Corset Pattern Maker

A blog about styling, patterning and making stays and corsets for modern, historical and fantasy looks.

If you have a corset you love and have spent good money to get it then being able to style it in multiple ways to be able to wear it in many different contexts. Here are some examples from a recent photo shoot we did.

Over a matching dress

This light blue corset has been paired with a floral dress with a full petticoat and flowers at the hem.

With a contrasting full skirt

In this look, we added a full-length wool skirt to a brown corset. Worn with thermal leggings this would be an ideal way to style a corset for winter.

With a Lacy Bra

In this look, the corset was of an experimental design that did not provide quite the look we were going for. The model here is wearing a lacy black bra and matching lace bolero and skirt

With a matching Pencil Skirt

In this look our model has a matching corset and pencil skirt. In this case, the corset and skirt were both made from the same cloth. We paired this corset with a white blouse and brown tights to make a more modern look.

With a Mini Skirt

This look features a maroon and blue corset with flower appliques on it. To not overshadow the corset which has a lot going on it is paired with a simple black miniskirt. We also added a few necklaces to break up the look of her upper chest area.

If you are using spiral steel boning you will need to put some kind of tips on the boning to prevent the sharp ends of the steel from poking threw the fabric and into the wearer. One way to do this and put a soft tip onto a bone is to use heat shrink tubing of the type that is often used by electricians. Heat shrink tubing is affordable and once you set it on the bone it is not going to move at all.

First, take the end of the bone and try to bend the back the pointy bits and if possible file them back so they are not pointy. Then find the smallest tube you can that will fit over the bone. and leave about ¼ of its length over the end. Then take a heat gun and point it at the tubing and blast it until the tube finishes shrinking. When it is done it should be tight on the bone tip and the ridges.

You can file down the bumpy ends of the tubing before putting it in the garment. I am going to try these in a corset in the next few days and will post an update on how it works in an actual corset.

This corset was made with scraps from other projects!


A corset can be styled as a layer over a dress quite well. In these 3 images we see cosplayer and model Carley Winn is wearing a blue linen corset over a blue and white floral dress.

The corset provides a well-defined figure which contrasts well with the flare of the skirt which is provided by petticoats.


If you have a corset that you want to jazz up a bit consider adding an embroidered patch that you can iron or sew into place. This is a really nice way to add some flair to an existing garment that may need it. If you have a small tear or stain that needs to be covered or just want to give an old garment a new look this is a great solution.


his is the same corset that can be styled with a pencil skirt. But paired with a very different skirt. In this case, it is an ankle-length red wool skirt with a pleated waistline.


In this look we have Renée wearing a corset with a black mini-skirt. The corset was made with a 2 tone effect to narrow at the waist and further enhanced with some iron-on flower appliques. She styled the look with some red flat shoes and a few necklaces. The neckwear is essential to this look as it breaks up the upper chest region and pairs with the red in the corset.

The crimson/red theme is reflected carries from the corset to her shoes and necklace.

Our first photo shoot with multiple models happened yesterday and It was a pretty solid success. The things that went wrong were mostly things we could fix or workaround. You will be seeing images from that shoot here on the blog as well as on our Pinterest and Instagram accounts for some time to come.

Some random thoughts…

I want to write all this down in the hope that it will help others and I can refer back to it for next time.


You should style it to look amazing, but no matter how you style it please remember to wear sunscreen. Sunburn and skin cancer are not stylish. SPF-50 is your friend here. Plus corsets can leave some very interesting tan lines.

Also, drink lots of water, dehydration is not fun and can cause some pretty major health issues. For many of us who go to events like these and work in an indoor setting we may not be used to being out in the sun all day so take care of yourself so you can keep having fun at the events you enjoy!

If you are constructing an outfit for a Renaissance Faire or other 16th-century event such as an SCA Event and want to have some inspiration based on what people were actually doing in the 1580’s one fantastic source is Philip Stubbs book “The Anatomie of Abuses

Philip Stubbs (c. 1555 – c. 1610) was a preacher and writer in Elizabethan England. He was a Puritan because he seemed to be desperately worried that someone might have been having a good time somewhere. There is no known picture of Stubbs but if you picture him as a 1970s tv evangelist, perhaps in more boring clothing you might be at least close to the spirit of the thing.