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Axfords Peach Vintage Overbust Review (Style C140)

This entry is a summary of the review for the “Axfords Peach Vintage Overbust (C140) Review”. If you would like more complete information and side notes about the corset, you can watch the video on YouTube here:

 

Quick Stats:

Fit, length Full bust: 31 inches (79 cm) (bust spring of 9 inches)
Closed waist: 22 inches (56 cm)
Low hip: 35 inches (89 cm) (hip spring of 13 inches)
Length: 14.5 inches in front and side. 8 inches are from the waist up, 6.5 from the waist down.
Silhouette is conical through the bust/ribs, rounded through the hips due to the hip gores.
Cut relatively straight across at the top, and “scalloped” on the bottom between the attached garters.
Material Two main layers: the fashion fabric is peach satin (rayon viscose / cotton blend), the lining is 100% cotton in a lightweight but dense canvas weave – the grain looks to be quite straight.
Construction 8-panel pattern (16 panels total): On each side, 6 of the panels are full length (and the 1st and 2nd taper slightly towards the lower tummy), while two large hip gores on each side contribute to the fullness and roundness of the hip.
Construction: fashion fabric and coutil were flatlined, Panels assembled with a topstitch, seam allowances facing inward. Herringbone twill tape was laid down on the inside to cover seam allowances, provide channels for the boning, and reinforce the seams.
Waist tape None.
Binding Skinny peach grosgrain ribbon which matches the peach fashion fabric very well; neatly applied (no fold-under as the edges are already finished).
Modesty panel None.
Busk 13 inches long, wide heavy-duty stainless steel busk (1 inch wide on each side). 6 loops and pins; the last two are a bit closer together.
Boning 14 bones (not including busk). Single-boned on the seams with 1/4″ spirals (attracts magnet well); and contains 1/4″ flat steels along the back by the eyelets.
Grommets 42 two-part tiny eyelets, probable size #X00 (smaller than standard; reminiscent of antique corsets), with very small flange. All have rolled nicely, no splits; washers present on the underside. They are placed 3/4″ apart (relatively close together) which allows for good control while lacing up.
Laces 1/8″ wide (made of 44% cotton and 56% polyester) white flat lacing – “workhorse laces” with no stretch and plenty of strength. Just wide enough to fit through the eyelets easily.
Price £160 GBP (around $217 USD) for a made-to-order corset in your choice of fabric.

 

Other Thoughts and Observations:

White bridal version of the same corset (C140) on a model with different proportions to myself.

Axfords is a corset brand from Brighton, UK. They are one of the oldest corset companies in the world, having been in business since 1880.

Many of their overbust patterns are the same patterns from antique corsets in the late 1800s and early 1900s, and some of their methods (lack of waist tape, lack of modesty panel, copious tiny eyelets, very lightweight construction) are also reminiscent of the way many corsets were constructed during the late Victorian / early Edwardian periods.

Axfords offered me a new sample for review, and because I have a long torso, I had asked Axfords to send the longest overbust style they currently make. At 14.5 inches, it is definitely a better fit lengthwise for me compared to my previous review, but much of that length ended up being from the waist down: this corset is designed to extend a bit beyond the lap level; the bones are deliberately shorter and pushed towards the top, to allow the fabric at the bottom to bend at the hip and allow you to sit comfortably.

The circumferential measurements unfortunately weren’t a perfect fit for my body, but this corset wasn’t made-to-measure so it would be unfair to expect this corset to fit like a custom-fit or bespoke piece. I can see this corset working fantastically with someone who has a more ‘pear-shaped’ figure: someone who has broader hips than mine, but a smaller bust or more narrow back.

Michael from Axfords mentions that all their in-stock satin is made and processed to their specifications (dyed to the perfect shade and reinforced for extra strength). I remember when I reviewed some of their other corsets over 6 years ago, I was very surprised to see that they chose to use a lightweight cotton canvas as a strength / lining fabric. However, since then I’ve come to realize that a few other brands (namely Dark Garden in the US) also use a dense-weave canvas, and this seems to work fine as long as it is carefully cut on grain (which this is).

There are other details about this corset: 2-inch wide frilly white floral lace covers the top and bottom edges of the corset, and along the bottom there are 6 wide, white elastic suspenders (garter straps) directly attached to the corset. These have a good amount of spring and contain high quality metal hardware.
There are also a few tiny, delicate-looking white satin bows along the top and bottom lace.

This corset might be the frilliest, most feminine corset I’ve reviewed to date – it reminds me of a frothy sherbet punch! But as each of their corsets are made to order, you can choose the color and even order the corset without lace, if you prefer.

See more at Axfords website here.

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Orchard Corset CS-411 LONGLINE Review

This entry is a summary of the review video “CS-411 LONGLINE underbust (Orchard Corset) Review”. If you want visual close-ups, you can watch the video on YouTube here:

Fit, length Center front is 12 inches long, princess seam is 11 inches (5.5″ above the waist, 5.5″ below the waist), side seam is 10 inches and center back is 12.5 inches.
Underbust 28″ (6 inch rib spring), waist 22″, low hip 32″ (10 inch hip spring).
Material 3 main layers – the fashion fabric is black cotton twill (also available in satin), flatlined to a sturdy cotton interlining, and lined in black twill again. Very stiff interlining in center front panel.
Construction 4-panel pattern (8 panels total). Constructed using the sandwich method.
Waist tape One-inch-wide waist tape running through the corset, hidden between the layers.
Binding Made from matching black cotton twill, machine stitched on both sides. Stitched in the ditch on the outside, and topstitch on the inside. There are no garter tabs.
Modesty panel Slightly under 6 inches wide, made of a layer of black satin and a layer of twill. Unstiffened, and attached to one side with a line of stitching (easily removed if desired).
The modesty placket in the front is also black twill and ¼” wide, extending from the knob side of the busk and not stiffened.
Busk 11″ long, with 5 loops and pins (last two are a bit closer together). Slightly heavier busk, slightly under an inch wide and fairly stiff.
Boning 16 bones total in this corset. On each side, 6 of them are spirals about ¼” wide (double boned on the seams) and then there are two flat steel bones, both ¼” wide sandwiching the grommets.
Grommets There are 24 two-part size #00 grommets (10 on each side), with a small flange, spaced equidistantly. On the underside there are many splits, but they don’t catch much on the laces due to the choice in laces.
Laces The laces are ¼” wide flat nylon shoe-lace style. I find them to be long enough and quite strong, but also rather springy.
Price Available in black cotton, black and white satin, and black brocade (I recommend the cotton finish for longevity and smoothness). Sizes go from 18″ up to 46″ closed waist.
Sizes 18″ to 32″ costs $72 USD  |  Sizes 34″ to 46″ costs $75 USD

 

Final Thoughts:

This was another one of those OTR corsets that I felt really indifferent towards as I took it out of the package, but it ended up giving a surprisingly really lovely silhouette once I wore it in for a time.

The silhouette of this longline CS-411 corset is reminiscent of the original CS-411 with sweeping lines and somewhat conical ribs. The hips are slightly more “cupped” below the iliac crest, however, compared to the original. I also feel that this version is slightly more curvaceous than their standard CS-411, and that could be why it fits my body better – I do have a longer torso though, and I tend to believe that longline corsets are generally more flattering on my body so this could be influencing my opinion.

While this corset is available in a cotton fashion fabric and satin fashion fabric, I would personally recommend the cotton as it’s is sturdier, doesn’t wrinkle as easily, is harder-wearing (doesn’t pull or fray as easily), abrasion-resistant and is generally better at hiding wear and tear.

