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3301  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Re: the colorful summer necklaces on: June 07, 2013 10:35:32 AM
Ooohh, I love the blue to yellow and red to black!
3302  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Craftalongs / Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* on: June 07, 2013 09:18:56 AM
OMG, THANK you!  This is pretty intimidating to me!  So I should put all 4 fabrics together, baste, and then sew the seam once?

No, no.  You want to hide your seam allowances inside the corset as much as humanly possible.  Start by putting your Center Fronts and Center Backs together as indicated in the pattern.  If it only calls for one layer of coutil, ignore it an use two layers.  You want both of those ares to be very strong.  Next, when you go to attach your Side Front to your Center front, you will make a sandwich, with the right sides of the fashion fabric together and the right sides of the coutil together, all in one thick, 4-layer, sandwich.  Stitch that seam, and then flip the Side Front couil and the Side Front fashion fabric so they face outward.

Do you then trim the seam allowance at different widths for diff layers to decrease bulk? 

Yes, you should grade the seams at CF/SF, SF/SS, and SB/CB.  Do NOT however, grade them at the Side Seams. (In fact I recommend that you ADD 1/2"-1" of extra seam allowance at both the Side Seams.)  You will basically build 4 corset sections.  A Right Front, and Left Front, as well as a Right Back, and Left Back.  Leave the panels OPEN at the Side Seams.  You will baste the Fronts to the Backs, and try it on.  From there, you can test fit it, to see what needs to come in or be let out.  You want a 2" gap at the Center Back, all the way down.  If you have say a 1" gap at the top, you will need to take in the Side Seams by 1" total.  (That mean 1/2" per side, or 1/4" per panel.  4 panels at 1/4" = 1" total.)  If you have say a 3" gap at the bottom, you will need to let it out at the bottom, by 1". 

Frequently, you will need to let out the bottom AND take in the top at the same time.  This is perfectly normal, especially if you have a bit of softness in the bust or hips.  (As I most certainly do.)  This pattern is excellent in it's sizing, but everything needs adjustment.  (That means absolutely cut out the size the pattern indicates, and not what you wear at a store.) When I did my recent workshop, even the smallest, most physically fit, and model-shaped/model-sized dancer in the group needed to adjust the top & bottom fit.  She was 5'5", a small B cup, a size 5, and shaped exactly like our brand new size 5 mannequin.  Still needed to take in the bust and let out the hips.

Once you have fit it, you can take out the basting stitches, and bind the top and bottom edges of all 4 prices, individually.  Then, mark any new stitching line you need, and stitch with a normal sized stitch.  By doing it this way, you leave yourself the option of being able to take it in or let it out at the Side Seam as your body changes, which can happen of course by losing or gaining weight, or just shifting a bit depending on the season/time of year.  Having added 1/2"-1" of extra seam allowance also helps this matter a great deal.

I was thinking of using muslin for the inner lining.  Would that work?
You mean in place of coutil?  No, I'm sorry to say that won't work dear.  If you actually plan to wear this at all, you need something very strong to be your base.  Coutil is really the only fabric strong enough to do the job.  Even heavy-weight canvas, duck, or denim isn't strong enough, because each of those fabrics stretch out of shape with heat and time, even in just one wearing.  (And if you're going to all the time and trouble to build a corset, I'm sure you'll want to get more than one wearing out of it.)

Oh, and how do you transfer the boning channel lines to the fabric?  For tracing the pattern to the interfacing (I like to trace to interfacing and have a sturdier pattern piece whenever I sew) I'm using a double tracing wheel and carbon paper, but I'm not sure how to transfer them to the fabric. Tongue 

I would not add interfacing to your corset.  If you build it with coutil, and a good quality cotton fashion fabric, you will not need anything more "sturdy".  I really don't recommend making your first corset out of anything shiny, stretchy, or "woodgie".  In fact, I don't let my students do so at all.  These fabrics degrade quickly, and do not wear well.  They are also usually hard to wash, and shrink differently than the cotton coutil. 

