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Red and Gold: Corsets to Fall For

2014 is racing by; it’s hard to believe that Fall is just around the corner! I know that a few places have experienced chilly temperatures this week… so as we wrap up the summer and bring out our long-sleeves again, let’s also take some time to appreciate corsets and the lovely extra layer of warmth they provide in the cooler weather.

 

Fall Leaves Underbust Corset

 

What better way to welcome in Autumn than with a Fall Leaves themed corset? Gorgeous large prints of leaves of pink, rust-red and bluish grey are sprinkled over this corset, allowing it to coordinate perfectly with a warm-toned outfit of brown or red, or to complement a cooler-toned outfit with blues and greens. The standard length means that most people will be able to sit down easily in this corset, whether you’re wearing it to work or to class.

 

 

Brown Floral Steampunk Corset

 

One can stare at this corset for a long time and not get bored. Wholesome earth tones come together perfectly in the rich-looking embroidery of the Chinese brocade panels: feathers and chrysanthemums echo the autumn leaves of red and gold, and also show hints of green, orange. Solid panels of brown satin alternate with the brocade to prevent the embroidery from becoming too busy.

 

 

Black Diamond Waist Cincher

 

In the Fall, the vibrant, bright tones of summer fade and make room for more muted hues. The black diamond waist cincher adds a bit of interest to your outfit without making too loud a statement. This cincher goes so nicely with a black shirt, cream leggings, black or dark brown riding boots and a soft, warm camel-colored wool peacoat. Wear the coat open to show off your corset, or tie your belt around your corseted waist to show off your curves even when the coat is closed. This cincher will fit like a full underbust to those with short waists, or may be worn as a wide belt for those with long waists.

 

 

Copper Floral Longline Corset

 

This corset is luxurious. The shiny copper satin gives also reminds me of rich spices, Orange Pekoe tea, or a deep caramel - either way, it reminds me of being at home with family in the warm, cozy kitchen. The warm tones is complemented nicely with black scroll print, black laces, and hundreds of tiny rhinestones all over to add a little sparkle to your shine. This is a longline corset so it’s suitable for those who are very tall of stature or who possess a long torso. The expandable hip ties make this a comfortable option for those who like to show off their impressive hip spring.

 

 

Rusted Brown Overbust Corset

 

This smooth chocolatey brown satin looks almost good enough to eat! As always, expert fusing keeps the satin wrinkle-free so nothing detracts from your curves. All of Timeless Trends’ overbust corsets are offered in three different bust sizes for EVERY waist size. So whether you wear an A-cup or a D-cup, there will be a bust size to fit you. Slits at the side by the hips also make this corset wearable for pear-shaped clientele, and the ties easily adjust for comfort.

 

Which of these corsets are your favorite as we head into Fall? How would you coordinate these into your cool-weather outfits? Let us know in a comment below!

Corsets and the College Life


Earlier this month, millions of excited young adults around the country became freshmen at a community college or university - for many, this means their first experience of getting out of their parents’ houses and living on their own. So, what does this have to do with corsets? Moving boxes and furniture, carrying heavy books from building to building, sitting comfortably in 3-hour long seminars - the right-fitting corset can assist you in doing all these (and in style to boot!)

 

Moving Day

 

For most students this year, this has already occurred - but it’s still important to talk about. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that over 1 million people suffer back injuries every single year - and many others suffer back injuries out of work as well! Heavy lifting without proper form and equipment is a huge cause of these injuries. Wearing a lightly-laced corset to support your core while lifting your desk or your boxes can encourage you to keep your spine straight, and save your lumbar area from strain. Also, always remember to bend at the knees instead of at the waist! Use a pretty short corset for this so you can remain mobile.

 

Carrying Textbooks Between Classes

 

If your classes were anything like mine in school, you had 10 minutes to get from one side of the campus to the other, over slippery terrain, with 18 pounds of textbooks and binders on your back! While 18 lbs doesn’t sound like much, having to do that 5 times a week for 4 years, especially if you carry your bag over one shoulder, can really throw off your balance and cause one side of your body to overcompensate for the other side. I have worn my corset under my clothes more than once on these types of treks and found that it discouraged me from leaning too much to one side. It became more comfortable to wear my backpack on both shoulders, with the waist strap attached as well, which helped stabilize me as I hauled my books between classes.

