of corsets, so this actually has my natural waist size. This one is meant more to hold the padding than to move things around.

I also made a quite ugly corset cover. It is just meant to be something to put enough ruffles on so that the top of the corset does not show through the blouse, and to add a bit more to the pidgeon breast look. It is historically correct to have ruffles, but otherwise I just made it up as simple as possible. That is probably not historically accurate - this period seems fond of pretty elaborate lace creations for underwear.

 Perhaps it is obvoius that I am not that fond of making the foundation wear? Maybe I should learn to stick to one time period, so I don't have start all over with corset and underskirts...

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