If you’re not a fan of the springy synthetic “workhorse” style shoelace that comes with this corset, Orchard also carries has some higher quality laces (double-faced satin ribbon and paracord) in an assortment of colors. I personally much prefer their ribbon laces to the standard shoelace style laces, but paracord is said to be the strongest type of cord.

One thing to look out for is that the “bunny ears” are also consistently set high on the waist on Orchard Corsets (sometimes higher than the waist tape and always higher than my natural waist), but this is an easy fix – you just need to relace the corset, and I have a tutorial on that here.

See Orchard’s CS-411 longline corset on their website here, and remember that my ref code CORSETLUCY takes an additional 10% off your order (I don’t get any kickback from this coupon code, so use and share it freely).

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Rebel Madness “Ocean Lagoon” Mesh Underbust Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the review video “Rebel Madness “Boho” / “Ocean Lagoon” Mesh Corset Review”. If you would like more complete information and side notes about the corset, you can watch the video on YouTube here:

 

Fit, length Center front is 11 inches long, princess seam is 9.5 inches (4 inches from the waist up, 5.5 inches from the waist down), the side seam is 10 inches and the center back is 11 inches long.
Rib spring is 7″, lower hip spring is 14″. Ribs are slightly conical, but the mesh allows some flexibility in the ribs. I recommend this for someone with a high waist and full hips.
Material The mesh parts are single layer synthetic corsetry mesh. The front and back panels are 3 layers (fashion fabric is decorative lightweight cotton, another cotton interlining, and black twill lining).
Construction 6-panel pattern (12 panels total). Panels 2,3,4 and 5 all have some ease over the hip to create ample space over the hips. Panels were assembled with seam allowances facing outward (so as not to scratch the skin) and decorative lightweight cotton boning channels were laid down on the outside.
Waist tape One-inch-wide waist tape made from grograin ribbon, stitched on the inside of the corset (obviously also visible on the outside due to the mesh). Seems to be full width (center front panel to center back).
Binding Commercially-sourced black cotton bias tape, machine stitched on both sides (probably on a single pass, possibly by using a special sewing machine attachment).
Modesty panel 6.25 inches wide, unstiffened, made from 2 layers of black cotton twill. Not sewn into to the corset – it’s suspended on the laces using grommets.
There’s also a 1/2-inch-wide unstiffened modesty placket in front, extending from the knob side of the busk, also covered in the same fashion fabric.
Busk 10” long, with 4 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. Standard flexible busk, with an additional ¼” flat steel bone adjacent to the busk on each side.
Boning 16 bones total in this corset, 8 on each side. On each side, 5 of them are spirals about ¼ inch wide – single boned on the seams. One of the bones by the grommets is spiral steel (so the back is a but more flexible than usual when lacing up) but the bones at the center back seam, on the outer edge of the grommets, are flat steel. The bones adjacent to the busk are also flat steel.
Grommets There are 20, two-part size #0 grommets (10 on each side). They have a medium flange and are spaced equidistantly, and finished in black. They’re very nice quality (similar to Prym brand) and have rolled beautifully – definitely an improvement from the smaller silver grommets used in their old stock of corsets!
Laces The laces are black, ¼” wide nylon cord / shoelace. They are a bit springy / spongey, but they hold bows and knots well and they are definitely long enough.
Price Available in the blue decorative fabric you see here, but also available in a more simple all black design. Sizes 18″ up to 28″ closed waist.
As of 2017, the price is $95 USD. Find it here on Etsy.

 

Final Thoughts:

Ocean Mesh mini underbust corset by Rebel Madness, model unknown. Image courtesy of Awin / Etsy. $95 USD.

This corset goes by several names, like “boho mesh”, “ocean mesh” or “lagoon mesh”. If you search any of those names on Etsy, you will find the listing – or you can find it here.

Because this corset is longer from the waist down than it is from the waist up, it would suit someone with a high waistline / deep pelvis, or it could conceivably be worn as an “active longline” corset (a term coined by Electra Designs, where the bottom edge of the corset covers the hips and lower abdomen, but the top leaves the ribs mostly free for expansion and movement). While I would still not recommend exercising or working out in any corset, this corset does leave my upper ribs more free for deep breathing, as I have a longer torso.

The mesh is a great quality, finely-woven synthetic corsetry mesh. Although we’ve been conditioned to think “natural fibers are superior” when it comes to corset strength fabrics (like cotton coutil) due to their breathability, the truth is that synthetic mesh fabrics tend to be stronger – and because they are a mesh, they are still lightweight and breathable. However, as always, I would recommend wearing this corset with a shirt or liner underneath to prevent chafing and to protect your corset from the sweat and oils from your body.

One concern I had was that the decorative blue fabric seemed a bit transparent (at certain angles, the edge of the spiral bones show through the channels) and I was worried that it would be too thin to keep the bones in place without eventually wearing a hole through the fabric after several months of use. Magda and Maciej (the Rebel Madness team) ensured me this would not happen, as they test all of their designs for at least 6 months before putting them on the market. So far I’ve not seen any damage or wear to this corset (but I have so many corsets that I don’t wear this one daily), so for now my worries are assuaged. However, I’m thinking about adding some decorative flossing on top and bottom of each boning channel in a delicate light blue or deep purple floss, which will add even more security against any future issues.

The prices of Rebel Madness corsets are also extremely reasonable for an entry-level corset (I’ve noticed that corsets made in Poland tend to be lower in price in general), at $95 in their Etsy shop.

Do you have this corset, or another corset from Rebel Madness? What do you think of it? Leave a comment down below!

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C&S Constructions Double Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the review video “Rainbow Holow Corset! Two C&S Constructions Corsets (Review / Study)” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Rainbow Holo Corset

Fit, length Center front is 10.5 inches long, princess seam is 9,5 inches, side seam is 9.5 inches and center back is 11.5 inches.
Underbust 29″, waist 21″, high hip 34″.
Rounded ribcage and rounded hips. The busk is flexible and allows inward bowing.
Material 2 main layers: fashion layer is holographic silver foil (almost like interwoven tinsel). Lined in herringbone coutil.
Construction 4 panel pattern! (Surprising as it’s so curvy.) Layers were flatlined, panels were assembled and reinforced with sturdy topstitch (seam allowances facing outside). External boning channels laid down over the seams.
Waist tape 1-inch-wide waist tape “invisibly” installed between the layers, full width.
Binding Bias strips of matching holographic foil material, machine stitched on both inside and outside (zigzag stitch; the foil material likes to shred/fray).
Modesty panel None (this is a sample). However on the C&S website, they say that all corset commissions come with a back modesty panel.
This corset sample does have a wide boned underbusk, covered in black herringbone coutil.
Busk 9″ long, with 5 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. Standard flexible busk (1/2″ wide on each side). The boned underbusk gives a bit more stiffness, but the corset still “dishes” on my body (this may be deliberate – common of C&S corsets, and this also seems to help me achieve a higher comfortable waist reduction in this corset).
Boning 11 steel bones, not including busk. 5 on each side, plus boned underbusk in front. On each side, 3 spirals single boned on the seams, and 2 flats (1/4″ wide) sandwiching the grommets.
Grommets 30 grommets total, size #00 two-part grommets with small flange; spaced a little closer together at the waistline for easier lacing up. Underneath the grommets there are wider washers that act as a wider flange – they may help protect them from pulling out, they give more thickness for the grommet to “bite down” on (preventing wiggling or looseness, and they also hide any fraying or splitting of the outer holographic material. There are no splits in these. No wear/fraying/pulling out of grommets.
Laces 3mm wide satin rattail cord. They have zero stretch, they glide well through the grommets (slippery), and they are long enough.

