14 Jul Working with my Corset Block
Fashion Corset v Historic Corset
There’s a lot of talk around the negative aspects of wearing corsets but be assured that’s not the whole story. My experience with corsets is strictly fashion industry and what I share here in the blog and through the product I have listed on the website is all derived from that experience. The articles and papers listed below will help you develop your own understanding of the debate around historic corsets if this issue is of interest.
History of Corsets: the first wave of feminism – A reasonable introduction to the debate.
The Kurious Kase of Kim Kardashians Korset – A more thorough and academic investigation of debate around corsets.
The construction of historic corsets is complex and requires very specific materials and techniques. I have little or no experience in this field but urge those that are interested to do their research and thoroughly immerse themselves in the delight of the intricacies of historic construction.
Industry methods and classroom methods.
Fashion corsets that you find in the retail sector are more often of a lighter construction with specific features suited to the factory production line. Simplicity of construction usually implies only an outer shell and lining layer. Both layers are block fused (fusible interlining added to both fabrics before cutting) for a sturdy construction with the nylon boning added to the seams of the lining layer. Corsets used in the bridal industry are often of heavier, and of a more elaborate construction.
When I teach corset pattern making and construction to college and school students I always suggest that an additional layer of calico is added as a middle core. In the main students are not experienced machinists and this allows them to add the nylon boning to the calico layer then all levels of machining skills can be easily managed. The details of this construction method is outlined in my Corset Pattern Making Worksheet available online.
What do you expect from your corset block fitting?
During the months of June and July I’ve been releasing a number of pattern making videos on Youtube. If you subscribe to my channel you’ll be notified each time a new video is released. These videos cover all the stages of prepping your corset block for your first personal fitting.
The Potential of the Corset Block
The basic shape of my Corset Block is a great starting point for your first corset project. It’s a princess line panel construction as a block and makes up easily and quickly for a classic corset design. Use a colourful feature fabric for this project and you’ll have a beautiful corset in no time. For the more complex designs the pattern making instructions in my worksheet will help you get there.
Pattern Making Worksheet for my Corset Block
My pattern making worksheet for the corset block includes two popular designs that can be used to make stand alone corsets or to be included in dress designs for more formal wear. The pattern making techniques involved in these projects include ‘slash & spread’, adding tucked drape, gap darting and empire lines. Also included in the PDF are construction details for a straight forward method to make up your first corset project.
If you have any questions about my corset block and the details of this post don’t hesitate to leave a comment below.