Fashion flashbacks: The History of corsets, by Sarah Willoughby

There I was after a vodka too many in the small space of a crowded pub dancing provocatively behind her.
She was stunning!
She unintentionally allured me with her floral scent as she danced seductively by swinging her rounded hips in a slow motion.
My hands freely caressed her slim waist up and down that was tightened in a satin laced corset.
Nether less to say the corset made her sexy and awakened my hidden fetish for corsets.
These waist shrinking-tit busters are a miracle in a form of a seductive corset, its sucks in the stomach and pushes out your breasts to create a figure that all of us woman wish to own naturally.

Corsets have made a bold comeback since burlesque was revived in the early 2000’s and brought back a lot of history.
(So it begins…..)
The earliest corset was created in the 16th century (Originally named ‘payre of bodes’) and sewn by hand with multiple layers of linen and wooden shafts that were inserted within pockets at the front to maintain a straight-cylinder like figure.
During its early stages, there was a strong emphasis on the rigid flatness of the front of the bodice which lead up to the breasts being pushed outwards and upwards-creating a contrast between big bouncy breasts and a straight-stiffened waist.

(Stand straight and shoulders back….)
By the 18th century the appearance and overall purpose had changed.
They were raise and shape the breasts, tighten the stomach and support the back to improve a woman’s posture.
So stand straight and shoulders back.
(The Victorian era….)
During the Victorian period, the corset witnessed a transformation.
The shape had changed from a straight figure to an extremely, sometimes exaggerated curvaceous shape.
Some corsets in this day and age still imitate this particular body shape and plus sized women would fit this style of corset better than the straighter types.
It adapts to their wide hips and bigger bust line to create an hourglass figure, also I think they’ll find a style like this easier and comfortable to wear!
(The Edwardian Corset…)
(Probably the most ridiculus looking shape of the bunch and the one style that I haven’t seen recreated, however it has less health risks to a woman’s stomach and abdomen than others)
Its goes by many names: The straight front corset, swan-bill corset, the ‘s’-bend and the health corset.
It worn in the early 1900’s before women were instructed by the ‘War Industries board’ to stop wearing corsets to save the metal for weaponry during the First World War
This type of corset was popularised by Inez-Gaches Sarraute, a corsetiere with a degree in medicine.
It was intended to be less harmful to the wearer than most corsets by exerting less pressure on the stomach however it forced an un-natural posture upon them.

(Fast forward to this century)

These days’ women no longer are forced to wear corsets with elegant gowns or daily dresses.
After all women have more rights and can show as much flesh as they please.
They’ve become cheaper (well depending on the brand, quality etc) and easier to own due to internet access and specialised stores within Camden.
Some women try to re-create the look from eras such as the Victorian, usually by wearing an underbust (which is a corsets that begins right at the bottom of the breasts, ending at the hips) and what larger women with a big bust line could wear if they’re not comfortable with their boobs being in closed in the typical overbust!
Other prefers to sex it up a little.
I’ve seen a trend where women would add tight leather leggings and high-heels to a satin or laces corsets, similar to the fetish fashion!
Yet corsets have no limits when it comes to pairing it up with the bottom half of clothing.
(Some good advice….)
You can go casual with jeans and denim-like leggings (Treggings) or show a bit more leg (if you got good pins) by combining a corset with a frilly tutu and a Ra-Ra skirt.
My advice is to try and avoid wearing too much black, especially if you tend to look anaemic and also learn to colour co-ordinate, for example if you are going to wear a gold corset don’t pair it off with a red skirt, you’ll stand out for all the wrong reasons and would look cheaper and tacky.
Not good.
Also heels are a must if you’re trying to pull off such a sexy look, please don’t wear pumps, converse, trainers or you’ll appear much wider than you actually are and this is due to the corset distorting your figure, making it more womanly- improving the look of your bust and giving you rounder hips!

To end this very brief history lesson, corsets are here to stay!

More about Corsetry on Altopedia