I was looking through your blog, and in a reply to an ask you said "Orchard Corset already gives way too much leeway with their corset sizing". Care to elaborate?
Hi! In the past year or so, I’ve received email after email from various people saying “Orchard Corset recommended a size 6/8/10 inches smaller than my natural waist, but that feels like too much of a jump for me. Do I have to go that small?”
It’s my personal opinion that 8 inches waist reduction is too much for a beginner. To my knowledge, they are the only OTR company that makes these recommendations; other brands I’ve ordered from have all recommended a reduction of 4-6 inches depending on experience level, compressibility, whether you’re full-figured, and whether the corset is designed to be worn with a 2” gap in the back instead of fully closed.
Back when I was still offering personalized consultations, I would typically recommend one size, and then if that client consults Orchard Corset, they would come back consistently recommending 1-2 sizes (2-4 inches) smaller than what I had recommended. It became tiring.
This video discusses the measurements I take (and the measurements that I request from others) and compare with a size chart to determine an appropriate size. Note that I don’t only choose a size based on the natural waist, but I also consider the ribcage and the iliac crest circumference, as well as torso length. OC used to have their rib/hip spring measurements on each product page, but it seems they’ve since removed them.
Ideally, a corset’s top and bottom edges should match the wearer’s ribcage and hip circumference measurements, respectively (if the corset is intended to be worn completely closed). Only compressing the waist area; not gaping away from the body too much, and certainly not spilling over the top or compressing the hips.
The latter (compression of the hips/pelvis) is a common result of wearing an OTR corset too small in size for your body. There are nerves and blood vessels that run over the iliac crest and their compression can result in pain, tingling and numbness. I’ve received emails from a few people who’ve had to take some time off from their OC corset so a nerve around their hip could fully heal and feel normal again. A well-fitting corset worn properly should never cause this; it is not a normal part of waist training. And it’s sad that their customers have to turn to me for answers after this sort of injury has already happened.