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Re: [TheCostumersManifesto] Re: Corsets

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  • Sarah P
    And adding to the long list of corset advise... A good way to prevent rolling of the ends of a corset, I sew drawstring piping around the top and bottom
    Message 1 of 28 , Apr 3, 2002
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      And adding to the long list of corset advise...

      A good way to prevent rolling of the ends of a corset, I sew "drawstring
      piping" around the top and bottom edges. This allows the wearer to cinch-in
      the edges so that they do not poke outward at funny angles and the edge
      won't roll if the bones or stays are a bit on the short side (say, by less
      than a 1/4 - 1/2 inch.) But be careful of the bones themselves, if you sew
      with the bones in. WEAR SAFETY GLASSES. I perfer the kind like you see in
      a carpentry shop or a chemistry lab. They cover more of the eye area than
      actual glasses. And have plenty of needles on-hand of the strongest kind.
      You'll be sewing a great many layers of fabric. Home sewing machines tend
      to have to be hand-fed with the wheel. They just don't have the power to
      put the needle through too many layers of cotille, and by hand-feeding, you
      can be more gentle to the needle than by letting the machine stitch itself.
      Takes a bit of time, but it'll save you from hitting bones or too-thick
      fabric before you know it.

      ----Raven


      >From: Terri Lee <terbear28_2000@...>
      >Reply-To: TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com
      >To: TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com
      >Subject: Re: [TheCostumersManifesto] Re: Corsets
      >Date: Mon, 25 Mar 2002 10:26:30 -0800 (PST)
      >
      >Kate-
      >I am so glad you have found comfortable off the rack
      >corsets. I have not been that lucky. I on the other
      >hand have been able to get good quality custom made
      >corsets. At a more than reasonable price 65.00 to
      >75.00 depending upon the fabric, and considering the
      >other alternitives, this is what has worked for me. I
      >am far to impatient to shop around. And considering
      >what I pay for custom made, find it easier to avoid
      >the hassle, headache and flustration of doing so.
      >
      >I would also like to point out that your right about
      >some places not returning corsets because it is
      >considered underware. However a good seamstress will
      >be able to take your measurements, and do a corset
      >based upon those. However you HAVE to know what you
      >want the end product to be, and this comes with trial
      >and error. A big part of corsets, is the shape amd
      >style you want or need. There are alot of variables
      >that go into corsets. What may work for one may not
      >work for another. I agree, take a knowledgeable person
      >with.
      >
      >I also sugest wearing a close fitting tank top,
      >camisole, something to try on corsets. Wear the corset
      >in the shop you plan on buying it from for a while, to
      >get the feel of it. Many time a corset feels great
      >when you put it on, but after a bit starts to cut in.
      >
      >I also wanted to hit on the subject of lacing.
      >I lace my corset to a slight hug.
      >Tighhtlacing corsets have been known to cause internal
      >injuries, and break bones. Those of you who are new to
      >corsets should be aware of the potential hazards of
      >lacing to tightly.
      >
      >I also wanted to hit on the subject of the stays of
      >the simplicity pattern being intentionally a half inch
      >shorter. While this may prolong the life of the
      >corset. I have found that the bottom of the corset
      >tends to roll or curl up causeing a nasty pinch. With
      >the correct length of stay in place. I have not had
      >this problem. But this goes back to body type, and
      >style of the corset. The woman who makes my corsets
      >adds a bit of washable milliners glue to the top of
      >each stay and then adds a double layer of what ever
      >she is using to finish off the corset. I went to check
      >my oldest corset here, (5 years old) the stays go to
      >the ends of all of the caseings, and none are starting
      >to come out.In fact none show wear.
      >
      >But this again is preferance, and experiance of
      >knowing what that pattern will do, and will do on a
      >customers body shape, and size.
      >
      >The bottom line of any corset, is what is right for
      >you works for you, and what may work for me or anyone
      >else may not work for the person who asked the
      >questions to begin with. Corsetry is an art, that
      >often times requires alot of trial and error to know
      >the ins and outs just for yourself.
      >
      >Good luck
      >Terri Lee
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
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    • Elli Gull
      I have been lurking for a while now, and the subject of corsets has come up a few times. It always seems to excite passionate responses, especially among the
      Message 2 of 28 , Aug 9, 2002
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        I have been lurking for a while now, and the subject of corsets has come up
        a few times. It always seems to excite passionate responses, especially
        among the anti-corset people. The myths that are repeated with such fervor
        are not very believable when examined closely. Although I am sure abuses did
        occur -- look at anorexia and bulemia today -- these could only be practiced
        by women of leisure. The vast majority of women had to work for a living,
        often very robustly, and could not indulge themselves in self-disfigurement
        even if they wanted to. Even among genteel women I doubt if tight-lacing to
        a point of disfigurement would be routinely practiced. Even on very formal
        occasions like balls ladies would not want to compromise their ability to
        dance! And an operation to remove lower ribs is absolutely unthinkable in a
        time with no anasthesia and no antibiotics. And the society of the time
        would denounce such vanity as ungodly.
        It seems to me that what people are actually objecting to is what the
        corset symbolized -- the enveloping restrictions placed on women by society.
        A women could basically choose one of three roles: wife, spinster or whore.
        The corset itself gave genteel women the reputation for frailty -- suited
        only to sit around an embroider, play pianoforte, or take easy walks in the
        garden. In reality, there were many strong women who definitely left their
        mark on history. :)
        Sorry to run on so long -- just had to put in my 2 cents...
        Elli


        "Some" children often wore training corsets as early
        as the age of 4, these young adults and women never
        developed the back muscle needed.

        Women often had their lower rib or two removed so they
        could be laced tighter than what was healthy.

