Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Orchard Corset Waist Cincher Review

I bought a corset!
I'd been considering getting one for a little while, and around my birthday I was waffling back and forth between a waist cincher from What Katie Did, and one from Orchard Corsets. Given that 1) the only corsets I've previously owned have been kind of shitty, so I didn't know if I'd like it well enough to want to own an "investment piece," and 2) I'm cheap as hell, I went with the one from Orchard Corset, which, at $65, was about 1/4 the price of the WKD version.
The corset that I purchased received a fairly positive review from Lucy's Corsetry, so it seemed like a good bet for the price. Shipping was free, and I even got 15% off when I used a coupon off of Lucy's Corsetry.
I had the corset shipped to my work, since I had just moved and wasn't sure if I'd have problems having it shipped to my house. Unfortunately, the mail room at work rejected it, so they had to reship it with additional information. I called them twice because of this situation, once to talk to them about reshipping, once to get the tracking number. Both times it took a few tries to get someone on the phone, but when I did they were helpful and friendly.
One of the reasons that I was interested in getting a corset is that I love that wasp-waisted, New Look silhouette, and that's just not achievable without a little assistance. Ideally, I wanted to be able to wear my corset under very fitted dresses and skirts.
The print is cute if I want to wear it outside of my clothes, although I would have liked a more subtle color, like a nude or white, for wearing underneath as a shaping garment. I figure with a cami or something over it visibility shouldn't be too much of an issue, though.
After wearing it for a couple of hours last night, I'm not sure about the fit. My measurements, for reference, are 35-27-40. I got a 24", and there's about a 6" difference between the waist at the smallest point and the high hip. I wasn't able to lace down all the way, and I'm not sure if that was because my waist needs time to adjust to being cinched down, or because it's not big enough in the high hip. The corset is still stretching and breaking in, so it may adjust a bit with wear. I'll update this review in a few weeks when it's a little more seasoned.
The construction is fair, although you are getting what you pay for. It gives me even compression, but there is a bit of buckling, so I'm not sure about the quality of the boning. The knobs on the busk are also set very low (meaning that they don't protrude very much), which is great for keeping it hidden under clothes, but not great for actually getting it fastened. It's fairly comfortable, and I don't have any issues bending or stretching in it.
Does it actually give me a smaller waist? Um.... yes and no. It makes my waist appear narrower if you're looking at me from the front, but the bulk from the busk and laces means that with the 1.5" gap I currently have in the back, my actual measurements are the same. When/if I can get it laced down all the way, my waist measurement on the outside of the corset would be something like 25.5".
Overall, I'm happy with it for the price that I paid. I'm going to try to give it some regular wear, both under and over my clothes, in the next few weeks. If I decide that I like it, I might upgrade to a custom corset. It seems like it would make the most sense, given the difference between my hip and waist measurements and the fact that I want something that can disappear under clothes.

(You can see an updated review here.)


  1. Thats really cool! I love the print. I've always been interested in corsets but I don't know if I would have the commitment to putting it on everyday,

    1. I'm not sure I do either, so I think the cheap one was a good choice for the moment. We'll see, though - maybe I'll end up really loving it.

  2. Cute corset! I also have one from Orchard Corset, the CS-411 and I love it! I went with them too because of the price and reviews from Lucy's Corsetry. I will say it does take a while before you're able to fully close it. I got mine in January and it's still not fully closed, but that doesn't bother me much. And it will take about 2 weeks of daily wear for it to be fully seasoned. I would love a What Katie Did one but it would have to be a gift from someone or they're gonna have to have an awesome sale haha.

    1. I'm glad to hear from someone else who loves their corset! I wore mine for a couple more hours last night, and I'm actually really enjoying it. I might even wear it in to work next week - I have pretty poor posture sitting in front of a computer all day, and I'm thinking that might help.

  3. I've long been drawn to the wasp waist look too (so much so, that the general silhouette that came about in no small part because of Dior's New Look, primarily in the years between '47 and '57, is my favourite of all time) and were it not for some medical issues that can't handle much pressure on my abdominal area, I'd be joining you in the waist wittingly corset club in the quickest of minutes.

    ♥ Jessica

    1. I would wear all manner of uncomfortable undergarments if it meant I could have (and wear) a Bar Suit. So divine.

  4. So the name of this one is from Lucy Corsetery is that it ?
    You should have worn it beside, underneath your tee so we could have tell
    You if indeed it makes a smaller waist but I'm sure it does.
    Love from Paris,


    1. Hi Lorna, I love your blog! I probably should have done a before and after shot, but my neighbor's dog was jumping all over me when I was out on my porch and I didn't feel like dealing with her twice *lol*.

  5. This has a great print, and a cute look, but it's not really what you need if you are wanting a 1950's silhouette. The best example is the "Merry Widow" corset by Warner's from the 50's ( http://www.pinterest.com/pin/219409813069426414/ ) and if you look at this ad, you can see that the front panels are very sheer and the side panels have a spandex stretch. The center back hooks shut with typical wire hook and eyes (like a bra). The lightweight sheer fabric and stretch panels makes them less bulky under fashions from the 50's. You may also want to try a good long line bra with girdle (more popular in the 50s than wearing a corset). A long line bra that fits to the waist will have the strong waistline definition you are looking for (http://www.hourglassangel.com/strapless-longline-bra-by-dominique-6377 )

    1. Thank you so much for the advice! I'll have to look into those. I know a merry widow or something of that style would be better for everyday wear, and I might pick one up. I did find this great video of models putting on foundation garments to wear a New Look style dress, though, and there's definitely a corset involved. It's kind of funny, actually - the American narrator does not sound impressed.