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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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JL (Sultry Confinement) Mesh Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the review for the mesh underbust corset made by JL Corsets / Sultry Confinement. If you would like more complete information and side notes about the corset, you can watch the video on YouTube here:

 

Fit, length Circumferential measurements: Underbust 28″, waist 22″, high hip 32″.
Length: Center front is 12.5 inches, princess seam is 9.5 inches, side seam is 9 inches, and center back is 12 inches. Slightly rounded in the ribcage, and a hip shelf.
Material Single layer of mesh made from quality “sports jersey” or athletic shoe type of material. The boning channels and binding are made from fashion fabric of teal silk (sourced by Christine), black herringbone coutil strength fabric, and a cheery bright green lining.
Construction 5-panel pattern (10 panels total). Panels 1-2 converge over the lower tummy, panels 3-4 give space over the hip. Mesh panels were assembled and boning channels sandwich the mesh fabric, straddling the seams and reinforcing the seams.
Waist tape 1-inch-wide waist tape, installed on the inside of the corset and secured at the boning channels. Full width, extending from center front to center back.
Binding Made from strips of matching teal silk, machine stitched on outside and inside (tidy topstitch on both sides).
Modesty panel No back modesty panel.
The front modesty placket is 3/4 inch wide, extending from the knob side of the busk, made from matching teal silk (probably fused to coutil).
Busk 11 inches long, with 5 loops and pins, the last two a bit closer together. 1″ wide on each side (heavy duty busk), fairly stiff.
Boning 20 bones total in this corset, 10 on each side. Double boned on the seams with ¼ inch wide spirals. The bones sandwiching the grommets are ¼ inch wide flat steel.
Grommets There are 24, two-part size #0 grommets (14 on each side). They have a medium flange and are spaced a bit closer together at the waistline, and finished in black. Most likely Prym brand eyelets.
Laces The laces are black, 1/8 inch flat cotton shoelace. They have no spring, they hold bows and knots well, and they are long enough.

 

Final Thoughts:

JL Corsets / Sultry Confinement teal silk and mesh underbust, as it appeared on auction. Model unknown.

JL Corsets / Sultry Confinement is a one-woman business based in Wales.

This corset has a sentimental connection to our mutual friend, Christine Wickham (AGirlFromDownUnder / Ariadne’s Thread). Around 2013, Christine commissioned a couple of corsets from Jacinta of JL Corsets, sending her some lovely teal silk all the way from Australia to Wales to be used as the fashion fabric. Christine adored her mesh corset from Jacinta especially.

Shortly after Christine’s passing, Jacinta had some leftover teal silk from Christine’s previous commission, and she made a second corset in a standard size – a “twin” to one of Christine’s corsets, and auctioned it off on Ebay with 100% of proceeds going to Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders), an organization that Christine passionately supported and hoped to one day join, once she became a physician.

The measurements of this auctioned corset were similar enough to my own, Christine was a dear friend of mine, I knew that she adored her own corsets from JL Corsets, and the proceeds were going to an excellent cause, so I felt that I had to win this auction.

Although I’m not certain whether Jacinta is still in the business of making corsets, I’m so grateful to her for her charitable work and lovely keepsake that I will cherish for many years to come.

Do you have a corset from JL Corsets / Sultry Confinement? Let us know what you think of it in a comment below! See more corsets from JL Corsets on Facebook and on Etsy.

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PaperCats “Porcelain” Sweetheart Overbust Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the video “PaperCats Overbust Review” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Fit, length Center front is 14 inches, princess seam is 16.5 inches (10″ from the waist up, 6.5″ from the waist down), side seam is 14.5 inches, and center back is 14 inches long. The size Small is equivalent to 23″ in the waist.
The bust spring is 10 inches and the lower hip spring is 12 inches (slightly curvier than their size chart).
Material Two main layers: The fashion fabric is a poly-cotton toile de jouy, and the lining is white twill (also poly-cotton blend).
Construction 6 panel pattern (12 panels total). Panels 1-2 give room for the bust, and panels 3-4 give space for the hip. Constructed using the welt-seam method with one bone on each seam.
Binding Made from navy blue cotton bias tape. Machine stitched on the outside and inside (topstitch on the outside, stitched in the ditch on the inside). No garter tabs.
Waist tape None.
Modesty panel 6 inches wide, unstiffened, finished in matching toile de jouy on the outside and twill inside, and sewn to one side of the corset. There is also a ¾ inch wide unstiffened modesty placket in front, also finished in toile de jouy.
Busk 13 inches long. 6 loops + pins, equidistantly spaced. It is a heavier busk (1 inch wide on each side), with a bit of flexibility.
Boning 14 bones total, not including busk. Single boned on the seams, using ¼” wide spiral bones. Beside the grommets, the outer bone is flat while the inner bone is spiral, giving some flexibility to the back.
Grommets 30 two-part grommets, size #00 (very tiny), with a small flange. Finished in silver, and equidistantly spaced about 1″ apart. Small washers in the back; splits in the back but they don’t catch the laces too much.
Laces Navy blue round nylon cord – a little springy, but difficult to snap or break. It’s long enough and holds knots and bows well.
Price This particular style is $90 USD in their Etsy shop (now sold out on their main website).
Shipping to North America was ~ $17 USD extra.