As for tracing itself, I start by photocopying all my corset pieces onto 11" x 17" paper.  Cut AROUND the biggest size of the pattern pieces, and copy those.  This way your original pattern is not damaged, allowing you to use it to build another size corset if necessary.  You should be able to fit even the biggest pieces onto 11" x 17".  If you don't have a copier, it's only $1-2 to have this done at Kinkos or Office Max.  I PROMISE it's worth the effort.  Now you can cut directly on the cutting line for your size.  I do all my cutting in my costume shop, which has cutting tables.  They have cork tops, which allows us to pin INTO the table.  I start by laying out my fabric, pinning it down to the table to make sure that it is square to the edges (aka "on grain").  Next, I use push pins to pin right down into the table  I extend my grain lines on all pattern pieces to the tops and bottoms, and line each grain line up with a grain line in the coutil.  (If you've never worked with it before, I assure you it has VERY distinct grain lines, allowing you to make sure it is being laid out correctly.)  Now pin your pattern to the table on top of the fabric.  Trace the outside edges.  If you have boning channels to trace, use some carbon paper to do so.  I like a single, pointy tracing wheel, rather than the double one.  (Also known as a needle-point tracing wheel.)  Also, I frequently use bone casing for the bones that are on the inner portions of the corset.  (ie, anything not directly at CB & CF)  You can find this for sale at CorsetMaking.com.  It is awesome stuff, and has channels that you stitch on, to get a nice even stitch line.  It's also a specially woven material that is quite strong, and will stand up better to the wear and tear that boning puts on a corset than the fashion fabric & coutil will.

Since I'm guessing you don't have a 4' x 8' cork topped cutting table just sitting around, you can try faking one.  If you have an old card table or something, you can top it with a cork board, or even better, cork on top of some foam core.  I've helped a friend put together a "portable" cutting table, where we gaff-taped together foam core in the size needed to sit atop an actual table, then we rolled out some of that roll-out stick-on cork board that you can find in craft stores & office supply stores.  Stick the cork in neat rows on top, and secure the edges with good tape.  Then you can tuck your "cutting table" away when you don't need it. 

Hope this helps!
3303  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Craftalongs / Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* on: June 07, 2013 07:44:31 AM
Abbee, love the new avatar!
3304  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / Re: Namaste - Yoga and Mindful Living Swap (SIGNUP 5/13/13-5/27/13 ; MAIL BY 6/28/13 on: June 06, 2013 01:36:57 PM
I wish I had seen this swap before it closed!  So sorry to miss out on it.  (Note, Jennie is typing this in her yoga clothes after just getting back from an amazing practice.)  I'll have to stalk your gallery and hope for another round later this summer.  Cheesy
3305  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / Re: IYP 23: Summer Do-Si-Do Signups closed! Sendouts 6/10/13 on: June 06, 2013 01:31:08 PM
Left work an hour early.  Pulled out the big tools.  Time to make a little mess!
3306  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 87 ENTRIES / Re: Die cut leather bookmarks on: June 06, 2013 11:55:04 AM
Love them onyxnox!
3307  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Craftalongs / Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* on: June 06, 2013 05:24:55 AM
They're lovely WhistleFish!  The colors you chose work so well together.  Beautifully done.  Smiley
3308  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: IYP 23: Summer Do Si Do GALLERY!! on: June 05, 2013 07:22:37 PM
I received the most stunning and generous package today from sheepBlue.  Please forgive me for the fact that I'm about to post a TON of pictures, but there was just so much to show you all, I couldn't help it.  When we decided to swap I asked sheepBlue for a Teesha Moore style bag, based on all my many loves and interests.  I can't believe just how many things she managed to incorporate!  Let's take a look...

Patch for my beloved home state of New Hampshire, complete with our state motto.

The wand that chose me!

Some of the very best advice I've ever heard.  When in doubt, make tea.

A Doctor Who Gallifreyan patch.