        A few years ago, I believe 1989 - 1990ish, a well
        preserved body of a woman was unearthed when a road
        construction crew hit her casket. Her lower ribs had
        been removed and her rib cage disfigured, she was
        still wearing her corset when they found her. Her
        internal organs ie, heart and lungs were smaller than
        a 6 year old childs.

        Corsets can be attributed to miscarriages, still
        borns, and death durring pregnancy as the women often
        could not deliver a child as her hips were never
        allowed to develop properly due to the constraint of
        the corset.

        While anything can be "evil" if misused, I have to
        admit that I wear a corset every weekend while I do
        civil war re-enacting. I do not tight lace, and I am
        able to move quite freely. The only complaint I have
        had is when the corset popped a steel rivet and ripped
        one of my dresses.
      • Paquerette
        ... What period do you reenact? Some corsets can be extremely easy to make yourself. Silk and linen are both strong and span many periods; linen will probably
        Message 3 of 28 , Oct 16, 2002
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          Terri Lee wrote:
          >
          > Hello-
          > Recently (two weeks ago) I bought a custom made
          > corset, for the smashing price of $150.00. Long story
          > short, I wore it for one day and had bloody scabbs
          > from where the boning had gone through the corset, my
          > chemise and me. The woman refuses to take the corset
          > back because she said I am to big for it.
          > First of all this thing was supposed to have been
          > custom made, and it had 2 1/2 inches of spring in the
          > back.
          >
          > I am not that knowledgeable about corsets, but I
          > thought that amount of spring was within the fitting
          > range. The corset was comfortable with the exception
          > of where it was jabbing me in the back.
          >
          > Due to this experiance, I am looking to make my own. I
          > found several sites where I can get the boning, busks,
          > and other materials.
          >
          > What is a good fabric to make a corset out of? As a
          > re-enactor I wear mine 3 to 5 days a week, from May to
          > October. Would a good quality silk be as durable as I
          > would need it to be? What is a good choice for the
          > backing of the corset?
          >
          > I am also looking for the tips and tricks and what to
          > avoid from those who have made corsets.
          >
          > Thank you much
          > Terri Lee

          What period do you reenact? Some corsets can be extremely easy to make
          yourself. Silk and linen are both strong and span many periods; linen
          will probably be more comfortable in the summer. Are you slim, average,
          full-figured? How much shaping does the corset have to do to you? This
          affects what you'll want to line it with.

          Also, would you mind telling us who you bought it from? There might be
          other people on this list considering corset purchase, who won't want to
          repeat your nasty experience. :(

          --

          Lady Ennoguent filia Bronmael, Endless Hills, AEthelmearc
          Barony of Endless Hills Webmistress
          http://endlesshills.cjb.net
        • Judith Cataldo
          I ve gone through several pair of stays over the years for 18th century re-enacting. I ve never made Civil War corset except for a pair of jumps/stays from
          Message 4 of 28 , Oct 16, 2002
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            I've gone through several pair of stays over the years for 18th century
            re-enacting. I've never made Civil War corset except for a pair of
            jumps/stays from Past Patterns. I've had similar problems with my 18th
            century stays with stays poking through despite using several layers of
            heavy fabric etc. This last time I machine stitched the channels for the
            boning and they don't seem to be poking through. Also, the last pair I
            made I used the corset calculator to get the size as my pattern was from
            when I was, well, not as fluffy. I used the corset calculator
            http://costume.dm.net/custompat/index.html I found after a year of
            wearing them they were uncomfortable, and had stays popping out and into me.
            Turns out the stays were too big for me, they fit perfectly when they should
            have been 2" smaller to fit well.

            So, my advice. Use a good pattern that is based on originals but comes in
            several sizes. Fellow re-enactors should be able to tell you what they have
            used. I think a lot of people use Past Patterns
            http://www.pastpatterns.com/708.html

            Use sturdy fabric, see what the patterns recommend. For boning stick with
            metal for 19th century corsets. You can get away with alternating metal and
            plastic for earlier periods but I think later ones need metal. I've been
            told the spiral boning isn't very good. With 19th century you can use
            pockets for the stays--strips of fabric the boning goes in that then go into
            the corset.

            Judy
          • Jasmine Tree
            A good quality, heavier weight, satin-weave cotton is a good corset fabric. It should be prewashed for shrinkage and used double-layered for best results.
            Message 5 of 28 , Oct 16, 2002
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              A good quality, heavier weight, satin-weave cotton is a good corset fabric.  It should be prewashed for shrinkage and used double-layered for best results.  Draw the bone cahnnels directly on the pieces intended to be the inside layer, then stitch them through both layers before putting the pieces together.  VERY IMPORTANT - the bones need to have room to move a bit, as the corset shortens slightly when stretched tightly around the body - make sure the bones are cut about 1/4" shorter than the bone channels, file and wrap the ends with medical tape to keep them from being sharp enough to protrude through the fabric.

              As to the corset you bought, you can probably fix the problem - open up the bone channels, cut the bones shorter, and wrap the ends.  This should fix the problem.

              I hope this helps.....good luck.

