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Late Victorian Corset Making Class Part 1: Patterning and Fitting

Saturday, March 14, 2020

2:00 PM

2 Sessions : March 14 & 15, 2020 : 10am-3pm 

This class can be taken independently or as a part of the Victorian Corset Making series, by registering for the second class on March 22, 29 & April 5 - Construction and Finishing


By the end of the class, students will be able to draft a custom, late 1880s corset pattern and refine their pattern through making and fitting a mock-up.


Course Summary 

Many costumers are intimidated by pattern drafting and fitting, especially when it comes to corsets, which require precision to achieve the period-correct shaping and a comfortable fit. This class will take the mystery out of crafting a perfectly fitted, historically accurate, 1880s corset pattern from the ground up. In this two-day course, you will learn to draft a custom 1880s corset pattern from your own measurements and construct a mock-up of your corset pattern to further refine its shape and fit. You will also learn basic construction techniques unique to Victorian corsetry, such as busk insertion and shaping synthetic baleen bones. You will come away from the class with a glove-fitting bespoke pattern that can be used to create stunning corsets for the late Victorian period. 

No prior experience making corsets is required to take this course, but intermediate machine sewing and garment construction knowledge are necessary.


What we will do

· Draft a custom late Victorian corset pattern based on your measurements for a comfortable corset that fits like a glove.

· Master the fundamentals of corset construction such as busk insertion, grometting, and shaping synthetic baleen.

· Learn to tackle tricky corset fitting problems like grain correction and panel shape manipulation.


About the Instructor : Alexander Chesebro

Alexander Chesebro is a historical costumer and living history interpreter with a specialization in foundation garments. Alexander has created corsets and stays for living history events and private clients across the U.S., including for performers at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco. His design process relies on extensive research examining extant garments in both his personal collection and museum archives in order to produce comfortable foundation garments with period correct silhouettes. Alexander also collects and documents historical textiles, specializing in silk brocades and woolens from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. He is thrilled to offer new classes on making foundation garments here in the Boston area. 


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