Hello, Big Cup Little Cuppers!
I’m a very excited Guest Cup with a love of corsets and anything steampunk related. After quite rightly admonishing me (again) for not wearing the right-sized bra, Charley asked if I’d try out a corset from corsetdeal.co.uk. I’d never visited before, but there were plenty of exciting burlesque/ vintage/ steampunk options. It was like putting a child (or any self-respecting adult tbh) in a sweet shop.
So I said ‘YES!’
I’m a self-declared little cup, 5ft2, a UK size 6-8, and alas, somewhat lacking in the chest department. That’s why I love the idea of corsets – who doesn’t want to change their shape every once in a while? I’m a fan of wearing corsets as tops, either for fancy dress (a good excuse) or just because I feel like it (and I can’t think of an excuse…)
Unfortunately, I haven’t had fantastic experiences with choosing corsets – I never splash out and buy something tailored or top-of-the-range, but I’ve experimented with enough to know that I have problems with fit. This includes inevitable small gaps at the bottom of the corset or under my arms, and once, when I tried a ‘corset blouse’ that hadn’t been scaled down correctly, sleeves that sat two inches above my actual shoulders. Having said that, I am filled with eternal optimism, so with Charley’s invitation gleefully in hand I skipped to my laptop.
After some deliberation I went for the Clary Steampunk Corset. It has a detachable belt and shoulder jacket, which is definitely a bit of a bonus. I measured myself as a 32” in the hips, 32” in the bust, and 26.5” in the waist, and went for a size-22, as advised by the site. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I crossed my fingers and waited.
I was first of all pleasantly surprised by the quality. It’s a weighty corset – much heavier than many other ‘wear to be seen’ versions I’ve had – and pretty well made. The material feels good, with a nice cotton lining, and even the belt is a lot chunkier and less flimsy than I expected. The belt is attached to the inside of the corset with D-rings rather like the ones on the front, which is another nice surprise, as I didn’t expect that level of hidden detail. One point to the Clary corset!
Now for the important part.
When on, and properly laced up, I was pretty happy with the fit around my waist – but I was having trouble (again, sigh) with my little-cup top half. No matter how tightly I was laced in there was a small gap at the top, just under my arms, between the corset and my sides. The shape just wasn’t quite right. My boobs were securely in, but perhaps because of the not-quite-right shape, they didn’t feel particularly supported or uplifted.
The belt presented another problem. It had arrived attached to the corset, and looked great, but once the corset was on the belt no longer attached properly. The loops on the belt and the D-rings on the corset were now in different positions – the belt would only attach properly if the person wearing the corset were actually flat. With some wriggling I got it on, but it still wasn’t secured properly, and I had to stretch it a bit. With a bit more wear it will probably settle into shape, but it’s a bit of a design flaw.
The jacket, on the other hand, was a very nice touch, and looked exactly as it had in the photo. The adjustable back meant that with a bit of shimmying it sat properly on my shoulders, and it makes the corset look significantly more kick-ass.
I successfully wore it (danced/pretended to sword-fight) around my flat for an evening without feeling like anything was digging in, coming loose, or rubbing, so comfort was totally fine. The belt made it slightly difficult to sit down, as it sits below the hips, but nothing too hard to deal with.
This corset is made to be seen – no under-dress shaping here, just plenty of snazzy decoration – definitely something you’d wear out and feel happy in. I like the aged zip down the front, and the buckles would be good for accessorising. The faux leather looks convincing, the delicately patterned panels are lovely, and all the accessories work well together. It also feels fairly well made, and I’d be surprised to see threads hanging loose any time soon.
Basically I was pleasantly surprised by the overall look and feel of this corset, and for me, that saves it.
Despite some small issues I probably wouldn’t regret buying this corset, but only because the problems with fit weren’t too bad, and it looks pretty good. I got the belt to work, and the gap problem is barely noticeable – just a little disappointing. I’d happily wear it out with one of my steampunk outfits, and as a sturdy, fun corset, it does the job of sucking you in and making you feel cool.
Would I wear it solely for the fit? My head say ‘no’, and I wouldn’t recommend it for someone who wants shaping above anything else. Would I wear it out and feel awesome? Definitely! And you should too.
And the great news is that in the run up to Haloween, Corset Deal are having a massive sale with LOADS of corsets as low as £22.