 

Sitting (or standing) for Long Seminars and Labs

 

Firstly, I don’t agree that schools should force people to sit for 3 hours straight without at least a 30-second stretch every hour - especially as I studied health sciences and all the professors should know better. By the end of the 3 hours, I was usually slumped in my chair with my back kyphotic (curved forward), and maybe sitting cross-legged or with one foot under me, which ended up causing aches in my knees. Wearing a corset to class prevented me from leaning too far to one side, or slumping forward. During standing labs, wearing a corset would encourage me to keep my hips level and keep both feet flat on the ground. Sitting or standing with a straight posture with both feet planted helped improve my “classroom ergonomics” and interestingly, helped me stay alert for longer (as long as the room wasn’t too warm!). Just remember to try wearing your corset for your shorter classes and see how you feel, before moving onto the longer classes.

 

Night on the Town

 

Yes… college students know how to party. Your corset helped you all week in class under your clothes, so the weekend is your chance to wear your corset over your clothes and to party in style! Just remember to party responsibly. :)

 

Are you a university or college student who uses corsets? How have they helped you? Let us know in a comment below!

5 normal things to feel when wearing a corset

Hi everyone, Lucy here again for another lesson in symptoms while wearing a corset – except this time instead of focusing on what unpleasant symptoms you should not be experiencing, we will put a focus on the positive symptoms that are normal to feel when wearing a corset. You may feel only a couple of these things, or maybe all five of them at some point or another - while these symptoms are not really alarming, just know that you're not alone. If you have any special questions or concerns regarding corsets and your health, don't be shy to ask your trusted doctor!

 

Gentle hugging sensation – many people expect a corset to feel like a great Python is squeezing your middle in two. If you feel this way (especially if you’re experiencing any pain), then your corset is likely far too tight for your experience level. In reality, a corset will feel like a secure supportive hug that extends from the ribs down to the hips. Think of when a larger friend or family member sweeps you up in a bear hug, just tight enough to be able to pick you up but not so tight that you don’t enjoy the hug. This is how a proper corset feels. Always remember that YOU are in control of your laces, and you decide how tight or loose you want that “hug” to feel.

 

Posture support – sitting and standing tall is a very common occurrence when wearing a corset, as it doesn’t lend well to bending at the waist. When you first experience this, you may find it awkward that you’re sitting with perfect posture while your friends all around you slouch and slide further and further into their cushy couches. You may even notice that you feel an inch taller, because you’re standing up straight in the first time you can remember. If you spend most of your day on your feet, as in a cashier position, having the corset to “lean on” and help you balance your weight on your feet can feel like a night & day difference at the end of your shift.

 

Relief of back muscle spasms – when you have a Charlie Horse, your first instinct is to grab onto your leg and squeeze and massage the calf muscle. I don’t often have back issues, but when I do it is almost immediately solved by putting on a corset – it doesn’t have to be at a huge reduction; even a couple of inches is enough to allow my muscles to relax into the corset and stop the pain and cramping.

 

Calm and protected – while I wouldn’t recommend doing anything senseless like walking down unlit alleyways by yourself, playing chicken with traffic or going sky diving without proper training, wearing a corset has an interesting ability to make you feel a bit invincible. Having many layers of smooth, strong fabric and steel bones surrounding you can feel very much like armor, and as mentioned before, the hug-like compression feels like someone is protectively wrapping their arms around you.

 

Increased confidence – doing a power strut with your head high, maybe swinging your hips a little as you go, and feeling in control of your day. Good posture is a sign of an Alpha person – and interestingly, when it comes to confidence, you can “fake it till you make it” – i.e. assuming a confident and authoritative posture can not only send a signal to make others treat you like you’re Alpha, but it also makes you feel more Alpha as well. Also, it’s difficult not to feel fabulous when your clothes instantaneously fit differently, when your back doesn’t hurt and when you feel safe and calm from a constant, all-day hug!

 

What positive symptoms have you experienced when wearing corsets? What else would you add to this list? Let us know in a comment below! As always, happy lacing!

~ Lucy (TT guest blogger)

3 symptoms you should NEVER feel in a corset!

