Golden 1860s corset

As I mentioned in an previous post about my sisters 1860s corsetI couldn’t resist the temptation to make one for myself (even though I didn’t need one and really didn’t had the time for it). I tried to convince myself that it would be like a workable test-run of the pattern for my sisters corset. But since I both started (and finished) it after my sisters was already done, that argument fell kind of flat.
But anyhow, I did make one for myself :-).

Using the same pattern, and initially also the same mock-up I got to work.

Terrible first mock-up

Wanting the fitting just right, I also made a second mock-up – based on my own measurements (instead of my sisters).

Using a beautiful cream/golden coutil from “Vena Cava designs”, and a orange cotton sheet for lining.

I sewed it up in the same way as my sisters (but I didn’t need any additional alterations), so it went faster.

Attaching the busk to the beautiful golden fabric
Oh, how I wished I’ve gotten the tad more expensive golden busk on my last order.


Front and back of the guessets

I stitched the whole thing together, adding bone casings, grommets and bones. I made my own bias tape using pieces of main fabric and used it to bind the top edge.

Then all that was left was to add the decorationTime for lace and flossing

Isn’t it amazing when your stash yields everything you need for a beautiful composed corset 🙂 (or maybe that a sign I got to much stash? Neh 🙂 )

The finished corset:

The facts:

Pattern: “Past pattern” 1860-1880s corset

Fabric & Notions: 0,5 m cream coutil, 0,5m orange cotton for lining, 1 busk, grommets, boning (plastic and metal) 4 m cotton cord, 1 m golden lace, thread, buttonhole thread for flossing.

Time: About 7 hours – pretty fast and easy

Cost: everything came from stash, but bought new probably 350 Sek (32 Usd)

Final Thoughts: I’m in love with this corset. It’s so light yet really strong, and it’s really comfortable, and on top of that I think the colors are delightful. 🙂

Green 1860s corset

Who knew it could be so much fun sewing guesses?

When I started working on the 1860s corset from “Past Patterns”, for my sister back in January I dreaded what was to come.

All the Guesses…
4 on each side = 8 on the outer fabric
+ 8 on the lining =16

Phu…

Then of course there was the question of the Mock-up = another 8
And me, my crazy as decided that a second mock-up was needed = another 8 guesses

I must say I lost count by now, but I’m not finished yet…

For once I started on my sisters corset, I of course wanted one of my own… (but that’s for a later post)

I think the final counting (including a few that needed re-setting) lands at about 60 or so.

But lets take this from the beginning.

This winter I got an invitation to my dance groups yearly historical ball, that was to be held in May.
I immediately asked my sister if she would like to join – which of course she would.
Then we started debating what to wear.
The timespan set for this ball was 1750s-1850s, so a pretty big gap and quite an ocean of possibilities.
I decided to postpone the difficult decision for myself a few months – after all I have a wardrobe full of dresses that would do (more on my thoughts on this dilemma in a later post).
But my sister only had one or two things from previous events, which non would work for this occasion. Quickly drawn sketches of possible ways to go.

And since The time I had to spend on her dress was limited by both my family and my work, we needed to find something relatively simple to make.
So after some debating back and forth, we (despite better judgment) decided to make her a complete set of 1850-1860s evening attire.
Of course…:-0

Starting with the corset.

And here we are.

I drafted the pattern from “Past Patterns” mid 19th century stay pattern, with some alterations for my sisters and made a mock-up.

Silly me, thinking that the few bones in this corset would hold upp the cheap cotton I use for most of my toiles. No It wont do. So I made a second mock-up in a much sturdier upholstery fabric (a friend bought at IKEA and gifted to me).
Sorry no photos of the second fitting, but it looked much better.

So I cut the fabric, a beautiful light green satin I got a few years back for exactly this purpose (well, it was intended for my corset, but what do you do – sometimes sisters need pretty fabrics to ;-)).

I interlined it with a sturdy cotton in a similar color from stash, and started on the gussets.

I stitched the boning channels, set the grommets and added the busk. 

Then I did another fitting, which I usually never bother to do, but since we where to meat for a cup of coffee I figured, why not.

That was a good call, since some adjustments still needed to be made.
I took it in a few cm at the top, let out a few at the bottom, shortened the whole thing a bit and added two extra bones on each side.
Only the bone in the middle is from the pattern.

Then I wrapped it up by adding the bias binding (made from the same fabric as the corset), lace and working some flossing on the bones.

Now it fit much better! 🙂

The finished corset:

The facts:

What: a 1850-1880s corset

Pattern: “Past Pattern” nr. 708 – Mid 19th century stays

Fabric & Notions: 0,5 m green cotton sateen, o,5 m cotton interlining, 0.5 m green cotton for lining. Thread, 1 busk, boning (plastic and metal), grommets, buttonhole thread for flossing, 1 m ivory lace, 4 m of cotton cord for lacing.

Time: With the many fittings, and short work sessions late at night it took about 10 hours.

Cost: Everything came from stash (fancy that!), but bought new about 300 Sek (25 Usd).

Final thoughts: I think it came out really well, and my sister loves it. Lets just see how well it holds up on the ball room floor…

Re-make a pair of bodice (HSM 2/2017)

I tend to think these “make-do/repair/re-make – challenges” are pretty boring. And I never know what to make and feel kind of uninspired by the whole thing.

