Tuesday, June 14, 2016

1880s/1890s corset from Atelier Sylphe pattern

A couple of years ago I made a short foray from 18th century costume making into Victorian corset making. While I love the result, the corset unfortunately turned out a bit too large so I never got around posting about it or making anything else from this period. However, a while back one of my friends allowed me to take photos of the corset while she tried it on so I finally get to show it to you.

The pattern for this corset is the "ref P" style from Atelier Sylphe. I made only a couple of alterations to the pattern by taking it in at the waist and hips but as it turned out I didn't take it in enough at the waist.

The corset is made out of two layers, one in white heavy weight cotton and the other in blue cotton twill. Would have loved to make this out of blue silk satin, like my favorite extant corset from this period (from The Corset: Fashioning the Body exhibit), but I wasn't able to buy that locally so it didn't happen. I knew the corset might not fit, as I didn't make a mock-up, so I was entirely happy with this less expensive material. The boning materials include flat steel and large cable ties. 

The flossing in the front was inspired by this corset from the Kyoto Costume Institute.

I'm definitely going to make another version of this corset sometime in the future since it's such a nice pattern and I want a gown from this period as well, but I don't see that happening anytime soon. Next time I probably wont do contrasting stitching, though, as all less than perfect stitching will be less obvious that way! ;) Also, I really want to use spiral steel as boning material next time since I believe it would accommodate the curves of the corset better than the flat steel that doesn't cup the breasts in a rounded way but sort of flattens and pushes them up here, if you can understand what I mean. 


  1. Even though the fabric is different, I think it look really similar to the silk one! And I'm in love with your flossing!