I went with an underbust corset to avoid fitting issues, and bought from a vendor who's been at the Faire for the past four years, so I am familiar with her sewing skills (she's had a lot more practice than I have!) and admire her construction techniques. Unfortunately, she doesn't seem to have a website, but those on the renn faire circuit in this general region can look for Fiona's Fineries. Pic time:
|Front of underbust corset|
|back of underbust corset|
Even more educational for me was the sizing. She measured my waist and pulled out a 32" one (wow I really HAVE lost size since last year she was having me try on the 36" stuff!). Once we got that on and tightened ... I had next to no lacing gap, so we tried a 30" one. I still didn't have enough of a lacing gap! Remember how squishy I was with the denim one? This silk corset is a 28" waist-size (I don't have it tightened all the way this morning). Surprise! That's two sizes below what the tape measure said for my waist, and a big part of my problem with fitting myself (this is not including the hips and bust, though ... the hips do NOT squish on me).
I forgot to ask at Ren Faire which pattern she uses for the underbust ... the lines make me suspect the Laughing Moon underbust one (which I still intend to buy). Does anyone have it to confirm that?
Since I have had it for over five weeks now, I have a couple more observations. Spiral steel boning with a steel busk is definitely harder to move in than a metal zipper and plastic cable tie boning, so this really isn't a good one for yard work (never mind that I don't want to mess up the silk outer shell), so I still have to make myself a denim or linen corset as a more functional back brace. I've already mentioned how fiddly fastening a busk is for me, so the functional back brace model will have a metal zipper along with the main boning being cable ties. The steel hardware is still on my to-buy list for a more formal and fancy corset, though!
Oh, there is a good reason Victorian-era women had such perfectly-straight posture ... there is no slouching in this!