Seasoning Your Corset

We often get asked about seasoning corsets at What Katie Did and it really is a term we hate! We feel it puts the onus on you, the customer, should the corset not fit - when in fact it's highly probable that the corset was the wrong shape for your body in the first place and it was never going to fit!

In this video Katie discusses the seasoning myth, and explains that the cut of the corset, and how close it is to your measurements, is what ensures a great fit - not seasoning.

If you're new to retro style hosiery, or hosiery of any kind, then the terminology can be confusing - but help is at hand!

Check out our guide to hosiery and all will be revealed.

Seasoning Your Corset: Text Only

Today I'm going to be talking about seasoning your corset, or not seasoning your corset, as the case may be. Now, I've been in the corsetry industry for nearly 25 years now, and I only found out about seasoning in the last 10 years and there is a bit of a running joke between corsetieres who'd been around for a long time who are like, "Well seasoning, that's for your food, isn't it? You don't season your corset, you season your food." And actually if you go to the great restaurants then you shouldn't have to season your food because the chef will have already seasoned it and it should be ready to go. And that's where we're trying to get to with corsets. If you have a good fitting corset from the start, which it should be, you shouldn't need to season it.

 

It should be good to go from the start. The reason I'm not a member of any corset groups on Facebook is because there are so many people posting images of themselves in a new corset that they've purchased, and it's either, there's a huge gap at the back, or there's ... you know, it's gaping usually at the hip and the rib and they're asking, you know, does it fit? And everyone's like, "Yeah, when it's seasoned it will be fine. And it's like, "No, no, no, it will not be fine when it seasons." And I remember a few years ago the corsetiere Fakir Musafar, he was a member of a group for a while and he was great fun, and he ... you just get a caustic comment like, "It's too small." Or, "It's too big." Whereas everyone else was like, "Hey girl, you look great, it will be fine when it's seasoned."

 

No, no, it won't be fine. So at What Katie Did, when you buy a corset from us, we make a variety of different shapes. For example, we have our Zita, which is designed for a more androgynous figure, and is cut very close to the rib and is cut very close to the hip. So although the hip size might be similar to that of our Morticia, if you look at the photographs, you'll see that for the Zita the hip actually goes straight down. So for me, I've got more of an hourglass figure and because the corset finishes mid hip, my thigh keep going out underneath the bottom of the corset. Whereas with the Zita, the Zita was more of a box shape, so it goes straight down underneath. I knew we do put the measurements for our corset, it's not ... I'll put them up here to show you where to find them.

 

We show mid hip, waist, and also the length of the corset under each product description. So you can compare it with your own measurements and try and work out which one is best for you. If you have any questions after taking your measurements, please get in touch and we'll be able to give you a second opinion. Currently we have four different styles of corsets. We do a standard version and an extreme version, and the extreme version is basically a curvier style of the standard version.

 

We have the Zita which I've mentioned before, which is for a more androgynous figure. Then we have the Luna which is a shorter version so you don't have to worry so much about the rib and the hip with that one because it's shorter, and it fits all kinds of body types. We have our Morticia, which is one of our most famous styles and this has more room on the rib and it flares out more on the hip and we've just launched our new Vamp, and this is a super curvy style so it's slightly bigger hips and it fits closer to the rib than our Morticia.

 

So you need to have a look at the measurements and try and work out which one suits you the best. We shot our model Sugar Rush in our new Vamp corset and it looks absolutely amazing and it fits like a glove. And this came straight out of the box. It's the standard size 20, it wasn't made for her, she hadn't tried it before the shoot. Obviously we worked ... well I've worked with her before and I know her figure type and I know she looks amazing in corsets, but until you put it on you really don't know if it's going to be 100% right and with her this was ... this just looked absolutely amazing on her. If you were to put on a corset like this and look as good as Sugar Rush, then you need to ask yourself what your aims are.

