I hate patterns. There. I said it. I find them lacking in every possible way, and crazy expensive to boot. I never once have bought a pattern that fits me perfectly without having to be adjusted. Why?
BECAUSE YOU CAN’T MAKE A PATTERN BE ONE SIZE FITS ALL- everyone is unique.
And this is why I prefer draping. There is one downfall to draping though- a dress form cannot be taken in like humans can. This makes drafting a tightlace or wasp waist corset impossible.
Here’s another problem. I have a small waist naturally, at 24.5”. Usually I am very thankful for this, it is one of the few things on my body I actually like. Most corset patterns are not drafted to accommodate for such a drastic difference between the hips and waist. That waist curve is a bitch.
First I bought an extra dressform and carved it into my desired measurements. Yes carved...with a knife. It was messy. I then draped a corset on it. But it turned out so wrong.
So I went to my books, pulling out Jill Salen’s Corset book:
This book gets great reviews. I like it, but I have several bones to pick with it. She discusses what the corset looks like and who it might have been worn by, but there are no detailed construction details. As most people who purchase this book are doing so for the purpose of recreating the historical patterns...this just seems like an obvious must to me.
This is the corset I decided to attempt:
The patterns are all .5 scale, so I resized them…which took forever…math…
And this is what came of it….GUH. Boob gap, hip gap.
Frustrated I took in the seams to try to remedy the problems and ended up making things even worse. It was so bad I didn’t even bother taking a picture. The waist was perfect, but I got what I refer to as the "fan" effect at the hips and bust.
I gave up and cut out an old pattern that I drafted for my Briar Rose costume. It isn’t period correct, but it does the job. I marked the boning channels, though I think I leaned too heavily on the 1700s because I added in some diagonal bones. I don’t know if I’ll keep them or not.