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Fitting: The Secret Skill

Detail from L'Enfant Terrible, 1890's In the first of a hotly-anticipated series, Laura rolls up her sleeves and addresses the single most pressing frustration that FR readers tell us they face: just how do you fit a corset properly?

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lauraloft 15.04.2010 23:08  
Yes No   Apologies,I edited out a small note at the end of the Jelly method to explain what the scales are for. When recreating a very large cup size, I find it helpful to measure the weight of all of the balloons for one breast to use as a guide when filling the balloons for the other breast.
I also make a note of the total weight of the balloons for each breast as my son has a nasty habit of mixing them up or running off with them. :-)
jema 15.04.2010 23:24  
Yes No   I can't wait to have a go at making some jelly boobs:)  
dazeoflaur 16.04.2010 00:39  
Yes No   I definitely need to make some boobies :) Great tips. I am a total believer in making your toile as close to the final as possible. Some say I overdo my mock-up *shrug* But the proof is in the pudding, I mean final fit of the corset :)

Now I'm hungry but I'm craving tapioca though *wink*
lauraloft 16.04.2010 01:20  
Yes No   "Now I'm hungry but I'm craving tapioca though *wink* "

Now that's some lumpy bobbies - well they would be the way I make it :-D
tomi 16.04.2010 04:54  
Yes No   Love the Jelly boobs--though I think I will try it with unflavored gelatin to avoid stains.  
sparklewren 16.04.2010 12:12  
Yes No   Love the way you went at those balloons with a knife Laura!

Seriously though, brilliant article. I think your first point of learning to focus on "looking" and assessing the figure is of paramount importance, and it's something I find very interesting. What one then does with that information varies a lot between corsetmakers (hoorah for self-learning!), but that first important step of really paying attention to the body should be highlighted often, in my opinion.

Can't wait for the next article :-D
catmacgregor 16.04.2010 19:40  
Yes No   I am just starting on my first corset so this is wonderful! I am an plump hourglass so those jellies are brillant. I had two questions if possible.
1) I am currently going to fitness course (yeah me!) so measurements are changing. Is there a way to accomodate changes so I can still start working on my corset but not have to constantly recreate the wheel? I think the answer is no but just hoping. 8)
2) I am curious what is a double hip?
Thank you so much!

lauraloft 16.04.2010 20:25  
Yes No   Hi Cat,
I always recommend that clients allow their measurements to settle before being fitted for a corset. But, I do understand the overwhelming urge to make one - I'm battling with my measurements and the urge to make myself a corset too! You could make the corset with a slightly wider lacing gap, but you will run the real risk that the corset will not fit as well as your measurements change - there is no way of working out exactly how each measurement will change as you tone up.
I've opted to make a simple corset for myself now and then will make one with all the bells and whistles once my measurements have stablised. That way I can recycle some of the metalware (bones, busk) and benefit from the experience gained from making up the first corset.
lauraloft 16.04.2010 20:25  
Yes No   A double hip is what I call it when a woman's hips have two distinct curves instead of a single curve.

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Single Hip Double Hip

Ok my keyboard drawing skills are worse than my pencil and paper scribbles, but hopefully you get the idea. ;-)
lauraloft 16.04.2010 20:29  
Yes No   Ok that didn't work, I'll try and post a sketch ......  
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