              Jasmine 

               Paquerette <paquerette@...> wrote:

              Terri Lee wrote:
              >
              > Hello-
              > Recently (two weeks ago) I bought a custom made
              > corset, for the smashing price of $150.00. Long story
              > short, I wore it for one day and had bloody scabbs
              > from where the boning had gone through the corset, my
              > chemise and me. The woman refuses to take the corset
              > back because she said I am to big for it.
              > First of all this thing was supposed to have been
              > custom made, and it had 2 1/2 inches of spring in the
              > back.
              >
              > I am not that knowledgeable about corsets, but I
              > thought that amount of spring was within the fitting
              > range. The corset was comfortable with the exception
              > of where it was jabbing me in the back.
              >
              > Due to this experiance, I am looking to make my own. I
              > found several sites where I can get the boning, busks,
              > and other materials.
              >
              > What is a good fabric to make a corset out of? As a
              > re-enactor I wear mine 3 to 5 days a week, from May to
              > October. Would a good quality silk be as durable as I
              > would need it to be? What is a good choice for the
              > backing of the corset?
              >
              > I am also looking for the tips and tricks and what to
              > avoid from those who have made corsets.
              >
              > Thank you much
              > Terri Lee

              What period do you reenact? Some corsets can be extremely easy to make
              yourself. Silk and linen are both strong and span many periods; linen
              will probably be more comfortable in the summer. Are you slim, average,
              full-figured? How much shaping does the corset have to do to you? This
              affects what you'll want to line it with.

              Also, would you mind telling us who you bought it from? There might be
              other people on this list considering corset purchase, who won't want to
              repeat your nasty experience. :(

              --

              Lady Ennoguent filia Bronmael, Endless Hills, AEthelmearc
              Barony of Endless Hills Webmistress
              http://endlesshills.cjb.net


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            • Terri Lee
              ... We do Civil War re-enacting, and I am a top heavy size 18 so the corset needs to be able to give some shaping. But more hold than anything else. As far as
              Message 6 of 28 , Oct 16, 2002
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                --- Paquerette <paquerette@...> wrote:

                > What period do you reenact? Some corsets can be
                > extremely easy to make
                > yourself. Silk and linen are both strong and span
                > many periods; linen
                > will probably be more comfortable in the summer. Are
                > you slim, average,
                > full-figured? How much shaping does the corset have
                > to do to you? This
                > affects what you'll want to line it with.
                >
                > Also, would you mind telling us who you bought it
                > from? There might be
                > other people on this list considering corset
                > purchase, who won't want to
                > repeat your nasty experience. :(

                We do Civil War re-enacting, and I am a top heavy size
                18 so the corset needs to be able to give some
                shaping. But more hold than anything else.

                As far as the woman who made my corset, she is a
                member of this list based here in Wisconsin. If anyone
                is looking to buy a corset from anyone, ask for
                referances first before handing over any money.

                Thanks
                Terri


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              • Diana Kolbe
                I m very sorry to hear about your experience! What kind of boning was used (spiral steel, spring steel, other?), and can you tell if it was properly tipped?
                Message 7 of 28 , Oct 16, 2002
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                  I'm very sorry to hear about your experience! What kind of boning was
                  used (spiral steel, spring steel, other?), and can you tell if it was
                  properly tipped? Lack of tips can increase the possibility of that
                  happening. Spiral boning needs metal tips that you should be able to
                  find at corset supply places. Spring steel needs to be rounded at the
                  end and then either wrapped in tape or coated with tipping fluid
                  (presumably also available at a specialty shop). As has been suggested,
                  shortening the boning may help, in which case it will need to be
                  re-tipped. Was the boning that poked through coming through seams, or
                  actually making holes in the fabric? If it was through the seams,
                  reinforcing the stitching in those areas could also help.

                  Fabric depends on what period you are looking for, as well as how
                  accurate you want to be. One obvious choice for a fabric is corset
                  coutil. It is a sturdy fabric specifically used for corsets and
                  (although I am not an expert by any means) I believe it would be roughly
                  period for most Victorian era corsets, including Civil War. Unless you
                  live in a major city, you would probably need to get this through an
                  online site as well.

                  I'd recommend a shop at this point, except for the fact that I wasn't
                  very happy with the last place I got supplies, and before that was a
                  local woman who no longer is involved with such things.

                  Diana
                • Sarah P
                  Cotton coutile is the herringbone-woven fabric I like to use for corsets--sturdy and heavy-duty while pliable and soft (especially after washings). I, too,
                  Message 8 of 28 , Oct 16, 2002
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                    Cotton coutile is the herringbone-woven fabric I like to use for corsets--sturdy and heavy-duty while pliable and soft (especially after washings).  I, too, mark where boning is to go, but I like to give the boning casings (made along the lines of twill tape), either from the coutile or from a heavy white muslin.  This allows you to remove bones for heavy-duty washing at the end of the run of a show, and allows you to remove them for alterations later on.  It's also handy for keeping you from having to tear the whole corset apart when a bone does eventually rust through and become sharp, or it wears through the tape and wears through the casing rather than through the body of the corset itself.  I also add a drawstring casing/piping around the top and bottom edges to let the corset be drawn-in on top and bottom.  This usually eliminates "bad corset lines", which can be avoided by fitting the corset properly the first time.  Then the drawstring piping simply makes sure it doesn't happen.  The piping would be best to put on before the encased bones, sandwiched between the two layers of corset body.  If not, you'll be more likely to interfere with boning placement or will break MANY needles hitting bones (this is doing it backwards)!  Wear safety goggles if you do it the backwards way!  Sure saved my eyes one time!  And lacing usually laces like shoelaces, except from both top and bottom, meeting at the waist at the small of the back.  That is how it is shown in drawings of the period, especially Victorian and Edwardian eras. 