Hi all! Last week we discussed how corsets are never supposed to feel painful, or give you numbness or tingling. This week we're going to discuss 3 other symptoms that you should absolutely never feel in a corset. If you notice any of these things, change something up: loosen or remove the corset, and if necessary change your waist training regimen or invest in a corset size and style that fits your body more comfortably. As always, this information isn't intended to replace the advice of a doctor, so if you have any special concerns, always check with your own trusted physician.

 

Bruising or blistering

Some people bruise easily, or they discover marks on them and don’t remember how they got them. However, a well-made, well-fitting corset should not leave any more marks on your skin than your bra leaves marks around your ribcage, or a pair of boots might leave marks around your legs. That is, when you take off the corset you might see some indentations, but they should fade within an hour or two. If your marks aren’t going away for a day or more, I’ve been told that it may be a sign of underlying circulation or hydration issues to your skin.

  

A well-fitting corset worn moderately should not leave you with bruising, blisters or broken skin. While many choose not to wear corset liners, I believe that they are important for preventing chafing of your skin, and also protecting your corset against the sweat, oils, sloughed skin cells and shed hair from your own body.

 

Shortness of breath

In an 1890 study on corsets featured in The Sanitarian, Dr Bell M.D. determined that the average corset wearer at the time had a 10-30% reduction of their total lung capacity (corseted vs uncorseted) depending on the tightness of their corset. Now, when we’re at rest, our lungs only use about 15% of their total capacity for relaxed tidal breathing – so the reduced capacity by the corset is barely noticeable. However, if you’re stressed, active, or if you have breathing issues to begin with (like asthma), then you may require your total lung capacity, and you may feel short of breath. While I don’t recommend working out in a corset, a well-fitting corset should not make you feel like you’re short of breath during normal sitting, standing or walking; if it does, then like the corset comes up high on the ribcage for you (and/or wraps too tightly around the ribcage). You may need a corset that allows more room in the ribs, or one that stops lower down on the torso so your ribs can expand freely.

 

Fainting

Feeling faint or passing out is caused by the brain not being properly oxygenated, but contrary to popular belief, most of the fainting done by corseted ladies was not due to suffocation. Most genuine fainting was rather due to abrupt changes to blood pressure. If your pressure is low and you’re not getting enough blood to your brain, then you lose consciousness – which will cause you to collapse, bringing your body horizontal so your circulatory system doesn’t have to work so hard to fight gravity and pump blood to your head. Some people lace their corsets too tight and too soon, which means your body may need to work harder to pump blood up from your legs and though your itty bitty waist to reach your heart and lungs again. This is another reason why waist training takes time; your body needs to adjust to the changes you’re putting on it. Your body may protest if it’s done all at once, but when done very gently and gradually, the body is much more accommodating and willing to work with the corset rather than against it.

 

What else would you add to this list of symptoms that you should NEVER feel in a corset? Let us know in a comment below - and next week we will be covering some of the normal things that is common to feel when wearing a corset. Until then, happy and safe corseting!

~ Lucy (TT guest blogger)

Pain-Free Corseting!

Hi everyone, Lucy here again to let you know about pain, numbness and tingling – the symptoms that you should never experience while wearing a corset. Many people mistakenly believe that you are supposed to feel some pain or discomfort when wearing a corset, or that this is supposed to be some kind of appeal. Those who believe this either have never worn a corset before, or they were definitely wearing the wrong type for their body! A corset should feel like a gentle, supportive hug, and that’s all. While I’m not a doctor, nor do I play one on the internet, I know that corsets are not supposed to hurt – so if you experience any of these symptoms, do loosen or take off your corset, and if you’re really concerned then check with your doctor (but you already told your doctor that you’re wearing corsets, haven’t you!).

 

Pain

Pain is your body’s way of telling you "something is wrong; stop doing whatever it is that hurts, and do something different". A corset may feel slightly stiff and not the most comfortable when you’re breaking it in, because it hasn’t molded to your body yet – the same way a pair of shoes might feel uncomfortable or possibly even give you blisters on your feet when you haven’t broken them in.

 

This is why it’s so important to only wear your corset a maximum of 2 hours at a time, and wear the corset very loosely during your seasoning period. This minimizes any damage to the corset, and also minimizes any discomfort you feel, until it starts to soften and mold properly.

