Video- Unboxing A Precious Locking Corset

Close up of locking corset straps

Ready for some more locking corset related fun? It’s been such a long time since I sat down to write to you. Yes, the shop is still “shut” though we are accepting orders from patient folk who don’t have deadlines, so the list isn’t getting much shorter! Aside from a half plan to open for a day on our 15th birthday next month, it’s looking likely that we’ll stay shut for a while, catching up! I feel very lucky to have my order books so hectic with your unique and beautiful commissions. Thankyou for your trust, I never take it for granted.

So, as a result of me locking myself out of the studio today I’ve finally edited a Youtube video I filmed last November! There are one or two more locking corset videos already filmed and plenty more to come, looking at the commissions I have waiting to be completed! This piece was made for a male client and follows a similar style to the first locking corset I shared in January 2020, a stripped back design featuring graceful interlocking straps. The main difference with this corset is that it has the soft touch of luxury silk satin both outside and in! The silk lining to this corset is hard to photograph due to the number of bones (more on that later) but the soft stroke as you run your fingers over it’s rigid construction is absolutely delicious.

This is another corset featuring continuous boning, whereby I fit as many bones into the corset as possible. On this piece, that totalled 78 steel bones, an impressive 25 metres of spiral steel boning! Naturally this made for an extremely heavy and armour-like corset, and with corsets like these, sometimes the weight plays a part in the fun for the wearer. The corset also uses a stiff and sculpted spoon busk for lower abdomen support and a fully steel boned modesty panel.

One of the reasons I made this video in the way I did was that I thought it would be nice for people who haven’t yet had the pleasure, to experience the frisson of unboxing a bespoke corset. When you sign for your package and feel the trepidation of what comes next, we may have been working on your commission together for months, or even a year. There is so much expectation, and curiosity, perhaps even a little reverence for something we have both invested such time and resources into. Parting the tissue paper, feeling the tactile surface of your new corset for the first time, this is a first encounter with your new second skin, and it shouldn’t be rushed.

Without further ado I invite you to join me in a serene, joyful few minutes of exploring a new corset for the first time, I hope soon you can experience it first hand! If you’re ready to breathe life into your new corset, you know you can always contact us to discuss ideas.

Summer Tightlacing And Stealthing

stealthing silk mesh corset

I think really, every corset aficionado ends up needing a good stealthing corset to call on! It’s like the “little black dress” of your foundation wear. No doubt you will have more showstopping pieces in your collection, but knowing that underneath the pile of lace and satin and strappy bits tangled up in each other is your reliable, comfortable, discreet old friend who just happens to reveal a killer figure at a moment’s notice? That’s priceless.

If stealthing is new to you, panic not! It just means that you’re wearing your corset under your clothes without showing any signs of it to the muggles! So any onlooker just thinks you’re naturally blessed with graceful curves, unassisted by any crafty devices. Typically speaking a corset designed for stealthing will be of light construction with a few extra considerations to help it blend in under your clothing.

As we come into Summer I do find a spike in interest for a) light corsets for warm weather tightlacing and b) corsets that can be discreetly hidden under a stunning outfit for a wedding or party. The great news is that we can solve these problems for you, and the solution is not only practical, but really rather charming! Unfussy, well designed luxury is something we can never tire of.

For our standard size customers we have a ready made solution in our Eirlys waspie, made in silk or cotton mesh and delicately constructed but still offering a sensuous 4″ waist reduction! I could tell you more but it just so happens that I made a video that should answer all your questions.

For our bespoke clients we can develop this style further to meet different needs- the essential elements of silk or cotton mesh with zip fastening and light lacing cord can be brought to full coverage underbust styles, built to blend in at the bra line for a perfectly smooth seamless finish. Perhaps an overbust style to support the bust in a special dress! Combined with our careful attention to fit and designing especially for the unique needs of each body, these simple but hardworking components can create results that you will turn to time and time again when you need your figure (and not the garment) to be centre stage.

Cotton mesh corset stealthing


If you feel the heat, these pieces are also your perfect companion- natural fibres allow your skin to breathe and don’t increase perspiration like some man-made fibres can. The honeycomb mesh structure also allows air flow so heat doesn’t build up under your corset! It’s the closest you can get to a corset that you can forget completely about once you’ve put it on!

If I’ve piqued your interest then do get in touch for more information, there is a wealth of solutions to your tightlacing needs, and Summer doesn’t need to slow you down!

