A corsetmaker is a specialist tailor who makes corsets. Corsetmakers are frequently known by the French equivalent terms corsetier (male) and corsetière (female). Stay-maker is an obsolete name for a corsetmaker. The word corset replaced the word stays after the Great Exhibition in 1851, because a prizewinning type of French stay was called the Hygienic Corset.
The best corsetmakers are highly skilled tailors with a knowledge of anatomy that enables them to make well-fitting, long-lasting corsets. Corsetmakers who reproduce historical styles must be familiar with historical fashions and costumes that span centuries of history.
Individual corsetmakers often favour a certain style, and frequently have differing theories and opinions about the physical impact and benefits of various corsets, thereby influencing their corset design and creation.
Some companies had travelling saleswomen, corsetiers who order the tailored corsets from the company. Well-known is Spirella (1904–1989), Barcley , Spenser .
The main consideration of corset design is duration of use. For short-term use, e.g. used for a special event such as a wedding, a corset will be worn briefly and so is not subject to wear, therefore need not be of the highest quality of construction. For long-term use, e.g., by tightlacing or waist training, corsets must be made to exact standards and are best custom-fitted and designed for the individual wearer. Single weakness or flaws tend to be visible. Some custom-made gowns have corsets built into the design; a talented dressmaker may also be a skilled corset-maker.
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The first step in a corset make is identify the customers type of body shape. The more fat, the fewer alternative corsets.
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