 

Final Thoughts:

PaperCats Porcelain overbust modeled by Absentia. Sold out on their main site; click the photo to go to Etsy.

Papercats is part of the “Polish OTR Corset Trifecta” (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 underbust styles.

I love the gently curved ribcage, and how the bust of the corset curves over the top of the breast to ‘cup’ the tissue and keep me secure within the corset. The only thing I would change of the pattern is to make it a bit longer from the waist up, and shorter from the waist down so it covers more of my bust but doesn’t hit my lap when I sit. However, someone with a higher waistline would fit this corset nicely.

The super lovely toile de juoy fashion fabric has Japanese inspired imagery (temples, cherry trees, birds and flowers) and the color scheme indeed makes it resemble blue and white porcelain.

I would use this corset for special events and occasional tightlacing; 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 – but I wouldn’t train in it regularly (besides, its more difficult to train in overbusts in general).

This design is currently sold out on PaperCats Corsets, their newer website reserved just for their limited corset collections. However it is currently available in their Etsy shop along with other new styles as well.

Do you have this corset or another PaperCats corset? Let us know what you think of it in a comment below.

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Glamorous Corset “Lara” Waist Trainer Review

This entry is a summary of the review for the “Lara” waist training underbust 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 12.5 inches long, princess seam is 9.5 inches (5 inches from the waist up, 4.5 inches from the waist down), the side seam is 10.5 inches and the center back is 12.5 inches long.
Rib spring is 7″, lower hip spring is 10″. Ribs are on the conical side. This is a “mid-hip” corset, which covers the iliac crest slightly, but this corset can still be worn by those with an average length torso.
Material Feels like 2 layers of black cotton bull denim (center front panels were more heavily interfaced than the other panels).
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 using the welt-seam method.
Waist tape One-inch-wide waist tape, stitched “invisibly” between the two layers. Full width (extends from center front panel to center back).
Binding Matching bias strips of black bull denim, machine stitched on both sides. The topside was stitched in the ditch and the back has a top stitch. Also 6 garter tabs (3 on each side).
Modesty panel 6.5 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” long, with 5 loops and pins, the lower two a bit closer together. Standard flexible busk (no adjacent bones by the busk).
Boning 24 bones total in this corset, 12 on each side. Double boned on the seams with ¼ inch wide spirals. The bones sandwiching the grommets are flat steel (stainless steel, so they attract the magnet slightly less).
Grommets There are 24, two-part size #00 grommets (12 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 of 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:

Lara training underbust corset, model unknown. $79-$84 USD. Click through to visit Glamorous Corset.

This is a heavy duty piece, so if you’re looking for a “little black corset” or entry-level trainer that’s more on the rigid or thicker side, you may like this one. Its conical silhouette and gently rounded hip offer a lovely silhouette, but if you have inflexible or sensitive ribs that can’t tolerate a conical rib corset, you might want to start with a different style instead.

If you like the silhouette and length or this corset but prefer a more lightweight and flexible version, it comes in mesh as well. While I haven’t reviewed the mesh Lara per se, take a look at my Jolie mesh review so you know what to expect from the Glamorous mesh pieces.

This corset also came in a lovely velvet drawstring storage / dustbag, which I always like.

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

 

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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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Corsets-UK ‘Instant Shape’ Classic Underbust Review

This entry is a summary of the review video for the “Instant Shape Classic Underbust” with subtle piping detail, by Corsets-UK. 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 10 inches long, princess seam is 9 inches, and the center back is 10 inches long. (Fits a bit short on my long torso and low waist.)
Rib spring is 2.5″, hip spring is 8″. Modern slim silhouette (see Final Thoughts below).
Material The fashion fabric is navy blue satin which is a blend of polyester, cotton and elastane. I found the elastane part interesting – was it just a fabric on hand, or was it chosen to reduce wrinkling? The corset does not stretch on my body because it has a lining of 100% black cotton twill.
Construction 6-panel pattern (14 panels total). The layers were flatlined and panels were assembled with subtle matching piping at each seam. Boning channels cover the seam allowances on the lining side.
Waist tape None. (Not recommended for high reductions or waist training – see Final Thoughts below.)
Binding Binding at top and bottom are made from matching blue satin. Machine stitched on both sides on a single pass (likely using a specialized binding attachment on the sewing machine). 6 garter tabs (3 on each side).
Modesty panel There is a modesty panel on the back, made of two layers (blue satin on the outside and black twill on the inside). 7″ wide and unstiffened. It’s sewn into the corset (covered by a boning channel) so it cannot be easily removed unless you take scissors and cut it.
There’s also a narrow blue satin modesty placket extending from underneath knob side of the busk.
Busk 9.75” long, with 5 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. Standard flexible busk (1/2″ wide on each side), normal stiffness.
Boning 14 bones total in this corset, 7 on each side. On each side, 5 of them are spirals about ¼ inch wide – single boned on the seams. There are also two flat steel bones, both ¼” wide sandwiching the grommets on each side.
Grommets There are 20, two-part size #0 grommets (12 on each side). They have a medium flange and are spaced equidistantly about 1” apart. Most of the grommets are finished in silver, but (oddly) the grommets at the waistline are gunmetal grey (probably done deliberately). Some of the grommets have shifted laterally, but none pulling out of the fabric.
Laces The laces are 3/8” wide flat nylon shoe-lace style, finished in black. I find them to be long enough, and they hold bows and knots well. A little springy but it “stretches out” and the springiness goes away over time.
Price Corsets-UK decided not to size these corsets with traditional corset sizes (waist size in inches) but rather, recommends you choose your street clothes size (like US 6 or UK 10). This corset is available in UK sizes 6 up to 24.
£49 GBP on Corsets UK, or $75 on Corset Story.

