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Since the late Renaissance period and into the twentieth century, the corset worn by western women has possibly been the most contentious fashion garment, throughout the entire history of fashion.  If we look into the corset it has been fashionable, through a period spanning close to four hundred years, it had a positive side with regards to social status, beauty, discipline of ones own body, making one appear more youthful and the further attraction of being erotic.  It is easy to sympathise why women continued with the corset and style of clothing because they received admiration, were perceived as having wealth, although not normally their own.  Today’s modern woman has the freedom of choice in all aspects in her life including her choice of lifestyle and fashion designs.  This collection although based on the corset has the added interest of unusual shapes that are almost sculptural in each design this is achieved by unique fabrics that can be manipulated due to their metal content.

Alison Partridge -



This design has a hood with bound edge detail the sleeves have darts to square the sleeve head the outside sleeves are wide at the elbow. The sleeves upper body and lower body side seams are French seamed these are not placed on the inside but shown on the outer body for detail.  The fastenings for the coat are suspenders this has incorporated the corset theme, ties will be sewn to tie the coat has a rolled hem.

The fabrics are metallic organza



This dress is designed for underneath the coat, it has ruching at the upper bodice.   The shoulder straps are crossed at the back.  The hemline has a fold of organza and a length of the India rose silk and metal taffeta this has a rolled hem, the design is fully lined.

The fabrics are metallic organza and pink antistatic lining India rose silk and metal taffeta



In this design the ruffles are over the shoulder the bodice has piped edging and a centre front seam, which has been twisted.  The dress has ruffles at the hem, which match the ruffle over the shoulder.  Gathered strips of the India Rose silk and metal taffeta are sewn onto the body of the garment for embellishment.  The back of the garment has eyelets for fastening with ties giving the corset theme to this design. 

The fabrics are India Rose silk and metal taffeta and pink antistatic lining

There is a cap style hat to match.



This design shows the corset with suspenders two at the front and two at the back.  Vivienne Westwood made the corset an outer garment to take this a stage further the metal boning is inserted on the outside (not inside) the corset.  The boning is made of spirals of metal, which are viewed through the fabric as a design feature.  The hips are accentuated at the sides to emphasize the hips the edges top and bottom have piped detail.  The centre back fastens as a corset.  The skirt has voluptuous folds of fabric with binding detail.  The fabrics are metallic organza, canvas and cotton chintz.

This design also has a hood this is optional to wear with a bag to match the skirt detail and a shoulder wrap to wear instead of the hood.



This dress design is off the shoulder and has an insert at the bust area.  Folds of fabric fall from the waist.  The skirt has been given an asymmetrical hemline and is slightly reminiscent of a handkerchief skirt.  This has been made even more dramatic as the hemline either side of the body is only slightly curved; the skirt has two side pockets.  The lower half of the skirt has netting; the back has eyelet fastenings to give a corseted effect.

The fabrics are India Rose silk and metal taffeta, sew in interlining, pink anti static lining and netting.

There is a matching bag for this design.



For this design the top has two shoulder straps that cross from front to back.  This design has a combination of manipulated fabrics for detail.  This manipulation is a combination of darts, pin-tucks, pin-tucks that form a grid and the crushing and folding of fabrics.  Binding is knotted and sewn in strategic places with a band of metallic organza at the hem of the bodice top.  Puff sleeves have pin-tucks and turn back cuffs; elastic pulls the top of sleeve making it more fitted.  The back of the garment has corseting fastenings.

The trousers for this design are fitted over the hips using darts at the side; the trousers have canvas shorts sewn into the trousers with a centre back invisible zip.  The trousers have only an inside leg seam this is French seamed to give a cleaner finish to the garment.  The trouser legs have turn-ups at the hem to match the top.

The fabrics are India Rose silk and metal taffeta, metallic organza, canvas and cotton chintz.



This design shows the corset with a low front and an even lower back.  The front of the corset has been cut low at the front and scoops nearly to the sleeve armholes. The back is cut low and has crossed narrow straps adding detail interest.  The side seams of the hip area have been accentuated outwards to emphasize the waist.  The sleeves are crushed to manipulate the metal fabric and give its full effect.

The skirt is slim over the hips but cut with a full hem and train.  The skirt is fully lined with an added lining that has netting.  The skirt fabric has been crushed to correspond with the sleeves.

The fabrics are India Rose silk and metal taffeta, sew in interlining and pink antistatic lining.

The hand made jewellery can be worn with each of these designs.



French knickers are added to this design these are for wearing as shorts with the corset.  These shorts have a corresponding ruffle at the top of the legs to emulate the sleeves of the corset.  The shorts have an inside pocket for a handkerchief as knickers had had in previous times.

The fabrics are India Rose silk and metal taffeta with pink antistatic lining.



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  © 2007 Alison Partridge
  Photography by Fiona Brolfe & Alison Partridge