This entry is a summary of the review video “Meschantes RTW Waist Training Corset Review” which you can watch on YouTube here:
Front is about 11″ inches long, back also 11″ long. From underbust to lap at shortest point is 10″. Moderate hourglass silhouette. Mid-hip corset (not short on the hips but not longline) – good for average-to-long torsos. Will hold in a bit of lower tummy pooch. Looking at the size chart for the RTW corsets, the ribcage is about 5″ bigger than the waist, and the hips about 8″ bigger than the waist. Always take this into consideration before buying a certain size.
2 main layers; fashion layer is cotton twill and the lining is bull denim. Some interfacing on the back panels.
6 panel pattern. Sandwiched boning, double-boned on each seam. Top-stitched between panels. The liner doesn’t float, and there are no garter tabs.
Black satin bias tape machine stitched on both inside and outside.
1″ wide invisible waist tape between the two layers.
Attached 7.5″ wide fabric lacing protector on the back, can be removed if desired.
No busk; closed front. Instead there are four flat steel bones in the center front, all 10″ long. Two center bones are 1/2″ wide, and adjacent to those are two flats about 1/4″ wide. Keeps the center front quite flat.
24 bones, including the center front bones (where the busk would normally be). On each side of the corset you’ll find 8 spirals steels (1/4″ wide) double boned on the seams; then 4 flats (1/4″ wide) sandwiching the grommets; and as mentioned in the “busk” section above, another two reinforcing the center front **Please note that some people have found plastic bones in the center front instead of steels in their Meschantes corsets. I had picked the binding of my Meschantes corset and found spirals in the channels I checked, but I didn’t check every channel so I can’t say whether my corset had plastic or steel in the center front.
24 grommets total, size #0 two-part grommets with large flange; colored black on the outside (washers are silver). Grommets are set closer together at the waist for more control when cinching. No splits, no catching on the laces.
Strong flat shoe-lace style laces; they grip well and they are long enough that I can pull the corset over my head when putting it on and taking it off (because there’s no busk). No springiness to the laces, and difficult to break.
Ranges from $140 – $185 depending on the size and where you purchase it. They have a regular website, but I recommend purchasing from their Etsy store instead (see Final Thoughts below).
Final Thoughts (and discussion on conflicting reviews):
Even though I’ve received requests for a couple of years now to do a review of Meschantes, I was hesitant to do so because of so many other conflicting reviews out there. Meschantes has a very enthusiastic and loyal customer/ fanbase, and then another significant group of people who’ve had very disappointing experiences with the company. My own contact with them was also limited as they didn’t respond to my own emails. Although I had wanted to try their custom/ made-to-measure service, in the end I decided to try one of their RTW corsets. I usually don’t like to depend much on heresay, but I’ve heard enough stories from people getting their corsets months late (or not receiving their custom orders at all) that I didn’t want to risk dropping my money on something that I knew couldn’t be shipped out immediately.
That said, I found fit and the quality of the RTW corset to be decent for the price (especially if you go by the price on Ebay). Meschantes is different to some other companies in that all the layers used are cotton (instead of polyester), allowing the skin to breathe. The shape/ silhouette it gives is quite lovely, and the reduction is decent on my figure (although due to the rib-waist-hip ratio, I would have fit the size 24″ better than the size 22″). For those who are conscious about the economy and fair trade, all of Meschantes corsets are constructed in the U.S.
Meschantes theoretically has a lot going for them; they have the ability to make beautiful and high quality pieces. I want to like them – my only wish is that their service were a bit more consistent. Very rarely do I see a company in which their customer base has such a “black or white” opinion; it seems that many people either love them or hate them. Granted, it’s usually the people who receive exceptional service and products (whether exceptionally good or exceptionally bad) who are the loudest. Although corset makers are human and we all make mistakes, after hearing from customers “for” and “against”, it sounds like purchasing from here is rather a game of roulette.
If you want to try Meschantes but you are nervous about the service, I would definitely recommend purchasing throughEtsy– the positive/negative feedback system on these sites can add incentive for sellers (in general) to deliver what they promise.
If you have any real, 1st hand experience with Meschantes or their products, whether good/bad/meh, I encourage you to comment below this post – maybe then we can see a proper reflection.
This entry is a summary of the review video “Shape of your Corset Gap – What does it mean?” which you can watch on YouTube here:
Brands to avoid for your body type
Brands to consider for your body type
This means that the bottom edge of the corset is too narrow for your hips. This type of gap is common for women who are naturally a pear shape. Do NOT try to force the hips smaller because then you may get an odd bump at the lower edge of the corset, and it can also make your hips go numb.