Waist Training And Weight Loss

Rust silk Tulipa training corset.

Waist training and the decision to focus on a diet or weight loss program can often go hand in hand, but there are a few questions that are probably going through your mind. If you choose to start training with a bespoke corset, you are investing in an item made with painstaking care to measurements that might not be representative of your size a little way down the line. So lets look at the next stages carefully together. There are ways around most problems in life, so here are some points you might want to consider as you look at your options.

The pro’s and con’s of waist training during weight loss

Many people choose to make a corset part of their diet because of the encouragement it offers to see your smoothly cinched waist in the mirror, and your sleek lines under clothing. Even things like watching the gap at the back of your corset slowly closing as time goes by can make your achievements more noticeable. It’s a boost to see the new figure that a corset unveils for you, and certain elements of the corset’s best use can be used in conjunction with healthy eating and moderate exercise to support you in your goals.

Comfortable use of the corset for long periods of time usually involves adjusting your diet to involve smaller, more regular meals without altering from a healthy calorie count. You can read more about this in the waist training section of this post. Some corset wearers also find that a snugly laced corset helps them to regulate their appetite at times, though I would never advise that you treat a corset as a substitute for food, or rely on it to reduce your calorie intake further than your doctor or dietician states.

The cons? Mostly, the in-depth process that we go through in order to provide you with a glove fitting garment. Though provisions can be made to accommodate gradual reductions, dramatic weight loss will inevitably leave you with a corset that won’t fit you forever. This is expensive, and in the case of very fast changes in your size, the length of time taken to create your corset may mean that you have already changed shape and size once it arrives with you. This is something we try to avoid at all costs.


A typical waist training corset would probably have a built-in gap of about 2″. This means that all over the corset, it is 2″ smaller than your stated measurements, and this gap leaves room for your weight to fluctuate over time. All sorts of things can affect your size, menstruation and dehydration being the most common, and having a gap allows you to tighten the corset further when needed. If you have decided that you are going to make a corset a part of your diet then we can increase this gap to 3″ or in cases of more dramatic weight loss, 4″. This is the equivalent of around 2 dress sizes, so you can see that there is scope for you to train with the corset for quite some time. Ideally, we would leave as small a gap as possible, because the breadth of the gap can distort where the side seam of your corset is designed to lie, and can also feel a little uncomfortable in those initial stages, but as a temporary measure, it works!

If your weight loss goals wouldn’t be properly served by the 3-4″ gap you might like to look at either investing in a more budget friendly piece, like a ribbon corset, or perhaps looking into a well made “off the rack” or ready-made corset. I wouldn’t often recommend waist training with a ready-made piece as small discrepancies in fit can feel quite drastic by the end of a long day in the corset, and quality construction becomes even more vital when you are wearing your corset for 100+ hours per week. But this said, when you are seeing regular change in your shape and size, this is a more affordable way to meet your needs.

Continuous boning in close up on an Orchid waist training Corset

When is the right time in my weight loss program to start waist training?

This is likely to depend on a few factors – how much weight are you planning to lose? over what timescale? Do you feel that waist training is something that you want to play a big part in your plan?

Something to think about- many diets have the most noticeable effects in the early stages. If this is the point at which you’re providing measurements for a custom order, then by the time your corset has been made and shipped to you, you could be a different shape entirely. Equally, we do not always lose weight evenly through our bodies! many women find that the bust or hips is the first place to show a result, so even if your corset order is due to be placed a few months into your diet, it’s a good idea to take regular measurements, noting where the loss is most noticeable, and if the rate at which your measurements change slows down.

Another thing to consider is the length of time your corset order will take to arrive with you. We operate on a waiting list system, so if your order was placed on the first of January, we might be ready to ship mid to late February. There could also be international shipping times to consider as well, so planning your corset at a middle or late stage in your diet could be advisable.

For most cases where a client is budgeting for one corset to take them through their period of weight loss we will recommend that you hold on until the 3-4″ gap will meet your needs, leaving the initial month as a time of recording your results to show us any trends in your new shape and to allow the initial period of high activity to pass. Throughout that month we can still discuss your order, talking about your preferred fabrics and styles. You may also want a boned mock-up to give you a physical impression of the changes you’re expecting to see in your figure.