                     

                    ----Raven


                     

                    >From: Jasmine Tree
                    >Reply-To: TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com
                    >To: TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com
                    >Subject: Re: [TheCostumersManifesto] Corsets
                    >Date: Wed, 16 Oct 2002 20:09:02 -0400 (EDT)
                    >
                    >
                    >A good quality, heavier weight, satin-weave cotton is a good corset fabric. It should be prewashed for shrinkage and used double-layered for best results. Draw the bone cahnnels directly on the pieces intended to be the inside layer, then stitch them through both layers before putting the pieces together. VERY IMPORTANT - the bones need to have room to move a bit, as the corset shortens slightly when stretched tightly around the body - make sure the bones are cut about 1/4" shorter than the bone channels, file and wrap the ends with medical tape to keep them from being sharp enough to protrude through the fabric.
                    >As to the corset you bought, you can probably fix the problem - open up the bone channels, cut the bones shorter, and wrap the ends. This should fix the problem.
                    >I hope this helps.....good luck.
                    >Jasmine
                    > Paquerette wrote:Terri Lee wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Hello-
                    > > Recently (two weeks ago) I bought a custom made
                    > > corset, for the smashing price of $150.00. Long story
                    > > short, I wore it for one day and had bloody scabbs
                    > > from where the boning had gone through the corset, my
                    > > chemise and me. The woman refuses to take the corset
                    > > back because she said I am to big for it.
                    > > First of all this thing was supposed to have been
                    > > custom made, and it had 2 1/2 inches of spring in the
                    > > back.
                    > >
                    > > I am not that knowledgeable about corsets, but I
                    > > thought that amount of spring was within the fitting
                    > > range. The corset was comfortable with the exception
                    > > of where it was jabbing me in the back.
                    > >
                    > > Due to this experiance, I am looking to make my own. I
                    > > found several sites where I can get the boning, busks,
                    > > and other materials.
                    > >
                    > > What is a good fabric to make a corset out of? As a
                    > > re-enactor I wear mine 3 to 5 days a week, from May to
                    > > October. Would a good quality silk be as durable as I
                    > > would need it to be? What is a good choice for the
                    > > backing of the corset?
                    > >
                    > > I am also looking for the tips and tricks and what to
                    > > avoid from those who have made corsets.
                    > >
                    > > Thank you much
                    > > Terri Lee
                    >
                    >What period do you reenact? Some corsets can be extremely easy to make
                    >yourself. Silk and linen are both strong and span many periods; linen
                    >will probably be more comfortable in the summer. Are you slim, average,
                    >full-figured? How much shaping does the corset have to do to you? This
                    >affects what you'll want to line it with.
                    >
                    >Also, would you mind telling us who you bought it from? There might be
                    >other people on this list considering corset purchase, who won't want to
                    >repeat your nasty experience. :(
                    >
                    >--
                    >
                    >Lady Ennoguent filia Bronmael, Endless Hills, AEthelmearc
                    >Barony of Endless Hills Webmistress
                    >http://endlesshills.cjb.net
                    >
                    >Yahoo! Groups SponsorADVERTISEMENT
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                  • Terri Lee
                    Thank you all for your help and advise, I greatly apppreciate it, especially going into a task like this. While I know fabrics, I do not know corsets. The
                    Message 9 of 28 , Oct 16, 2002
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                      Thank you all for your help and advise, I greatly
                      apppreciate it, especially going into a task like
                      this.

                      While I know fabrics, I do not know corsets. The
                      corset from h@ll, was a coutil, it had the chanels
                      sewin on the ouside of the fabric with nothing over
                      the top of the channels.

                      The bones were strips of 1/4 inch flat metal that had
                      rounded ends and that were coated with something
                      white.
                      Please excuse my lack of knowledge on that one.
                      Why this thing came apart is beyond me, In 7 diffrent
                      spots I had bloody marks where the boning had come
                      through the seams and through the layers of clothing
                      that I wear. And in 4 other spots had come through the
                      fabric and put holes in my period dress.

                      This is why I was wondering if there was some other
                      type of fabric that should be used.
                      I have since removed the boning from my expensive
                      nightmare and plan to reuse them in the same pattern
                      just redone, as the fabric is now beyond repair.

                      The removeable boning is a great idea, I am going to
                      give it a try and see if I can figure out how to do
                      it.

                      As a civil war re-enactor, I am not as worried with
                      the appropriate type of corset as I am with the
                      correct line of the corset. As long as the line is
                      correct, and it is comfortable. It is correct. However
                      I do period fashion shows, and need it to look "nice"
                      and "correct", while being comfotable. Some weekends
                      my days starts at 6 am, and go until 2 am. All the
                      time in a corset.

                      Here is my thought...
                      What if I redid the body of the corset in Coutil, with
                      the casings on the inside, between the layers... and
                      the outter layer in a silk? Stiching all of the layers
                      together along the channel marks? Would this make it
                      secure enough? Durable enough? Or would it end up to
                      bulky or to hot??? For warmer weather I need something
                      that will not act as a sauna... Or would a double
                      layer of heavier silk with the boning put between it
                      be durable enough?

                      Thanks so much for all of the advice.
                      Terri





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                    • Diana Kolbe
                      ... This may be part of the problem. I practically always make my channels on the inside of the garment, with twill tape (which may be more resistant to holes
                      Message 10 of 28 , Oct 16, 2002
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                        Terri Lee wrote:

                        > Thank you all for your help and advise, I greatly
                        > apppreciate it, especially going into a task like
                        > this.
                        >
                        > While I know fabrics, I do not know corsets. The
                        > corset from h@ll, was a coutil, it had the chanels
                        > sewin on the ouside of the fabric with nothing over
                        > the top of the channels.


                        This may be part of the problem. I practically always make my channels
                        on the inside of the garment, with twill tape (which may be more
                        resistant to holes than the actual corset fabric), and I have not had
                        this sort of problem. As a caveat, mine have never received the kind of
                        intensive wear and use that you are talking about.


                        > The bones were strips of 1/4 inch flat metal that had
                        > rounded ends and that were coated with something
                        > white.


                        That would be spring steel with tipped ends (ie, tipping fluid dries to
                        that white stuff.)

                        > Please excuse my lack of knowledge on that one.
                        > Why this thing came apart is beyond me, In 7 diffrent
                        > spots I had bloody marks where the boning had come
                        > through the seams and through the layers of clothing
                        > that I wear. And in 4 other spots had come through the
                        > fabric and put holes in my period dress.


