When this week of “Anthing but Clothes” began I was intending to make a bag. I even cut out a small rucksack pattern which I found for free from SoSewEasy and I really think I may have to get round to finishing that at some point because its a great little pattern. The problem though is I use a rucksack – as in a proper small Karrimor rucksack for my everyday life and I really virtually never use a bag so it seems a waste of effort.
Then on Tuesday evening I decided instead to make the free corset belt pattern from Scarlet at https://www.corsettraining.net/project/shop-vixen-corset-pattern/
First though I needed to check with the editors if this counts as an indie pattern company and they agreed it does which is brilliant.
I have been intending to make this for years. Really about 5 years I think. I downloaded and printed it out years ago but never got round to putting it together or even looking at it until now because what I never realised is the pieces are so small you do not actually have to stick anything at all together!
Unfortunately, after I made this I had some issues taking photos because really most of my clothing that will go with this is dark and it does not show up well so I ended up trying several outfits with mixed success but I think it shows the belt anyway.
Ideally I now need to make a dress to go with this I think.
The belt is made from scraps as well left over from other projects and when I say scraps I really do mean that. The satin is so lovely I thought it might be a pocket, collar or something or a covered button cos the pieces I had left are all small. I still have loads of scraps but all the reasonable sized bits are gone. I ended up using selvedges for the edging in fact which should be bias cut but I did not have enough.
Its really not a proper corset because I only had plastic rigilene bones and two sizes of these so the sizes vary around the belt.
Its meant to be made with metal ( steel) bones. I decided to go ahead anyway because its a good practice to make a muslin and this is a wearable muslin and right now I am between jobs. I temp and am waiting to find a new placement so money is not really available for anything and I must find what I need from my stash. My stash is pretty big tho so its not really a problem but does inhibit me sometimes.
So this is a muslin really. I will, however, definitely be making another with proper boning. Luckily Scarlet gives three different versions of where to put the bones so I made a mash-up of these to make it work.
The channels are green bias binding. Some of the channels have an extra row of stitching so I can have two bones side by side in one channel because the thinner bones need to be doubled up else they are too weak. I also have two channels up the front (or back) because its wearable with lacing front or back depending on how you want to wear it. I had 1m of each of two widths of rigilene and I have about 10cm left of each size so it uses quite a lot of boning. The white lines you can just about see on the lining are chalk where I was working out where to put my front boning channels because they are slightly different to the pattern.
I used grommet tape because I did not have grommets as such and this is left over from a dress I made a few months ago.
For directions I used the instructions from Emerald Erin’s blog
Construction is completely different to clothing but its very straight forward and I would definitely recommend making this if it appeals to you. Personally, I have no interest in tight lacing at all but just want an unusual belt. I think next time I will also make a bigger size because its meant to reduce your waist. I usually like to wear loose comfy clothing but I really need a belt to go with a dress I am making which is very sack like so this is a big adventure for me.
I could really have sewn the rigilene straight onto the fabric but decided to make this exactly how I will make the steel bones version in the future because its a good practice.
Its got 3 layers, not two, as in the instructions because I did not have any Cortil. The outer is fragile satin backed cotton type but of unknown fibre. I made a dress from it previously for the 3 Dresses from one pattern TMS challenge. The inner is 100% cotton shirt weight fabric which I also made a dress from and sandwiched between these to give strength is a layer of canvas. You should really use Cortil but I do not have any so for now this will surfice. It seems to work but I suspect this belt may not last long, mind you it is also not something I see myself wearing every day especially since I need help to put it on!
I do not yet have proper lacing so am using ribbons. I started off with two different coloured ribbons and this is much easier to lace youself because you can see in a mirror which ones you are pulling.
Its a big difficulty putting this on and I need help which is not ideal tho when laced at the front its obviously easy to do . Did I mention its reversible so you can lace front or back?
You are meant to be able to do this yourself! Maybe with proper lacing it will be easier. I may have to buy some. Scarlet reckons you can put this on yourself either way and a full corset too. It may then get easier with practice but who knows.
Its a fun project either way so thank you TMS because this is reallymaking me step into the unknown and do what I have thought about but probably would never have actually got round to without IPM.
Anyway I am happy how this has turned out despite it not quite working with my current wardrobe. That however, I can easily fix and as you can imagine my ideas of what to make to go with this are seriously flowing now.
So here are the photos:
This is definitely a fun item to add to your wardrobe and I may even make one of those Burda dirndle patterns I seem to have hundreds of😊