 

Final Thoughts:

‘Instant Shape’ Classic underbust, by Corset Story (Corsets-UK) ($75 USD or £49 GBP)

It’s been several years since I reviewed any piece from Corsets-UK, because I had purchased about 10 of them in the past (between the years of 2010 and 2012) and I was not the most thrilled with their quality. The company approached me in the summer of 2016, letting me know that they have been working hard on creating new curvier designs, with better quality materials, and asked if I would be willing to try a couple of their pieces in exchange for personal feedback. I agreed, and I was surprised to see how much their products had changed over the years. While it was not in the original agreement to review this corset (and the other two coming up soon) publicly, I did ask them if it was alright to share the review with my viewers / readers, bearing in mind that it will be a balanced review where I mention the good points and the room for improvement. They agreed, so here we are.

Corsets-UK’s ‘Instant Shape’ corsets are designed to be a bit less curvaceous than their ‘Waist Taming’ line that I reviewed last week. Their website states that it is designed for more gentle waist reductions (perhaps 2 inches or so in the waist), and it’s not designed for waist training. Because it has gentle sloping hips and a modern slim silhouette, I would recommend that if you are naturally curvy, opt for a curvier style corset.

The grommets of this corset were not pulling out the same way that they were in the ‘Waist Taming’ Corsets-UK review, but this may have to do with the fact that this corset is less curvy and is not designed for high reductions. One subtle feature that I found interesting though, is that this corset (and also the ivory overbust I reviewed from the ‘Instant Shape’ line) is that most of the grommets are silver, while just the four at the waistline (where the bunny ears come through) were deliberately a darker silver, closer to pewter or gunmetal grey. I would have thought this was a mistake, if it hadn’t been consistent in both of my ‘Instant Shape’ corsets. Whether it was done by the factory so the person lacing the corset would lace it properly, or whether it was done for the consumer in case they wanted to change the laces, I’m not sure – but it was interesting to notice, and the difference in color isn’t too conspicuous from far away.

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Corsets-UK ‘Instant Shape’ Ivory Overbust Review

This entry is a summary of the review video for the “Instant Shape Ivory Overbust” with floral trim and quilted hip detail by Corsets-UK. 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 14 inches long, princess seam is 15.5 inches, the side seam 13 inches and the center back is 14 inches long. (Fits a bit short on my long torso and low waist.)
Bust spring is 8″, rib spring is 2″, hip spring is 8″. Modern slim silhouette (see Final Thoughts below).
Material The fashion fabric is polyester based ivory satin which was interfaced, and the lining is a dusty pink cotton twill.
Construction 6-panel pattern (14 panels total). The layers were flatlined and panels assembled, and then on the hips, there is “quilting” over the hips (made to look like cording, but they used thin cotton batting). Boning channels cover the seam allowances on the lining side.
Waist tape None. (Not recommended for high reductions or waist training – see Final Thoughts below.)
Binding Binding at top and bottom are made from matching ivory satin. Machine stitched on both sides on a single pass (likely using a specialized binding attachment on the sewing machine). 6 garter tabs (3 on each side) and additionally there are 2 small tabs per side on the top edge if you want to add your own bra straps.
Modesty panel There is a modesty panel on the back, made of two layers (ivory satin on the outside and pinky twill on the inside). 7″ wide and unstiffened. It’s sewn into the corset (covered by a boning channel) so it cannot be easily removed unless you take scissors and cut it.
There’s also a narrow ivory satin modesty placket extending from underneath knob side of the busk.
Busk 13” long, with 6 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. It’s similar to a spoon busk: 1/2″ wide on each side at the top, and at the widest part of the “spoon” it is 1.25″ wide on each side. But it is not curved inward like a spoon busk (it acts more like a “wide busk” at the bottom.
Boning 14 bones total in this corset. On each side, 5 of them are spirals about ¼ inch wide – single boned on the seams. There are also two flat steel bones, both ¼” wide sandwiching the grommets on each side.
Grommets There are 24, two-part size #0 grommets (12 on each side). They have a medium flange and are spaced equidistantly about 1” apart. Most of the grommets are finished in silver, but (oddly) the grommets at the waistline are gunmetal grey (probably done deliberately). Some of the grommets have shifted laterally, but none pulling out of the fabric completely.
Laces The laces are 3/8” wide flat nylon shoe-lace style (finished in green!). I find them to be long enough, and they hold bows and knots well. A little springy but it “stretches out” and the springiness goes away over time.
Price Corsets-UK decided not to size these corsets with traditional corset sizes (waist size in inches) but rather, recommends you choose your street clothes size (like US 6 or UK 10). This corset is available in UK sizes 6 up to 24.
£59 GBP on Corsets UK, or $89 on Corset Story.