                        ewwww. That is very, very unpleasant, just to think about.


                        > Here is my thought...
                        > What if I redid the body of the corset in Coutil, with
                        > the casings on the inside, between the layers... and
                        > the outter layer in a silk? Stiching all of the layers
                        > together along the channel marks? Would this make it
                        > secure enough? Durable enough? Or would it end up to
                        > bulky or to hot??? For warmer weather I need something
                        > that will not act as a sauna... Or would a double
                        > layer of heavier silk with the boning put between it
                        > be durable enough?
                        >
                        > Thanks so much for all of the advice.
                        > Terri

                        I think I may have to defer to some of the more experienced members of
                        the list. Keep in mind, though, that if your boning is inbetween two
                        layers of fabric, it may be more difficult to incorporate the idea of
                        making it removable. (A great idea, BTW).

                        Diana
                      • Terri Lee
                        ... Keep in mind, though, that if your boning ... My thought on removable boning was this... Putting the channels between the layers, finishing the top as
                        Message 11 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                        • 0 Attachment
                          --- Diana Kolbe <dlk182@...> wrote:
                          Keep in mind, though, that if your boning
                          > is inbetween two
                          > layers of fabric, it may be more difficult to
                          > incorporate the idea of
                          > making it removable. (A great idea, BTW).
                          >
                          > Diana

                          My thought on "removable boning" was this...
                          Putting the channels between the layers, finishing the
                          top as you normally would, and then to finish off the
                          bottom. Adding some kind of trim stiching it down
                          securely between the bones, and then using a larger
                          stich that could be easily removed in the spots where
                          the chanels were. If I finished the edges of the
                          corset before I put it together I would not have a
                          fraying problem, thus solving the problem of hiding
                          the unfinished edge, making it removeable, while
                          apearing as if it is finished.

                          In my mind this clicks, but I have been on sensory
                          overload this week so please tell me if I missed
                          something.
                          Thank You
                          Terri

                          P.S.
                          I got an e-mail from some well meaning folk who asked
                          why wasn't I "smart" enough to take my corset off
                          before it go to this point. I will not reply to this
                          person, however I will make it known to the list.

                          Many times I am involved with event organisers,
                          fashion shows, and several other aspects of keeping an
                          event moving and flowing.
                          While I did know that the corset was rubbing, I did
                          not know to what degree, By the time I realized it had
                          caused this much damage, I was about to do a fashion
                          show presentation, and then a workshop on how to
                          recover parasols, and then help feed the re-enactors
                          and then a presentation on period correct head wear.
                          And then a formal dance that I was required to attend.

                          The period correct fit of a civil war dress, is snug
                          to say the least. None of my dresses fit without a
                          corset. And I was not able to remove myself from my
                          obligations. I am the type of person that follows
                          through once I have given my word. However friends
                          were behind me lifting up my bodice to remove the
                          boning that had popped out and to change gauze pads.

                          However on Sunday I wore a blouse, and one of my
                          skirts so I could avoid the corset. However on
                          Saturday, I had nothing to change into. So this was
                          not a matter of how "smart" I am, it was a matter of
                          obligation.

                          Please refrain from using my personal e-mail address
                          for your degrading nasty remarks.

                          __________________________________________________
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                        • Bjarne og Leif Drews
                          Hello you poor thing. I think it is very bad, that she refuses to take it back, 150 dollars is not cheap! If i were you, i would use calico. Calico you use to
                          Message 12 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                          • 0 Attachment
                            Hello you poor thing.
                            I think it is very bad, that she refuses to take it back, 150 dollars is not cheap!
                            If i were you, i would use calico. Calico you use to make muck up dresses of.
                            Before you cut it, you boil the calico and iron it afterwards.
                            Then it wont shrink.
                            For boning i would recomend you to use either wood or plastic. I use plastic from Wissner in Germany, and i have heard that you can get it in USA also.
                            Plastic is very easy to use, because you can cut off the sharp points and get quite rounded edges. You dont have to use those metal things for the edges of bones.
                            And above all it is just as good as steel!!!
                            If you want it to be very period accurate you could use linen fabric, but it is a little difficult to work with because it is very stretchy.
                            Calico is just as good, and it is cheap.
                             
                            This is my advises for you, i have made many many corsets, so i know where it hearts!!!
                             
                            Bjarne Drews in Copenhagen, Denmark      
                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: Terri Lee
                            Sent: Thursday, October 17, 2002 12:41 AM
                            Subject: [TheCostumersManifesto] Corsets


                            Hello-
                            Recently (two weeks ago) I bought a custom made
                            corset, for the smashing price of $150.00. Long story
                            short, I wore it for one day and had bloody scabbs
                            from where the boning had gone through the corset, my
                            chemise and me. The woman refuses to take the corset
                            back because she said I am to big for it.
                            First of all this thing was supposed to have been
                            custom made, and it had 2 1/2 inches of spring in the
                            back.

                            I am not that knowledgeable about corsets, but I
                            thought that amount of spring was within the fitting
                            range. The corset was comfortable with the exception
                            of where it was jabbing me in the back.


                            Due to this experiance, I am looking to make my own. I
                            found several sites where I can get the boning, busks,
                            and other materials.

                            What is a good fabric to make a corset out of? As a
                            re-enactor I wear mine 3 to 5 days a week, from May to
                            October. Would a good quality silk be as durable as I
                            would need it to be? What is a good choice for the
                            backing of the corset?

                            I am also looking for the tips and tricks and what to
                            avoid from those who have made corsets.