 

Purple with Lace Longline Corset

Fit, length Center front is 12.4 inches long, princess seam is 11 inches, side seam is 11.5 inches and center back is 13 inches.
Circumferential measurements: Underbust 28″, waist 20″, high hip 35″.
Conical ribcage. Slight hip shelf, and longline corset. Also bows at the front (likely a deliberate effect to get more of a waist reduction).
Material 3 main layers: fashion fabric is Cadbury purple satin (may be a satin coutil, or fused to a strength fabric), overlaid with black lace. Lined in black cotton drill.
Construction 4 panel pattern! (Surprising as it’s so curvy.) Layers were flatlined, panels were assembled and reinforced with sturdy topstitch (seam allowances facing outside). Black external boning channels laid down over the seams, plus extra bones in the middle of the panels (sandwiched between the layers).
Waist tape 1-inch-wide waist tape “invisibly” installed between the layers, full width.
Binding Black satin ribbon (the same ribbon used for external boning channels), matchine stitched on both sides using a zigzag stitch.
Modesty panel None (this is a sample). However on the C&S website, they say that all corset commissions come with a back modesty panel.
This corset sample does have a wide boned underbusk, covered in black satin coutil.
Busk 11″ long, with 5 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. Standard flexible busk (1/2″ wide on each side). The boned underbusk gives a bit more stiffness, but the corset still “dishes” on my body (this may be deliberate – common of C&S corsets, and this also seems to help me achieve a higher comfortable waist reduction in this corset).
Boning 17 steel bones, not including busk. 8 on each side, plus boned underbusk in front. On each side, 3 spirals single boned on the seams, and an additional 3 bones in the middle of the panels. Also on each side there are 2 flats (1/4″ wide) sandwiching the grommets.
Grommets 34 grommets total, size #x00 two-part eyelets with tiny flange; set closer at the waistline to make lacing up easier. On the underside, the eyelets were perforated (petals splayed out) but they don’t catch on the laces. There are still very large washers on the underside to prevent the eyelets from pulling out.
Laces 1/8″ wide flat black cotton shoelace. They have zero stretch or springiness, they glide well through the grommets, they hold knots and bows securely, and they are long enough.

 

C&S Model Karen models the same holographic corset – see this and other pictures on C&S Constructions website, in Gallery 1!

Final Thoughts:

Both of these corsets were made for one of C&S Constructions’ previous models, who had a slightly smaller ribcage and slightly fuller hips than me – so these weren’t made to measure for my body, but we’re “close enough” to be able to fit the same corsets similarly.

I adore the holo corset especially, and it’s a very thin and lightweight corset. Even though both corsets are a smaller waist than I’m accustomed to wearing these days (I prefer to stay at 22 inches, but the holo corset is 21″ and the purple corset is 20″), I’m able to achieve slightly more of a waist reduction in both of these because of the comfortable patterning, and also likely because of the slight “dishing” or bowing in the center front busk.

In both corsets, the construction is a bit more “rugged” than I’m accustomed to seeing these days. The overlocking / zigzag stitching is visible (especially on the inside of the corset). I thought this might have just been because these were sample corsets for photoshoots, but from other C&S customers I’ve spoken with, it seems that this was just the way many corsets were constructed in the 90s and early 2000s. While they’re just not as “tidy” in their finish compared to most corsets on the market today, these corsets have held up well over the years and give a beautiful silhouette, and are a reflection of C&S’s good reputation. Visit C&S Constructions website here.

Do you own this corset or another piece from C&S Constructions? Let us know what you think of it in a comment below!

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What Katie Did Vamp Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the video “What Katie Did (WKD) Vamp Corset Review”. If you would like more complete information and side notes about the corset, you can watch the video on YouTube here:

 

Fit, length Center front is 11 inches long, the princess seam is 9 inches (4.5 inches above the waist, 4.5 inches below the waist), the side seam is 10 inches, and the center back is 11.75 inches long.
Rib spring is 7″, low hip spring is 13″. The rib is conical, and the hip spring is rounded / shelf-like and dramatic.
Material 3 main layers – the fashion fabric aubergine silk and contrasting pewter brocade (see Final Thoughts below), it has a cotton twill strength fabric, and it’s lined in black cotton twill as well.
Construction 7-panel pattern (14 panels total) including hip gores. Fashion fabric was flatlined to strength fabric, panels were assembled, and external boning channels laid down overtop. The lining is floating.
Waist tape 1-inch-wide waist tape, usually installed “invisibly” between the layers. This corset has an external waist belt which is aesthetic and also functional.
Binding Made from strips of pewter brocade, machine stitched on outside and inside (topstitch on both sides, may have a special attachment that stitches on the binding in one pass). Also has 6 garter tabs, 3 on each side.
Modesty panel Nearly 8″ wide, unstiffened, finished in aubergine silk (fashion fabric) and lined in cotton. Attached to the corset (sewn into the lining of the corset, so can’t easily be removed).
In the front, there is a 3/8″ wide placket under the knob side of the busk, slightly stiffened (buckram?) and finished in matching raw silk.
Busk 10 inches long, with 5 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. 3/4″ wide on each side (slightly wider than a standard flexible busk), with an adjacent flat steel on either side of the busk for extra stiffness.
Boning 18 bones total in this corset, 9 on each side. Some seams are single boned and some seams are double boned, depending on how much space there is (perhaps the larger sizes have more bones?). The bones on the seams are all ¼ inch wide spirals. The bones sandwiching the grommets are ¼ inch wide flat steel, as well as the bones by the busk.
Grommets There are 22, two-part size #0 grommets (11 on each side). They have a medium flange and are spaced equidistantly, and finished in silver.
Laces The laces are black, 3/8 inch flat nylon shoelace. They have a little spring, they’re difficult to snap, they hold bows and knots well, and they are long enough.
Price Available in size 18″ up to 34″.
Price starts at £169.50 GBP ($275 USD) for the classic Vamp in solid satin colors, and price may go up from there depending on what you choose in their “Designer” section.

 

Final Thoughts:

WKD Vamp corset in black satin.

Of all the underbust corsets from What Katie Did, this might just be my favorite. It’s just as curvy as the Morticia underbust, but made to be a more “squat” version so you get all the curve in less of the length. It provides the look and support of a longline corset while still allowing those with a shorter waist (or shorter of stature) to sit down comfortably.

True to WKD aesthetic, it’s quite conical over the ribs, dramatic over the hips, and gives a very flat tummy, making it ideal to wear under retro clothing.

 

I chose the color and overall design of this Vamp corset by submitting my choices in their Corset Designer – for the fashion fabric, I chose a rich, deep aubergine raw dupioni silk, and I requested external boning channels, binding and an external diamond waist tape all made from a pewter / gunmetal (dark silver) floral brocade. You can choose different colors or fabrics for all of these components, or you can choose to not have any contrasting channels or any belt at all (you do need binding, but you can have it match the rest of the corset). Ordering a special design corset automatically makes the corset a WKD Gold Label corset.

Do keep in mind that their “Design your own Corset” section is mainly for colors, fabrics, embellishments and trims for a selection of their standard sized corsets, and it does not give a made-to-measure option. They can make corsets 1 inch longer or 1 inch shorter at the top / bottom edge compared to the base pattern, but this is the extent of the pattern changes they’re able to do.

What Katie Did’s Vamp corset can be found on their website here.

EDIT 2018: What Katie Did has discontinued the Vamp corset and has created an entirely new line of corsets! The probable equivalent of their old Vamp is their new Extreme Morticia Nouveau corset.