Avoid any corsets that say “modern slim” silhouette or “gentle curves.” This may include any of the “Level 1” corsets from Orchard Corset, or the underbust corsets from Corsets-UK.
For those who have a larger hip spring, look for corsets for vintage figures: The Gemini corset or the “Josephine” by Isabella Corsetry are good choices. They have a hip spring of more than 12-14 inches.
This means that the top edge of the corset is too narrow for your ribcage. Your ribcage or shoulders might be on the broad side. While it is possible to train down your ribs, it’s unlikely that you can train it right from the very top edge. This often occurs in swimmers, those with a barrel chest, or those with a masculine physique.
Corsets that have a relatively narrow ribcage, which include some WKD underbusts.
For standard corsets with a larger ribcage, try the Libra corset, or the Dita corset from Glamorous Corset, as well as some corsets labelled “Masculine” from Mystic City Corsets (although you don’t have to be male to wear them).
This is when you have gaping at the waist – the bones in the back are either too flexible, or the waist is too small than you’re ready for. This CAN ruin the corset because it’s forcing the bones to twist in their channels. It can even make the bones kink outward or inward into your back, which is quite uncomfortable.
Avoid corset patterns that are curvier than you are ready for. If you have a very “unyielding” figure, you may have to train down before buying extremely curvy corsets like WKD or Isabella.
I’d recommend you start with a larger corset size, or go for a corset that makes more gentle/ natural hourglass or slim silhouette corset.
This is when your body is more of an hourglass shape than the corset itself! The corset doesn’t have enough curve in it. BEWARE of this common trick on websites! They will use models who are naturally quite curvy and this will make their corsets curvier. A corset that is modeled with a gap like this in the back will likely look more tubular when it’s laced straight.
Avoid any corsets that say “modern slim” silhouette or “gentle curves.” This may include any of the “Level 1” corsets from Orchard Corset, the underbust corsets from Corsets-UK.
Try What Katie Did Vamp corset, the Curvy Girl corset from Azrael’s Accomplice, or several options available from Isabella Corsetry.
A diagonal but fairly parallel gap means that the corset fits your ribcage, waist and hips reasonably well but it is twisting on the body. There are several reasons why this may be happening: 1. If the corset is made with twill and all of the panels have the twill running in the same direction. Twill, while strong, has an asymmetric weave so stretches more on one bias than another. To test if your corset has stretched differently on either side, measure the ½ circumference on each side of your corset at ribcage, waist and hips. See if both sides are equal.2. It may just have been how you put the corset on that day! Always lace in front of a mirror to avoid tying it skewed. If you notice your corset is twisted, take it off immediately and put it on again straight. It is possible for a corset to season into a permanent twisted shape! 3. It may not be the corset, but rather your body that is asymmetric. If you have any of the following then this can make a symmetric corset look asymmetric:
a previously broken rib
one leg longer than the other
some other skeletal or muscular asymmetry
In the first situation, I recommend not buying corsets made with twill – or if they are made with twill, make sure the corsetiere is experienced enough to sew it perfectly on grain, and to flip every other panel so that the bias of all panels don’t run in the same direction.Also, as bad as it sounds, avoid “risky investments.” Ensure that your corsetiere is scrutinous about making each half of the corset the same way, and to specification (whether symmetric or asymmetric).
In the last situation (physical asymmetry), I strongly suggest finding an experienced corsetiere who can fit you with an asymmetric corset, which will then end up looking symmetric on you!
This is the coveted vertical parallel gap! Some people prefer to have no space in the back, while others like about 2 inches of space so the back edges don’t touch the spine. Either way, your corset fits you well. Congratulations!
Make sure that your corset is not too big for you; when the corset is closed there shouldn’t be any significant gaping between your ribcage and the top edge of the corset, or your hips and the bottom edge of your corset.
You’re very lucky, my friend! If You’ve found an off-the-rack corset that fits you nearly as well as a custom corset. If it makes you look good and feel good, then take it and run!
Final Thoughts:Many people have no problem with the shape of their corset gap (after all, the wearer doesn’t have to see it!). If this is you, then continue rocking your corset just the way you like it. However if you, like me, are a little more conscientious about achieving the vertical parallel lines of a well-fit corset, I hope these suggestions can help you choose a better off-the-rack corset for next time – and if all else fails, go custom! If you enjoyed this article, or even if you need clarification, you may also like my “Addendum to Corset Gaps: Troubleshooting More Fitting Issues“