Corsets

The most commonly used article of clothing in women's Steampunk fashion is the corset. Corsets have been used throughout history, but hit their peak popularity during the Victorian era. Since Steampunk genre takes place during Victorian times, many cosplayers turn to corsets to add femininity and sex appeal to their costume.

An example of underbust corsets being used in women's steampunk fashion. This girl is wearing her underbust corset with a blouse and gloves. This is an example of how to use an underbust corset in women's steampunk fashion. this woman is wearing her underbust corset with a lace blouse, skirt, hat and goggles.

Corsets are often confused with "bodices" and "bustiers," so lets clarify before we go any further:
  • Corsets are garments designed to hold the torso in a shape that creates a desired silhouette. In the Victorian era, the hourglass figure was the sought after silhouette, and the corset helped achieve that look by cinching in the waist while exaggerating the bust and hips. Corsets usually have a buttoned or hooked front opening (called a busk) and laces in the back, used for tightening. Steel or plastic boning keeps the corset's stiff shape. 
  • Bustiers are designed solely to lift the bust, not cinch the waist. They don't extend as low as a corset, and they don't have functional lacing or boning. 
  • Bodices are just the upper part of a dress (not including the sleeves), or a separate piece of clothing that women wore like a vest over a blouse. They aren't designed to boost anything up, or cinch anything in.
An example of how corsets are used in women's Steampunk fashion. This woman is wearing her underbust corset with a mini skirt, short sleeved top, fingerless gloves, a belt and goggles. This is an example of how overbust corsets are used in women's steampunk fashion. This woman is wearing her overbust corset with a peasant blouse, skirt, belt and goggles.

Does this mean women wore corsets outside their clothing during the Victorian era? NEVER! It was the most modest of times, so corsets were strictly an undergarment. However they did wear something similar called a Swiss Waist (more on that in a minute). The reason you see cosplayers wearing corsets as outerwear is that they're trying to make modest Victorian fashion sexier, and there's nothing sexier than a corset.

Modern corsets sometimes have straps that go over the shoulders or in a halter style around the neck. They often have garter straps at the bottom to hold up stockings.

Learn more about corsets and how they're used in women's Steampunk fashion:

This is an example of an underbust corset being used in women's steampunk fashion. UNDERBUST CORSETS



This is an example of an overbust corset being used in women's Steampunk fashion.
OVERBUST CORSETS



This is an example of a longline corset used in women's Steampunk fashion.
LONGLINE CORSETS







This is an example of a Waist Cincher Corset (aka waspie) being used in women's steampunk fashion.
WAIST CINCHERS


This is an example of a swiss waist belt being used in steampunk fashion.
SWISS WAIST BELTS












FOR MORE...

In Part 2 of the Guide, learn about Victorian era skirt and dress styles, and their sexier counterparts in Steampunk fashion: Skirts & Dresses

Learn how to recreate popular Steampunk costumes: Tutorials

Browse our carefully curated photo gallery of beautiful Steampunk cosplayers: Fashion Inspiration

No comments:

Post a Comment