Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Corset making 101: Cutting pattern pieces and preparing your machine.

Now that we've got our final pattern. let's cut it out of fabric.
The corset will consist of three layers of fabric.
(one outer layer, and two layers of stiff cotton)
and since each pattern piece is mirrored on each half of the corset, you will need to cut each pattern six times. (four times out of cotton and two times out of your outer fabric)

If you are making a corset with an outer layer of striped fabric, take special care in cutting the fabric so the stripes match up (see Julia's corset)

Once you have cut everything, take all the silk pieces and and serge (or sew) them onto a corrseponding piece of cotton as show in the picture above.

Now you've got your outer fabric piece, which looks delicate and flimsy, but is strong because of the cotton attached.

You now have four pieces left for each pattern. 2 mirrored outer and inner layers as seen on the picture above. the black pieces on the picture are the single layers of cotton which will be used as the lining. Notice that I also serge these lining pieces.

Let's start preparing your sewing machine.
Use a piece of the cotton fabric folded double to test your thread tension. the seams will have to be good tension wise especially when making a corset.

My pattern include 5/8 inch seam allowance (about 1,5 cm)
Here's a little trick.
I never mark my sew lines, I just simply measure the distance of the seam allowance from my needle position and mark this with a piece of crepe tape.
(as shown in the picture below.)

Now all you have to do is follow the line of the tape when sewing the pieces together..


Let's continue...


  1. Ok. The simple brilliance of a strip of tape is the best tip I've found in quite some time. I will be doing this for the rest of my life!

  2. did u miss posting a segment? You skipped from pattern and materials (with a slight mention of the toile being a cup size too small) to cutting pattern pieces. It's like you skipped posting the whole toile adjustments & fitting part. Just curious.

  3. I just found this post/series of posts by you, and have to completely agree with debdebp that the tape idea is super excellent! sad that i've even taken costuming courses and never once heard of such a simple alternative solution to marking the seam allowance directly on the fabric. Thanks for the idea!

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I'd like to know your opinion.