In Person

  • Class: Personalized Victorian Corset with Mela (April 27th & 28th, plus fitting appt.)

    $ 375.00

    Have you always wanted a corset that was tailored to your body?  A well-fitted corset makes a world of difference, and you will make one fitted to your own body in this 2-day class.

    Mela will create a personalized mock-up for each student, which she will then fit to your body. You will use that as a pattern to make your own *custom fitted* mid Victorian corset, appropriate for 1850s through 1880s. Not only will you finish the workshop with a wearable corset, you will also have a usable pattern and the skills to make many more corsets in the future.

    Class time:

    Fitting at Renaissance Fabrics shop, 6200 Center Street #G-1, 6200 Center St #1, Clayton, CA 94517
    Friday, April 26, 2024: 5 pm – 8 pm (Fitting is Required for all participants, can be scheduled earlier in the week as well)

    Workshop held at Odd Fellows Lodge, 4349 Cowell Rd, Concord, CA 94518
    Saturday, April 27, 2024: 10 am – 1 pm, 2 pm – 6 pm (Arrival at 9:30 am)
    Sunday, April 28, 2024: 10 am – 1 pm, 2 pm – 6 pm (Arrival at 9:30 am)

    This class is for intermediate or advanced sewists. No Beginners, please. We will move quickly. Open to all genders, aged 16 and up.

    Students will provide:

    • Sewing machine
    • Basic sewing kit (thimble, needles, thread, pins and scissors)
    • Reading glasses, notebook and pencil
    • One to 1.5 yards of a woven, stable fashion fabric, if desired. Washable fabrics will need to be washed, and all fabrics need to be pressed in advance of class.
    • Measurements provided to Mela at least 3 weeks prior to workshop, including above bust, bust, below bust, waist, 3″ below waist, 6″ below waist, bust point to bust point and shoulder to bust point, and bra size including cup. Students will also tell Mela if they have any asymmetry in their bodies at this time.
    • A chemise or shift to wear under the corset during fittings.
    • Any padding to be used underneath the corset – bust improvers, hip pads, etc.

    Instructor will provide:

    • Corset Kit for each student, including 1- 1/2 yards white coutil, cotton sateen in black or white, front busk closure, grommets, bias tape, white metal bones for back lacing area, industrial zip ties for rest of corset, white thread, corset lace for back lacing, cord for front tie, petersham ribbon for waist support, bone casing, fitting canvas “muslin” created for each student based on measurements sent, written instructions, size 16 machine needles.
    • Grommet setter, awls, mallets, board to insert grommets on, lacing strips for fitting, curved cutters for zip ties, nail files for zip ties.

    About the Instructor:

    Mela Hoyt-Heydon is a union costume designer, retired Professor/Chairman of the Theatre Arts Dept. at Fullerton College, founding member of both Costumers Guild West and Costume College, Dean of Costume College twice and Past President of Costumer’s Guild West. She is a member of Costume Society of America, USITT, and was a member of the Smithsonian’s Copp Family Textiles Research Team. She owns Atelier Mela, which creates millinery and costumes primarily for the entertainment industry. In 2020, she and her team’s hats and “shop dressing” were featured in the opening of Tokyo Disneyland’s new Fantasyland. In 2045, over 100 of her designs and fabrications will be featured in the Frozen, Peter Pan and Tangled areas of the new Fantasy Springs located in Tokyo Disney Sea. Mela received her MFA in design from the University of California, Irvine; studied art history at Kings College, London and trained under Rose Corey, milliner to the Queen Mum in London. Her millinery shop is located in the Willamette Heritage Center in Salem Oregon.

    $375 for 14 hours of instruction, plus personalized pattern and corset kit.

    Class size is limited to 18 people.  Reserve your spot now!

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