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Morgana Femme Couture MF1303 Gold Satin with Black Lace Longline Underbust Review (MFC)

This entry is a summary of the review video “Morgana Femme Couture Lace Overlay Longline Underbust Corset (MF1303) Review” which you can watch on YouTube here:

 

Fit, length Center front is 14 inches long, princess seam is 12 inches (5.5″ above the waist, 6.5″ below the waist), side seam is 13 inches and center back is 14 inches.
Underbust 27″, waist 22″, low hip 36″.
Traditional hourglass silhouette with conical ribcage. Longline corset, recommended for tall or long-waisted people. Will hold in lower tummy pooch, recommended for pear-shaped people.
Material 3 layers; fashion layer is gold satin, with black lace overlay. The interlining (strength fabric) is 100% English cotton coutil, lining of cotton twill. Boning channels are satin coutil.
Construction 6 panel pattern. The strength fabric, satin and lace were all flatlined and panels assembled, and external boning channels strengthen seams. Floating lining.
Waist tape 1″ wide waist tape, secured “invisibly” between the layers, secured down at boning channels. Full width (center front to center back).
Binding Black satin coutil bias tape neatly machine stitched on both inside and outside with a small topstitch (may have been stitched in one pass, using a special attachment). No garter tabs.
Modesty panel By default, MFC corsets don’t come with a modesty panel in back. In the front there’s an unboned placket, about ¼ inch wide, finished in black satin coutil, extending out from under knob side of the busk.
Busk 12.5″ long, with 6 loops and pins (the last two a bit closer together). Standard flexible busk (1/2″ wide on each side) of average stiffness, and reinforced with backed with a ¼” wide flat bone on each side. See Final Thoughts for how it was covered.
Boning 24 steel bones not including busk. On each side, 9 spirals (1/4″ wide) are single boned on the seam (and also in the middle of the panels) in external channels, 2 flats (1/4″ wide) sandwiching the grommets and an additional flat steel by the busk.
Grommets 26 grommets total, size #0 two-part grommets with moderate flange; set a bit closer together at the waistline, the occasional split, no wear/fraying/pulling out of grommets.
Laces Strong 1/8″ wide cotton flat shoe-lace style laces; they have zero stretch, they hold the bows and knots well, and they are long enough.
Price Available in waist sizes 18″ up to 26″. Currently $300 USD on their Etsy store (standard size, ready-to-wear) or $290-$350 USD on the MFC website (made-to-measure and custom colours, price depends on the size).

 

Additional Thoughts:

Morgana Femme Couture MC1303 longline corset, with satin and lace overlay. Photo courtesy of Awin / Etsy.

I purchased this corset from a friend (Jasmine Ines of Sin & Satin) and I believe I’m the third owner – so this corset has held up extremely well considering how old it is and how much it’s been worn. However, it was not made for my body – it was made-to-measure for the first customer, who has a much smaller ribcage and much fuller hips than I have, as well as someone with a much longer torso from the waist down compared to me.

As per usual, I’m quite impressed by the quality of the materials in this corset. The gold satin and black lace overlay feels lush (and if you dislike the gold, you can have the corset made in nearly any other color of satin you like), English herringbone coutil strength layer, satin coutil boning channels and cotton lining. Once you go quality, you won’t want to go back.

Another rare feature of MFC corsets is their “skinny panel” over the busk – on the loop side, it’s often one continuous piece of fabric that wraps around the busk, with buttonholes for the loops to peek through. This prevents any possibility of the center front seam ripping open. I’m on the fence as to whether I like the look of buttonholes, as it can make the busk look a bit “hairy” compared to a clean seam, but I can’t deny that it is strong construction.

The only thing I would improve upon in this corset is I wish they were available in a wider range of sizes! There are so many full figured women who would love to own an MFC corset, it would be great if MFC could eventually expand their most popular corsets up into the 30+ waist range – at least for made-to-order corsets.

See Morgana Femme Couture’s MF1303 corset here, or visit their Etsy shop here.

Do you own this corset or another piece from Morgana Femme Couture? Let us know what you think of it in a comment below!

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Glamorous Corset “Jolie” Mesh Longline Review

This entry is a summary of the review for the “Jolie” longline corset in black mesh, made by Glamorous Corset. If you would like more complete information and side notes about the corset, you can watch the video on YouTube here:

 

Fit, length Center front is just short of 14 inches long, princess seam is 10 inches (5.5 inches from the waist up, 4.5 inches from the waist down), the side seam is 12.5 inches and the center back is 14 inches long.
Rib spring is 8″, lower hip spring is 12″. Ribs are gently rounded due to the flexibility and expansion of the mesh. Longline corset, coming low over the abdomen and hips.
Material The mesh parts are single layer hexagonal-hole “fishnet” style netting (seemingly industry standard for OTR). The front and back panels, boning channels and binding are all black cotton bull denim (a coarse weave twill).
Construction 6-panel pattern (12 panels total). Panels 1-2 converge and taper towards the lower tummy. Panels 3-4 provide space over the hips. Panels were assembled together, and seams were sandwiched by boning channels on the outside and inside.
Waist tape One-inch-wide waist tape made from single-faced satin ribbon, stitched on the inside of the corset and secured at boning channels. Full width (extends from center front panel to center back).
Binding Matching black bull denim, machine stitched on both sides. The front was stitched in the ditch and the back has a top stitch. Also 6 garter tabs (3 on each side).
Modesty panel 5.5 inches wide, unstiffened, made from 2 layers of black cotton bull denim. Attached to one side of the corset with a line of stitching (easily removed if desired). In the front, there is a ¼ inch wide modesty placket, also finished in black cotton.
Busk 11.5” long, with 5 loops and pins, the lower two a bit closer together. Standard flexible busk, with an additional ¼” spiral steel bone adjacent to the busk on each side.
Boning 26 bones total in this corset, 13 on each side. Double boned on the seams with ¼ inch wide spirals. The bones adjacent to the busk are also spiral steel. The bones sandwiching the grommets are flat steel (probably stainless steel).
Grommets There are 28, two-part size #00 grommets (14 on each side). They have a small / medium flange and are spaced equidistantly, and finished in silver. The washers are larger than the top-hat side (which is a perk). Many splits on the underside of the grommets, but due to the choice in laces, they don’t catch too much.
Laces The laces are black, ¼” wide flat nylon shoelace. They are a bit springy / spongey, but they hold bows and knots well and they are long enough.
Price Available in sizes 18″ up to 40″ closed waist.
Sizes 18″ – 30″ are $79 USD, and sizes 32″ – 40″ are $84 USD.
Only available on the Glamorous Corset website here (this ref link will give you 15% off your first purchase).

 

Final Thoughts:

Jolie Mesh longline underbust corset, model unknown. $79-$84 USD. Click through to visit Glamorous Corset.

The Jolie corset is my first review of seven different mesh corset reviews I did in 2017, showing that mesh corsets are now a huge part of the OTR corset market and they’re definitely here to stay!

The Jolie is quite possibly the longest mesh underbust I’ve ever tried – many of the Orchard Corset mesh pieces are shorter from the waist down and stop slightly higher on my hip, while many of Mystic City’s corsets are shorter from the waist up and stop short of my underbust. If you have a very long torso and need more coverage and support both above and below the waist, the Jolie may be a viable option for you. However, if you have a seated torso length of less than 10 inches, you might feel more comfortable in a shorter mesh corset instead.

The mesh is the OTR standard “fishnet” type cotton netting, which offers breathability and quite a lot of flexibility, while the sturdy double boning adds body and rigidity to the corset for posture support and vertical tension. Do keep in mind that because the mesh can expand, this mesh corsets (like other mesh corsets) can expand 1-2 inches when worn (I find this is true of nearly all OTR corsets with this kind of fishnet material, regardless of the brand), so if you’re looking for a specific waist reduction, you may need to go one size down from your usual size.

Find the Glamorous Corset Jolie and other mesh corsets in their shop here (using this referral link will get you 15% off your first purchase).

