Friday, March 6, 2015

My DIY Choli Bodice [By BlackUniGryphon Kandice K Zimbleman]

I don't know why but many Americans call anything that laces up, other than shoes, as a "corset" or "corseted". I don't know why because in school many books and literature make references to the bodice, much of our culture comes from European origins, and we all speak English (or Spanish).

The corset and the bodice ARE NOT THE SAME THING. 

A bodice has straps that go over the shoulder, and are worn over the inside layers of clothing, traditionally, of can be made into the construction of a dress or gown.  They also flatter the bust, and aren't necessarily made to give you a tight waist. A bodice can, and has, been made with or without breast cups.

Fashion corset A corset is traditionally ALWAYS an undergarment, or underwear worn like a waist cincher beneath the outer clothing. Corsets are always made to tighten at the waist, and don't necessarily have anything to do with the bust, unless you wanted to flatten the bust, and they traditionally didn't have breast cups.Corsets can also be dangerous to repeatedly wear.

In modern times versions of corsets have become decorative tops worn in spring or summer, or at cocktail parties, even teenagers.
But, they were also used by burlesque dancers, and performers as a main piece of clothing.

Corsets do not have straps.

Corset Deal

Corset Deal
Both the bodice and the corset CAN have boning in them. It's called bones because they were originally made from Whale Baleen, which is a flexible yet firm material like a flexible bone. I've seen moden "bones" or boning made from bamboo or ratan (which aren't very good to wear because they can break) but usually "synthetic" or man-made petroleum processing byproduct waste materials left over from creating gasoline or other hydrocarbon fuels, such as plastics, and hard industrial rubber.

However, both a corset or a bodice don't necessarily need "bones", or "boning".

Also, this is a Choli version of a bodice.

Cholies are short tops, often midriffs, with either short sleeves, or straps.

The lace-up aspect of the design of these types of clothing items has been incorporated in many other kinds of clothing, not just shoes, and often with leather, ribbons, or chord.

Plus Size Lingerie Boutique

How did I make this?

 I actually don't know how to step-by-step explain how I even made mine.

I made mine as an experiment. I was actually expecting it to turn out badly, and learn from it... however, it turned out very well.

I do actually have a pattern which could be made into either a  bodice or a corset, or variations of tops with sleeves that could lace-up. But, I wasn't very confident in my sewing skills, and wanted some practice. So, I tore apart some old clothes and re-assembled them so they would lace-up.

I really wanted a traditional bodice to wear to fairs. But, I didn't want a badly made one. So, after I experimented with my other stuff, I kept seeing these lace-up choli bodices, which some American dorks call "choli corsets" or "corset cholies" even tho' IT IS NOT A CORSET, meanwhile the same dorks blow a gasket when you say the word "Gypsy" and give you a major earful lecture about "The Romani People" and blah-blah-blah.... as if by saying "gypsy" you or I are total racists that are unwittingly spawns of Hitler or Mengele.... *face-palm* -but I digress....


What I did was I took some notebook paper, and folded it, and took note of where in fit in proportion to my bust, and body in the front to the side. Then I drew a shape based on what I thought looked like the ones that many people online, made. Because before, the only way to get one was either to by one that was hand made by someone either online that was pre-made (HOPEFULLY IN YOUR SIZE), have one custom made, or maybe if you were lucky, and could go to a fair or convention, like Tribal Fest, you maybe could find one there... all those options, despite of simple they were, cost a fortune, hence the reason I made my own.

I adjusted the lines, and size until I was satisfied, and it actually didn't matter if it seemed to small or short because it would be laced-up anyways, and even if some skin showed, that wasn't a bad thing. This whole principle makes it WAY EASIER than you think. Just make sure your nipples get covered! So, keep that in mind.

Once I got the shape right, I cut out cloth with an outer margin to help sewing. you know, selvage stuff... There's plenty of tutorials out there to teach how to make lace up anything from vests, to bodices, to corsets, arm cuffs, leggings, etc.

The fabric I used for the outer part fabric was from an old crappy Chinese dudou  (肚兜) I got from Manhattan Chinatown (New York City) that looked GREAT when I bought it, but kept falling apart due to poor quality. no matter how many times I would repair it, it would shred further and fall apart until it became frayed. So I checked some techniques about how to sew these materials hopefully so they wouldn't fall apart.

Since I've made it, it's mostly stayed together, but it is showing wear, and I might be able to salvage it later for parts if I take off the otter blue fabric.

You will also need an inner lining, which should be made of another fabric.

Something to keep in mind is texture. If you are using smooth, shiny, and/or frictionless texture fabrics like silk, satin weaves, or any kind of synthetic materials, no matter how rough or coarse, they always slide around. Also, your skin needs to breath, so you might want to consider cotton, or cotton blend on the inside, or something made of plant based fibers.

I actually did lots of research before I started mine. I recommend teaching reseources & tutorial stuff by Threadbanger:

Just an aside about adding the eyelet rings: once you have added the rings you WILL want to add some reinforcement stitching on the sides, otherwise all that tightening will causing tearing & ripping, and all of your hard work will be for naught.

I have 3 sections on my choli where in laces up: The front bust section, and the sides.

This makes it much easier to adjust to fit. It also makes it so that most people could wear it so long as they are not too small.

The back of the choli was actually made from the back of an old top I had. I just cut off the sleeves, and the front (which I used to make other garments) and made an inner lining for that as well.


Also, even tho' most folks tend to prefer using "matching" thread to sew your stitches, I actually didn't have any blue, but lots of red. I've found that often times more visible stitches look better, and give it a better feel, more like a bodice, and less like a regular top.

I like to add small jingle bells to my lace-up costumes.

Most tribal fusion & bellydance stuff has jingle or tinkling stuff on it, like coins, dangles, bangles, bits, and bobs anyways. And, Ren' Fair costumes often have jingle bells. unfortunately they;re not actually as loud as I would've thought. If you want them to jingle louder you will need to get bits of stuff from India. Good luck with that, because even tho' some cheap items come with jingly stuff on it from India, if you buy them yourself, it will get very costly, sometimes even for just one little bell or doodad, especially if it's a Kuchi bell or dangle. But, the SOUND is great.

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