Bridal Corsets

We speak to a lot of brides, and the most frequent thing to be brought up in their first email is that they’re losing weight for the wedding. Sometimes this is a modest “toning up” exercise, and sometimes this is the catalyst for a long-term goal. Whatever you’re planning, the main thing to focus on is your deadline, and who else is relying on your corset being finished to complete their work for you. The most typical example is that your dressmaker will need the corset completed so that they can begin their fittings for your dress- for a ready-made dress the alterations usually need to start a minimum of 1 month before the big day, for a custom-made dress, this could be considerably longer. Your dress makers needs will dictate (to an extent) our best step going forward, maybe such changes as whether we opt for an overbust or underbust, and the point at which we will need to look at your current and predicted sizes.

Hopefully this post will help you to understand some of the practicalities to be thought through for this process- If it sounds scary, don’t worry! We are always on hand and happy to talk to you about your options. Why not drop us a line to discuss your plans?


Waist Training And Seasoning Your Corset

At Orchid, we have the honour of introducing many newcomers to waist training. This is the usual term for the discipline of gradual waist reduction through regular wear of a tightlacing corset. Perhaps you have started this exploration with intentions to taper the ribcage to a wasp waisted silhouette, to encourage better posture and to enjoy the secure, snug sensation of being tightly cinched. Many reasons and effects can draw an individual to this practise. In our Shropshire studio we create more training corsets than any other form, so I feel confident that our clients are in safe hands for this exciting process. Here, we’d like to share a little with you about some important care techniques for your new corset as well as some tips for a safe and healthy approach to waist training whatever your lifestyle.

Seasoning Your Corset

Your corset is a unique garment that perfects and enhances the figure, through cut, fit and construction of unique finesse. It’s an extremely exciting moment when your first custom corset arrives through your door, swathed in tissue paper. It’s waiting to be tried on, and drawn in to reveal a curve and sweep to your waist that you didn’t know was there…

But you need to rein in the understandable excitement at this point, and make sure that your next step protects the life of your new treasure and investment, and also your long-term health. You may have heard about seasoning or breaking in your corset (a practise of gently wearing the corset in until it is closed at its optimum or intended reduction) and now is the time to practise the theory.

It’s essential that for the first few weeks of owning your corset you only lace it very loosely at the back. Don’t try to experience the full extent of the reduction until you have accustomed yourself to wearing the piece, feeling the pressure of a couple of inches cinch and no more. Two hours or so is plenty to wear this in each day, and after a fortnight of this careful lacing process you can gradually start to bring your corset in to its intended snug fit. The first few wears should not be a battle to close the gap, it’ll all happen in time, and taking this precaution will prevent stress on the fibres of your corset, and the stitching that maintains it’s contours. Corset wearing is about many things, but impatience is not one of them!

Why is it necessary to take these careful precautions with a traditionally constructed corset, made with the very best quality materials? Well, when your Orchid corset arrives at your door it has been made to flow around your precise body measurements but has not yet moulded itself to your shape. This occurs through the pressure and heat of the body over time. The spiral steels that fit your curves smoothly will return to their original shape when the corset is removed, but the fabric and stitching will be gradually taking on your form during wear, and finding its correct tension. Forcing the corset to close too early can result in weakening the overall structure and, occasionally and sadly, breakages.

To hear the words of a regular corset wearer on the matter I recommend you watch this video by Lucy’s corsetry, which covers her own experience with undue care at the early stages of corset wear.

I think this paced and steady introduction is also an ideal approach for beginning your journey with waist training. It prepares the wearer for slow and regular progress whilst avoiding the pitfall that so many would-be tightlacers experience. Going too fast, too soon can result in you being given a negative impression of the whole affair, and finding reasons not to persist with their efforts.

Waist Training

Once you’ve reached the status of a regular tightlacer, I think it’s easy to become fixated on continual, inflexible lacing habits. The fact that it is described as “a discipline” means that some people get the impression that we must lace as tightly as we can, for as long as we can bear. Whilst some people may embrace the challenge that this offers, it doesn’t really fit in with most modern lifestyles. We do not always have the ability to control our diets to optimum effect, we may feel unwell one day or need to be more active, with much bending from the waist and rushing around in the summer heat. All these things affect how you feel in the corset laced to your optimum degree, or even if you want to wear it at all. It’s important that you don’t feel that you have let down your hard endeavours by needing to loosen your lacing after lunch, or that it “doesn’t count” if you didn’t reach the number of hours you intended to one day. It’s true that you must persevere to reach your goals, but your body is an organic machine and does not behave predictably!

