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Corsets and Crinolines - unique vintage clothing

Matron's Summer Corset

Matron
This summertime corset dates to about 1900. Summer corsets were made out of a cotton mesh material instead of regular jean like coutil. The lightweight mesh was thought to allow your skin to breathe during the heat, therefore making your corset more comfortable to wear. It must have worked as this one has (and most summer corsets have) a lot of wear to it. The "bones" in it aren't made of whalebone or metal, but of bamboo.
The style of corset is somewhat of an older style, typical of the 1890's with its curved busk. It would soon be replaced completely in fashionable circles by the straight fronted corset which had made its debut a year before.
The corset measures 30" in the waist and would have been the largest size you could buy without paying extra. It would have been worn by a lady with a 36" to 38" waist which is approx a US size 18. Its quite busty too. Yhis corset fits up to a 44" bust and would have given good support to the bust line.
(Formerly L. Hidic)