                            Thank you much
                            Terri Lee


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                          • Moira
                            Hi all, If you are interested in making your own corsets a couple of really good resources are: Corset construction Group
                            Message 13 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                            • 0 Attachment
                              Hi all,

                              If you are interested in making your own corsets a couple of really
                              good resources are:

                              Corset construction Group
                              http://groups.yahoo.com/group/corsetconstruction/?yguid=31128213


                              How to's at Waisted.com
                              http://www.waisted.com/

                              and the books "Waisted Efforts", an extremely well researched and
                              documented book written by a historical costumer at Louisbourg, and
                              of course, Corsets and Crinolines by Norah Waugh.




                              --- In TheCostumersManifesto@y..., Paquerette <paquerette@a...> wrote:
                              >
                              > <<If you want it to be very period accurate you could use linen
                              fabric,
                              > but it is a little difficult to work with because it is
                              > very stretchy. Calico is just as good, and it is cheap.>>
                              >
                              > I don't find linen to be stretchy. I guess it depends on what linen
                              you
                              > get, but most linens I've worked with are quite sturdy. My 18th
                              century
                              > stays are two layers of linen/cotton, with a layer of cotton duck in
                              > between. The bones are spring steel, in cotton casings sewn to the
                              duck.
                              > I do ask quite a bit of this corset, but it hadn't let me down
                              until I
                              > started shrinking. :) I just need to move the lacing now.
                              >
                              > <<If i were you, i would use calico. Calico you use to make muck up
                              > dresses of.
                              > Before you cut it, you boil the calico and iron it afterwards. Then
                              it
                              > wont shrink.>>
                              >
                              > I think your calico is our muslin. I think that would work for a
                              > lighter-duty corset. How many layers do you use?
                              >
                              > <<For boning i would recomend you to use either wood or plastic. I
                              use
                              > plastic from Wissner in Germany, and i have heard that you can get
                              it in
                              > USA also.
                              > Plastic is very easy to use, because you can cut off the sharp
                              points
                              > and get quite rounded edges. You dont have to use those metal
                              things for
                              > the edges of bones.
                              > And above all it is just as good as steel!!!>>
                              >
                              > I'm kind of against the plastic boning. When it gets warm from
                              wearing
                              > it, it molds into your shape. I have a cheap bodice with plastic
                              bones,
                              > and after 5 or 6 wearings, the bottom front of it now points out,
                              and
                              > the bust is starting to curve out. It looks like an extremely
                              > exaggerated hourglass. :/
                              >
                              > Jeni.
                            • Paquerette
                              Message 14 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                              • 0 Attachment
                                <<If you want it to be very period accurate you could use linen fabric,
                                but it is a little difficult to work with because it is
                                very stretchy. Calico is just as good, and it is cheap.>>

                                I don't find linen to be stretchy. I guess it depends on what linen you
                                get, but most linens I've worked with are quite sturdy. My 18th century
                                stays are two layers of linen/cotton, with a layer of cotton duck in
                                between. The bones are spring steel, in cotton casings sewn to the duck.
                                I do ask quite a bit of this corset, but it hadn't let me down until I
                                started shrinking. :) I just need to move the lacing now.

                                <<If i were you, i would use calico. Calico you use to make muck up
                                dresses of.
                                Before you cut it, you boil the calico and iron it afterwards. Then it
                                wont shrink.>>

                                I think your calico is our muslin. I think that would work for a
                                lighter-duty corset. How many layers do you use?

                                <<For boning i would recomend you to use either wood or plastic. I use
                                plastic from Wissner in Germany, and i have heard that you can get it in
                                USA also.
                                Plastic is very easy to use, because you can cut off the sharp points
                                and get quite rounded edges. You dont have to use those metal things for
                                the edges of bones.
                                And above all it is just as good as steel!!!>>

                                I'm kind of against the plastic boning. When it gets warm from wearing
                                it, it molds into your shape. I have a cheap bodice with plastic bones,
                                and after 5 or 6 wearings, the bottom front of it now points out, and
                                the bust is starting to curve out. It looks like an extremely
                                exaggerated hourglass. :/

                                Jeni.
                              • Anne Redish
                                Re corsets - yes, a newbie can make successful corsets. Read on ! I made some corsets two years ago for the first time (or the first serious corset making).
                                Message 15 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  Re corsets - yes, a newbie can make successful corsets. Read on !
                                  I made some corsets two years ago for the first time (or the first
                                  'serious' corset making). I was making them without concern for historic
                                  materials accuracy. I read numerous resources about corset making,
                                  including many good sites online. I used a Mantua-maker 1720-1790 stays
                                  pattern - which I found out is not the easiest to follow - but I had great
                                  help from the vendor with numerous conversations online and on-phone. Our
                                  budget didn't allow for top-notch materials so I turned creative. I used a
                                  fine but very dense ticking found in our Fabricland/Joanne's sale aisle
                                  (preshrunk) for the inner layers, and a heavy (almost canvas) cotton twill
                                  (preshrunk)for the next-to skin-lining. The 'fashion' fabric of the dress
                                  was used for the 'top-front' layer. Rather than regular 'boning' I used
                                  3/8" wide cable ties available from Home Depot. They are nylon (I think),
                                  cheap, come about 2 feet - 30" long and can be easily cut to any length
                                  with sturdy scissors (or tin-snips), and trimmed on an angle for fit in any
                                  angled channel. I had no waste, since I planned the use of each length as I
                                  went along to avoid waste. The corsets I did were not totally boned - ie I
                                  left every 4th or so channel open - to allow some air and flex. The top and
                                  bottom edge handwork was VERY time consuming, but resulted in a VERY sturdy
                                  top and bottom edge, with so far no 'bones' poking out. The pattern can be
                                  done with as much boning as you want. This process resulted in 3 sturdy and
                                  machine washable corsets that are used by students regularly for rehearsals
                                  and shows.
                                  Pattern vendor and support: Lorina at
                                  http://www.5rivers.org/
                                  Anne Redish
                                  Theatre Wardrobe Coordinator
                                  Department of Drama, Rm 020
                                  Queen's University,
                                  Kingston, Ontario
                                  613-533-6000 x75359
                                  ar11@...
                                • Siebel San
                                  I hear you there. I ve been trying to find a good source for steel bones for a while, but I just haven;t had the time to really look. All my bodices have to
                                  Message 16 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                    I hear you there. I've been trying to find a good source
                                    for steel bones for a while, but I just haven;t had the
                                    time to really look. All my bodices have to be washed and
                                    then worn inside out for a while to get the plastic boning
                                    back to it's original shape. It's fine for stuff that
                                    wasn't designed to be worn heavy-duty like though.
                                    Jessica (corsets - everyone's favorite topic)

