04 Mar 2011

Your Arvynia Corset was handmade with the utmost care to detail and thoughts for the longevity of your corset.  This early line of Arvynia corset is made to give your body support, structure, and form to your natural curves. Most corsets are patterned with straight lines, which gives it a more rigid fitting. However, your corset is patterned with your natural body’s curve, which gives you a more comfortable, natural fit. Arvynia corsets can be made either way, with rigid straight lines or natural lines.

All corsets have at least three layers, the face (main/outside fabric), interlining for support and/or boning, and the lining. They also have a cotton twill, non-stretch waist stay which helps control the fitting of the corset and also to support the tension at the waist, where your corset is most stressed.
The bonings used in these corsets are spiral steal boning, which are hand-tipped so it does not ruin the fabric from the inside. The center back and front of the corset uses stainless steel boning which are also tipped for protection. The grommets used for closure are high quality size 0 or 00 metal grommets with backing. Of course, with that being said, your corset can not take care of itself. To make the best of your corset and make it last longer for you, here are a few tips on how to wear and care for your corset, and yourself.

To wear:

  • Wearing a corset is like wearing shoes for the first time. It needs time to be “broken” in, both for your corset and for your body. Nowadays we are used to wearing loose or stretchy clothing, which allows us to breathe easily. However, a proper waist training corset allows for no stretch in the fabric or make, which means that it would be super uncomfortable and not highly recommended to wear one the first time for a long period.
  • The first time you wear your corset, you should tighten it to a comfortable fit, nothing that would make you short of breath. I recommend wearing your corset for the first time no more than 1 hour so it can slowly get used to your curves.
  • The next few times you wear it, you can increase the time and tightness. However, a rule of thumb is that if you find yourself feeling lightheaded or short of breath, that means you need to loosen your corset or take it off.  After wearing your corset for a few times, your corset will mold to your body, and will become more comfortable to wear.
  • Putting on a corset takes lots of practice and experimenting. Always loosen the back lacing before you put on your corset. If you do not do this, you have a good chance of ruining, snapping, or bending the busk (metal hook and eye closure on the center front) by trying to close the busk. If your busk is ruined, that is pretty much the end of that corset. Always buckle your center front first, and then tighten the lace on the back. I always buckle the middle hook and eye first, then work my way up, and do the bottom half last.
  • To tighten your lace, you will need someone’s assistance. Simply start from the opposite end of where you will tie. Pull the center where the lace criss-cross together out towards you. Your other hand positioned to pull the next set of criss-cross as soon as the previous set has been pulled out/tightened. Continue till you get to the very end. Sometime the lace may come out too short to pull, but you can simply adjust the lace so that you will have enough to pull. Then tie the ends of the lace together. I usually double tie it so it doesn’t undo itself.
  • If you do not have a friend to help you lace up, there are several online sites and videos that have step by step on how to do this. Just simply type in “How to lace up a corset by yourself.”
  • Either way you lace up your corset, never tie excess lace around your waist because it causes wear and tear faster.  If you find your laces are long, you can tie it into a bow with long ears twice, tuck it inside your corset, or braid it. If it is super long, then trimming can be an option. Just be careful that you don’t trim too much that lacing is impossible. Corsets have extra long laces for a reason.
  • If you know that you will be sweating in your corset, you can powder the inside of your corset or powder your torso with baby powder or baby cornstarch before wearing, or wear a tube-top underneath to protect both your skin and the sweat from the bonings, which could cause rust to happen faster.
  • To take off your corset, it is also highly recommended to loosen the back lace first, then unbuckling the front should be easy.
  • Last, because wearing and getting used to your corset can be a process, never let anyone else wear your corset. No one’s body is the same and if your corset is molded into someone else’s body, then it may become warped and you may have to remold it again.

 Also – make sure you wear your bottoms first (pants, skirts, stockings, etc) before you put on your corset. ;)

To care:

  • After you take off your corset, it is best to let it air out. Your sweat and humidity could affect the fabric and boning, causing it to weaken faster. Just simple lay your corset flat with the lining facing out. Do not air it out in direct sunlight – if you must air it outside, place a thin cotton fabric over it so the sunlight does not damage or alter the color/properties of the corset fabrics. You can also let it air out by hanging it on its lace over the back of a chair. A fan helps with airing out. Use it.
  • It is best to store your corset away from direct sunlight, humidity, or heat as the steel boning and/or fabric can get affected. You can simply store it in a corset bag, which is available from Arvynia, or any cotton bag that can protect from insects or humidity. These bags can be stored neatly in a drawer or hung in the closet.
  • If you do not have a corset bag and your corset is small enough, you can hang it over a hanger on the lace, so each halves are hanging, and cover it with a plastic or garment bag. If you have a corset bag, it should be wide enough to fit your corset, folded in half on the lace, unbuckled. You should not roll your corset up as it may warp the bonings or cause stretch/puckers. With this being said, there are many corset bags that are also sold on the internet, but they are slim versions which means you’ll need to roll your corset. Try to find wide bags so rolling your corset is unnecessary.  

To clean:

  • Never wash your corset in a washing machine or submerge it fully in water. This will mangle and damage the steal bonings inside. Instead, spot clean with a safe, mild soap and use your fingers or sponge to gently rub away dirty spots on delicate fabrics or a VERY soft brush like a soft toothbrush on normal/durable fabrics.
  • Don’t use detergents. The spiral steel bonings are covered in special oil to keep it from rusting and detergents can break down these properties quickly. Use gentle, mild soap.
  • Some cleaners can do dry cleaning on corsets as they understand the properties of corsets – it’s best to ask your cleaner if they know how to dry clean corsets. Otherwise, I would stay away from them because the methods and chemicals they use for dry cleaning can be harsh and wear down your corset faster.
  • After spot cleaning your corset, let it air dry before storing it.
  • If you find your corset smells a little funny, simply mist it with Febreeze. Don’t over-spray it. Baby powder can also help with odor and sweat control.

The rule of thumb as far as cleaning is concerned: the less you have to clean it, the longer it will last. So be careful with food/stain-causing drinks, etc when you wear it!
If you have any other concerns or questions about your corset, how to wear or care for it, please don’t hesitate to contact me through arvynia@gmail.com or check me out on facebook!

Arvynia Corset Wear and Care © 2010-2011