The Curious Corset Experiment – Part One

I wrote in an earlier post that I wasn’t planning any new sewing resolutions this year, besides the usual sew more, blog more, have fun.

I do however have a bit of a sewing goal to complete in 2015 and that is to make a corset.

I see it as a technical challenge and an excuse to sew something fun that I wouldn’t normally sew. I intend to fit it in amongst my usual sewing and I thought I’d share my progress in a semi-regular (read: I’ll post when I do anything but there is no set timeline) blog series.

This idea has been floating around in my head for a while…maybe 4 years ago I bought The Basics of Corset Building by Linda Sparks and one of the two recommended patterns, Simplicity 9769.

All I really needed to get serious was some hardware so after Christmas I jumped online to check out several websites suggested by various sources and eventually settled on Aussie Corset Supplies.

They had what I needed in stock and being just over the ditch in the West Island (New Zealand joke) their shipping was very reasonable.

Based on the listed notions I bought the following:

  • Spiral Steel Boning
    • 4 x 25cm
    • 4 x 26.5cm
    • 2 x 27.5cm
    • 6 x 28.75 cm
    • 4 x 23.75cm
    • 2 x 22.5cm

(Which seems like a lot more more boning pieces than I can count on the pattern outline!)

  • 1 x 30cm DEU Standard Busk 30cm
  • 5 meters white lacing

This all cost me about NZD$70.00 including shipping and handling.

I went for precut/finished spiral steel boning but I also priced up buying it by the meter and the tips separately. The pre-cut boning worked out cheaper because I suspect the by-the-meter stuff is of higher quality. If this experiment goes well and I decide to make a more advanced corset I might look at upping the hardware quality then.

I still need grommets and fabric, which I will buy locally.

I’ve traced my size, I’m starting with a straight 12, and my first step is to stitch up a quick muslin out of heavy calico to test the fit. I’ll also insert the boning and busk.

Then it’s fabric shopping time!

So that’s it for now. I’ll post future entries under The Curious Corset Experiment so if you are interested you can look them up.

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