Well, since I had the 1914 mourning dress sorted, I also needed proper underwear. I have never been particularly fond of the WWI fashions, but since we are getting more and more bookings for that period for the summer, it makes sense to be prepared. Also, since the current WWI interest is going to last for another 4 years or so due to the centenary, we are bound to be either booked for shows, or to make clothing from that era. And so, I bought a pattern and decided to have a go at it next time I was due for our monthly Stitch and Bitch session at Sew Curvy.
on my way to Sew Curvy – Cuckoo Lane in its spring glory!
Pattern – Nehalenia patterns, 1910 corset – earlier than the WWI, but this type of corset was worn generally till at least mid decade if not longer – a quick look at other sources confirmed it, and so the decision was made. I adapted size 12 – with the bust from size 16, as specified by my measurements.
materials – bits of cotton broche, black – remnants form other projects. Alas, it turned out that they cane from different batches and one piece was darker than the other – but the difference in hue would hardly matter on an underwear corset.
boning – flat and spiral steels enclosed in channels made with herringbone tape.
All components,apart from the lace came from Sew Curvy shop.
mock up first…
mock up cut in calico…
mock up boned using masking tape – stupidly I didn’t notice at that point that bones do not go all the way down, so had to trim them later… Irritating…
mock up on! not too bad, just minor adaptations 🙂
it felt surprisingly comfortable, and gave a much better silhouette than I had envisaged! loving the smooth fit over the hips.
Once I saw how flattering the corset can be, I set to making the real thing with renewed enthusiasm…
and stitched together…
seam detail on the outside…
and on the inside… after the first trials the flat felled seams were a joy to make! the trick is to pre-press the seam allowance on the folding over piece – makes stitching it much , much easier!
then eyelets were inserted…
and then the boning:-)
the whole thing was bound in cotton binding
and it was time to try it on…. 🙂
not too shabby!
very pleased with the fit – just need some nice lace to put on top, and the make and attach suspenders:-)
And while I was having fun with the kit for my mourning kit, Julia was working on a sweet bridal sheer – a few taster pictures below, official photos not disclosed yet! 🙂
sheer mesh, silk satin and lace – divine combo!
it is progressing well 🙂
If you like the look of the sheer corset, check out Sew Curvy courses – the was a recent course on sheer corsetry, but i believe the dates for the next one will be announced soon!
once back home I sorted out the suspenders…
trying to puzzle them out was a bit of a challenge at first, but it is not rocket science!
and then added lace and a velvet ribbon, flossed the bones for that extra security and fashionable look – and the corset was ready. Here worn over my late Edwardian chemisette and drawers, the stockings and shoes from American Duchess
you can see the differences in the different hues of the broche quite clearly here…
Altogether, I am very well pleased with the thing – it is comfortable, gives a much better silhouette than I had expected, and above all, serves its primary function – this type of corsets did not aim a waist reduction ( though there is some!), but at streamlining the body, so that the loose, close fitting garments of the era ( hobble skirts especially) looked smooth, flowing down the body in a relatively undisturbed fashion.
In fact, I liked them so much I made 5 others, in different sizes, as a trial batch for our online shop ( news on that shortly) – we will be offering them as off the peg items alongside other corsetry items ( Regency, mid Victorian, late Victorian, early Edwardian) in standard sizes 10-18 🙂
The ones I made as a trial were photographed one weekend in a WWI undergarment shoot with Pitcheresque Imagery– a picture-full report on that here – and the teaser below:-)