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Measurement For Making a Corset

Hello, sewing enthusiasts!

I’m sure that you understand that exact and accurate measurement is the thing of high importance.

99% of mistakes and bad fitting are because of carelessness in measurement.

Before you are starting measuring your client, you should already have an exact plan:

  • Which pattern you will use
  • What techniques of sewing you will use
  • What additional measurements (according to the figure of the client) will help you to achieve a perfect fit.

At the beginning you and a client are discussing the style, details, trimmings. And only then you are starting to measure.

Let me say few words before we will start. At first, we should measure a client, and then measure a pattern. We will compare the measurements and change the pattern. Believe me, when you will understand my method, you will forget all others.

It takes 1 second to calculate the pattern alterations using our software and 5-10 minutes to draw a pattern on the material. Then it takes 6-7 hours to sew, and… your client could visit you for a fitting. Then it takes 2-3 hours to complete and make small changes.

Believe me, it’s possible! It takes no more than 2 working days to sew a wedding or an evening dress. Of course, I’m talking about only sewing a dress, without spending time on hand embroidery, decorating by beads or complex skirts.

Okay, let’s measure. You should face the client, and it’s comfortable to place a mirror behind the back of the client. So you could see the way the tape measure goes, and so it’s easy to correct it.

Now, tie up two ropes: the one rope on the waist, the other on the belly. It’ll be much more comfortable for you, if you’ll place the rope at the borderline on the bottom of the corset. But there could be some differences. For example, if the corset is shorter on its sides and longer in the middle part. In that case you should place the rope at the corset’s sides.

Please pay attention how is your client standing, while you are measuring. The client should stay erect, the client shouldn’t move at all, even client’s hands shouldn’t move. Ropes should also stay at the same places, that you put them first time. And I’d like also to point out that you should place the rope at the waist, exactly where it should be at the result (it’s not always the narrowest place on the belly). The client should be dressed lightly, and she should wear brassiere. If the client likes push-ups bra, then she should put on the push-up.

(1) The first measurement is named “Bust front”. The measurement is from side to side through the most prominent parts on the bust.

Please pay attention to the side view. I’m always focusing on the side seams of the dress. The measurement is through the breast from one side to another.

(2) The second measurement is like the first one: from side to side, but directly under the bust (under-bust front).

I’d like to point that it is measurement from side to side through the front part of the body.

(3) The third measurement is the standard measurement Bust circumference. Please don’t stretch or relax the tape measure. Let the client put on her favorite bra and measure as is.

(4) The fourth measurement is Under-Bust Circumference. Don’t stretch the tape measure. The client has to breathe freely while she puts on the corset.

(5) The next measurement is Waist circumference. This is the only measurement, when you have to stretch the tape measure. But don’t stretch too strongly. It’s better to hide some in the side seams later. Usually I’m hiding about 4-5 centimeters. By the way it gives good shape and doesn’t disturb the client.

(6) The sixth measurement is Stomach circumference. Please don’t stretch the tape measure. The worst thing that could happen with the corset is cutting into the body side. And it’s necessary to write down at what height this measurement was. This height is the distance between ropes.

And now we’ll do a set of measurements. I call this set “a clip” or a “chicken leg”. These measurements help us to correct the pattern at the breast part.

First measurement is the Bust Middle. Look at your client to determine the point, where is the best place for the reliefs. The reliefs should help to shape the beautiful and proportional figure. Only after that you can start that measurement. (7)

Now press the tape measure by your finger to the left point, and turn around. So you could have three measures.

(7-4) The first measure - toward the arm, (7-5) the second – up, toward the imaginary corner of the corset (usually I’m going through the shoulder strap of the bra), and the (7-6) third measure – toward the center - the distance to the low neck of the corset. You should try to imagine what does the low neck of the corset look like (it is highly individual and depends on a client).

These measurements are the same as will be on the corset. Of course you should have some experience and imagination. Don’t close the armhole too much; therefore the corset wouldn’t chafe the arm. But otherwise don’t open it too much; therefore not to let go out of the corset too much body.

The distance to the low neck of the corset is up to you too. But I would like to point out, that if the bust is small, then you should make the low neck larger; and if the bust is large, than you should make the low neck smaller.

You can have an additional measurement on the back, to construct an eye for the shoulder strap.

(8) This measurement is a distance between shoulder straps. I’m looking at the shoulder straps of the bra and I’m measuring that distance.

(9) The next measurement is the width of the back: distance between armpits from the back (when your client put her hands down).

(10) The next measurement is the height of this eye or a corner from the waist.

Further there are several important measurements. Imagine that a client is dreaming about a corset, but her belly couldn’t be tightened. In that case you should have two measurements: (11) Waist front and (12) Stomach-front. These two measurements are the same as the first two measurements.

You are measuring from one side to the other side through the fist and the second rope.

(13) The next additional measurement is the Side Hight to the waist. This measurement is important in the case if the height of the client is less than 160 cm, or more than 170 cm. We know the standard measure – 18-19 cm, if client’s height is 160-170 cm.

(14) The depth of the neck line you should measure from the waist, from the rope. (15) And in the case if the undercutting is placed rather high, then you are measuring from the center of bust.

(16) If it is necessary you can also measure the height of the back in the middle from waist to the top.

That’s all for now.

Good luck! See in the next tutorial!

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