September 19, 2012

a beauty from warsaw


I've wanted to share images of this corset since I first saw it in storage at the Kent State University Museum.

KSUM 1983.1.1500 Three quarter front detail

I recently photographed it as part of the preparations for the upcoming Undress exhibit so I have a few nice pictures to post. Yea. The corset was made in Poland in the 1880s from two layers of silk. The exterior is black brocade and the interior is pale blue moire. If you look closely at the picture below you can see black thread is used for the warp and brown thread for the weft resulting in rich background that helps bring the solid black motifs into focus.

KSUM 1983.1.1500 Busk detail

The M Grochovska engraved on the busk loops is the maker's name, it's also woven on the label inside the corset. There is an image of the label and a bit more information about this corset on the museum's blog. But before you click over there let's take a closer look at the flossing.

KSUM 1983.1.1500 Three quarter detail

Wow. And the bow at the center front.

KSUM 1983.1.1500 Bow detail

Now that's a bow. There are two blue elastic suspenders to support stockings placed at the center front. They were my reference for attaching the garters on the 1911 corset I made. This corset is very shapely, but it isn't small. Laced closed on a form it measures bust 40 inches, waist 29 1/2, and hips 44.

KSUM 1983.1.1500 Three quarter front

So pretty! Don't you agree?

17 comments:

  1. Beautiful, and delightfully close to my size! Hmm... :)

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  2. It is absolutely gorgeous. Makes me, almost, wish we still wore these, so much prettier than my bra and knickers.

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  3. WOW! corset from my city :) beautiful :)

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    1. Yea! I tried to find more information about the corsetier and was able to locate the building where her shop was, but that was all I discovered. I'm sure it was a beautiful little boutique.

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    2. corset not from my city, but from my country ;) nice to see something about polish corsets on your blog ;)

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  4. Absolutely GORGEOUS!! The flossing is sublime! With that extra flossing "hanging down" on the front it really makes the decoration just perfect.

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    1. The long flossing at the bust does a great job of drawing eye to the waist, doesn't it?

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  5. That's just sumptuous. The black/brown combination give the fabric a real shimmer, and then you've got the brocading as well. And as for the lace/bow/flossing combination at the top - more drooling

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    1. Normally a bow that large would overwhelm the rest of the design but on this corset it's perfect. Did you notice even the ribbon is fancier than your average ribbon with the perforated row near each edge? Sumptuous is the perfect word!

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  6. that flossing is INCREDIBLE!!! wow, sorry my jaw is still hanging on the floor

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  7. I have always been wondering - how comes such a large bow wouldn't add too much bulk and disturb the appearance of clothing worn over the corset? Maybe you, corset experts, can enlighten me.

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    1. There would have been a corset cover worn over the corset, which would have smoothed the transition between the body, the chemise, and the corset. The bow would have been crushed beneath the corset cover and become unobtrusive.

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  8. Just rediscovered this via Pinterest and fell in love. I'm about to start making an 1880s corset from black silk jacquard and this corset is my inspiration piece. Maybe I'll use teal or emerald green flossing instead, though. It's just gorgeous!

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