 

Obviously, pain in different parts of your body may tell you different things about how your corset is not fitting correctly. A stomach ache might be caused by trying to put your corset on over a full meal, or overeating while wearing the corset. Pain up the esophagus might be acid reflux. Pain along the back may be caused by your muscles “fighting” the corset, if they’re not used to the compression or if your muscles are not used to holding an upright posture (however, do make sure that you are not having pain around the kidney area, as this is definitely not normal!). Pain around the ribcage may mean that the corset is more conical than you’re accustomed to (remember that ribs are capable of moving SLOWLY, but if you insist on training your ribs, this should preferably take months to years and should not be associated with any sharp pain).

 

If your corset is already seasoned and you feel pain, or if you’re feeling any real pain during seasoning (vs a bearable bit of tenderness of the skin when you’re first starting out), please loosen or take off the corset.

  

Tingling or numbness

When I wear a new corset, especially when sitting down for a long period of time, I occasionally poke my hips to make sure they haven’t gone numb (that’s the thing about numbness; sometimes when it comes on gradually, you don’t even notice it!). Numbness could mean the circulation to an area is diminished or cut off, and that “pins and needles” feeling is when a rush of blood returns to the area. The most common area of numbness is in the hips and bum, and this is why it’s so important that a corset doesn’t pinch or cut into your hip, but rather runs over the hip smoothly while NOT compressing it. Numbness can also mean compression of nerves which can take a long time to return to normal, so do loosen up immediately if you notice any numbness at all.

 

I’ve said it many times, and I’ll say it again – if your corset hurts, something is wrong! Either the corset is not the right type for your body, or you are lacing down too much or too fast, or there is an underlying health condition that may make you incompatible with wearing corsets. So as always, check with your doctor if you have any concerns.

 

Next week we’ll go over some more symptoms you should never feel while wearing a corset! As always, happy (and pain-free) lacing!

~ Lucy (TT guest blogger)

DOs and DON’Ts of snoozing in your corset

If you’re into daily corseting (whether for waist training, maintenance, back support or pain relief) you have probably considered sleeping in your corset before. Imagine getting another 8 hours of corset time in while you’re relaxed and dreaming peacefully! But some people don’t know how to start - so here’s my list of DOs and DON’Ts for sleeping in your corset:

DO

Start with naps, if your schedule will allow! Sleeping a full night in a corset can be daunting for some, so try going for a 20 minute nap in your corset and see how you feel. The issues that arise during your nap (stomach ache, improper support, claustrophobic thoughts) may be amplified when you’re sleeping a full night in a corset, so get these issues under control as they come up.

 

DO

Loosen your corset a bit before going to sleep - the abdomen expands during sleep, partially due to the “rest & ruminate” response, where blood flow to the internal organs increases and flow to the limbs decrease. Allow your body to do what it needs to do, and loosen your corset by a couple of inches. Many people save an older, larger corset for sleeping in, and wear a smaller corset during the day.

 

DO

Stay hydrated before you go to bed! Remember that ideally you’re sleeping 7-8 hours a night, unbroken - which means that you’re going a full 8 hours without drinking any water! A couple of hours before you go to bed, have a glass or two of water or no-caffeine herbal tea. You don’t need to knock it back; drink at a comfortable pace so you’re not bloated. The two hour window will allow some of the water to pass through so you don’t have to get up in the middle of the night to use the restroom.

 

DON’T

Try not to eat a large portion of food and then lie down with your corset - acid reflux can happen if you eat and lie down, and when you combine this with a corset pushing upwards on your diaphragm, it could exacerbate this. Avoid quintessentially heartburn-causing foods before you go to bed, including spicy foods, fried fatty foods, cheese, and caffeinated drinks. If you still find you’re uncomfortable, try propping yourself up on some pillows or invest in a wedge, which leads us to the next point:

 

DO

Get some pillows or rolled up towels to support you when you sleep. Most people have more pillowcases than pillows, so if you have a few extra you can stuff them with old clothes or linen if you can’t invest in fancy body pillows. If you’re a back sleeper, roll a towel under your lumbar spine and under your knees. You may also try sleeping on a slight incline using a wedge, if you’re experiencing reflux or if you feel that lying down in a corset gives you a head rush.

