Centuries before Madonna wore her iconic pink cone bra bodice, the ladies of Europe and sometimes the men were lacing themselves into beautiful corsets.

Throughout Europe, for over 500 years, the corset has been an essential piece of historic clothing for ladies. The corset was seen as indispensable to the beauty of the female figure. And while having been incredibly popular, has courted much controversy. By some, it has been described as a patriarchal instrument of torture that deformed the female body. In contrast, many others argue, and historians now agree that there was not just one experience of wearing a corset. It was, in fact, for many, a positive experience that made the wearer feel empowered and beautiful. A notion that is reflected and reinforced in the continuing popularity of the corset.

While corsets are no longer a part of a ladies everyday wardrobe, they have always been embraced by historical fancy dress enthusiasts, burlesque artists and fetishists. And have been a source of inspiration for fashion designers throughout the last century. Viviene Westwood featured them in her collections in the ’70s, while in the 80s Jean-Paul Gautier and Madonna made fashion history with the iconic pink satin corset she wore on her blond ambition tour. Many designers over the years have experimented with corsets, imagining them as empowering rather than suppressing the female form.

In recent years the corset has once again been seen on catwalks of Paris, New York and Milan, having been embraced by fashions elite. Interestingly many of the styles seen have been inspired by historical fancy dress. They feature traditional lace bodices that can be tightened to reduce the size of the waist and create the ever-fashionable and desirable hourglass figure.

With each season arrives a new trend that has been inspired by historic clothing. And while trends come and go, and styles evolve, it’s important to have pieces that are timeless and chic. The corset is a timeless investment piece that will never go out of fashion, which is why at Corset Story, we have created a beautiful range of ‘Historically inspired’ corsets.

Our approach for these corsets was to use our modern, refined patterns and fits and adopt the aesthetics and styles from yesteryear. Corsets from this collection are finished in rich tapestries and boast hand embroidery or corset flossing and feminine lace.

Whether you are a historical enthusiast looking for a high quality historically inspired corset, a costume buyer putting together outfits for a theatre production. Or you are merely experimenting with a new look. We can help you find your perfect yesteryear inspired corset.