I really hoped to have a finished corset to show off today, but alas, although I did finish one the fit is less than ideal. I would go so far as to say it is disappointingly too big. So instead you get a long, picture free, post mostly made up of me taking notes for myself.
Although I did make a muslin before making the corset, and I was happy with the fit of the muslin, the finished product gapped too much at the neckline and didn't give me the kind of waist reduction I was hoping for. Not that I want to be cinched so tight I can't breathe, but my natural figure is very straight from my waist to my hip and I want to alter that, just a little bit.
There are a few errors that I think I made with the first corset.
1) I did not lace up the muslin, I just had a friend hold the back shut for me and tell me what kind of gap I had. As a result, I didn't really realize how much tighter it actually needed to be in order to fit. Corsets should fit very tight to the body if only to eliminate shifting (and therefore potentially rubbing). There were rubby spots on my corset because the fit was too loose.
2) The fit of the bust area was perfect without bones, but when I added bones the fabric stood up to much. For some reason, I foolishly thought that would magically go away; in reality, the bust was too loose and nothing was going to magically fix that.
So, now I'm making a new corset, having learned a great deal from the first one and being able to move forward with greater confidence.
I redrafted my pattern today to include a much greater waist reduction. My original pattern I only aimed for a two-inch reduction because I thought more than that would be uncomfortable or look too exaggerated. This time, I aimed for an additional 4 inches (so 6 total). I also took in the bust and eliminated the sweetheart neckline in favor of a lower straight neckline.
I already made a new muslin. This time, I pounded in some cheap eyelets and laced it up. I used masking tape to hold the bones in place rather than sew on ribbon for bone channels. It's easier, cheaper, and still gives a good approximation of what the corset will be like with bones.
Already I can tell the fit is better. I now have a cute, little, defined waist, but it doesn't have that waspy look vintage corset patterns impart, I just look skinnier than I am in reality. Making the top shorter also helped with the fit in the bust, there was just less material for the bones to hold stiffly away from my body. Now I do have to keep reminding myself that the corset will be underneath my gown, and there will be more coverage because the girls are way on display, which I don't typically feel comfortable with. Now I'm noticing that they are squishing a bit more to the side than I want them too, so that is the next fit challenge to overcome.
I will have a tutorial for the handbound eyelets that I did on the first corset coming up this week. And hopefully soon I will have a finished corset that fits to show off.