Friday, April 15, 2011

Regency Stays

As I mentioned in this post, I've mostly decided to commission things I don't want to make, or don't have time to make, rather than letting not having an item hold me back from costuming that period.  One of the periods of costume in question is regency.  I didn't have regency stays.  I bought like 6 patterns, felt very intimated, mocked one up, and it went terribly.  So I poked around on etsy, found a seller with good feedback and who I could afford, and just went for it.  I also wanted stays I could get away with for a wide range of time, like maybe 30s/40s - and these fit the bill.  (I actually did do some googling and open front stays like this did start being worn in 1829, according to a bunch of sources (see comments). I am not a historian, so feel free to debate that date.  I don't really care though, I just wanted to not be totally off base and as long as there are multiple pages referencing that date, that's fine with me.  Also, metal grommets came in in 1828 apparently.)

Anyway, I couldn't be happier.  They fit, they're comfortable. She was very fast, communicative, she sent me a mock-up to try on and adjust, and I'd definitely recommend her.

She's Louise Pass, woodsholme on Etsy.  The pics are hers, of my commission.


  1. I don't think they had open front with busks like that until later but it's still pretty and it's not like anyone will know unless you are being indecent. ;-) I really like the detailing on the sides.

    If you would like a pair of short stays, I have a pattern based off my extant pair. I can hand it over to your.

  2. Well, like I said, when I commissioned them, I did some google and found references to the first front opening busk being in 1829.

    This says 1829

    This says metal grommets in 1829, the planchet in 1829:

    This says 1829:

    This says 1829:

    This says by 1847

    I don't know if 1829 is right, but it came from multiple sources, and I didn't pull the number out of my butt, I promise you.

  3. Sorry, I probably should have added that they did have front lacing stays, just not with that type of busk and that the pattern I have for short stays takes a couple of hours, tops.

  4. Again, Sorry! I think I started to post at the same time you did. :-) Okay, that makes sense. I just didn't recall seeing or reading about metal busks being used until later (1840s).

  5. All those links I just cited were for busks of some sort, not just front laces.

    And thanks - I don't think short stays would suit my figure though. I'm happy with these.

  6. I'm certainly open to the fact that that date might be wrong, but it was in multiple places at least. It may not have been common til later. :-)

    I'll let you know if I need a short stay pattern. :-)

  7. HI Maggie I just stumbled onto this a moment ago, and You both are right, the button busk is later than the date of the corset, however most reinactors are use to the "escape Hatch" of being able to undress quickly. Since the corset is a custom piece and is commissioned, I can easily make it with a laced opening or a closed front if the button busk is a problem. And thank you Maggie for your kind words!
    Louise Pass of Woodsholme Handworks (

    1. Sorry - somehow this comment got buried and I didn't see it needed approval! I'm perfectly happy with the corset as is - it's worked really well for me! Thank you again!