 

Final Thoughts:

It’s been several years since I reviewed any piece from Corsets-UK, because I had purchased about 10 of them in the past (between the years of 2010 and 2012) and I was not the most thrilled with their quality. The company approached me in the summer of 2016, letting me know that they have been working hard on creating new curvier designs, with better quality materials, and asked if I would be willing to try a couple of their pieces in exchange for personal feedback. I agreed, and I was surprised to see how much their products had changed over the years. While it was not in the original agreement to review this corset (and the other two coming up soon) publicly, I did ask them if it was alright to share the review with my viewers / readers, bearing in mind that it will be a balanced review where I mention the good points and the room for improvement. They agreed, so here we are.

Corsets-UK’s ‘Instant Shape’ corsets are designed to be a bit less curvaceous than their ‘Waist Taming’ line that I reviewed last week. Their website states that it is designed for more gentle waist reductions (perhaps 2 inches or so in the waist), and it’s not designed for waist training. Because it has gentle sloping hips and a modern slim silhouette, I would recommend that if you are naturally curvy, opt for a curvier style corset.

I chose this corset for several reasons – the first is that it was a different range from their ‘Waist Taming’ line, at a drastically lower price point, so I wanted to see what was different in terms of the quality. When I compared the two corsets, I could see that the fashion fabric was thinner and had a less dense weave compared to the ‘Waist Taming’ satin fashion fabric, and it had thinner, lighter weight spiral bones (closer to 4mm instead of 6mm wide, but still thankfully galvanized with no rust). If you’d like to see the bones in this corset (where I opened up the binding and took a look inside), see the video above.

The other reasons why I chose this corset is because it had 3 decorative features that caught my eye: the quilted hips (made to look almost like cording), the ‘aesthetic’ spoon busk (which is wider at the bottom just like traditional spoon busks, but doesn’t curve inward like traditional spoon busks), and the ribbon floral trim on the top edge (which Corsets-UK provided a small ziplock baggy of extra flowers).

The grommets of this corset were not pulling out the same way that they were in the ‘Waist Taming’ Corsets-UK review, but this may have to do with the fact that this corset is less curvy and is not designed for high reductions. One subtle feature that I found interesting though, is that this corset (and the underbust I also reviewed from the ‘Instant Shape’ line) is that most of the grommets are silver, while just the four at the waistline (where the bunny ears come through) were deliberately a darker silver, closer to pewter or gunmetal grey. I would have thought this was a mistake, if it hadn’t been consistent in both of my ‘Instant Shape’ corsets. Whether it was done by the factory so the person lacing the corset would lace it properly, or whether it was done for the consumer in case they wanted to change the laces, I’m not sure – but it was interesting to notice, and the difference in color isn’t too conspicuous from far away.

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Corsets-UK ‘Waist Taming’ Overbust Review

This entry is a summary of the review video for the “Waist Taming overbust with Hip Panels and Curved Hem” by Corsets-UK. 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 14 inches long, princess seam is 16 inches, the side seam 12.5 inches and the center back is 14 inches long. (Fits a bit short on my long torso and low waist.)
Bust spring is 9″, rib spring is 4″, hip spring is 9″. Has rounded hips and a relatively conical ribcage.
Material The fashion fabric is polyester based satin, and the lining is cotton twill.
Construction 6-panel pattern (14 panels total). 6 panels are “full length”, while the 7th panel is the semi-circular hip panel. The layers were flatlined and panels assembled, and boning channels cover the seam allowances on the lining side.
Waist tape Partial waist tape, exposed on the lining side. Starts at panel 2 and stops at panel 5. One inch wide, made from black cotton twill tape. The tape is positioned a bit too high on my body (about 2 inches above my natural waist) so it sits on my lower ribs.
Binding Binding at top and bottom are made from matching black satin. Machine stitched on both sides on a single pass (likely using a specialized binding attachment on the sewing machine). 6 garter tabs (3 on each side) and additionally there are 2 small tabs per side on the top edge if you want to add your own bra straps.
Modesty panel There is a modesty panel on the back, made of two layers (satin on the outside and twill on the inside). 7.5” wide and unstiffened. It’s sewn into the corset (covered by a boning channel) so it cannot be easily removed unless you take scissors and cut it.
There’s also a black satin modesty placket extending from the knob side of the busk ( 1/2″ wide).
Busk 13” long, with 5 loops and pins (last two are a bit closer together). It’s just under an inch wide on each side (so slightly wider than a standard busk, and also very slightly stiffer).
Boning 14 bones total in this corset. On each side, 5 of them are spirals about ¼ inch wide – single boned on the seams. There are also two flat steel bones, both ¼” wide sandwiching the grommets on each side.
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. However the grommets are pulling out of the fabric at the waistline.
Laces The laces are 3/8” wide flat nylon shoe-lace style. I find them to be long enough, and they hold bows and knots well. A little springy but it “stretches out” and the springiness goes away over time.
Price Available in waist sizes 20″ to 38″ in black satin.
£95 GBP on Corsets UK, or $145 on Corset Story.