 

DO

Try a shorter corset - a cincher that doesn’t cause too much restriction around your upper ribcage may help you feel more comfortable as you’ll be able to take very deep breaths. We tend to sigh in our sleep. Cinchers also give you more mobility, so if you roll around during the night, you will not be hindered from a longer corset.

 

DON’T

Never knot your laces in the back! If your laces are loose and tangled in the morning, there’s one of two things happening at night: either your tossing and turning during sleep have cause the bow to come loose (it happens!) or you have deliberately loosened your corset at some point because your body needed it, and you don’t remember waking up. If you did it yourself, trust that you were doing the right thing for yourself at the time and listening to your body. If you find that you get tangled in your laces throughout the night, twist or braid the excess lace and stick them under either the top of bottom edges of the corset.

 

DO

Realize that sleeping in your corset is completely optional! It does not make you a bad waist trainer if you choose not to sleep in your corset. Remember that corseting is a very personal thing - your comfort and safety come first, always. If you hate the feeling of sleeping in your corset, go without! It’s not a big deal.

 

Hopefully these tips will have you off to dreamland soon! What DOs or DON'Ts would you add to this list? Happy corseting,
~ Lucy (Timeless Trends guest blogger)

Undeniably Outerwear - Fun, Funky corsets to FLAUNT!

Last month we discussed whether corsets should be worn over or under your street clothes, and the conclusion was: do what makes you feel comfortable!

 

But certain types of corsets translate better to outerwear sometimes - a brightly colored, funky corset that’s designed to grab attention will, for some, seem less awkward than wearing a beige shapewear corset over one’s clothes. Below is a selection of some of my favorite fun, bright corsets that you can flaunt without anyone telling you, “isn’t that supposed to go *under* your clothes?” Because these designs are simply too cute to hide.

 

Kawaii Anime Corset

A new design just released this week! This adorable corset features an embroidered graphic of a sassy cute anime DJ with quintessential candy-colored hair. Music notes pour from her headphones while speakers blast in the background. The graphic is framed by smooth and classic black satin panels. You can wear this corset as a statement piece against an all-black ensemble to make the graphic pop, but it will also easily go with any of color of the rainbow - cyan, pink, burgundy, lime green and purple are all featured in this piece, so it will pretty much match anything in your wardrobe!

 

Dark Purple Gears Anime Corset

For those who like something a little darker, here is another embroidered graphic corset exclusive to Timeless Trends. A mysterious feminine figure stands beside a gothic window framing a crescent moon, with blue and purple cogwheels dance in the background. Like the Kawaii corset, this one is embroidered on a black satin base, and expertly matched up in the center front - which means the graphic can’t rub off and you’ll enjoy this corset for years to come. As always, these graphic corsets come with Timeless Trends’ lifetime guarantee.

 

Skull with Roses Corset

Timeless Trends says that this corset is inspired by the Day of the Dead… I might say it’s a little Hardy-esque! Pearly-white skulls and crossbones nestled all cosy within lush red roses (also with little red skulls in the middle!) makes for a slightly macabre yet colorful statement piece that screams to be seen. This is no garment that’s designed to be hidden under clothing! Wear with a black tee and dark wash jeans for a casual look, although I would wear this corset over a light blouse and full red tea-length skirt!

 

Pink Punk Black Skulls Corset

Whether you’re into punk or not, this adorable corset crosses bridges between the feminine and the edgy, the elegant and the avant-garde. Black printed skulls and crossbones are juxtaposed against an adorably bubblegum pink background, perfect for those who want to let others know that they're fun-loving but won't be messed with! Solid black satin panels are alternated so the pattern doesn’t become too busy.

 

Hard Brown Leather Corset

Alright, so this doesn’t exactly count as brightly colored, but there’s no way a piece like this is meant to be hidden. Chunky hardware like the swinghooks and rivets add an industrial, steampunk feel to this corset, and the thick leather is so unyielding that it doesn’t even need steel bones to keep its shape when worn! This is unlike any corset out there… except perhaps the black hard leather corset (the more gothic sibling of this style).

 

What corset styles do you like to show off over your clothing? Do you tend to go for classic, simple styles or do you prefer bright and funky corsets like these? Which of these are your favorite? Let us know in a comment below!

