Corset hardware, however, arrived on Friday, and the corset is finished. Here's how it happened:
First up, the beautiful black velvet with little white gems on it is a stretch velvet. Stretch is not so good for corsets, so I added some heat-bond interfacing, and some ugly quilter's cotton I had lying around, for stability, to each individual piece, and stitched around the edges to hold it in place.
Sewed together the outside.
Added some mis-matched decorative diamonds on the front center panels. Sorry about the washed out photos - the lighting in my workshop is great for working, but terrible for photography.
On the front, stitched the lining and fronts together along the center opening, leaving gaps for the loop side of the busk. Inserted the loop side and stitched it down. Poked holes with an awl for the studs, shoved them through, and stitched that down, too.
So, I stitched up the side seams, slipped the rest of the boning into the channels on the lining, laced it up and did a trial fitting. It was a bit too loose (I've lost some weight since the pattern was drafted for me originally), so I took in the sides a little.
The fit was just about perfect, so I added binding to the top and bottom edges to finish it.
And here's the finished corset.
I've started on the tutu to go with the corset - I've got the basque made (basically a crotch-length, high-waisted, very tight mini skirt), and have sewn on the first three rows of frills. I'll try to remember to take some photos of it soon.