 

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Gemini Corset Review (Timeless Trends / Lucy Corsetry collaboration)

Disclosure: I designed the Gemini underbust in both silhouettes, and it’s manufactured by Timeless Trends. If you’re considering purchasing a Gemini corset and you’d like to support my business and designs, please consider purchasing the Gemini here through my online shop.

 

Fit, length Center front is 11 inches long, the princess seam is 9.5 inches (fairly evenly distribued above and below), the side seam is 11 inches and the center back is 13.5 inches long.
Rib spring is 8″, high hip spring is 12″, and low hip spring is 16″.
Comes in 2 silhouettes (low rib spring of conical rib version is 2.5″, and low rib spring of round rib version is 5″).
Material All designs are 3 layers: The fashion fabric is a choice of creme cotton or black cashmere, and the lining and interlining are always cotton twill.
Construction 6-panel pattern (12 panels total). Panels 2-3-4 give space for the roundness of the ribs in the cupped rib verion, and panels 3-4-5 make the curve over the hip. Constructed using the sandwich method.
Waist tape One-inch-wide waist tape, secured “invisibly” between the layers of fabric. Full width (extends from center front panel to center back).
Binding Matching strips of fashion fabric (creme cotton or black cashmere), machine stitched on both sides. Stitched in the ditch on the outside, and small topstitch on the inside. Also has 6 garter tabs (3 on each side).
Modesty panel No back modesty panel, but stiffened floating modesty panels are available for separate purchase (the Gemini would fit the long panels). In the front, there is a 1/2 inch wide modesty placket, finished in the same fashion fabric.
Busk 10” long, with 5 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. Standard flexible busk, 1/2″ wide on each side (with adjacent flat steels on each side).
Boning For sizes 22″ and above, there are 32 bones total in this corset, 16 on each side. Double boned on the seams with ¼ inch wide spirals, and single spirals in the middle of the wider panels, panels 3-4-5 (sizes 18″ and 20″ don’t have these extra bones in the middle of the panels due to the panels being so narrow). The bones sandwiching the grommets are 3/8″ wide flat steel, and one flat steel adjacent to the busk.
Grommets There are 28, two-part size #0 grommets (14 on each side). They have a small / medium flange and are spaced equidistantly, and finished in pewter / gunmetal grey.
Laces The black cashmere version comes with black, 3/8” wide flat nylon “workhorse” shoelace. The creme cotton comes with creme, 1/2″ wide single-faced satin ribbon which matches the cotton better.
Price Available in sizes 18″ up to 36″ closed waist. If there is enough demand, this range may increase up to 42″ closed waist.
All Gemini corsets in all silhouettes are $99 USD.
Available in my corset shop here.

 

Gemini Corsets (conical rib on the left and round rib on the right), Model is Eva, who wears a size 18″.

Final Thoughts:

The Gemini is made to fit people with a similar torso length to fit TT’s standard length hourglass corsets, but give a bit more of a longline appearance while not affecting one’s ability to sit down comfortably.

There are pros and cons to each silhouette.

Try the round rib silhouette if any or several of the following apply to you:

  • you have a broad ribcage or barrel chest
  • you are a swimmer / athlete and have a muscular back and torso
  • you are a singer or you play a brass instrument
  • you require your full lung capacity
  • you feel claustrophobic or short-of-breath when you wear a conical rib corset
  • you don’t want to train your ribs
  • your costal joints (where your ribs “hinge” in the back) are rigid and your ribs can’t compress
  • your ribs themselves are sensitive, you might have have broken / injured your ribs from an accident in the past, and your ribs don’t take well to pressure
  • you just love the look of a round rib corset!

Try the conical rib silhouette if any or several of the following apply to you:

  • you have a naturally tapered or narrow ribcage, and you don’t “fill out” round rib corsets
  • you want to train your ribs over time
  • you are interested in waist training to achieve a naturally smaller waist over time (even when the corset comes off – a smaller ribcage gives more semipermanent results, as opposed to very temporary results)
  • you have very flexible floating ribs and flexible costal joints that “hinge” easily
  • you want to fit into vintage clothing that might have a more conical rib than you have naturally
  • you love the look of a conical rib corset, and otherwise you have no health issues that prevent you from wearing one.

For those who have hypermobility disorders and you experience subluxation of your ribs, I would recommend speaking to your doctor, chiropractor, osteopath etc. regarding which silhouette or style of corset (if any) would work best with your condition. Some patients do better if their ribs are tightly bound (such as with a conical rib corset) so the rib doesn’t “pop out”, but some patients cannot tolerate compression on their ribs (as it might push their ribs inward too much) and this may necessitate a more round rib design. So discuss this with your trusted health professional who has a decent knowledge of your personal medical history and personal situation.

For total disclosure: I designed the Gemini underbust in both silhouettes, and it’s manufactured by Timeless Trends. If you’re considering purchasing a Gemini corset and you’d like to support my business and designs, please consider purchasing the Gemini here through my online shop!

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CS-426 Mesh Longline Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the review video “Review: Orchard Corset CS-426 Mesh Longline”. If you would like more complete information and side notes about the corset, you can watch the video on YouTube here:

Fit, length Center front is 13.5 inches long, princess seam is 11 inches long, center back is 13.5 inches long. (A bit longer than their non-mesh longline CS-426 corsets.)
Rib spring is 7″, and lower hip spring is 14″.
The silhouette is hourglass, but the flexible mesh allows for more contouring around curves = giving more of a rounded ribcage, and hips of the corset can contour around your own hips, whether your hips are slanted or shelf-like.
Material Single layer of fishnet style black mesh, and the boning channels / are made with 2 layers of black cotton twill.
Construction Likely still a 6-panel pattern (12 panels total), but because of the boning channels in the middle of the panels, it means that the corset “appears” to have closer to 20 panels.
Waist tape One-inch-wide full waist tape running through the corset from center front to center back, made from grosgrain ribbon, sandwiched between the boning channels.
Binding Binding at top and bottom are made from matching black cotton twill. Machine stitched on both sides, stitched in the ditch (between the corset and the binding) in front, and a necessary top stitch on the underside. 6 garter tabs (3 on each side).
Modesty panel There is a modesty panel on the back, made of two layers of black twill. 5” wide and unstiffened, attached to one side with a line of stitching. (You can also remove the tags in the back by removing that seam with the modesty panel, in case you find that the tags show through the mesh)
There’s no front modesty placket in this corset.
Busk Standard width busk (half an inch wide on each side) and 11.5” long, with 5 pins (last two are a bit closer together). Orchard’s busks are more rigid (less bendy) than other busks of the same width.
Boning 22 bones total in this corset. On each side, 9 of them are spirals about 3/8 inch wide, in single channels, equidistantly spaced. Then there are two flat steel bones, both ¼” wide, sandwiching the grommets.
Grommets There are 24, two-part size #00 grommets (12 on each side). They have a small-medium flange and are finished in silver. They’re spaced equidistantly about 1” apart.
Laces The laces are ¼” wide flat nylon shoe-lace style. I find them to be long enough, a little springy but it “stretches out” and the springiness dissipates over time. Orchard also sells double-face satin ribbon if you prefer.
Price Available in waist sizes 18″ to 40″, in black and in beige mesh.
Sizes 18-32 are $72 USD, and sizes 34-40 are $75 USD, but you can save 10% by using the coupon code CORSETLUCY

 

Final Thoughts:

Screencap from one of my past videos “Waist Training Results: How Long Should it Take?” Click through to read that article. Here I’m wearing the CS-426 mesh longline test sample.

