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The Art of Corsetry

Burlesque artist Dita von Teese in a corset.

What fun we’re having with lingerie and accessories this week! Time to turn our attention to corsetry, the fine art of making corsets. Although nowadays corsets are usually not worn to shape the female waist into hourglass shapes, the bone stays and lacing remain. There truly are some amazing corsets out there. I had the recent experience of helping my sister with her custom corset as part of her wedding day attire – lacing and fastening a corset is another skilled art in itself.

18th century silk corset.

Corsets were popularized in the 1550s, when Catherine de’ Medici famously declared that there would be no thick waists in her court. Did you know that our earliest knowledge of corsets comes from drawings recovered from a Neolithic archaeological site in England? Corsets may be controversial, but they’ve been around for a long time. If you’re curious, you can read up on the subject with The Corset: A Cultural History.

Gothic corset.

Corsets usually come in two main types, underbust and overbust. The underbust corset is designed to reduce the waist to create an hourglass silhouette. The overbust corset is designed to lift and shape cleavage.


Stylish underbust corset by Fairygothmother.

Shapely overbust corset.

And some more beautiful corsets for your viewing pleasure…

Beautiful black corset.

Elegant underbust corset.

Steampunk corset.

Spring green corset.

KidThink Etsy corset.

And another one of Dita just because I can.  She is one of my favouritest girl crushes.

Pin up Dita strikes a pose.

Enjoy the corset shopping out there! And for you creative types out there, I may do a sequel about making your own corset if you’re keen.

x Rena

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Comments

  1. jadesteckly says:

    Those are so beautiful! I can’t believe there is so much history behind one article of clothing…very interesting!

  2. Would definitely love that course, Rena! Always been intrigued by corsets, haven’t worn one since the babies started coming along, lol! Would be fun to do so, again.

  3. The corset is probably the only garment with both the richest history and the most modern current incarnation. I do love Dita too! She’s helped modernise the corset no end

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