 

Final Thoughts:

 

Close-up angle of the corset, with the waist tape outline and the hip panel visible.

It’s been several years since I reviewed any piece from Corsets-UK, because I had purchased about 10 of them in the past (between the years of 2010 and 2012) and I was not the most thrilled with their quality. The company approached me in the summer of 2016, letting me know that they had been working hard on creating new curvier designs, with better quality materials, and asked if I would be willing to try a couple of their pieces in exchange for personal feedback. I agreed, and I was surprised to see how much their products have changed over the years. I even took a peek at their steel bones, and noted that their spirals were a thicker gauge and had a shiny galvanized finish (no rust) and although there were small holes in the flat steels, they were properly dipped, had no rust or sharp points, and had a decent amount of flex to them.

The two issues I had with the corset were the oddly high placement of the waist tape, which seemed to not coincide with the smallest waist measurement of the corset (the place of highest tension), and the grommets that had started to pull away from the fabric at the waistline. I alerted them to this by email, and their representative said that they are happy with their products and saw no reason to change these. While it was not in the original agreement to review this corset (and the other two coming up soon) publicly, I did ask them if it was alright to share the review with my viewers / readers, bearing in mind that it will be a balanced review where I mention the good points and the room for improvement. They agreed, so here we are.

I’m wearing the corset laced closed here, but the website states that their corsets should be worn with a 2-inch gap in the back. I would not recommend this style of corset for training down – not only because it’s an overbust, which is already tricky to train in – but also because the fit of this corset is crucial for the hip panels to be properly situated at each side of the body. If the corset is too small for you, the hip panels will be positioned too far forward and may not fit over your own hips, which would look odd and feel uncomfortable. Using this corset for fashion purposes and ensuring that it fits with small gap in the back (laced closed, up to perhaps a maximum of 3 inches in the back), will make sure the corset fits the way it should. So if you are between sizes, I would recommend going up a size – especially if you are fuller in the bust.

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Rebel Madness Gothic Sweetheart Overbust Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the review video “Rebel Madness Overbust Review”. If you would like more complete information and side notes about the corset, you can watch the video on YouTube here:
[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7M8vsSQvVzI]

 

Fit, length Center front is 17 inches long, princess seam is 18.5 inches (12 inches from the waist up to the top of the bust), the side seam is 13.5 inches and the center back is 16 inches long.
Full bust spring is 10″, hip spring is 10″ as well. Gives a lovely hourglass silhouette.
Material The fashion fabric and lining are both made from 100% black cotton twill.
Construction 6-panel pattern (12 panels total). Panels 1-2 give space for the bustline, and panels 3-4 creates the curve over the hips. Assembled using the welt-seam method.
Waist tape One-inch-wide waist tape, “invisibly” installed, sandwiched between the layers. Starts between seams 1-2, and extends to the 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 Unstiffened, made from 2 layers of black cotton twill, 6 inches wide. Not attached to the corset – it’s suspended on the laces using grommets.
There’s also a 1-inch-wide unstiffened modesty placket in front, extending from the knob side of the busk.
Busk 16” long, with 7 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. Heavy duty busk (1″ wide on each side), and although it is stiffer than a standard busk, due to its length it may seem to flex relatively more.
Boning 14 bones total in this corset, 7 on each side. On each side, 5 of them are spirals about ¼ inch wide – single boned on the seams. There are also two flat steel bones, both ¼ inch wide sandwiching the grommets on each side.
Grommets There are 36, two-part size #00 grommets (18 on each side), because the corset has such a long back. They have a medium flange and are spaced equidistantly a bit less than 1” apart. Most of the grommets are finished in silver. All are holding in fine, some of the grommets have splits in the back which catch the laces (please note that this is an old stock corset; they have switched to new grommets in 2017 which are much better quality).
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, even with the very high back.
Price Available in black cotton (reviewed here) and black satin. Sizes 18″ up to 30″ closed waist.
As of 2017, their prices have raised to $90 USD. Find it here on Etsy.

