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Corsets: A Modern Guide [Hardcover]

Velda Lauder
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Sep 2010
While ideals of feminine beauty change over time, an hourglass silhouette with a tiny waist has frequently emerged as a potent image of women's sensuality This beautiful guide depicts the transformation of the corset from ancient to modern times, with particular reference to the recent revival of the corset as an outer garment. The overall style of the book combines extensive reference material alongside a more personal journey through the evolution of the garment, from one of the most celebrated corset designers of our times, Velda Lauder. Velda s enthusiasm and fascination for her subject makes this a unique document from the viewpoint of an industry insider who has devoted the last 15 years to celebrating the female form.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: A & C Black Publishers Ltd (1 Sep 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408127555
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408127551
  • Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 17.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 53,132 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description


'combines gorgeous images, fascinating historical background and unique inside knowledge in this entertaining, authoritative and inspiring look at the shapewear that has shaped the world.', November, 2010

About the Author

A graduate of the College of Marketing & Design in Dublin, Velda Lauder cut her teeth in the fashion co-ordination and display team at the department store of Brown Thomas & Company. After winning a prestigious Smirnoff Young Designer of Year award Velda joined the creative design team for premiere nightclub Ku in Ibiza. Relocating to London in 1996 she worked as a stylist for Tatler and Opera Now while designing clothing for rock stars and royalty. Her first UK collection Warrior Woman was featured at London fashion week with Wayne Hemmingway s Red or Dead label. Her design company and soho based store Pagan Metal provided the platform to launch her ground breaking corset collection Vanity in 1997 employing for the first time her unique Uber-Curve method of corset construction and tailoring. Velda Lauder has designed for the Coco De Mer Couture Collection, been commissioned for one off pieces by Karl Lagerfeld, The Victoria s Secret annual TV shows, Dita Von Teese, Courtney Love, Sarah Brightman, The Sugarbabes, promo videos for George Michael's An Easier Affair and Robbie Williams' Love Light, plus stage costumes for Pete Burns and numerous Burlesque stars including Miss Lily White and Miss Polly Rae.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Impressions of thick book but thin content 11 Oct 2010
I spotted this book months before it was published. Then the description stated it included a chapter on corset making, but sadly this has been dropped from the final draft and the blurb has been amended accordingly.

First impressions were the book was smaller than expected, but nice and chunky. There are lots of colour photos of corsets, including many by modern designers - perhaps too many as few readers will be in a position to afford couture corsets, let alone those designed over a decade ago.

Sadly the written content is not as comprehensive. In the history section, for example, there is too much on underwear such as bustles and not enough on corsets. The second half of the Nineteenth Century - in my opinion the golden age of corsetry with much innovation in product and processes - is skipped over in a paragraph or two. (And confusingly there is an advert for Swanbill corsets from 1879 whilst the text on the facing page talks of "the straight-fronted or 'swan bill' corset fashionable from 1900 to 1910": they are not the same thing.)

Whilst the pictures from modern designers are attributed, the same cannot be said of the French drawings from 1892 (La Vie Parisienne?): nor are the French captions translated. The bibliography is similarly light, omitting for example, Norah's Waugh's classic 'Corsets & Crinlines'.

One myth I'd like to dispel is that 'underwear as outerwear' is a modern concept. "The present corset... should be over the dress, like the Roman belt of old; it is quite as handsome." - Ladies' Column in the Aberdeen Weekly Journal, 19th October 1892. The idea is over a hundred years old; moreover, several period cutting books base their corset drafts on dress bodice blocks.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars informative, interesting and above all gorgeous 29 Oct 2010
I have to disagree with some of the negative comments in other reviews here. I was simply delighted with this book, it gave a comprehensive history of the corset and included a generous section covering the corset revival from Westwood onwards. The pictures are gorgeous, and it kept my attention from start to finish which is more than I can say for other books I have bought on the subject.
Velda Lauder is a designer not a journalist, it's somewhat missing the to point draw comparisons with works by Valerie Steele for example (a fashion historian, curator, and director of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York no less). It's a real pleasure to read something from the individual perspective of a designer who's work you admire and I couldn't recommend this book more highly. Enjoy corset lovers !
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5.0 out of 5 stars velda Lauder Corsets: A modern guide 4 Jun 2014
By Agi
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
All the more poignant since the sad passing of Velda, This book is beautiful, It is a lovely little size, more of a keepsake, The print quality is exceptionally high, with a plethora of photographs throughout. It provides a concise history of the corset and makes more of a dainty coffee table book rather than a reference book. It is delightful
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4.0 out of 5 stars Nice book 13 Mar 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Nice compact book with lovely illustrations. Bought for a friends birthday and as a corset lover she really liked it
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