I’ve been working on my Rainbow Dash corset. It’s not done by any means, but I have had some good struggles with it.
So today I’m going to talk about some modifications I am making for this corset. And some of the trials and tribulations in the muslins and fitting.
First, you can never make too many muslins.
I made two and a half muslin versions of this corset. The first muslin was okay, but the height of the top and the length of the bottom needed to be adjusted, and the cup portion of the corset needed to be pulled in towards my body at the top. So I remade my corset pattern pieces easily, with the use of the tissue paper pattern that I made during my drafting session with Elizabeth. And I remade a new muslin.
One of the unfortunate parts of this process is that I had to recut the spiral steel boning for the new longer corset. I am saving the other pieces and hoping I can use them for a waist cincher someday.
I was pretty happy with my adjustments to the length and cups. I know there is no picture of the first version to compare, but trust me there is a reason why, hah! What I was not happy with was the way the two pieces of boning that were supposed to be acting as underwire laid. They twisted and turned a little funny and it was just … not good. Plus the center between the cups was not against my body.
I decided immediately that I would adjust the sweetheart top to be lower at the center to solve that problem.
I also decided to do some seam ripping on this muslin and try to just place straight strips of boning along all the seams, more similar to the way my first corsets worked. This is how the second muslin and the half-third version looked.
Half-third is way worse, right? And I refused to make a third complete one. Mostly because I am now out of muslin hah.
Instead I decided that I would adjust the location of the boning channels just slightly and hope that it makes things better in the final product. The underwire will go flat against my body instead of along the bottom curve of the cup, and the two central boning pieces are going to go a bit higher in the corset.
Next point, cutting fabric for a corset in a single layer is very mistake-prone.
Normally to fold the fabric along the halfway line, pin a pattern, and cut. Voila, two matching corset pieces facing the right direction and stuff. Since I had 6 different colors for the panels, and none of the panels would use the same color twice, I had to cut in a single layer. I constantly got the wrong side of the fabric up, or used the wrong pattern piece. So much failing. I didn’t quite cut a dozen extra pieces, but man it felt close. In the picture below, the blue and the red piece are incorrect.
Once the fabric was cut properly, I was reminded of how much sewing with satins and brocades BLOWS. So much fraying! Here I am pretending to be happy about all the fray check I used for this project …
Finally, ADD ALL THE THINGS!!!
I am doing a couple of other things to this corset, some that I have done before and some I have not. First, I am adding gold bias tape between the panels and under the cups. Additionally, the top and bottom bias tape for the corset will be gold. I also bought crystal beads to match each panel of the corset, and hand-stitched the crystals onto the appropriate panels of the outer corset layer. Here is what the outer layer looks like with crystals.
Even though it’s hard to capture in pictures, based on the way the table light hits them, I think it will have the pretty, sparkly effect for which I am hoping. When placing these crystals, I tried to stay away from the seam lines of the panels because I know bias tape is going there. As you can see in the picture above, I still came rather close, but no disasters occurred. I also tried to place the crystals in relatively logical places on the brocade patterns, rather than just sewing them on randomly. Not sure how much I succeeded at this.
Next I added the bias tape, which came out pretty nicely. I did make one boo-boo here: the center front seam is supposed to have two boning channels, one to either side. I put a single piece of bias tape over the central seam. So now I have to decide if I will put only a single boning channel here, or if I will just suck it up and stitch the edge of the two boning channels straight up the center of the bias tape. I am leaning towards the latter option as I feel the center front of the corset needs a bit more support. Regardless, here is everything after bias tape.
The final adjustment I am making to this corset is to add an additional back panel to the lining layer. This will allow me to hide my skin behind the ties in the back. I’m thinking I will do this piece in the light blue, but hope that it doesn’t ruin the rainbow effect of the corset. I haven’t made this piece yet.
All of these modifications to the corset need to be done on the outer layer and the lining layer prior to stitching the corset layers together. First of all it makes it easier. Second, it protects the backside stitching by enclosing it. Third, you don’t wind up with unwanted stitch lines on the opposite layer of the corset.
I really need to finish this by the end of the weekend, as I have skirt parts to do! Megacon is in two weeks! Yikes!