                                    >
                                    > I'm kind of against the plastic boning. When it gets warm
                                    > from wearing
                                    > it, it molds into your shape. I have a cheap bodice with
                                    > plastic bones,
                                    > and after 5 or 6 wearings, the bottom front of it now
                                    > points out, and
                                    > the bust is starting to curve out. It looks like an
                                    > extremely
                                    > exaggerated hourglass. :/
                                    >
                                    > Jeni.
                                    >


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                                  • Bjarne og Leif Drews
                                    Hi. Well you are right. I was not aware that it was a victorian corset in question. I was talking about 18th century corsets. I make 4 layers of muslin and
                                    Message 17 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      Hi.
                                      Well you are right. I was not aware that it was a victorian corset in question.
                                      I was talking about 18th century corsets.
                                      I make 4 layers of muslin and stitch trough all layers for the bones. Then i whipstitch all the panels together, cover the seams with a tape including all the tabs with bias tape, + the bust and armscye/ shoulder straps -handsewn (very longlasting work)
                                       
                                      Bjarne
                                      Bjarne 
                                      ----- Original Message -----
                                      Sent: Thursday, October 17, 2002 5:28 PM
                                      Subject: [TheCostumersManifesto] Re: Corsets


                                      <<If you want it to be very period accurate you could use linen fabric,
                                      but it is a little difficult to work with because it is
                                      very stretchy. Calico is just as good, and it is cheap.>>

                                      I don't find linen to be stretchy. I guess it depends on what linen you
                                      get, but most linens I've worked with are quite sturdy. My 18th century
                                      stays are two layers of linen/cotton, with a layer of cotton duck in
                                      between. The bones are spring steel, in cotton casings sewn to the duck.
                                      I do ask quite a bit of this corset, but it hadn't let me down until I
                                      started shrinking. :) I just need to move the lacing now.

                                      <<If i were you, i would use calico. Calico you use to make muck up
                                      dresses of.
                                      Before you cut it, you boil the calico and iron it afterwards. Then it
                                      wont shrink.>>

                                      I think your calico is our muslin. I think that would work for a
                                      lighter-duty corset. How many layers do you use?

                                      <<For boning i would recomend you to use either wood or plastic. I use
                                      plastic from Wissner in Germany, and i have heard that you can get it in
                                      USA also.
                                      Plastic is very easy to use, because you can cut off the sharp points
                                      and get quite rounded edges. You dont have to use those metal things for
                                      the edges of bones.
                                      And above all it is just as good as steel!!!>>

                                      I'm kind of against the plastic boning. When it gets warm from wearing
                                      it, it molds into your shape. I have a cheap bodice with plastic bones,
                                      and after 5 or 6 wearings, the bottom front of it now points out, and
                                      the bust is starting to curve out. It looks like an extremely
                                      exaggerated hourglass. :/

                                      Jeni.


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                                      TheCostumersManifesto-unsubscribe@egroups.com



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                                    • Andrea Bertone
                                      I recently completed Laughing Moons Dore corset. It gave me great support, a perfect line and it was comfortable. And for my first corset, it was pretty easy.
                                      Message 18 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        I recently completed Laughing Moons' Dore corset. It gave me great support, a perfect line and it was comfortable. And for my first corset, it was pretty easy.
                                         
                                        I got all of my supplies from Alter Years.
                                         
                                        It was great.
                                         
                                        -Andrea
                                        -----Original Message-----
                                        From: Anne Redish [mailto:ar11@...]
                                        Sent: Thursday, October 17, 2002 9:08 AM
                                        To: TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com
                                        Cc: info@...
                                        Subject: [TheCostumersManifesto] Corsets

                                        Re corsets - yes, a newbie can make successful corsets. Read on !
                                        I made some corsets two years ago for the first time (or the first
                                        'serious' corset making). I was making them without concern for historic
                                        materials accuracy. I read numerous resources about corset making,
                                        including many good sites online. I used a Mantua-maker 1720-1790 stays
                                        pattern - which I found out is not the easiest to follow - but I had great
                                        help from the vendor with numerous conversations online and on-phone.  Our
                                        budget didn't allow for top-notch materials so I turned creative. I used a
                                        fine but very dense ticking found in our Fabricland/Joanne's sale aisle
                                        (preshrunk) for the inner layers, and a heavy (almost canvas) cotton twill
                                        (preshrunk)for the next-to skin-lining. The 'fashion' fabric of the dress
                                        was used for the 'top-front' layer. Rather than regular 'boning' I used
                                        3/8" wide cable ties available from Home Depot. They are nylon (I think),
                                        cheap, come about 2 feet - 30" long and can be easily cut to any length
                                        with sturdy scissors (or tin-snips), and trimmed on an angle for fit in any
                                        angled channel. I had no waste, since I planned the use of each length as I
                                        went along to avoid waste. The corsets I did were not totally boned - ie I
                                        left every 4th or so channel open - to allow some air and flex. The top and
                                        bottom edge handwork was VERY time consuming, but resulted in a VERY sturdy
                                        top and bottom edge, with so far no 'bones' poking out. The pattern can be
                                        done with as much boning as you want. This process resulted in 3 sturdy and
                                        machine washable corsets that are used by students regularly for rehearsals
                                        and shows.
                                        Pattern vendor and support: Lorina at
                                        http://www.5rivers.org/ 
                                        Anne Redish
                                        Theatre Wardrobe Coordinator
                                        Department of Drama, Rm 020
                                        Queen's University,
                                        Kingston, Ontario
                                        613-533-6000 x75359
                                        ar11@...