Fran Blanche from Contour Corsets promotes what I feel is a very healthy and sensible approach to tightlacing. You can read about her Cycle Method which talks about understanding that you will likely need more flexibility in your approach to waist training than simply tightening it in the morning and releasing it before bed. Reading this helped me to understand that I wasn’t bad at tightlacing- I just couldn’t expect the corset to accommodate me, my meal and the strains of the day without feeling additional pressure. Once I realised this, I found that my occasional grudging feelings towards the corset going on in the morning were not a problem. I understood that a day of less consistent wear did not mean going back to step one, and I was able to simply take it at my pace, at the level that running a bustling business allows.

Other important points for those considering waist training.

The most important first step when considering starting waist training is to consult your GP. Your doctor may have advice for you about managing other underlying health conditions such as high blood pressure with your intended schedule. It is vital that you take these assurances before beginning to plan your corsets with your couturiere.

Your diet makes a big difference to how you experience wearing your training corset. Our typical western way of consuming food is not very conducive to 23/7 or extended corset wear, we tend to have a “feast and famine” approach, taking a large meal, then after hours of nothing, eating another hearty meal. Consider that this food takes 6-8 hours to be digested properly, and you can see why you may experience discomfort and additional pressure within the corset that could easily be dispensed with by eating small amounts, more regularly. The types of food and drink that you consume will also contribute to your comfort and ease of wear. Fizzy drinks and carbohydrates that expand in the stomach, or sit there heavily such as pasta should be taken in smaller quantities, self-regulation will help you to find the best limits for your body. There is absolutely no need to reduce your healthy daily calorie intake just to alter your quantities and balance your meals.

Something that many tightlacers who are just starting out can forget is to keep their core muscle strength up. This is absolutely vital for those working on a 23/7 routine, and making time in your day for a few simple exercises will take care of strength in your abdomen and back. Pilates targets these areas well, as do many traditional warm-up exercises that can be done in your own home without gym subscriptions or pricey equipment.

Protecting the skin is an essential part of training. If you tightlace daily for long hours your skin is given very little chance to breathe, and trapped moisture can cause problems. Always endeavour to have a corset liner made of natural fibres underneath, as although your corset can’t be washed, a liner or camisole can, and should be changed every single day. This forms a barrier against perspiration from the lining of your corset and protects the tender skin of the waist from any chafing. We stock the very lightest and breathable silk corset liners for just this purpose, just drop us a line to learn more about how they can contribute to your training regimen. Keeping up a moisturising routine is also important, but make sure that the creams have fully absorbed before beginning to dress.

Another way to protect your skin from prolonged contact with perspiration is to change your corset for bed, should you be continuing to train at night-time. Many of our clients find that their lacing at night uses less reduction than their typical daytime corset would provide, so a ribbon corset, which is lighter and with more ventilation than our regular construction methods, makes a great alternative. Ribbon corsets fit into the “waspie” part of the spectrum, meaning that they typically cover 3″ above and below the waist at the sides, with longer front and back edges. Ribbon corsets are also unique in that their main construction is created from diagonal and horizontal strips of ribbon, using fewer steel bones to create their shaping. The added flexibility at the sides from the shorter length means that movement during sleep is less inhibited, and should therefore prove more comfortable.

The same corset should never be worn two days running if it can be helped, as you may have read in our care of your corset section, we recommend that you air out your corset overnight to ensure that it’s fresh for your next wear, and alternating your corsets regularly will not only prevent excessive wear on one piece but will make certain that before you put it back on, all perspiration has dried. You can also gently wipe the lining of your corset with a well wrung out cloth after wear to help the process and save a few trips to the dry cleaners.

We hope that these tips help you to enjoy your corset for even longer, and to progress with your training enjoyably. Waist training is not a practise to be treated with trepidation but it is something to treat with attention, care and respect. You need to listen to your body’s warnings if you are moving quickly through the waist sizes- cramps, discomfort and other pain should not be ignored, it may be that your chosen corset style needs further fine tuning, or that it’s time to take a step back for a while. If you’re having persistent problems don’t hesitate to contact your corsetiere for support, we don’t have all the answers but we might just have a new insight for you.

If we have not dealt with a subject that is of interest to you, please let us know, we’ll be happy to illuminate you.