 

Now if you're going to wear your corset a few times a month to go out for special occasions or under a certain outfit, then this will be perfect for you because it already looks amazing and it fits well and it feels comfortable. If you are going to waist train in it, you wouldn't have a huge amount of room to pull the corset in, you could pull it in a couple of inches, so once you've got used to it, you could pull it in a couple of inches and get a slightly more dramatic shape.

 

By pulling it in a couple of inches you'll not going to affect the rib or hip very much at all, so you don't have to worry about bulging at the top or the bottom. So you do have some way, some leeway, making it tighter. The only way I'd go smaller than this would be if you were a larger person, which means you're going to squish more easily than Sugar who's wearing a size 20, and in that case I might consider going down a size, but I wouldn't go down any smaller than that.

 

Really, this is a perfect fit on her. She had ... she has the room to make it slightly smaller or slightly bigger and it's perfect, so if you're going to be wearing a corset a few times a month or a couple of times a week even. It just looks amazing on her. If we take a look at her in the extreme corset, if you look very closely you'll be able to see that it's gaping very, very slightly on the rib and this is because we haven't been able to get the waist small enough. Her waist is resisting. So this is where waist training comes into play. Now, if she was looking at waist training and wearing her corset every day, then I'd suggest going for this corset, because after a few weeks, after her body has adapted, she'd be able to pull it in more, and the corset would soften, and the slight gap on the rib cage would pull in.

 

If she was looking at wearing it as a fashion corset, just on occasion, then I'd say stick with the standard style. So really you'd only be looking at getting away with a gap like this on the rib cage if you were looking at waist training on a daily basis. This is why I don't believe in seasoning because we are ... the seasoning really is the icing on a cake on the corset. The cake is the actual corset and the cake has to be as good as you can get it before you even worry about the icing. So when you look at Sugar Rush in the extreme Vamp, then you'll be thinking, "Well, that looks fine already." It's literally that little 5%, which is where the seasoning or breaking in comes into play is where the corset softens a little, it molds slightly to your body, and you get used to it and your body gets used to it and you can just make that tiny bits of amendments.

 

Other corsetieres often say that you need to try on your corset loosely. Now with us, the opposite is true. We want you to try it on tightly. So with Sugar Rush with that Vamp, that's ... we put it on straight, we put it on tight, and for shooting it, she's in it for like 20 minutes and if you came to our boutique, you try it on, we'd let you sit down and make sure we can bend over and move around in it and it was comfortable after 10 minutes, but we wouldn't expect you to be wearing it eight hours a day like that. When you purchase a corset, you need to try it on at home and look at it closely, try it on tightly and see if you are happy with the fit. Now when you try it on at home or in a changing room or for shoots, you will lace it tightly, but we wouldn't expect you to wear it that tightly all day from day one.

 

So breaking in your corset or seasoning it's ... well not really about the corset, it's about you. So once you've tried it on and you're happy with the fit, and you tried it on tightly and you're happy that it's not got any major gaping or the gap's fine at the back, then when you actually start wearing it, you'll wear it looser. Corsets should be comfortable, and when you wear a new corset they do take a bit of breaking in and they do need a bit of softening up. And if your body's not used to it, you will have to build up gradually. And this is what we call breaking in. It's not about seasoning the corset really, it's about seasoning you, because you're the important part of it. So once you've tried it on tightly, then the first few times you wear it, you will be wearing it more loosely.

 

And the worst thing you can do is try it on in a changing room, try it on super tight, wear it under a dress that fits like a glove, and not being able to loosen it, because the first few times you need to wear it, or even the first couple of months if you're waist training, you do need to have access to be able to loosen your corset if you have to. For example, if you're sitting for a long time, if you're traveling, if you're eating, there might be a time where you feel uncomfortable and you need to loosen it quite quickly. So it's about getting used to your body in a corset. It's not about seasoning the corset, it's about seasoning yourself and adjusting to how a corset feels. If you have any questions about breaking in your corset, or have any queries, please let me know below and I'll get back to you. So take care.

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