Traveling in your Corset

There is a good chance that you commute to school or work almost every day, so how do you make your travels more comfortable when you’re wearing a corset?

 

Vehicles: 

Only occasionally do I drive in a corset, because I drive a low car. Low/ small cars and corsets are not really compatible, especially if they have “bucket seats” which encourage you to hunch forward, and they create an acute angle between your torso and your lap. I have noticed that riding in higher vehicles can be more comfortable; and especially vehicles with flat, “bench” like seats (e.g. pickup trucks and buses) are most comfortable for me in a corset. When I do drive in a corset, I prefer to lace it up relatively loosely (which for me is about 25-26 inches). This is small enough that the corset doesn’t ride up too much on my torso (although some riding up seems to be inevitable) yet it’s large enough that I have enough mobility to turn around and check my blind spots. Remember that safety always comes first: if you are not physically able to twist your body around or drive safely, then drive without your corset and put it on when you get to the destination - or if you’re carpooling, then opt to ride as a passenger.

 

Bicycles:

Yes, it’s absolutely possible to ride a bike while wearing a corset! Remember that exercising in a corset should be approached with caution (be sure that you are not getting winded or dizzy), but for many who enjoy riding leisurely or those whose bike is their primary means of transportation, they sometimes ride with their corsets on. Riding bicycles was a common pastime for Victorian and Edwardian women, and some companies even started advertising corsets specifically made for bicycling! My friends have advised lacing up a little bit more loosely for the bike ride, and then tightening the corset once you get to work or school. A few have also said that the corset helps keep their torso balanced on the bike and they become more aware of how they lean on the bike when making turns! Once again, if you plan to wear a corset and use your bike at the same time, take a test run or two around the block and make sure that you’re able to ride safely before going into traffic or for a very long bike ride. Also, keep your laces away from the wheels or chains!

 

Planes:

Flying is a different situation because of the tighter security. Many people ask me if their corset will set off the metal detector. In a word, YES. Not only will the lights and beeps go off, but some corset wearers have even been taken aside for a search and questioning! If you really need to wear your corset on the plane (to relieve back pain or to help with flight anxiety, for example), then at least put the corset into your carry-on or personal handbag, put it on the conveyor, and walk through the detector without your corset. I have always had to open up my bag and show them my corset (and I have even travelled with spiral steel bones separately before so I can show security what they look like) but chances are, the security team will be more relaxed if you put the corset through with your luggage instead of on your person. When you get through security, you can always lace up in a private area or stall before boarding the plane. Remember to get up and walk around at least every hour when on long flights, and keep those laces out of the way when using the plane’s lavatory!

 

How do you travel when wearing your corset? Let us know in a comment below!
Happy lacing, wherever you go!

Protecting your Corsets from the Elements! Storage and Safety

I know, I know: sometimes you just don’t want to take your corset off, but it has to come off sometime! But do you know what to do when you take off your corset? (Hint: don’t just toss it on the floor.) How do protect your corset when it’s not worn, and how do you store it safely?

 

Last week we went over how to clean your corset, and the possible dangers that water poses to your corset. This week, we’ll touch on a few other elements that can prematurely damage your corset, and also how to store your corset safely long-term.

 

Firstly, let’s go over some of the elements that can damage a corset over time:

Salt: You will usually get salt on your clothes through your sweat, but if you live in an area where they salt the streets, then getting salt on your clothing is a risk as well. Salt can leave stains on your fabric, can leech color away from the fibers and can break down silk and wool over time.

 

Extreme pH: When I say “extreme”, I don’t expect you to be carrying around battery acid or concentrated bleach with you. But even very slight variations in pH over time can cause damage to your corset. The pH of your sweat, the acidic coating on tissue paper, even the glues from interfacing can break down delicate natural fibers over time.

 

UV radiation: Yes, keeping your corset in a place with lots of light can cause damage to your corset and fade bright fabrics. Although UV can kill microbes and get rid of odor-causing bacteria, if you want your corset to stay as vibrant as possible, it may be best to store it in the shade. Fun trivia: wool seems to hold onto dye more than cotton, so your black cashmere corset would likely remain a deeper, more saturated black compared to a black cotton corset over time!