Several years ago, when I went to visit Orchard Corset in Wenatchee, Washington, I was invited to test the first sample of the CS-426 mesh longline, before it was released to the public. But over the years I didn’t hear anything about the mesh longline being released for almost 3 years, so I ended up selling off my mesh corset in a sample sale. Then in summer of 2016, I noticed that Orchard had finally released the mesh longline! Without my old sample to review, I had to purchase another one (which ended up being mislabeled by the factory – a size 28″ corset with a size 26″ label) so unfortunately I don’t have the curves to properly fill out the corset in this review – but please refer to the way the old (size 22″) sample fit me back in 2013 in this article / video, if you’d like a better example of how the corset is supposed to look when it properly fits.

One of the things I like about the mesh corsets is that they’re not simply double-boned on the seams, but rather the bones are evenly distributed around the waist – and the bigger the corset size, the more bones are included. While this does affect the price (the bigger corsets contain more bones and require more work in construction sewing on the boning channels, so they cost more), it means that you’re getting more equitable support and quality across all sizes.

One consistent bug I notice is that Orchard Corsets have “bunny ears” that are set 1-2 grommets higher than the true waistline of the corset – this is easy to fix when you get the corset though, by simply re-lacing the corset. I also like to use inverted bunny ears for better control and reduced bowing at the waistline.

Shop for the CS-426 mesh longline corset from Orchard Corset here.

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Retrofolie “Botticelli’s Birth of Venus” Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the video “Review: “Botticelli’s Venus” Corset by Retrofolie” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Fit, length My corset was made-to-measure, so it fits my longer torso but it’s also slightly less curvy than the standard size version of this corset as I have slim hips. Standard size 22″ would have a ribcage of 30″ and hips of 34″.
Material Three main layers (not including interfacing): The fashion fabric is a cotton print (interfaced for strength), strength interlining of coutil, and brown lightweight cotton lining.
Construction 6 panel pattern (12 panels total), the fashion fabric and coutil were flatlined, panels assembled using a topstitch. ouble boned on the seams with a floating lining inside.
Binding Made from commercially purchased cotton bias tape, in seafoam green to match the fashion fabric. Machine finished on both sides.
Waist tape 1 inch wide, stitched invisibly between the layers. Extends from panel 2 to the back seam.
Modesty panel 6.5 inches wide, stiffened, finished with another Venus in the back that can show through the laces. The panel is suspended on the laces using grommets. There is also a 1-inch wide unboned modesty placket in front under the busk.
Busk 12 inches long. 6 loops + pins, equidistantly spaced. My corset was modified to be longer though, so a standard size corset will have a 10 inch busk instead. Standard flexible busk, with 1/4″ flat bones adjacent for reinforcement.
Boning 28 bones total, not including busk. Double boned on the seams, using 1/4″ wide spiral bones. Flat steel bones are used beside the busk and by the grommets.
Grommets 26 two-part grommets, size #00 with a medium flange (the very popular grommet brand among corsetieres in North America). Finished in silver, and equidistantly spaced about 1″ apart. Big washers in the back; splits in the back but they don’t catch the laces too much.
Laces Standard white nylon shoelace style laces.
Price This particular style is $315 USD for standard size (18″ up to 26″). For custom fit, the price is $350.
Example of the impeccable print matching on the historical art corsets, this time on a Mucha piece. Photo courtesy of Etsy Affiliates.

 

Because this corset was made back in 2014, a few changes have been made to this corset – the first change is that this pointed longline style is no longer called the “Azalea” longline cut, it’s now just style “Retro 04” on Retrofolie’s website. Also, the standard size measurements are now curvier than they were in 2014!

This is part of Julianne’s “Retro History” corset line, where she is able to use any historical painting in the public domain (the artist must be deceased for at least 70 years to use their work). The painting is printed with a repeat pattern on fabric, and the panels are cut from this fabric and painstakingly matched at the seams. Julianne started her corset career making these pieces, and has since expanded her corset ranges to include “Retro Basic” (simple corsets covered in cotton or silk) and “Retro Galaxy” (corsets featuring beautiful galaxy and nebula motifs).

Although her corsets are strong enough for waist training, Julianne recommends that you don’t wear a Retro History corset as your daily-wear corset, as the fashion fabric will ease and the painting will distort over time. If you wish to preserve the historical art corsets but waist train in one of her Retrofolie pieces, she recommends the Retro Basic line.

Check out Retrofolie’s Birth of Venus corset here, or check out her full range of corsets here.

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Orchard Corset CS-426 Longline (Hip Ties) Review

This entry is a summary of the review video “Review: Orchard Corset CS-426 (with hip ties)”. If you would like more complete information and side notes about the corset, you can watch the video on YouTube here:

Fit, length Center front is 13 inches long, princess seam is 10.5 inches long.
Rib spring is 7″, upper hip spring is 10″, and lower hip spring is 13″, but the hip ties allow the hips to expand to 20+” if needed.
The silhouette is hourglass, with a semi-conical ribcage, and hips of the corset can contour around your own hips, whether your hips are slanted or shelf-like.
Material 3 main layers – I have the black cotton version, so the outer (fashion fabric) layer is black twill, flatlined to a light cotton canvas interlining, and lined again in cotton twill.
Construction 6-panel pattern (12 panels total). Hip flare is patterned into panels 3-4. Constructed with the sandwich method.
Waist tape One-inch-wide waist tape running through the corset, hidden between the layers.
Binding Binding at top and bottom are made from matching black cotton twill. Machine stitched on both sides, stitched in the ditch (between the corset and the binding) in front, and a necessary top stitch on the underside. 8 garter tabs (4 on each side).
Modesty panel There is a modesty panel on the back, made of two layers of black twill. 6” wide and unstiffened, attached to one side with a line of stitching, reinforced with “hemming tape”.
There’s also an unstiffened black twill modesty placket extending from the knob side of the busk ( ¼” wide).
Busk Standard width busk, half an inch wide and 11.5” long, and 5 pins (last two are a bit closer together). However it’s more rigid (less bendy) than other busks of the same width.
Boning 22 bones total in this corset. On each side, 9 of them are spirals about 3/8 inch wide and then there are two flat steel bones, both ¼” wide sandwiching the grommets.
Grommets There are 24, two-part size #00 grommets (12 on each side). They have a medium flange and are finished in silver. They’re spaced equidistantly about 1” apart.
Laces The laces are ¼” wide flat nylon shoe-lace style. I find them to be long enough, a little springy but it “stretches out” and the springiness dissipates over time. Orchard also sells double-face satin ribbon if you prefer.
Price Available in waist sizes 16″ to 46″.
Sizes 16-32 are $82 USD, and sizes 34-46 are $87 USD, but you can save 10% by using the coupon code CORSETLUCY

 

Final Thoughts:

Orchard Corset CS-426 Hip Ties, $82, modeled by Caylyn

Full disclosure, this corset contains my “Lucia Corsetti” label – back in August of 2013, I released a tutorial where I took one of Orchard’s original 426 longline corsets and simply added hip ties to them, so people with a naturally fuller hip spring could cinch down in their corset without compressing their hips. Orchard liked the idea so much that they put it into production, and they gave me credit for the idea by adding my label to the new design. (I have no patent on the hip ties design, but it was courteous of them to give me a nod!)

This is the second time I’ve reviewed a CS-426 corset, after my first time in 2012, and there are marked improvements in the construction – particularly the grommets. These grommets don’t tarnish and have fewer splits compared to the older corsets). If I’m not mistaken, Orchard Corset had switched manufacturers a couple of years ago, which may account for the change.

Other changes include the modesty panel in the back being a touch wider, the addition of a modesty placket in the front, and a slightly longer busk.

Find the CS-426 Longline corset with hip-ties on Orchard Corset’s website here.