But then something always happens.

I guess it’s due to my ever growing costume wardrobe, and my inpatients (often pressed by deadlines) to get stuff finished, that I always end up with several entry’s for the “re-make” HSM challenges.

The first one, this time, is the fixing up of my 16th century “Pair of bodice” (corset) that I made as one of my first historic pieces back in 2013.
2013-03-01 14.33.57Mighty proud back then

Since I’ve long been dreaming of expanding my 16th century wardrobe (and just recently got both patterns and a lovely black wool for a robe) I decided it was time to go through the existing pieces to make sure they where up to speed.

2013-02-09 15.45.57 2013, and just starting to ventur into the world of historic costuming

 
February 2017, and still a novice (tough a bit more knowable)
The corset fit me almost the same as back in 2013, but that was not enough anymore.
It needed to be fixed.

Here is how it looked before I dug my seam-ripper into it.

The first thing I did was to take my measurements, and they tuned out (as I expected) to be the exact same with and without the corset on. I know that the 16th century silhouette don’t call for any sliming of the torso, but a column to get the right look of the garment. But despite that I wanted to minimize my “column” as much as possible – Oh the vanity…

One of the biggest problem in this was the thick (2-3mm) plastic zip-ties I used to completely bone the bodice.
They build on to the outside of the corset to give me the bigger/same size as un-laced.

So they had to go.

Or at least most of them.
After I unripped the bias tape covering the upper edge, I removed every other bone at the front, all bones at the sides and only left a few ones a the back. I also cut the remaining bones down a god cm to make them fit better into the channels.
Cutting down the plastic boning.

Once the bones was gone I faced another problem – now the whole thing was a bit to big…

So I grabbed my seam-ripper, and got to work removing the piecing I added for exactly the same (opposite?) reason when I made the bodice.

Once almost all the upper binding was removed, I also took the opportunity to shorten the shoulder straps.

By now the corset looked like some kind of roadkill, with everything hanging lose and the big pile of boning sticking out. 

 Quality control by my tiny “helper”

Then all that was left was to stitch everything back again.

The finished Pair of bodice:


All the facts:

Challenge: nr 2/2017 – Re-make

What: The re-make of my 16th century “Pair of bodice”

How It fit the challenge: I re-made the pair of bodice to better fit my current skill and body, making it a lot more likely I will actually wear them. I also got a lot leftover boning from the fix-up, that I can use for other projects down the line.

Pattern: None

Fabric/Notions: Thread

How historical accurate: Not at all except the shape. The whole thing is made with machine, in synthetic brocade using both plastic boning and metal eyelets (so sorry you guys…). But it is a clear example of how my knowledge and skill have grown and since they will never be seen, it don’t bother me as much as it probably should. about 3/10.

Time/Cost: About 3 hours and it didn’t cost me a thing (of one thing I gained a few cents with the opportunity to re-use the left over bones).

First worn: Beginning of Mars for photos

Finished thoughts: I’m happy that I now might finally wear them 🙂

***

And here’s a complimentary “striptease” 🙂

photos by: Elin Evaldsdotter

Edwardian Vampire

Here comes another batch from last years Halloween photoshoot.

This time we are doing the classical vampire in my Edwardian lingere getup.

interviewtomInspiration 1.
Sadly I couldn’t get anyone to play Lestat, so we had to manage on our own 🙂

vampire02Inspiration 2.

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img_9449Model: Jessie Lewis Skoglund
Photo: Elin Evaldsdotter
Costume & Concept: Fashion through History

A 16th century UFO Corset

This spring, when cleaning out and sorting my sewing things I found a mysterious bag among my old fabrics.
And it wasn’t until I pored the content out on the table, I realized what it was.

Can you guess…IMG_7263A pile of some blue, white and grew stuff…Hm…

This seems to be some thread, laces, bias tape and some metal eyelets. IMG_7272Do you know yet?

And some plastic boning.IMG_7273What can it be…

And here we got something that looks remarkably like a mock-up.IMG_7274Come on, you can say it now.

Yes!
It is the Elizabethan Dorothea bodies from “The Tudor Tailor”. Which I’ve totally forgotten I’ve been working on long ago. IMG_7266

It seems like I’ve scaled the pattern and altered it for my figure.IMG_7268

And cut and sewed bias tape to all the tabs – by hand.IMG_7269Ok, I guess grey may not be the best choice of color for matching with the blue.

I´ve also managed to turn the back edges over and stitched the boning channels.IMG_7280

The two back pieces.IMG_7278

A close-up of the eyelets.
It seams like I used the metal eyelets for strength and covered them with blue thread. Not a technique I would have used today.IMG_7279

For some reason, I also stitched the edges of the two back pieces – in red thread (!?).IMG_7289

It guess I’ve must have put LOTS of work into the front piece.IMG_7286

Stitching all the channels by hand.IMG_7288Carefully following the basted lines.

IMG_7287I mean, look at that amount of work.

I remember starting this project about 4 years ago, when I (very ambitiously) decided to make a whole 1550s dress from scratch.
And since my skill and knowledge have progressed so much since then, I’m sad to admit I will probably never finish this corset.

But I´m not ready to throw it away yet either – so guess it will just go back into the ever growing pile of Un Finished Objects.