Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Finished project: Red Victorian Corset

I have finally finished my Victorian corset. I irritatingly ran out of steel before it was barely half boned, there is nothing worse than running out of materials when you are in the mood to sew.

I completely love how it turned out.  After umming and ahhing over what colour bias binding to go with I thought white would really bring the red to life.

This is based on one of the simpler corsets from Jill Salen's book (Black and yellow flossed corset 1890-1900)  The panels are straight forward, no gussets etc, so it would make a good starter project for a beginnner. It's nice and comfy to wear.

The corset as seen from a weird artistic angle.

In terms of improvement I need to tweak the pattern slightly, particularly around the hip, just to ensure total "snugification".


  1. I have only just come across your blog, but your work is fantastic! I recently purchased a copy of Jill Salen's book, and was wondering what the best way to enlarge these patterns is? how did you get them to fit you? I have done a course in corset making, but this unfortunately did not include pattern drafting etc.

    1. Hi Jessica - thankyou very much. Jill Salen's book is a great starting place. I find the best way to scale them up is on pattern cutters paper/ graph paper, basically paper that has a grid on it to make your life easier.
      Getting your head around the scale is the next bit, so - 10 tiny little squares on the grid in the book is equal to an inch full scale. The thing I found difficult with this is that inches on rulers tend to be divided up into 8 instead of 10, luckily I was able to find a ruler in inches where each inch had increments of ten. That made everything so much simpler, you can just double each measurement, eg. 2 tiny squares on the diagram means 4/10ths of an inch full scale.
      Next step is plotting the important points. I usually start by drawing in the centre front of the corset, then drawing a line horizontally out from the very bottom and also from the top and working up/down and across from those lines.
      Getting the pattern to fit you will require you to make a mock up from the pattern you draw and seeing whether you need to take away or add in fabric. Remember - the scaled up pattern has no seam allowance so you need to add that in aswell. Have fun!

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