July 30, 2013

Finished Stays

So the stays are finished, but they are too small! The mock up fit fine but wasn't fully boned and somewhere along the way these ended up much too small. It is perfectly acceptable to have a few inch gap in the laces in the back, but these have a 4-5 inch gap! Much too big of a gap, and so sadly these don't fit me very well at all. I am also disappointed in my sewing on these, ever since I decided to give up on hand sewing them and machine sew the rest I started rushing because I wanted them done.

Overall this was still a new adventure in stay making for me. The shape of these stays is different than any other I have constructed before and this was my first time using horizontal boning across the chest which I do like now that I have tried it. Again these remind me of how annoying trying to get into a back lacing garment on ones own is and I think my next pair will be front and back lacing. Even though I just finished these I am already itching to make a new improved pair! I think I will instead start the gown re-do over my old stays which fit much better than these new ones. My only hope is that if I end up losing some weight these new stays will eventually fit, until then its back to using my old pair.

I didn't even bother lining the tabs :/
They are even too small on my dress form who is much smaller than I am!
yikes gap!
So its back to the drawing board for my next set of stays! I have two stays/corset hybrids I made ages ago that are so comfortable and fit so nicely that I wish were accurate. They are stays to the waist but then flare over the hips like a corset. I actually based them on extant examples but they are no good for accurate late 18th century :(
ca. 1620-1630, Manchester City Galleries
 This was the pair I based mine off of, front lacing over a stomacher and with webbed tabs over the hips. I have never seen another pair like these from the Manchester City Galleries and would love to see more documentation for this style as it is so comfortable. The pair I made below which have a true 18th and 19th century mash up going on with a fantasy element as well.

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