I have been planning this one for some time – I think it was a glimpse at a kimono silk somewhere on ebay that provided the spark – 30 minutes later and I have purchased several bits of left over kimono silks and started planning. The silks arrived, and loved them even more – and they were just big enough to incorporate into some corsetry. The theme was not an unfamiliar one to me, as we have used oriental inspiration int the Petal dress, and in our Steampunk Amazones, but this one was to be a more cohesive collection.
As always the first stage was sketching, drawing, gathering inspiration ( Pinterest board is here), and gathering props. I already had an early 20th century set of a katana and tanto, and a matching kimono I wanted to use, plus a collection of kanzashi ( japanese hair flowers), parasols etc…
Ironically the first design that emerged wont be shown here – I will present it in another post giving more details – it was the first ever pattern I created myself, and the corset, together with other bits and pieces was sent on adventures, to be photographed by the Iberian Black Arts, modeled on the gorgeous Threnody in Velvet.
Do not despair though – I do have some lovely pieces for you today!
Once I had some idea of the feel for the collection, i purchased more props ( hakama trousers, jackets etc) and discussed styling and options with our main model, lovely Lizzie ( Miss Lilian Love), who also had a nice collection of oriental props:-)
Then it was just down to finding time in between commissions to make the corsets, but finally in January I managed to free a few days and frantic corsetrymaking ensued…
The feel of the collection was to be a blend of modern and traditional. The form of the corset is not a traditional shape for oriental women, however, it may be argued that obi represents a constriction and shape forming element too. In our corsets the silks or the motives were the traditional part – as well as flossing. I had a brief moment of inspiration where flossing was concerned and decided to floss the bones using kanji – chinese/japanese characters. to make it even more difficult, each kanji needed to be matched to the collection too – you cannot have a corset in silks saying for example ‘rice’ or ‘cow’, can you?
In the end we got the following kanji:
The first corset to me made was a playful geisha print – I made it as a challenge – one last corset for 2014 – and completed before midnight:-). It was meant as a sideline, to be honest, and as an exercise in pattern matching – but worked so well I decided to include it in the collection. Indeed the pattern matching worked so well that the corset is now featured on Lucy’s Corsetry blog, among other beautifully pattern matched corsets – have a look!
work in progress…
and on the Lizzie:-)
The next one was the Crane corset – a mix of kimono silks and cotton sateen.. ( this one is offered in our shop)
then another print followed, and a bit more pattern matching…
I think this is my favourite corset of the collection – I experimented with the pattern, creating a more pronounced hip spring – and as a result I love the silhouette, and it is surprisingly comfortable – I normally lace down to 27inches max – here, 26 with no problems….
and on Lizzie – again, this corset is now offered in the shop🙂
Then it was experimenting with more silks, broche and sheer mesh 🙂 both corsets are available in the shop:-)
The last one was a plain piece in broche to match my honey kimono
A week before the shoot Paul accepted our invitation to play with us on the day – and arranged for the snow machine too…. so the day was a full on fun, getting ready, changing, shooting both outside and inside with a backdrop. Whereas Lucas shot product shots and some arty stuff, Paul went for artistic and more cinematograpic mood – sexy ninjas, Kill Bill etc…
Below a few more pictures from the boys:-)
and some great shots from Paul. More of his work can be seen on his blog – link soon!
and a few behind the scenes shots:-)
and after some 6 hours, it was rest time – homemade pizza and wine! 🙂
Hope you enjoyed the collection – there are 2 more corsets, to be covered n a separate post, and since I still have a few bits of silks, I may add some more stock pieces to the shop at some point. In the meantime, 4 of the corsets are available for sale, plus some other corsets from past projects:-) have a look!
Corsetry – Prior Attire
Models, Izabela Pitcher and Miss Lilian Love
Corsetry supplies – Sew Curvy
Kanzashi – Kikuya Kanzashi