 

Final Thoughts:

La Esmeralda modeling the Sweetheart overbust by Rebel Madness. $90 USD, Etsy.

I’d recommend this corset for someone with a longer torso, and a low waist. As I have both, I’m extremely happy with the fact that it covers my bust fully and I feel very secure that I’m not going to “booble” out of this, even if I were upside down. (Why would I ever be upside down?)

I like the sweeping curve of the top edge, where it comes down on the sides to allow me to lower my shoulders and arms without the corset cutting into my armpit. Many corset makers keep the line of the corset high around the side of the corset, to control “side-boob” or to try to deal with armpit squidge. But this often doesn’t allow the wearer to naturally lower their shoulders – and in my case, with my already developed trapezius muscles, I end up looking like a linebacker and my neck disappears! But in this corset, the low side allows my shoulders to drop naturally, creating a more elegant posture and reducing shoulder strain – while also accentuating the sweetheart effect in the front. The top edge of the corset sweeps back up in the back to control “muffin top” as well.

That said, if you have a shorter torso, you might be more comfortable in a shorter style corset, because it is 18.5 inches in the princess seam, and may still hit your lap when you sit down if you have a shorter waist.

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). While this overbust was $80 a couple of years ago, as of 2017 prices have raised to $90 in their Etsy shop (but I also know that they’ve been working to improve quality as well, such as more sturdy grommets) which is still inexpensive as far as overbusts go.

If there is only one thing I had to complain about, it’s that I wish these corsets were made available in sizes larger than 30″! The length and cut of this overbust corset is so flattering, I know of a few plus size women who would love to have this available in their size.

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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CS-426 STANDARD length underbust (with hip ties), Orchard Corset Review

This entry is a summary of the review video “Review: CS-426 SHORT with hip ties (Orchard 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 10.25 inches long, princess seam is 8.25 inches long.
Rib spring is 6″, and lower hip spring is 12″, but the hip ties allow the hips to expand to 20+” if needed.
Material 3 main layers – I have the black satin version, so the outer (fashion fabric) layer is satin, flatlined to a light cotton canvas interlining, and lined in cotton twill.
Construction 6-panel pattern (12 panels total). Hip curve is patterned into panels 3-4. Constructed with the sandwich method.
Waist tape One-inch-wide full waist tape running through the corset (center front to center back), “invisibly” secured between the layers.
Binding Binding at top and bottom are made from matching black satin. 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. 4 garter tabs (2 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, and reinforced with “hemming tape” (a type of temporary fabric glue).
There’s also an unstiffened black twill modesty placket extending from the knob side of the busk (1/2″ wide).
Busk Standard width busk, half an inch wide and 9” long, and 4 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, (mostly) double boned on the seams. On each side, 9 of them are spirals (~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. They have splits on the back, but the laces do not catch.
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″, in black cotton and black satin.
Sizes 16-32 are $71 USD, and sizes 34-46 are $75 USD, but you can save 10% by using the coupon code CORSETLUCY

 

Final Thoughts:

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!)

With the introduction of the new “CS-411 Longline” corset in 2017, Orchard sought to standardize their corset names, so now all “short” corsets are called “Standard” (including the CS-426 Short now being called CS-426 Standard, and their original CS-426 corsets now being called their CS-426 Longline).

The CS-426 Short (now “Standard Length”) is said to be taken from the same pattern as the 426 Longline, but has about 1.5 inches cut off from the top, and another inch or so cut off from the bottom. So although it may look slightly less curvaceous than their longline corset (and on paper, the rib and hip springs are reported to be smaller), the standard and longline corsets should fit the same person in the same size.

However (and this might be due to construction), I feel that this corset has a slightly more conical ribcage, and slightly more flared hips than the longline pattern. I think the longline CS-426 corset flatters my figure better (and I have a longer torso anyway) so I personally prefer the longline version.

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

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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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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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Dark Garden Aziza Overbust Corset (with Shoulder Straps) Review

This entry is a summary of the video “Dark Garden Aziza Corset Review” which you can watch on YouTube here:

