Corset Making Supplies

Corset Making Supplies
A corset can be worn in any way you imagine

Monday, September 27, 2010

sew be it studio

This past weekend found me teaching an amazing group of teen's how to make a corset the quick n easy way using Rye and Ginger Corset Kits corset kits. We met at 10 on Saturday morning and one of the girls finished around 4, the others weren't far behind. We faced a few delays but weren't far off our targeted finish time.

The girls chose basic black and basic white waist cincher corsets and plan to add embelishments later - but before the Corset Fashion Show - they'll be modeling their work during Farthingales Corset Fashion Show on Friday October 22nd, at the Creativ Festival

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Press Release


Corsets From Stratford to Toronto

September 23, 2010

The Creativ Festival; one of North America’s largest sewing and crafting events, will be the venue for a very unique fashion show and exhibit: “Corsets – Fabulous Fashion Accessories” in Toronto. The subject matter is unique in it’s self but what makes this show very special is the fact that every one from the corset makers to the models are volunteers and some have never made a corset before! Over 20 people have worked both independently and together to create works of art that happen to be corsets – but not underwear. Most of these people are from the Stratford area but some are from London and Brantford and a few are from outside of Ontario.

Rita Gramsch of the Creativ Festival and Linda Sparks of Farthingales began discussion about this project shortly after last years Festival. By March of 2010 Linda was connecting with people to see if there would be enough interest to develop the corset fashion show idea and remarkably almost everyone who signed on is still with the project. Linda is the owner of Farthingales and Farthingales L.A. both of which focus on corset making supplies and corsets, but she didn’t want to design or build all the corsets. She wanted to see fresh approaches and was willing to coach anyone who needed help, though she’s found little coaching on her part has been needed as people are helping each other out. Linda comments: “It’s been a remarkable experience to see all these corsets come to life. Many of the corset makers are artists in their own rite so they’ve brought skills to the table that I don’t have and they’ve brought fresh perspective as to what a corset can be.” “No one has all the skills that this team of women & men (yes we have two) posses as a group and that’s what will make this show very one of kind. Each member of the group designed the corsets they wanted to make and they talked about their designs with me so I was sure no two projects would be similar and none are. I then advised on construction, if they needed or wanted support or I teamed them up with someone else who had the skills they didn’t.”

The diversity of interpretations of what a corset can be is exceptional because so many people are involved. There will be a fairly classic Victorian corset and petticoat look but you’ll also see corsets that appear to be knit, covered in bobbin lace (the lace is being hand made as this is written), made from hand woven fabric designed specifically piece by piece for the corset, and one will even be made from welded steel by the woman who will model it. “It’s a lot of work to organize a show of this size, we’ll have over 30 corsets on the runway and there are over 20 corset makers but it has hardly seemed like work because everyone is excited about what they’re doing and that excitement is contagious and motivating.” says Linda who is overseeing every aspect of the show. So what does she hope to gain from producing this event? “I hope that people will see corsets in a new light – let go of old perceptions of underwear and sex and see corsets as a fashion accessory and an art form. I also hope it will inspire people to sew, this show just might give young people something to aspire to since we’ll have simple corsets on the runway and incredible corsets out there to.” “I also think we representing the “Canadian Way” as this process has been the “anti-project-runway” approach, no one is competing everyone is offering ideas and construction advice when someone indicates they need help. It’s amazing what can be accomplished with a team approach,”

The Corset Fashion Show will be held at 1:00 Friday, October 22nd at the Metro Toronto Convention Center during the Creativ Festival. Some corsets will be on display during the 3 day event at booth 838.

Can’t get to the show? Follow it here on the blog OR pick-up a copy of “A Needle Pulling Thread” a Canadian needle arts magazine where one corset’s progress is being followed in a 3 part article.

Linda Sparks


286 Monteith Ave.

Stratford, Ontario

N5A 2P8

PHONE: 519-275-2374

Fax: 519-275-2376


Little Black Corset - take 3

Who says a corset can't be professional? It all depends on how you wear it. Come see many ways to wear a corset during the Corset Fashion Show at the Creativ Festival on October 22, 2010

Little Black Corset

A little black corset is a great accessory to update your wardrobe and you can make your own.


Imagination....a classic little black waist cincher corset can be worn with a t.shirt and jeans....or something a little different.  The little black corset - as versatile as "the little black dress" 

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Inspiration can come from many places. Karen Merriam loved the jacket and skirt in this Vogue Pattern and as she thought about the outfit she developed the idea of a corset that would complete the look - not quite the typical 3rd piece but a great idea.

All pieces are well underway and she's still got time to decide on a blouse or turtleneck.

This elegant and unique outfit can be seen at the Corset Fashion Show during the  the Creativ Festival, October 22nd

Side Opening Corset

Karen Merriam isn't just making a corset for the Corset Fashion Show at the Creativ Festival - she's making a whole suit! Jacket, skirt and corset. As a proffesional tailor Karen has lots of sewing experience but it's been awhile since she made a corset. She's used a commercial pattern for her corset but made some major modifications to it. Typically a busk goes down center front and lacing is at center back. Karen as opted to place the lacing as a design element down the left side of her corset and put the busk in the back. It means she'll be able to get into the corset with some assistance but won't have to lace it up as the lacing can be left in - it will need to be loosened to get into and out of it but not unlaced and re-laced.

To see this corset come to the Corset Fashion Show at the Creativ Festival October 22nd at the Toronto MetroConvention Center

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Corset with wings

Sketch for one of the corset entries for the Corset Fashion Show to be held during the Creativ Festival on Friday, October 22nd at 1:30.

This corset incorporates many things, a spoon busk, painting and WINGS.

Sketch and corset by Sharon Gashgarian

Diamond Busk

Farthingales is considering investing in diamond busks - the same great quality as our regular busks but with with a rhinestone well secured in each knob. These are for the fashion corset, at twice the price of a regular busk you won'twant to hide these. We expect to have some in stock by mid  November
Don't know what your looking at? These are the bound tabs at the bottom of an 18th century corset.  See the rest of the corset; made of black silk with heavily jet beaded front, at the Creativ Festival the weekend of October 22-24th. At the Toronto Metro Convention Center

Friday, September 17, 2010

An asymetrical corset

I'm making a corset for the Corset Fashion Show as well and I wanted to do something different. At first I considered and underbust lace corset with exposed bones - german plastic ones that had been dyed RED! I collected scraps of  fabric in in red and black because I wanted a very "organic" look. The more I played with the fabrics the more my vision changed and it has evolved away from a lace corset with red bones - though I may still try that - if I have time.                                                                               The pattern has morphed from an underbust to a partial over bust corset - or "Asymetrical" corset. Pictured here is just the mock-up. The actual corset is now almost finished, I've used several pieces of the black and red scraps and so that none of the panels are the same, I've made a hidden busk and am now adding beads to add just the faintest bit of glitter here and there. The corset will be paired with a black and red tulle skirt.              
To see this corset "in the flesh" come to the Creativ Festival in Toronto. The Corset Fashion Show is on Friday October 22nd, and this corset with several others will be on display all weekend.