I had plenty of silk curtain fabric left after my petticoat project, so I decided to make a matching Edwardian corset cover. Yes, I called my petticoat Victorian but that works well for the early Edwardian period, too. I wanted a super ruffly corset cover that would help to create that Edwardian pigeon breast silhouette. For the pattern, I chose the Edwardian Underwear pattern by Truly Victorian.
Here is my atmospheric video about making of this corset cover. What do you think about having the video without voice-over and just the subtitles? Comment below!
Some design choices not mentioned on the video
I had plenty of tulle fabric for the ruffles but I couldn’t use the wide lace part of the tulle fabric even if I had had some of it left. Luckily I found narrow embroidered tulle lace that had a bit similar pattern to it. Once more I had to use onion peels and tea to dye it to match after which I also starched it with potato starch.
To tie the petticoat and the corset cover together, I also wanted to use the wide lace fabric that goes around the hem of the petticoat. The centre back seemed the easiest place to attach the lace as the front was already pretty full. However, I had to then move the facing to the inside, when it was attached to the outside in the original pattern. It makes sense at the front where the facing edge covers the raw edge of the ruffle. In the back, there is no benefit on having the facing on the top.
After that, I had still a tiny bit of the lace left and I couldn’t just leave it as it would have gone to waste. So, I got this genious idea and I chopped the lace in half along the pattern. That doubled the amount of lace I had and created a nice decoration effect on the front bodice. I gathered it slightly and sewed it on the top of the upper ruffle.
About the pattern
The Edwardian Underwear pattern by Truly Victorian is an excellent pattern. It comes with both drawers and a corset cover and you can also use it to make a set of combinations. I will be definitely making those drawers at some point, too!
If you are someone that needs to adjust the bust a lot, you will be happy how this pattern has instructions on how to choose the size based on how your bust measurement is naturally divided between your front and back. For me, it meant that I cut the size B, except for the front pieces for which I cut the size E. I also adjusted the shoulder slope like I always do.
The final size is pretty good although I think I could have made the waistband a bit tighter. I don’t remember exactly but I may have cut it a bit too large on purpose. I decided to leave the waistband as it is because I can always tuck the excess width under the waistband of my petticoat.
The finished Edwardian underwear outfit
Now you can get to see both the silk petticoat and the corset cover on me.
I sewed the whole outfit with my Singer 15D machine, except for the few buttons and buttonholes I decided were too boring to sew by hand.
Here is the ensemble from the back. Underneath, I have a chemise, a corset, possibly a lightweight cotton petticoat, and a small bustle pad. The chemise shows a bit which is not ideal. It seems that one can never have enough different kinds of chemises!
One more staged photo. Not that I haven’t used that amazing Edwardian sewing book a lot!
A front detail image. I don’t know if I really can deal with this much ruffle but I can’t claim that they aren’t pretty in their own way. Actually, the ruffles are even a bit shorter than what they were in the original Edwardian corset cover pattern as I only had a limited amount of that narrow lace.
I know this outfit is not really practical and I have no idea how well this silk handles washing. But it was fun to make and the silk only cost me a few euros. Well, I used money for the lace but still, I think the money was well spent. If nothing else, I can use it to lounge at home in style!
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