Corsets are more popular than ever, but it's easy to get overwhelmed by all the styles to choose from. Here are three of the most beloved corset styles and how to make the most of them.
Corsets are a centerpiece of gothic style for women. Rooted in the fashion of the romantic past, there is nothing quite so perfect for a gothic party or event as a truly evocative corset. Accordingly, there has been an explosion of style choices for the gothic corset.
Many gothic corsets come in black for obvious reasons, but just as many feature rich reds, purples, blues, black and white together, or a combination of these. Gothic corsets are also available with several different aesthetics in mind. There has been a rise of "gothic cute" pieces that mix playful elements like bows, ribbons or pink material together with the black and leather components for a powerful contrast. At the other end of the spectrum is the very traditional gothic look that involves moodier, more old fashioned styles and elements of velvet and black lace. Bondage influences leather and metal pieces are also popular.
Steampunk style also takes its cues from the past but with a very different vibe. Whereas gothic fashion looks to the 19th century for Romanticism, steampunk looks to it as the Age of Science. Appropriately enough, steampunk corsets combine traditional elements with decorative metal elements including clasps, locks, and cogs. Sometimes the material itself is influenced by steampunk themes and contains faint patterns echoing machinery.
Just as often, however, steampunk corsets stay surprisingly true to Victorian styles featuring rich fabrics and few or no "machine" elements. These pieces are incredibly versatile: worn with goggles and the right hat they look like you've stepped out of a high adventure, but with a change of accessories they could garner compliments at any party, steampunk or not.
Corsets have always held a place in mainstream fashion and they are rising to prominence once again. Fashion corsets today allow women to use the distinctive silhouette of the corset without sticking to its old fashioned roots. They come in every color and style imaginable and are meant to be paired creatively with dresses or blouses for a dashing but feminine look.
Of course, there are many variants on these corset styles and almost endless combinations. What kind of corsets do you like the best?