Victorian Corset: Fitting

It is fitting time, with the corset constructed just enough to be able to fit it to our beautiful model.

Corset are easiest fitted inside out, which is unusual, as most garments are done the other way around, however for the makers convenience it is easier to do the fitting in side out and to pull in and measure seams when there is the seam allowance to grab on to.

The first job was to machine tack the two separate eyelet samples so that the back of the corset so that it could be laced up.

Importantly it needs to be remembered that there is a specific way to lace up a corset! the laces begin at the top of the corset and come through to the front from underneath, and that is repeated all the way down-under, over, under, over- however when you reach the waist the lace needs to go straight down once, this is where the bunny ears are, here all the excess lace will go as the corset is pulled in.

My corset fit very well every where and so the only thing that needed to be adjusted was the spacing of the back of the corset. However sometimes the corset needs to be shaped around the bust and the hips, and this needs to be done before you begin to get all maths-ie.

Now hear comes the maths. Depending on what the back looks likes the corset needs to be straight all the way up and down the back. It is also best if the corset sits about  5 cm apart all the way down, this allows for the model/actors body to get used to the corset and therefore the corset to be pulled in tighter.

So you take the measurement from the top, middle and bottom. Then you work out how far off these numbers are from 5 cm. The number you now have is how much the corset needs to be let out at the side seams to make the corset fit correctly.

This number will be divided between two for the two sides, divided in two again for the two seams and finally divided by two again as you will be working to take the fabric out on the double (This means you are working with two layers of fabric i.e. a seam). All in all your number is divided by 8.

The lines are drawn and then the new seams are sewn. Remembering that to avoid changing the alignment of the corset the new seams must be sewn from the top to the bottom of the corset.

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With the new seam in place the old seam can be unpicked, and you are ready to move on to the final stages of the construction of your corset.

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