Fit, length The measurements were highly customized to fit my body, including accommodating for several asymmetries (like my left hip protruding very slightly more, one breast being fuller than the other, one shoulder sitting a bit higher than the other, etc). See discussion below for more detail about the fit.
Material Possibly 2 main layers: Fashion fabric is a gorgeous gold floral brocade, likely fused for strength. The lining (strength fabric) is an American milled cotton canvas.
Construction 6 panel pattern. Most of the bust curve is drafted between panels 1-2, and most of the hip curve is drafted between panels 3-4, and much of the room for the upper back was obviously drafted into panels 5-6. The corset was topstitched between panels (seam allowance on the outside), and the seam allowances were covered and straddled by double boning channels.
Binding Bias strips of matching gold brocade, machine stitched on inside and outside. Tidy topstitch on the outside, no topstitch on the inside. No garter tabs (I didn’t request any).
Waist tape 3/4 inch wide invisible waist tape, sandwiched between the layers. It starts between seams 1-2, and extends to the center back.
Modesty panel Modesty panel is around 4.75″ wide, finished in the same gold brocade. Stiffened with 4 steel bones and left separate to slip under the laces when worn (or you can choose to not wear the modesty panel). There is a teensy seam in the center front which is not a modesty placket per se, but it does help prevent a visible gap between the busk.
Busk 14 inches long, standard flexible busk, with 7 loops + pins, equidistantly spaced.
There are half inch wide flat steel bones adjacent to the busk for further reinforcement, but they deliberately stop about 4 inches from the top of the corset so they won’t interfere with the curve of the bust.
Boning 26 bones total, 13 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. The additional bone on each side is adjacent to the busk.
Grommets 42 two-part grommets, size #00, with medium flange. Finished in gold and equidistantly spaced. Big washers, all grommets rolled nicely.
Laces Gold double faced satin ribbon – no spring, very strong and flat. Laced using the “chevron method” with “inverted bunny ears”.
Price $1475 USD without shoulder straps, or $1625 USD with shoulder straps. It is only available as a custom option, not standard.

 

Final Thoughts:

This is the final product for the Dark Garden bespoke process I went through over the course of 2015. If you’re interested in learning more about the bespoke process and the mockup fittings, click here.

Dark Garden always spends the extra time to match brocades, prints and lace motifs as shown in this gorgeous Aziza overbust modelled by Vienna La Rouge. Photo: Joel Aron.
Dark Garden Aziza overbust version without shoulder straps, and made for a very different body type. Model: Vienna La Rouge. Photo: Joel Aron.

Because I’m long-waisted, this corset is much, much longer from the waist up compared to most OTR overbust corsets. Using the mockup fittings I was able to choose not only the height of the neckline, but also the height of the side of the corset into my underarm area (Autumn recommended bringing it up a bit higher to account for a bit of my underarm squidge) and also in the back. I asked the back to be higher and have more room, so it would contain my muffin top (back spillover) and also it would allow my scapulae to snuggle down into the corset as opposed to hitting the edge of the corset and forcing my shoulders up.

The length of the shoulder straps were also adjusted custom to my body, and they secure in the front with matching gold ribbon. There are several grommets so I can wear the straps looser (for mobility or to wear them slightly off the shoulder) or tighter over my shoulders if I need more upper back support.

The bust was drafted beautifully; it cups over and supports my bust without squishing it flat. I also requested for the neckline of this corset to be slightly higher so that I can wear this to public functions and not fear that my bust will pop out or be exposed.

With this corset, it’s extremely apparent that my body is the type to “squish upwards”. While some people get a small lower tummy pooch from wearing corsets. By contrast, my hip measurement essentially stays the same, but my ribcage and bust can increase by up to two inches in a corset (compared to its natural measurement) depending on the reduction of the waist. Displaced flesh has to go somewhere!

Along the bottom edge, although aesthetically I love a longline corset, I requested this corset to be cut at the mid-hip (just about my iliac crest) so that I’ll be able to move and sit comfortably, even in low seats.

The Aziza corset is a custom option, so you may not see it available as a standard sized corset in their Classic Line on their website. Dark Garden has a catalogue of many more corset styles, and their skilled team of corsetieres can create almost any style you can think of. If you’re interested in learning more about Dark Garden and their 30 years of work, head over to their website here.

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‘Love of Corsets’ Long Brocade Underbust Review

This post is a summary of the “‘Love of Corsets’ long brocade underbust review” video, which you can watch on Youtube:

Fit, length Center front is 13 inches long, the side seam is 9.5 inches long. (Your torso should be about 10.5 inches long from underbust to lap). Center back is 12 inches long. Circumferential measurements: waist is size 24 (24 inches), the underbust is 30 inches (6 inch rib spring), and the high hip is about 32 inches (8 inch hip spring).
Material Two main layers: fashion fabric is brocade, and lining is black cotton twill.
Construction 4 panel pattern, constructed using the welt-seam method. The panels are stitched with a lock-stitch, and the corset is double-boned on the seams (bones sandwiched between the layers).
Binding Bias strips of matching poly brocade. Top-stitched on both outside and inside. Includes 4 garter tabs at the bottom, and 2 hanger loops at the top.
Waist tape None.
Modesty panel Modesty panel is 6″ wide and finished in matching brocade. Unstiffened and stitched to the corset on one side (easily removable). Also the modesty placket in front is 1 inch wide.
Busk 12 inches long with 6 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. The busk is slightly stiffer than a standard flexible busk.
Boning 16 total bones not including busk (8 on each side). 1/4″ wide spirals, double boned on the seams. Two 1/4″ wide flats sandwich the grommets on each side.
Grommets 18 grommets total, size #00 with a small flange and finished in silver. Set equidistantly, a little more than 1 inch apart.
Laces Black flat nylon shoelace style lacing, 1/4″ wide. Slightly springy but very difficult to snap. Long enough and comfortable to hold when lacing up.
Price This corset was $65 at the time of recording two years ago, but most of Love of Corsets’ stock is now around $30 USD!