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Papercats Longline Underbust Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the video “REVIEW: PaperCats “Longline Cherries” Corset” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Fit, length Center front is 12.5 inches, and princess seam is 9.5 inches, side seam is 10 inches, and center back is 12.5 inches long. The size Small is equivalent to 22″ in the waist. The sizing chart on their website says that the ribcage would be 29″ and low hip 34″ for this corset, but when I measured mine, it was 27.5″ in the ribcage and 33″ in the hips. Conical through the ribs.
Material Two main layers: The fashion fabric is a poly-cotton blend with cherry print, and the lining is black cotton twill.
Construction 7 panel pattern (14 panels total), constructed using the welt-seam method with one bone on each seam.
Binding Made from bias strips of black cotton twill. Machine stitched on the outside and inside. No garter tabs.
Waist tape None.
Modesty panel 6.5 inches wide, unstiffened, finished in matching cherry print fabric and sewn to one side of the corset. There is also a 1-inch wide unstiffened modesty placket in front, also finished in cherry print.
Busk 11 inches long. 5 loops + pins, equidistantly spaced. It is a heavier busk (1 inch wide on each side), with a bit of flexibility.
Boning 16 bones total, not including busk. Single boned on the seams, using 1/4″ wide spiral bones. Beside the grommets, the outer bone is flat while the inner bone is spiral, giving some flexibility to the back.
Grommets 34 two-part grommets, size #X00 (very tiny), with a small flange. Finished in silver, and equidistantly spaced about 0.75″ apart. Small washers in the back; splits in the back but they don’t catch the laces too much.
Laces Standard black nylon shoelace style laces.
Price This particular style is 155 zł (about $52 USD)
The cherry print underbust as seen on Papercats website.
The cherry print underbust as seen on Papercats website.

 

Other Thoughts:

Papercats is the second brand of the “Polish OTR Corset Trifecta” I’m reviewing (along with Restyle and Rebel Madness). Lately Poland has been dominating the niche of curvy budget corsets with pieces that start from less than $50 for certain styles.

While I wouldn’t personally waist train in this corset (there is no waist tape, and the tiny flange around the grommets make me nervous that they might eventually pull out) I think this corset is adorable and much curvier and more comfortable than some other corsets of equal price that you might find on Ebay. Its lightweight construction and flexibility may make it a good “starter corset” for someone who is unsure if they want to dabble in wearing corsets and they don’t want to break the bank.

As of 2017, it seems that Papercats has brought back this particular design! They are always releasing beautiful designs on their main website, and also their newer website reserved just for their limited corset collections as well as their Etsy store.

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Unartig Boutique “Red Poppies” Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the video “Unartig Boutique “Red Poppies” Corset Review” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Fit, length The measurements of one of Unartig’s standard sized corsets would be: Waist 24″, Underbust 30″, Low hip 37″. (But the corset was made slimmer through the hips to fit my body).
Material The fashion fabric is a fine-weave black cotton canvas, and the lining is black German spot broche.
Construction 8 panel pattern (16 panels total), constructed using the welt-seam method. 4 panels make the front of the corset, and 4 panels makes the back on each side.
Binding Made from bias strips of matching black fine-weave canvas. Machine stitched on the outside, and hand finished on the inside.
Waist tape 1 inch wide invisible waist tape, sandwiched between the panels. Extends from the seam between panels 1-2, back to the seam between panels 7-8.
Modesty panel No back modesty panel (but you may be able to request one in a custom order). The modesty placket in front is half inch wide, unstiffened, and finished in black canvas.
Busk 10.75 inches long. 5 loops + pins, equidistantly spaced. It is a standard flexible busk, and black busks seem to have more flexibility in general compared to other busks – but Lotta reinforced it with 1/2″ flat steels on either side of the busk.
Boning 22 bones total, not including busk. Single boned on the seams, using 1/2″ wide spiral bones. Flat steels are placed in the back by the grommets and also adjacent to the busk.
Grommets 26 two-part grommets, size 5mm Prym brand (very popular amongst European corsetieres), with a medium flange. Finished in black to match the rest of the corset, and set a bit closer together at the waistline. Big washers in the back; all grommets rolled nicely.
Laces Double face satin ribbon in black, 3/8″ wide. It’s long enough, very strong, has no spring, glides through the grommets well. Ribbon hides well under clothing as it’s not thick.
Price This particular style is €400 (Euros), which converts to about $420 USD.

 

Although at first glance this corset may look relatively simple as a (mostly) black underbust, it is actually a “first” in my collection in several ways. The gorgeous poppy motif was embroidered on each panel and then carefully matched at each panel (the poppy theme was chosen by Lotte, as I gave her creative license in designing this piece). Subtle, elegant piping also accents some of the seams.

It is also my first corset made with a strength fabric of German spot broche, which I’ve come to learn is very strong. The corset is very posture-corrective and has an extremely strong, flat front for those who prefer slightly more rigid corsets. Having an 8-panel pattern (16 panels total) it is highly customizable to fit around most any curve.

The corset also has a unique and flattering cut to the upper edge: along the front of the corset, it closely follows a similar path as the underwire of my bra, which may support and push forward the breasts – but at the side seam, the top binding sweeps back down again to allow space under my arms for full range of motion and not dig into my armpits.

While Lotte can make this corset in a standard size or completely custom, I believe in this situation my measurements were close enough that it was “semi-custom” to fit me. The center front is 11 inches long, and the princess seam is 10 inches long. 6 of those inches is from the waist to the underbust, while 4 inches were from waist to the lap bottom, so it would fit my long torso/low waist comfortably.

To learn more about Lotte and her Unartig boutique, visit her website here.

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Castle Corsetry “Marvel Comics” Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the video “Castle Corsetry Marvel Corset Review” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Fit, length This corset is a sample (not made to my measurements) but when you order your corset, this corset will be made to your measurements. Silhouette-wise, the ribcage is softly rounded and the hips are rounded as well. This is a longline style with a relatively flat front.
The measurements of the standard sized sample: Waist 20.5″, Underbust 28″, High Hip 28″, Low hip 34″. The center front is 12 inches long, and the princess seam is 10.5 inches long. 5.5 of those inches is from the waist to the bottom, which is a bit long for me (my comfortable waist-to-lap measurement is about 4.5 inches).
Material Three layers of fabric. The fashion fabric is a cotton-based Marvel comic print, the interlining is bull denim or cotton twill, and the lining is black cotton twill.
Construction 5 panel pattern, constructed using the sandwich method. Curve of the hip is distributed between panels 2-3-4. Double boned on the seams, and faux black external boning channels break up the busyness of the Marvel print.
Binding Commercially purchased black cotton tape (same with the faux boning channels).
Waist tape 1 inch wide invisible waist tape, sandwiched between the panels. Full waist tape, from center front to center back.
Modesty panel None (but you may be able to request one in a custom order). No modesty placket in front, but the Marvel comic print is matched nicely in the center front with no visible gaps or breaks.
Busk 11 inches long. 5 loops + pins, equidistantly spaced. It is a standard flexible busk, and it is reinforced with 1/2″ wide flat steels on either side of the busk. The bones between panels 1-2 are also flat steels, which further help keep the front flat.
Boning 22 bones total, not including busk. On each side, there are six 1/4″ wide spirals (mostly double boned on the seams on the sides of the corset). Flat steel bones are beside the busk, in the seam between panels 1-2, and two flat steels by the grommets.
Grommets 26 two-part grommets, size #00, with a medium flange. Finished in black to match the rest of the corset, and set a bit closer together at the waistline. Big washers, all grommets rolled nicely.
Laces Single face satin ribbon in black, 3/8″ wide. It’s long enough, has no spring, glides through the grommets well. Ribbon hides well under clothing as it’s not thick. Single-faced
Price This particular style is $250 USD in their Etsy shop and can be made to measure. But cinchers and other styles may start from as little as $175 USD.