In order to not take over the entire thread, here are thumbnails of many of the other patches on this side of the bag.  Please check them out!

Onto the other side of the bag!

The Deathly Hallows.

One of my all time favorite quotes from Harry Potter.

Time is flying!

Sewing patch.  (Incidentally sheepBlue, I made a quilt out of this same fabric for my Costume Shop!  It sits on the couch in my office.  Wink)

Lovely art nouveau lady.

It seems I somehow forgot to get detail shots of the amazing skull patch and the silhouette patch.  I'll try to get them tomorrow sheep!

And as if that masterpiece of stitching wasn't enough, we go onto the other goodies she included.

A cute Hogwarts crest button on an adorable little zippered TARDIS pouch....

....which was filled with goodies!  Lots of bits and bobs for making jewelry and shrines!  I can't wait to use some of these in the shrines I'm making pinkleo for the Shrine Swap!

Some awesome wax seals that say things like "official seal of approval", a beautifully stamped card, and a baby Weeping Angel.  Don't blink!

sheepBlue has some amazing screen printing skills, and she showed them off here with a beautiful Steampunk print...

...and a lovely teacup print!  This one is just so stunning, and the colors are so very me.  My only problem is in deciding just what I want to do with it to show it off to it's best advantage!

And finally, something to enjoy while crafting.  Tea of course!  English Breakfast to be exact, in the funniest mug I've ever seen.  The text on the inside of the rim reads, "Fancy a strong brew?"

So there you have it, the most amazing and generous swap package ever received.  Thank you so very very much my dear sheepBlue.  Your stitching is simply stunning and I can't wait to show my tote off to everyone I know!  Having bits and pieces of fabrics from my own stash worked into it gives it so much meaning too, every time I see it I'll think both of you, and of the quilts I've made for close friends and family.  From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

(Runs off to stitch more on sheepBlue's art quilt....)
3309  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / Re: IYP 23: Summer Do-Si-Do Signups closed! Sendouts 6/10/13 on: June 05, 2013 09:03:03 AM
My package from sheepBlue is out for delivery!  I'm so excited!!!
3310  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Craftalongs / Re: HP Craftalong ~Summer Semester 2013~ *Join at any time!* on: June 05, 2013 08:55:17 AM
*deep breath*  I have a NEWT proposal!

NEWT Subject: Transfiguration
House: Hufflepuff
Project Name: The Blue Butterfly
Project Page Link (if available): http://corsetmaking.com/laughing-moon-patterns/CMS-P-LM100.html
Brief Description: I believe this is well-suited to the Transfiguration requirements, because I will be taking a LOT of different supplies and transfiguring them into 1 item.  Additionally, a corset is an object that literally transfigures your body!  It will also help me to "vanish" into the crowd at Ren Faire.  (It will also vanish some of my waist, LOL!)  This is a big undertaking for me as it will be the most complicated sewing project I have taken on to date!

Moonflame, I have made this pattern many times here at work, and have both attended and taught workshops on building this corset.  (I run a theatrical costume shop at a university.)  It is a very well written pattern, but there are steps that seem confusing just because the supplies are unfamiliar.  I promise, corset making is not as scary as it's made out to be!  Cheesy  Also, I'd recommend using the "sandwhich" method of piecing it, rather than piecing the outer fashion fabric & the inner coutil separately if possible.  It makes for a much simpler and much neater corset.  (Less wonky pull lines where seems might not match perfectly.)  

Since you are only making one corset, you may wish to look into supplies available from CorsetMaking.com.  They sell items in small quantities (usually as little as 1 of something), rather than some of the other vendors I know, who only sell in bulk.  Their prices are slightly higher per bone/yard/grommet, but if you're only buying enough to make one corset, it's not bad at all. Vendors like Richard the Thread sell for less per piece, but you have to buy a dozen of something to get the better price, which usually works out to hundreds of dollars per order from them.  If you have questions about corset making, you're welcome to ask, and I can *try* to answer via the internet.  
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