A very productive day, after a rather dispiriting one yesterday. Yes, the skirt went well [and has progressed a little more today, trimmed, pressed and ready for finishing.]
Unfortunately, the toile for the jacket threw up a new challenge: galloping back flab!
Ew! My eyes! My eyes!
Before the back fat, try to concentrate for a moment on a few other issues- It’s meant to fit snugly over the corset, and wifey is not very brilliant at pinning me into things, or performing the necessaries…she tries bless her, and is improving slowly! However, it’s not going to work like this…
From the front it’s not TOO bad, that neckline will be cut away remember. I’m happy enough with the dimensions across the upper chest, and the shoulders. That’s a start. I decided to use all the princess seams to basically go up a size or so. By adding in 1/8″ to 1/4″ at all the princess seams, I stand to gain about 3″. I only let it out at the upper back leaving back waist for the other fix:
A horizontal fisheye dart, about 1″ deep at the centre, tapering to nothing at the sides. My ‘erect back’ is even more so in a corset. I’ll stitch this out of the toile/underlining, and cut the other pieces to match.
If after all the fixes, it ends up with too narrow an overlap at the front, I’ll just put a fly/modesty piece in. I might do that anyway, I hate gapiness.
And of course, I had a brainfart and put the sleeve in backwards. Le sigh.
So apart from being bloody awful, that’s fixable. Now for the back fat…
I assumed that upper bulginess is just one of those prices that flabby old me would have to pay for the fabulous hourglassiness that the corset promises…but this is just NARSTY!
Next stop, the circus? Not a happy Fairy.
So I ran weeping to Facebook, blew up some puddings, and collapsed sobbing onto the Historical Sew Fortnightly page. And the Sewing for Steampunk and Cosplay page. ‘Help me mighty gurus of corsets and flab’ I cried, and they did. EVEN WITHOUT PICTURES!
Their words of wisdom:
- corset is too short in the back
- corset is laced too tight at the top
- my chemise is too stretchy
They made lots of other useful suggestions and diagnoses, but these are the ones I’m tackling first, other than ‘bin the corset and start again’.
So, the plan of action became
- lace it looser at the top [but then my boobs will try to escape, so-]
- make a new chemise, with a more fitted/smooth back to control the jelly
- Make some sort of strap for the corset, to do the same smoothing, and also supply some side restraints for the bazooms
So I did. I’ve cut out two pieces of the bronze dupion silk for straps-using the selvage as the ‘outside’edge, and sloping the ‘inside’ edge to become narrower at the front. No idea if this will work, I’ve just hemmed them and then will have to play once I’m togged up.
I’ve made a brand new chemise, as I was delighted to find out that I had JUST enough silk left for a mini version. I’ve used the Laughing Moon pattern, size 18. To make the back close fitting, I matched stitching lines on the yoke and main piece, and pleated out the excess which would have been gathered to fit, producing a sort of vest back.
It went together very easily, and a quick try on, sans corset, seems to work exactly as I wanted. Yay!
I’ve done the alterations on the jacket toile as well- go me!
That’s enough of this post, the next one will have the new chemise and the results of the toile experiment.
PS I also got my act together and made proper [covered] hip pads to tuck into the corset instead of just lumps of folded wadding.