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Jupiter Moon 3 “Hemp and Twill” Corset Review

This post is a summary of the “Jupiter Moon 3 Corset Review” video, which you can watch on Youtube if you prefer:

Jupiter Moon 3 Quick Stats

Fit, length (Because JM3’s corsets are made to measure, the measurements of this corset are a bit irrelevant. But I’ve added the measurements below for the sake of completion.) The center front is 14.5 inches long. Princess seam is 10.5 inches. The side seam is 9.5 inches, and the center back is 14 inches.  Circumferential measurements: waist is 20 inches, the underbust is 26 inches, and the low hip is about 30 inches. This corset fits me with an even 4-inch wide gap.
Material Three layers (if you consider fusible interfacing a layer): fashion fabric is tea-stained cotton twill, fused to very thick non-woven interfacing, and the lining is a thin lightweight cotton.
Construction 5 panel pattern (10 panels total).
The fashion fabric was fused to heavy interfacing, and the panels look to be lock-stitched (no visible topstitch). Single boning channels on the seams. The lining is a floating layer (only attached at the front and back panels).
Binding Bias strips of tea-stained cotton twill. Neatly machine stitched on both sides (stitched-in-the-ditch on outside, and turned under on the inside. No garter tabs on this sample (but available for special corset orders).
Waist tape None detected. (See discussion below)
Modesty panel 4 inch-wide back modesty panel, finished in tea-stained cotton twill, and stitched to one side of the corset. Also unstiffened placket in front by the busk.
Busk Standard flexible busk (1/2″ on each side), 13 inches long with 6 loops and pins (equidistantly spaced). Close to each side of the busk are stiff flat steels that are pre-bent to give support to the busk and curve over a lower tummy.
Boning 12 total bones (6 on each side). They all seem to be 1/4″ wide flat steels, single boned on the seams. JM3 uses rigid bones and pre-bends them to curve inward at the waist and outward at the hip to accentuate the hip spring. In the front, the bones curve around a lower tummy, acting almost like a spoon busk.
Grommets 28 grommets total, size #00 with a medium flange and finished in silver. Set ea bit closer together at the waistline, and they’re in good condition (set in securely and not falling out). Typical “US brand” grommets.
Laces 3/8″ wide double-faced satin ribbon in a cream color.
Price $272 USD for this exact style (as of 2016, JM3 has reduced her prices!)

 

Andi models this sample corset by Jupiter Moon 3. Photo: Viva Van Story. Click through to see JM3's Etsy shop.
Andi models this sample corset by Jupiter Moon 3. Photo: Viva Van Story. Click through to see JM3’s Etsy shop.

Jupiter Moon 3 is a one-woman business owned by Jennifer in Texas. I love the charming vintage aesthetic of this corset, with the tea staining, the lovely lace and the thick hemp flossing. I was surprised at the strength of this corset considering how lightweight it was – especially considering that the strength layer is just interfaced twill!

JM3 says that she tends not to use a waist tape, and that in the 1000+ corsets she’s ever made, she has never needed a waist tape to reinforce the waist (she’s never had a problem with the waist of her corsets stretching or seams tearing). However, she will add a waist tape to any special-ordered corset for a small markup in price.

There are more comments from JM3 and also other owners of JM3 corsets in the comments section under the Youtube review for this corset, so I encourage you to read more there if you’re interested in more opinions and information about her corsets.

See more at in Jupiter Moon 3’s Etsy shop!

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Whirling Turban Wing Bust, Sarong Skirt Dress!

This is a very special OOTD episode, where I feature a lovely vintage reproduction dress made by Whirling Turban. I was introduced to Whirling Turban’s products via Ashley of “Lisa Freemont Street”, fellow vlogger on Youtube and blogger. (Ashley is also a full-time mom and an integral part of the Whirling Turban team, in addition to a few other jobs – and manages to look fabulous doing it all! She’s a modern Superwoman.)

If you would rather watch and listen than read, feel free to watch the video below (lots of eyecandy!).

Many people know me for my detailed corset reviews, but it wasn’t until I got my vintage dresses last year that I really started paying attention to the quality of the rest of my wardrobe. When a garment (corset or otherwise) is made with care, attention, time and skill, it really shows. And it may cost a tad more (for instance, the standard size wingbust dress on WT starts at $235), but I consider this a very fair investment considering it makes me feel like a million bucks.

This dress is adjustable in several ways – its flexible wing bust allows the wearer to flip the ‘wings’ up into cheeky points to conceal the contrast fabric, or to curve the wings down for a softer look and to expose more of the contrast. The dress also comes with a halter strap which matches the contrast, a halter strap which matches the main fabric of the dress (whichever color you like, since there are 9 colors of sharkskin to choose from), and these straps can be interchanged/ adjusted in length using two pairs of small buttons on the inside of the bust.

