Tips & Tricks - Knowledge Base:  
How to Work with a Corset Maker
Last Updated: 04/09/2014

So you want to get a Custom Corset

The Corset Makers listed here are customers of Farthingales. BE AWARE that we are not promoting or endorsing these people as in most cases we have never seen their work. There will be an * next to those names whose work we are familiar with and respect.

When choosing a Corset Maker you need to ask a few questions.

  1. How many corsets have you made? The more they've made the more experience they have BUT a lack of corset making experience does not mean they have poor workmanship and having made several corsets does not mean they have good workmanship, so the next question is....
  2. Can I see samples of your work? You need to see samples of their work to know if it's a quality you are willing to pay for. They should have at least a couple of corsets to show you and maybe some other garments – check for stitch lines that are straight, grommets that are set securely and that line up, seams that are secure not fraying. The garments should look neat and clean – you may not like the design but be sure you like how the garments are finished.
  3. Where do you get your products? If they answer Farthingales you at least know they are using superior product. You can ask about specifics – considering the corset you want and your body type – what kinds of boning will they use.
  4. How many weeks will it take from start to finish? They should be able to give you an estimate of how long you will wait before you get your corset – the amount of time will depend on several factors; how busy they are, how soon you deliver fashion fabrics and trim, how available you are for fittings and if they have the foundation materials in stock. Count on 3-5 weeks. DO NOT expect to place an order on Wednesday and have a corset for Saturday night. AND, it's best to have your wedding corset before you have the dress! The dress will fit and look different when worn over a corset.
  5. How often do you need to see me? Some corset makers will want to see you 4 times; once for the initial consultation and measuring, once for the fitting of a mock-up, once for the fitting of the real thing and finally to pick up the corset.
  6. How much will it cost for what I want? There could be as much as $100.00 just in foundation materials depending on the size of the corset and quantity of bones. The corset maker then has to spend time drafting the pattern, making the mock-up, fitting the mock-up, cutting and sewing the real thing, fitting the real thing and finishing it. So expect a minimum of $300.00 and it could be a lot more. Remember – you are hiring someone to create something that you cannot buy and they may be earning a living from their skill. Add the cost of fashion fabric and trim that you'll need to purchase on your own. A custom corset, like a man's tailored suit is an investment in looking great.
  7. What is the payment structure? No corset maker is going to start without a deposit and some are willing to take a deposit only for the cost of supplies, others will ask for 50% up front. This is fair. If they buy materials and spend time drafting and then they never see you again because you change your mind – they're out money and the cost of their time. So expect to leave a deposit before they will start working on your corset.
  8. Do I have to order the materials or do you the corset maker you supply them? If it's a fashion corset you'll likely be expected to buy the fashion fabrics and trims. In some cases the corset maker asks the client to order the corset foundation supplies from us – I suggest you not agree to this, unless they create the order on-line and print off a copy and hand it to you so you can recreate the order on our web site and pay for it yourself. Your deposit should more than cover the cost of supplies and since the corset maker knows what they need they should place the order to be sure they get what they expect.
  9. Is there an agreement for me to sign? There should be something that you sign – typically the agreement will state that you agree to pay a specific amount for a specific item. If you agree to pay for a hot pink over bust corset and you're given a yellow waist cincher – you could have a problem but if you have the agreement saying what you agreed to pay for – then you don't have to pay for the yellow waist cincher. This is an extreme example of miscommunication but it gives you a clear idea why you need an agreement. It proves that both you and the corset maker know what to expect. It also protects the corset maker from the client who changes their mind part way through the project…you change your mind, expect to pay extra. Meaning if you agreed to pay for a black leather corset with basic details and you decide you want extra rivets or some feathers – expect to pay extra! Know what you want before the corset maker starts work.
  10. I've never worn a corset before, is there anything I should be aware of? The corset maker should have some experience wearing them and they should have some information to share with you about how you will feel, what movements if any will be restricted, basic care for your corset etc. They should have some literature about corset care that you can take when you pick-up your corset. Proper care will limit the risk of damaging your corset make the corset last longer.

If the answers to any of these questions seem vague you may want to think twice about investing your $300 . Just because you initiate a conversation with a corset maker does not mean you have to buy a custom corset. Getting a custom corset should be a positive experience and your corset should last a long time with proper care. Treat the corset maker with respect – if you contract them to do a job then be sure to make your appointments and pay your fees just as you would with any other professional.

Farthingales is not endorsing or promoting those listed below - those listed are customers of Farthingales and are listed for your convenience. We are only familiar with the work of those with an * in the righthand column. Check out their websites/etsypages and then contact them with your quesitons.

Corset Makers are listed by Country

Australia

NSW

Isobel Page

Hornsby Heights

Bel Page

Canada

Alberta

Alyssa Beauchamp

Calgary

www.mycups.ca

British Columbia

Melanie Talkington

Vancouver

www.laceembrace.com

Sue McCaskill

Victoria

http://www.etsy.com/shop/gothgirlfashions

Ontario

Dianna DiNoble

Toronto

www.starkers.com

*

Heather Jacobsen

Toronto/Montreal

www.Apollonie.ca

LoveSick

Toronto

www.lovesickcorrectiveapparel.com

Saskatchewan

Dean Renwick

Design Studio

Regina

www.deanrenwickdesignstudio.com

New Zealand

Jemma McLean

Wellington

www.prettybirdy.co.nz

U.S.A.

Florida

Kate Decker

Deerfield Beach

www.tahileedesign.com

Erin Massey

Central Florida

http://www.etsy.com/shop/IronPeacock

Kentucky

Alisha Martin

Frankfort

www.thebadbuttoncorsets.com

Illinois

Laura Pulice

Chicago

www.vexclothing.com

Ohio

Diana Sidley

Cleveland

www.mentionablescorsets.com

Larissa

Columbus

http://www.wildehunt.com

*

Oregon

Alice Clemans

Portland

Waywardseamstress@gmail.com

Lisa Marie

Portland

www.enchantedcorsets.com

Tennessee

Susan Jarrett

Chattanooga

www.maggiemayfashions.com

Utah and Illinois

Anne Sorenson

www.AnneNSorenson.zenfolio.com

Washington

One Wilde Knight

Seattle

www.onewildeknight.com

*

Camille Goodman

Seattle

millievixen.com




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