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                                        TheCostumersManifesto-unsubscribe@egroups.com



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                                      • peggy salvail
                                        Are you haveing any trouble getting a catalog from then? I have had one ordered for almoset 2 years now(Feb) paid for and all. Peggy ...
                                        Message 19 of 28 , Oct 17, 2002
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          Are you haveing any trouble getting a catalog from
                                          then? I have had one ordered for almoset 2 years
                                          now(Feb) paid for and all. Peggy

                                          --- Andrea Bertone <andrea@...>
                                          wrote:
                                          > I recently completed Laughing Moons' Dore corset. It
                                          > gave me great support,
                                          > a perfect line and it was comfortable. And for my
                                          > first corset, it was
                                          > pretty easy.
                                          >
                                          > I got all of my supplies from Alter Years.
                                          >
                                          > It was great.
                                          >
                                          > -Andrea
                                          > -----Original Message-----
                                          > From: Anne Redish [mailto:ar11@...]
                                          > Sent: Thursday, October 17, 2002 9:08 AM
                                          > To: TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com
                                          > Cc: info@...
                                          > Subject: [TheCostumersManifesto] Corsets
                                          >
                                          >
                                          > Re corsets - yes, a newbie can make successful
                                          > corsets. Read on !
                                          > I made some corsets two years ago for the first
                                          > time (or the first
                                          > 'serious' corset making). I was making them
                                          > without concern for historic
                                          > materials accuracy. I read numerous resources
                                          > about corset making,
                                          > including many good sites online. I used a
                                          > Mantua-maker 1720-1790 stays
                                          > pattern - which I found out is not the easiest to
                                          > follow - but I had great
                                          > help from the vendor with numerous conversations
                                          > online and on-phone. Our
                                          > budget didn't allow for top-notch materials so I
                                          > turned creative. I used a
                                          > fine but very dense ticking found in our
                                          > Fabricland/Joanne's sale aisle
                                          > (preshrunk) for the inner layers, and a heavy
                                          > (almost canvas) cotton twill
                                          > (preshrunk)for the next-to skin-lining. The
                                          > 'fashion' fabric of the dress
                                          > was used for the 'top-front' layer. Rather than
                                          > regular 'boning' I used
                                          > 3/8" wide cable ties available from Home Depot.
                                          > They are nylon (I think),
                                          > cheap, come about 2 feet - 30" long and can be
                                          > easily cut to any length
                                          > with sturdy scissors (or tin-snips), and trimmed
                                          > on an angle for fit in
                                          > any
                                          > angled channel. I had no waste, since I planned
                                          > the use of each length as
                                          > I
                                          > went along to avoid waste. The corsets I did were
                                          > not totally boned - ie I
                                          > left every 4th or so channel open - to allow some
                                          > air and flex. The top
                                          > and
                                          > bottom edge handwork was VERY time consuming, but
                                          > resulted in a VERY
                                          > sturdy
                                          > top and bottom edge, with so far no 'bones' poking
                                          > out. The pattern can be
                                          > done with as much boning as you want. This process
                                          > resulted in 3 sturdy
                                          > and
                                          > machine washable corsets that are used by students
                                          > regularly for
                                          > rehearsals
                                          > and shows.
                                          > Pattern vendor and support: Lorina at
                                          > http://www.5rivers.org/
                                          > Anne Redish
                                          > Theatre Wardrobe Coordinator
                                          > Department of Drama, Rm 020
                                          > Queen's University,
                                          > Kingston, Ontario
                                          > 613-533-6000 x75359
                                          > ar11@...
                                          >
                                          > Yahoo! Groups Sponsor
                                          > ADVERTISEMENT
                                          >
                                          >
                                          >
                                          >
                                          >
                                          > To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                                          > TheCostumersManifesto-unsubscribe@egroups.com
                                          >
                                          >
                                          >
                                          > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo!
                                          > Terms of Service.
                                          >
                                          >


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                                        • Becky Lee
                                          Ahhhhhh boning... I think I mentioned this on a thread about corsets in another group ages ago, but for boning I ve been using 1/4 polyethelene tubing. You
                                          Message 20 of 28 , Oct 20, 2002
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            Ahhhhhh boning...

                                            I think I mentioned this on a thread about corsets in another group
                                            ages ago, but for boning I've been using 1/4" polyethelene tubing.
                                            You can buy it at hardware stores. Around here they use it to hook
                                            water to evaporative coolers. It's really cheap stuff. If you cut
                                            it straight across and don't fit it in channels too snugly, you won't
                                            have a problem with it pushing through. It's flexible and machine
                                            washable. It has a slight curve to it, but I've used it on straight
                                            elizabethan corsets successfully. I can say its a bit more bulky
                                            than rigilene boning. I have also used it to hold out panniers and
                                            hoops. As far as I know it comes in 4 colors, I have copper
                                            colored. Recently I made a pink "diamonds are a girls best friend"
                                            Marilyn Monroe and boned the inner bodice shell with it, worked great!

                                            Becky
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