You can also wear it strapless, and the lightly boned bodice will keep the dress from falling down on you. The light boning and the shirring both keep the bodice wonderfully smooth instead of shifting or bunching. However, this bodice is not designed to nip you in at the waist, so WT recommends wearing a corset underneath to give you a period-accurate silhouette. In my video ab0ve, you can see me model the dress first with my What Katie Did Morticia underbust, and then with my Versatile Corsets Mimosa overbust, so you can see the difference that your foundation wear makes in silhouette.

The sarong skirt is attached to the bodice, and flares out dramatically from the waistline to accentuate full, feminine hips. There are several neat pleats in the front which would nicely conceal any lower tummy pudge; and otherwise add to the very 50’s-accurate profile. I chose my skirt to end about one inch lower than the fullest part of my calf, which gives a slight leg-lengthening illusion. The sarong is a kind of wiggle skirt, and hugs my legs in a flattering yet non-restrictive manner, as the slit between the two overlapping panels of fabric in the front accommodate any extra room you may need to climb a steep set of stairs, or to quickly sidestep your manic puppy. (Both happen frequently, in my case.) A lovely casual tie on the side of the hip, like an understated bow, finishes off the look and provides very minor adjustment in the hips.

The more I look at the dress, the more details pop out at me. Not one aspect of this dress was constructed without some sort of consideration for the wearer. The material is 100% cotton, which drapes beautifully and is a dream to wear, as it doesn’t cause sweating, itching, static cling, etc. The wings on the bustline are meticulously pressed and sewn into crisp edges; the shirring is symmetric on both sides of the bodice; the clothestag is concealed and prevented from poking into my back; the matching colored zipper is cleanly inserted and doesn’t catch; and even the interfacing is sew-in instead of fusible. One of the most important features is the pinked edges, which provide a non-bulky way to prevent fraying and unraveling of seams.

If this post sounds like I’m waxing poetic about the work of Whirling Turban… it’s because I might be! Looking at the craftsmanship of this dress, I’m tempted to get rid of many of my worn-too-quickly $15 eco t-shirts and start to take more pride in the way I dress on a regular basis.

If you would like to see Whirling Turban’s selections, feel free to visit their site here.

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Using Corsets for a 1950’s “New Look” Accurate Silhouette

Earlier today I posted an “OOTD” video, showing that the right undergarments can make all the difference when trying to dress in a period-accurate manner.

If I could show you the difference of the fit of these dresses with and without a corset, I would – alas, I couldn’t get either of them zipped up without a corset. The little black wiggle dress has a 24″ waist, the blue dress has just under a 25″ waist. I have a natural 27″ waist – close, but no cigar.

After reading Sarah Chrisman’s bookWaisted Curves…” and remembering what she said about the subtle lessons we can learn from studying and wearing vintage clothing, I decided to pay more attention to my own posture and behavior while wearing these dresses.

The Little Black (Wiggle) Dress (LBWD?)

This is a sophisticated little number. By modern standards, it’s very conservative (covers much more skin than most cocktail dresses available today) but there’s something alluring about it. The dramatic dip in the waist is unexpected to most people today, and the bodice of the dress will not be having any self-deprecating pose from me. The width of the back panels are more narrow than that of the front panels, forcing my shoulders down and back, making me look confident and proud even in situations where I’m feeling painfully shy.
The only feature I find less-than-absolutely-perfect about this dress is the little lower-belly pouch that sticks out from the skirt, making my profile look a little dumpier than I actually am. Whether this is just a result from the the skirt’s darts and pleats, or if this was designed in due to the shape of many women during this time, I’m not entirely sure – but I am told that this is normal of wiggle dresses of the period.

The Blue-Grey Shelf-Bust Twirly (Swing) Dress

I have no words for how much I love this dress. The teensy pleating over the bust area; the way the silhouette is created by elongated hourglass-shaped panels (much like the panels in a corset) dipping in at the waist and swooping back out again in the skirt; the sweet little bow detail on the shoulder; the heavenly silky blue fabric with pink lining which go perfectly with my new lemon-meringue-colored petticoat – wearing this dress makes me want to play hooky from work and just twirl in this all day.
Whereas the LBWD makes me feel mature and sophisticated like a siren or femme-fatale, this soft blue dress makes me feel distinctly youthful, sweet and girly. I feel like a flower; something to be nurtured and cherished.

The psychological effect of clothing is incredible. When I hung up the femme-fatale dress and the delicate-flower dress and donned my comfy, frumpy, fleece pajamas this evening, I felt a little silly – how could I let my clothing affect me so much? Is there any merit to that age-old saying “The clothes makes the man” (or woman)? It makes me wonder if wearing a corset has shaped my behavior over the past couple of years, and if so, how (and how much) has it changed me?
Whatever the case may be, it’s definitely fun!