Saturday, February 23, 2013

Stays fit... feeling a little smooshed.

So, I pulled out my stays today. I wasn't able to find my shift (aaaaahh, no clue where that is! I checked all the likely spots.) so I threw on a shirt nearby. Not the best plan - it is super poufy. But I was able to assess the general fit of the stays on my current body.

Not too bad! However, my breasts were barely pushing a B-cup when I made the corset, and now they are a pretty solid C. So... they were a little squashed. Lifted, but squashed. The side view below shows this problem a little better.

I think what I'll have to do is unpick the gussets and add a little bit of width to the top of each gusset. That shouldn't be too hard, right? We'll see. Better than making a new corset, for sure!

A few details about these stays: the pattern is from Period Costume for Stage and Screen, by Jean Hunnisett. I found the pattern very easy to scale up and it came together super easily. The outer fabric is white quilting cotton, and there are two lining layers, both linen. I corded it with hemp cord (which smells faintly of manure when washed, apparently), and boned it with cheap plastic boning. The eyelets in the back are made with stainless steel jump rings, which is moderately period-correct (would have been a different metal, but same technique). However, they probably should spiral-lace, and they lace straight across (without a lacing gap, unfortunately). So this corset is mish-mash of period-correct and modern techniques. But I'm happy with it for now, it'll do. ;)

Those coral beads that I mentioned last post? I have found quite a few paintings that show simple necklaces with round coral beads. In fact, coral seems to have been a popular accent in general, but I have to do a little more homework on that.

The Daughters of Colonel Thomas Cartaret Hardy, painted by Thomas Lawrence

Young lady with short-cropped hair and a coral necklace.

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