September 26, 2011

lacing strips for mock ups

I've had a few questions about what I use to lace up mock ups so I thought I'd share my lacing strips.

Pretty low tech, just folded over denim with a couple of seams to make boning channels, and some grommets. They are 13 inches long, just long enough for to use for fitting, but I often think I should make a longer set. These were made for fitting my very first corset six years ago. I pounded the grommets while sitting poolside in Carlsbad, California. Good times.

For fittings I place the folded edge along the the center back of the mock up and stitch the strip to the back panel. Since I don't use a busk on fitting toiles, I wrap the mock up around myself with the lacing strips to the front, then thread the lace through the grommets. When I reach the top I tie the laces together and twist the corset around my body until it sits properly with the laces in back, then I start cinching. It is not an elegant process. But I've found this works better than lacing the corset first and slipping it over my head. After experiencing a couple horribly claustrophobic moments with my arms pinned above my head once the corset reached my shoulders I started putting on toiles corsets the way a twelve year old puts on a bra. Has anyone figured out a better way to get into a buskless toile?


  1. I usually end up sewing a heavy duty separating zipper into the front, because I don't have the patience to keep re-lacing while doing fittings.

  2. I do the same thing. I use a lacing strip (also from an old corset), and sew a heavy duty zipper to the center front.

  3. As a person who's just getting inspired to make a corset, is there anyway to fit one without making the test lacing strips? I'm not certain how many grommets I can pound before my neighbors would take up arms... :D

    of course, if there's no other's time to take over a convenient sidewalk!

  4. Hi Caroline,
    There is a website called Vena Cava based out of the UK. They have these pliers made by "prym". Some people actually have issues with these as well, as they do not have the strength in their hands. I find it soooo simple and I can set probably about 100 grommets before getting bored and having to stop.. These pliers do not hurt my hands..

    I love your site, I have only just found it but I am excited to read through your posts and learn as you learn! I am planning on starting a blog of sorts of my own. It will also document my progress with corsetry.