 

Detergent: We just can’t catch a break, can we?! It’s damaging to dirty your corset, and it’s damaging to clean it! Yes, clothing detergents often have a high pH and also contain salt, so it’s best to keep your corset as fresh as you can and prevent washing too often.

 

Storing your corset:

So, you’ve taken off your corset and let it air out for a day or so - now you want to store it. How would you do this?

 

Hang it: open the laces slightly in the back, and slip the corset over a hanger so it’s hanging by the laces. Make sure the corset is hanging with the lining side out and the fashion fabric in. The laces are arguably the cheapest and most replaceable part of the corset, so if any damage were to occur from hanging, it should be on the laces. This method is great if you wear your corset frequently.

 

You can also fold the corset neatly and put it into a storage bag. Did you know that Timeless Trends sells storage bags, made to fit their own corsets? They are made from a plush velvet, they close with a zipper and they block out the light. Because of their shape, they can also stack easily! Use the shorter style for the cinchers and standard length corsets, and the longer style for the longline and overbust corsets. This method of storage is suitable for short-term or mid-term storage.

 

If you intend to store your corset for a long time, consider investing in some sturdy boxes, lined with acid-free tissue paper. Your corset can be laid totally flat in a large one, or it can be gently folded in half or in thirds if the box is more narrow. Keep it away from light, moisture, and other dyed fabrics.

 

How many corsets do you own, and how do you store your own corsets when not in use? Let us know in a comment below!

Corsets vs Water! Plus some laundering tips

Water: crucial for life, but it has the power to destroy as much as it creates! Getting your corset soaked can be bad news for a couple of reasons:

 

  1. Although spiral steel bones are typically galvanized (coated with a thin layer of zinc) to protect against oxidation/rust, it’s not completely air and water-proof and can only protect for so long. Constantly exposing your corset to water (as in the case of washing regularly) may cause the steel to rust over time.
     
  2. Some types of satin and taffeta may “water stain” when exposed to moisture - they may appear darker and form a ring around the spots where they got wet.
     
  3. When your corset is made from different types of fabrics (such as wool/silk on the outside and cotton on the inside), each of these layers may react or shrink differently when exposed to water, causing some layers to become tighter than others and leading to potential warping of the corset.
     
  4. Because corsets may contain several layers and can sometimes be quite thick, having a corset stay damp for too long raises the risk of formation of mildew.

 

Keeping your corset fresh:

In a previous article, we learned that using a corset liner as often as possible will go a long way to keep your corsets from getting soiled. When you take off your corset, the best thing to do is to hang it on a hanger or drape it over a chair (lining side up) for the perspiration to evaporate. One trick used in music/ drama productions is to use dilute vodka (or simply diluted pure ethanol) and using a mist bottle, very lightly spritz it over the lining side of the corset only. The alcohol will mix with the sweat and moisture from your corset and help it to evaporate more quickly, as well as somewhat disinfecting the corset, reducing the chance of mildew forming in the corset.

 

How to clean your corset:

If you need to clean your corset, spot-clean where necessary - do be careful to test the fashion fabric for water staining in an inconspicuous spot, like the inside of the corset by the grommet area. If your corset does not show water spots, you may proceed treat stains as necessary. For vinyl or leather corsets, it’s possible to wipe the corset with a soft, damp rag or sponge. If your corset is very soiled, consider taking the corset to a specialist dry cleaner (one who is experienced with cleaning wedding dresses, costumes for drama/ music productions, etc).

 

Only in very pressing situations would I consider fully washing a corset, but if necessary, I would advise washing gently by hand (never in a washing machine!), using a mild detergent like one designed for hosiery. If possible, remove as many steel bones as you can first; you can label them and put them back in later. Try to let the water run over the soiled part of the corset instead of fully immersing the corset under water. Clean as quickly as possible. Afterward, don’t wring or twist the corset but try to take as much water out as possible by dabbing between two towels, and then let it hang in a hot, dry area with lots of air flow. The faster it dries, the lower the risk of bones rusting.

 

Do you know what it takes to care for your corset when not wearing it? Test yourself using the Corset Wear and Care quiz on my own website! Next week, we’ll talk about forms of storage for your corsets - plus some other factors to minimize if you want to keep your corsets looking like new for longer!
Until then, happy corseting!