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This corset is a modern slim silhouette, with a smooth sweeping curve from rib to waist to hip. It does give a moderate waist reduction on me (having a 6″ rib spring and 8″ hip spring) so Romantasy may call this a “U” shaped corset, or it may be reminiscent of an old Victorian silhouette (as their corsets were not convex at all over the ribs, but rather smoothly concave).

I wouldn’t recommend this piece for “stealthing” under clothing, because the rather long point in the bottom of the center front may poke out from under your pants! However, the same brand has a few other corset styles that would be a bit better for wearing under outfits.

This specific corset is sadly currently unavailable, but feel free to check out some of Love of Corsets’ other styles on Amazon here.

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Dark Garden Risqué Overbust Review

This post is a summary of the “Dark Garden Risqué Valentine Overbust Review” video, which you can watch on Youtube (below the table of quick stats) if you prefer:

Dark Garden Risqué Valentine Quick Stats

Fit, length Center front is 15 inches long, the princess seam (under the breast to top of the lap) is 16.75 inches long. The side seam is 14 inches, and the enter back is shorter at 13.5 inches.  Circumferential measurements: waist is size 24 (24 inches), the full bust is 34 inches, and the low hip is about 36 inches.
Material Two layers in the center front and center back satin panels (satin can also come in red or black). One layer of ivory transparent nylon mesh (also can be ordered in black)
Construction 5 panel pattern (10 panels total). Bust ease is distributed between panels 1-2, and most of the curve of the hip is in panels 3-4 (and a bit of panel 2 as well).
For the construction, as most of the corset is single layer, panels were assembled with a top stitch with seam allowance facing outward, and external double boning channels were made with peach satin over the seams. (The boning channels straddle the seam to reinforce it.)
Binding Bias strips of vintage pink satin, neatly machine stitched on outside and inside. There are also 8 garter tabs (4 on each side). You also receive 8 matching garters (included in the base price).
Waist tape White twill tape (0.75 inch wide) is exposed on the inside of the corset, anchored by the seams/ boning channels, and is covered by a 1″ wide vintage pink petersham ribbon.
Modesty panel Modesty panel is 5″ wide and finished in the same vintage pink silk satin. It is stiffened with 4 bones to resist wrinkling or collapsing, and it remains loose (not sewn in and not suspended on the laces) so it can be used or not used depending on your preference.
No modesty placket in front, but a topstitch of fabric by the busk prevents gaping in the center front.
Busk 14 inches long with 7 loops and pins, equidistantly spaced. standard flexible busk (half inch on each side). It’s further supported by a half inch bone on each side, slightly shorter (stops at the underbust level to allow for more ease in the bust)
Boning 22 total bones not including busk (11 on each side). 1/4″ wide spirals, double boned on the seams. Two further 1/4″ wide flats sandwich the grommets on each side.
Grommets 34 grommets total, size #00 with a medium flange and finished in silver. Set equidistantly, less than an inch apart.
Laces Pink double faced satin ribbon, half-inch wide, no stretch or spring to it. Sufficiently long and laced in DG’s typical “chevron” pattern.
Price Sweetheart overbust (4 panels per side) version is $505 USD which includes the modesty panel and 8 garters. The Risqué can be ordered specially for $555 USD (including accessories).

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The Risqué corset is aptly named as it has breezy, transparent side mesh panels. If you indeed wanted to dress a little risqué, you could wear this corset with nothing underneath and show a little skin (note, “side boob” will be very visible). Dark Garden’s website points out that it would look incredible if you happen to have a rib tattoo you wanted to show off! Or, you can wear a matching (or complementary color) dress underneath as I have shown in the video above to create a striking effect.

This overbust is a specially-made Valentine overbust instead of Dark Garden’s more common Sweetheart. The Valentine is designed to flatter fuller / curvier figures; it has a very similar silhouette to the Sweetheart, and similar proportions, but it has 5 panels per side (the Sweetheart has only 4 panels) and it contours over the bust and hips more smoothly.

This is quite a long corset, nearly 17 inches at the longest part. Dark Garden distributes more length from the waist up (and less length from the waist down) so even with my long torso, the corset covers my bust sufficiently and feels very secure, while the shorter length at the bottom allows me mobility and helps me sit down comfortably without the lower edge hitting my lap. Other corsets I’ve reviewed in the past were sometimes a similar overall length, but had less length distributed from the waist up (which meant that my bust didn’t feel as safely held into the corset) and more length from the waist down (which meant I had a harder time sitting) – those other corsets were clearly meant for someone with a shorter ribcage or higher waistline than myself. It’s useful to know that Dark Garden corsets fit my personal proportions so well!

The Dark Garden Risqué Valentine overbust is available in standard sizes from 18 up to 38, but one can commission Dark Garden for a made-to-measure version if you fall out of this size range. See more at Dark Garden’s website here.