Wednesday, February 12, 2014

How to sew a corset - Part 2 Inserting the busk

After cutting the fabric in the last post, now is your duty to hem it, to keep it from fraying. I used my serger but a simple zig zag stitch will do as well. You don't have sew this right along the edge, but keep the stitches from the outlines you drew around your pattern pieces! I always fuse some of my layers during this process, because I prefer to have 2 pieces of fabric flapping around to 3 or 4. I just pin the outer fabric and the  stabilising layer together and serge then.

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I mentioned it before: If you sew a corset for yourself, please use materials that might cost a bit more but will last for a long time. This means that you need to use steel boning instead of plastic and a real busk that will not bend after sitting down. If you want to close your corset with a zipper or hook and eye tape (only using the heavy duty stuff of course, otherwise the pressure from lacing will simply tear them out and damage them!), do use some steel bones to stabilise the front! Even without a front closure, there need to be an reliable (= at least 1cm wide) steel bone sewn in in the middle!

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The busk I used for this corset is spooned which helps keeping the tummy in. You can use the same insertion method for non-spooned busks as well. First, I marked the positions of the eyes and pins with chalk. For the eyes, I lay the busk on the inside of the outer fabric and mark the sewing lines. I For the pins, I just draw a little chalk on the head of each pin and press them against the inside of the fabric. If necessary, I will increase the mark by adding more chalk but most of the time it is visible enough. 

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Then I sew the front pieces together, for each side the outer fabric+stabilising layer and lining+stabilising layer. For the side with the eyes, I just sew on the lines between the eyes. The side with the pins is sewn completely.

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The busk with the eyes is inserted y sticking it into the fabric sandwich and folding the left sides together:

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For the side with the eyes, I use some tools to widen holes for the pins. Do not cut or punch them, the fabric will fray and the corset will go to waste (you simple can't hide flaws right at the front!)! I use
  1. a seam ripper (just the tip) for starting the hole
  2. a pencil for widening it
  3. an awl for the last increase of the hole to fit over the pins
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When your holes fit over the pin heads, carefully insert the pins into the outer fabric layer. I'm a bit overly careful and always secure the pin holes after insertion with quick setting glue:

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The last step is to sew around the busk with a zipper sewing foot so that it can't move any more. Be careful here, sewing onto the busk will damage your needle! Just go slow and carefully move closely around the busk:

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Now the glue had time to set and you can enjoy your beautifully inserted busk!

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linnea-maria said...

For the first time I have the clue about how to insert the busk :)

Neisella Nightmare said...

Super beschrieben. Genau so mache ich es auch

MindLess said...

@ linnea-maria: I am happy to serve! ^^

@ Neisella: ich kann mir auch keinen anderen logischen Weg vorstellen... Prokelst du auch höchst professionell 2 min mit dem Bleistift in jedem Loch rum?! ;)

Neisella Nightmare said...

Nachdem ich mich vorher mit dem Nahttrenner gestochen habe, ja :-D

MindLess said...

@ Neisi: Du Pechvogel! ^^

Grace Hollow Doll said...

Oh my, Im shoked! PhD and on the same time so gothic and creative person! It's really amazing :D

MindLess said...

@ Grace Hollow Doll: Thank you! Nice to see a new face on the blog...