Milady’s correct fashionable corsets

After years of deliberation and search through the fashion centers of the world, women have been brought to the realization of exactly what they require in the way of fashionable corsets.

For this reason, manufacturers of corsets have refrained from producing a multiplicity of models, but only those commanded by the most fastidious dressers who bow to the dictates of fashion.

Nature has tapered a woman’s ribs to make the body flexible, but in so doing, she has sacrificed stability for gracefulness and left an imperative need of support to the spine at the waistline. Upon this spot depend grace of motion, the position and health of vital organs, muscles and nerves and the proper poise of the entire body. If the spine is supported in a correct position, a too-prominent abdomen, stooping shoulders and ungainly lines are impossible.

Unsupported, the spine curves outward at this vital point, every muscle is strained, every vital organ out of position, and unsightly lines are inevitable. Nature has made a line, starting from the spine, where the ribs end, and falling below the diaphragm, known as the waistline, where firmness, even pressure, is both comfortable and needful for the proper support of the spine.

Dancers of all ages have accentuated this line of grace of motion, and man from primeval time has applied the same principle in the belt of skins or the athlete’s girdle for support and safety in any physical exertion.

The present-day corset is built with a full recognition of these principles. Its straight cut gives firm support along the waistline where it is indispensable to health and beauty, and ensures permanency of a shape that is correct and comfortable in the beginning.

It is well-known that anything cut on the bias will stretch, so that the bias gored corset cannot be firm, and a permanent waistline is impossible. Its stretching gives same pressure over vital organs as at the waistline, making comfort or the free, graceful motion of uncramped muscles equally impossible.

Fashionable corsets from 1905

The corset’s shape

Shape is the first requisite in a corset. The present-day corset not only improves the figure, but it beautifies the individual, and gives that tangible something — “the indefinable in dress” — that was impossible with stiff lines of the former day models. It gives the up-to-date woman the figure and style she will have and ensures her the good health to keep and improve her figure.

Corsets are built in distinct styles, belts for full and stout figures, and the lattice ribbon for slender and medium, with varieties in each, so that every possible figure will find its corresponding correct model.

The long hip belt models for full and medium figures are pre-eminently the corset for the present style of dress. The best-gowned women of today give them an unqualified endorsement. They cover the entire hip smoothly, showing no ridge, even through an unlined skirt. There can be no rolling up of flesh over the edges, or shifting motion of a very fleshy figure.

The bust is supported sufficiently to prevent sagging or shifting, but not confined. The bust curves are full and begin low, so that the corset will not push up in any position. Each long hip belt model has two pair of extra fine and heavy French silk elastic hose supporters covered with satin in all colors.

Tight waisted fashionable corsets from 1905

Select the correct corset carefully

Every woman should select her corset with the greatest care. She should be fitted by an expert corsetiere, for every line and curve of her form has a reason, and must be properly fitted and worn to accomplish its work.

The proper model worn cannot fail to bring out every good point, and make a distinct improvement in figure and poise. Each model improves the figure it represents; for example, a short-waisted model will lengthen a short-waisted figure, while a long-waisted model would neither look nor feel well.

The new system of measurement eases the corset over pit of stomach, giving freedom instead of applying pressure in front. The waistline curves in sharply at back, supporting the spine in the correct position that makes a too prominent abdomen disappear naturally and permanently. The straight front, straight cut and full deep bust encourage natural breathing and an erect, easy poise, and make it impossible for the corset to ride up in any position.

Continued wear cures ungainly lines by removing the cause. The belt model is the only corset for stout figures that cures permanently instead of applying temporary pressure; that hygienically to remove the cause, not temporarily by strapping back an effect.

Get laced up with more than 200 classic Victorian corsets

Many colors of fashionable corsets available

The lattice ribbon models for medium and slender figures are made in both white and black bodies, with white, pink, blue, lavender or cherry ribbons; also made in pink with pink ribbons, blue with blue ribbons, black with black ribbons. Those models are lightest weight durable corsets made.

The bodies are of very fine, thin material, the ribbons giving firmness as well as a very dressy appearance. They give the chic, dainty figure an easy air of style, and allow perfect freedom in breathing and motion. The long, sloping waistline is clearly defined and fits in firmly, inclining the body to gracefulness.

There is no other corset for slender and medium figures which is very light in weight and yet firm enough to retain its shape. The boning is so flexible that it curves gracefully, but will never become set to the figure. They fit so perfectly at waistline that one size smaller than is usually worn should be selected.

Tight fashionable corsets - wasp 1905

Fashionable corsets, or college girl girdles

The college girl girdle is especially adapted to golf, horseback, the gymnasium and all athletic exercise. It will give the hygienic support that makes muscular exertion safe and comfortable, and also preserve the dainty, slender figure without which the athletic woman loses her greatest charm.

The college girl girdle is recommended as the first corset for the growing girl. It will not only develop a good figure and poise, but prove the ounce of prevention against stooping shoulders, and ungainly poise and the many posible ills resulting from an unsupported spine.

The average woman today has a good figure and poise and does not need violent methods of correction. She loses her own good points in an arbitrary corset, and gains nothing but “corset lines” that make it impossible for her to be stylish. The present-day models correct this fault.

The long, sloping waistline is rounded and clearly defined, curves in sharply at back and falls low in front. The bust and muscles are supported, but not confined, keeping the body erect and developing a lithe and willowy motion and poise. The wearer looks and feels her best, and wears her costume with the finished and easy air of style.

Get the proper fit for a truly fashionable corset to flatter

To obtain the correct corset measurement, a woman should stand correctly, measure the waistline well down in front snugly, and deduct two inches to ascertain size, or four inches when measured over the dress. Measure from armpit to waistline and deduct two inches for length of waist. The measures should be taken over the underwear to be worn.


About this story

Source publication: The Saint Paul Globe (St. Paul, Minn.)

Source publication date: May 03, 1904

Filed under: 1900s, Beauty & fashion, For women

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