06 October 2017

Continental stays 1: Diderot à la Waugh

Waugh's Diderot stays pattern
Waugh's pattern in
Corsets and Crinolines, page 40.
Norah Waugh's classic book Corsets and Crinolines (1954, reprinted 1987) includes her "Pattern of stays from Diderot's L'Encyclopédie".

Comparing Diderot's plates to Waugh's pattern, I found that she'd not just resized it for real bodies, but also taken some liberties in redesigning the stays. Here, I'll describe some changes she made, and how they can be reversed for a more period accurate cut.