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The kimono that I so desperately wanted at 18 has been living in my closet for a few years now. Every time I found it, I couldn't help but admire the fabric and the hand stitching- even though I didn't display it any more, I couldn't see parting with it. I finally plucked up the courage to cut off the beautiful bottom portion off the kimono and turn it into a corset. To keep costs low, I used left over heavy duty cable ties as boning. This project was all about recycling something old (yet beautiful) and dusty into something a little more fun and actually wearable.

I drafted the pattern based on an awesome tutorial . I hadn't done much in the way of pattern matching before (solids FTW!), so it took a night of trial and error to get to the point of cutting into my beautiful but extremely limited supply of fabric. I ended up drawing each pattern piece on tracing paper, adding seam allowances, and then cutting two of each piece. I knew I wanted a crane at the center front, and I happened to have a crane that spanned two pieces of fabric. I made that seam line my center front opening and traced the main elements of the kimono's pattern onto each of my two center front pattern pieces so that I would know where to lay them out when cutting the fabric. Even though I wasn't necessarily matching the rest of the pieces to each other the way I matched the center front, I still used the tracing paper method with the rest of the corset. I wanted the center back to match up the same way the front did, and I wanted the side panels to be exactly the same as each other, with the side front and side back panels at least closely relating to the front and back pieces.

I might have gotten a little frustrated by the end of the process and not ended up with perfect matches or symmetry, but I hope the finished product will inspire others to recycle old pieces into fresh, wearable art.
<p>I only used the link to the great pattern-tutorial and am going to try the zip tie-method next time when I trie again, as I'm not 100% satisfied with my result. Not quite but nearly. Your corset turned out beautiful!</p><p>But how on earth did you manage to form those beautiful curves and contours at your hip and under your breast?</p><p>Since I can't maintain a ProMembership I try and ask you this way, because I cannot use your WIP-Download. If you don't want to share your secret in public, I can understand that.</p>
<p>Beautiful and glad others are recycling amazing fabrics. Great job. Will be trying the zip ties in my next corset. Binning has gotten too expensive.</p>
Spectacular. So very beautiful.
This is so beautiful and shows your creativity and vision! Thank you.
Beautiful! I love how well the panels display the image, five stars.
Voted. :-)
Thank you!
Lovely!
Voted :) Came from the Jaxofalltrades FB page.
You can use heavy duty zip ties for boning. It's more comfortable than the steel I use in most of my ren wear, but will still give you sleek lines and allow you to pull your corset tight. I make corsets in four layers. Two inner layers of a heavy material that holds the boning and a layer next to my skin, with the final layer of the fabric I want on the outside. It's not as high temp in summer, as it sounds and the fit is perfect. <br><br>You can get the large zip ties at Home Depot, K-Mart, Lowes, etc. <br><br>The corset rocks. It's fabu and you look amazing in it.
Yup! Those heavy duty zip ties are what I used, actually. I discovered them back in high school when I was dead set on making an Elizabethan corset and had no way to get steel bones. I love them!
Love how it is recycled and &quot;green&quot;! Looks amazing!
Very nice!
Clever, gorgeous, and (if you don't mind me saying) wicked hot.
Thank you for the kind words! ^_^
Simply stunning! Beautiful work!
Thank you!
This is Gorgeous!!! I've always wanted to try making a corset, but i'm too a) broke to buy a pattern, and b) didn't know to find the boning locally. Thanks so much for the link, too, definitely going to try this!
Thanks! I discovered cable ties back in high school when I wanted to make an Elizabethan corset but didn't have access to (or funds for) steel boning.

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Bio: Not much to tell... I love to sew and create things, but I learn a lot through trial and error. Instructables is a great site ... More »
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