 

Final Thoughts:

“Final Frontier” Star Trek themed waist cincher, starting at $175 USD with option for custom fit. Picture courtesy of Etsy Affiliates.

I’ve been a long-time fan of Castle Corsetry’s fun, cosplay-themed corsets and costumes; the corsetiere Lauren is highly active in conventions and offers everything from Harry Potter themed corsets, to Ghost Busters themed corsets, to Retro Super Mario themed corsets and more!

So naturally I was thrilled when Lauren asked if I would be willing to review a corset from her shop. I got a sample corset on loan, and unfortunately it was a bit small for me (my fault for gaining a bit of weight through 2015) but it still gave me a beautiful silhouette, even when worn with a larger gap in the back. I loved the comfortable, gently rounded ribcage with the sharp nip in the waistline, as well as the dramatic hip that offered a 14-inch (lower) hip spring.

To see more of Lauren’s fandom-based collection, head over to the Castle Corsetry Etsy shop here.

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Mystic City MCC64 Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the video “Mystic City MCC64 Corset (Mesh Longline Underbust) Review” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Fit, length This style is standard sized 24″: Center front is about 12 inches high, from underbust to lap is 10 inches, and the center back is 13.5 inches (but this is sweetheart shaped). Waist in this corset is 24″, ribcage is 32″ (8 inch rib spring), upper hip is 36″ (12 inch high hip spring), and lower hip is 40″ (16 inch low hip spring). This is a pear-shaped, longline corset.
Material The solid cotton parts are two layers of black twill (the fashion layer is a finer weave of twill, while the lining is a coarser bull-denim). The mesh panels are made with a cotton type of fishnet, which is available in a variety of colors. (Read more below for more info on the mesh.)
Construction 6 panel pattern, probably assembled using welt-seam method for the twill panels, and the twill boning channels sandwich the single-layer mesh panels.
Binding Commercial black satin stretch bias binding, which combined with the mesh panels provide a bit of give or ease. 4 garter tabs, 2 on each side.
Waist tape 1 inch wide invisible waist tape, exposed on the inside of the mesh panels, but sandwiched in the twill panels. Full waist tape, from center front to center back.
Modesty panel Stiffened (boned) black twill modesty panel, suspended on the laces. Modesty placket under the busk, which is also boned.
Busk 11 inches long. 5 loops + pins, equidistantly spaced. It is a standard flexible busk, but it is reinforced with flat steels on either side of the busk (plus the boned modesty placket).
Boning 27 bones total. On each side, there are ten 1/4″ wide spirals, two flat steels by the grommets, and one flat steel by the busk. The last remaining bone is in the modesty placket under the busk.
Grommets 28 two-part grommets, size #0, with wide flange. Finished in silver and equidistantly spaced. Big washers, most grommets rolled nicely. There are some splits, but they don’t catch much on the laces. There is a lot of friction lacing up but probably because of the modesty panel.
Laces The original lacing that came in this corset was a springy nylon-based shoelace, but my friend had switched out those laces with double-faced satin ribbon instead.
Price $119 USD as of 2015; the all-twill version of this (no mesh) is $89 as of 2016.

 

This sample was in a larger size than I usually take; I would have fit the size 22″ in this corset because it’s so curvy, but I had borrowed this particular corset from a friend when I was visiting the US in 2015.

The large, rounded ribcage and generous “hip shelf” allow for ample room for those who are naturally curvy or are advanced corset-wearers capable of large waist reductions. The hip ties along the front of each hip allow for modest expansion of the bottom of the corset, in case the wearer is particularly pear-shaped and needs the extra few inches.

The sweetheart shape in the center back is a nice touch and even somewhat helps combat muffin-top. The center front has quite a long point at the bottom though, and as someone who carries most of my torso length from the waist up, I personally found this to be a touch longer than comfortable on my body.

The fishnet-type fabric used on the mesh panels is very common among mesh corsets, but they do stretch and break down over time. Since 2015, MCC has changed their mesh to a polyester based fine weave mesh instead of the fishnet, which appears to hold up a bit better.

The particular sample I received had a reinforced waist tape – I believe the original waist tape is made with cotton twill, but after some concerns of the twill waist tape eventually breaking down or tearing, it appears that MCC had gone back and installed satin ribbon underneath the twill tape to help it hold up to tension.

Visit Mystic City’s shop here to learn more about this corset and dozens of others.

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Isabella Corsetry “Petite Josephine” Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the video “Isabella Petite Josephine Corset Review” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Fit, length This style is standard sized 22″: Center front is about 11.25 inches high, from underbust to lap is 9 inches, and the center back is 12.5 inches. Waist in this corset is 23″ (it was 2nd hand so it stretched slightly), ribcage is 29″ (7 inch rib spring) and lower hip is 33″ (11 inch hip spring). “Longline” for someone with a short length, conical in the ribs and cupped over the hips.
Material 3 Layers: Fashion fabric is black satin. Interlining in between, and lining is black cotton twill.
Construction 6 panel pattern, and constructed with the sandwich method with double boning on each seam.
Binding Commercial black satin bias binding. No garter tabs.
Waist tape 1 inch wide invisible waist tape, sandwiched between the layers. Full waist tape, from center front to center back.
Modesty panel You have the choice of ordering any Isabella corset with a sewn-in panel, a separate panel, or no panel. This particular corset didn’t come with a modesty panel.
Busk 9.25 inches long, heavy duty wide busk, with 5 loops + pins, equidistantly spaced.
Boning 20 bones total, 10 on each side. Double boned with 1/4″ wide spiral steels on the seams, and there are four flat steels in the back sandwiching the grommets. (My original Josephine has 2 extra bones.)
Grommets 28 two-part grommets, size #00, with medium flange. Finished in black and spaced a bit closer together at the waistline. Big washers, all grommets rolled nicely. There is a lot of friction lacing up but probably because of the modesty panel.
Laces Black double faced satin ribbon – no spring, very strong and flat.
Price $175 USD base price for the immediate line corsets (but on an indefinite sale; around $150+ depending on the color/ fabric).

 

Isabella Corsetry is run by a woman named Erin in Sacramento California. The Isabella Corsetry brand offers three ranges:

  • the “Immediate” line for standard-sized, in-stock corsets in simple fashion fabrics (OTR corsets), which is only the most popular 5-6 underbust styles.
  • the “Made to Order” line for standard sized corsets, but they can be made in your choice of fabric (choose among 200+ fabric options, or send them your own custom fabric), in 18 styles.
  • the “Custom” line if you prefer the corset made to your measurements and specifications, and you can choose among the 18 styles or request your own style.

For awhile, the Josephine corset was one of the curviest OTR corset styles on the market, and I believe it was probably the “original” pattern that many other companies had copied over time. The Petite Jo was the answer to those who loved the look and the curviness of the corset, but had too short of a torso to comfortably sit down in the original Josephine. Now Isabella has come out with the Katherine, which is marketed towards waist trainers or tightlacers who have gone as far as they can in the Josephine!

The only caveat I found to ordering from Isabella Corsetry is that the wait times are quite long, especially if you’re ordering your corset from outside of the US. While the shipping time was stated to be 2 weeks to Canada, I found it took closer to 6 weeks for me to receive my order, which made me wonder if the in-stock corsets were actually made to order.

The other thing I noticed is that both my original Josephine and my Petite Josephine had stretched an inch in the waist over time with very regular use – however, I’m impressed that they did not have any ripped seams, popped grommets or other structural issues; they’re strong garments certainly capable of withstanding months or years of waist training, as long as you take into account the stretch factor.

See more on the Isabella Corsetry website here.