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    A good corset is an absolute must. It is equally important to have a corset that is made especially for oneself.  A popular myth is that a corset should be so tight that breathing is difficult. NO! Victorian corsets are made to force the body into a hourglass shape. The Elizabethan corset creates a tube. It needs to be snug but not suffocating. 
      I based my corset on the pattern in Arnold’s “Patterns of Fashion” Fortunately I have not been overly blessed with "endowments”. I used wooden kebab skewers for boning to simulate the reeds used in period corsets. I also decided against shoulder straps. Another alteration I made was to have my corset lace up the sides. I have a bit of Kordosis in my back (a result of the RA) so I did not put boning in the back of the corset 

Front view of my corset

Arnold, Patterns of Fashion pg. 45 

Front and back view of me in my corset, farthingale and bumroll over
square neck chemise 

Back view