|8||CORSETS AND CLOSE-FITTING PATTERNS||§7|
18. Some women contend that corsets are uncomfortable and for this reason refrain from wearing them around the house. A woman who feels this way about corsets should resolve to accustom herself to wearing a corset every day, for no woman can appear at her best at any public gathering or when entertaining friends if she is uncomfortable, and uncomfortable she is bound to be if she wears her corset only a short time each day or at intervals. A good plan for a person so inclined is to procure a moderately soft corset that is not too long for her figure and then to wear it loose; that is, not so tight as to make her conscious of the corset. By wearing a corset of this kind continuously every day for a short period of time she will soon be able to wear with perfect freedom corsets that have better lines and are a little closer fitting; also, she will be well repaid for her efforts.
Every woman should wear a corset all day long if she can. By so doing her clothes will appear to much better advantage than would otherwise be the case, and she will come to assume a trim, neat appearance. However, she should not wear a corset so constantly nor so tight that she must depend on it for support. For a woman to be entirely comfortable, the muscles around her waist must be kept normal and strong, and if she finds that they rely on the corset for support she should practice some exercises that will strengthen them.
19. There are no doubt some women of the opinion that they can economize on their corsets for the reason that the corsets are worn under cover. Such a practice is all well and good for the small, slender woman, but to get corsets that are correct in length, weight, and shape women who are the least bit inclined to stoutness must pay more for their corsets than do their slender sisters. However, it is real economy to buy good corsets. Such corsets not only wear much longer than cheap ones, but give greater comfort and better lines; also, as all good corsets are stiffened with bones that do not rust, and as those made of such material as coutil and sateen may be laundered very nicely, it is possible to continue wearing them until they are no longer fit for use.
20. Washing a Corset.—To keep corsets clean and fresh, it is advisable to wash them from time to time. However, corsets of expensive material or of colored material should not be washed; rather, they should be dry-cleaned or French-cleaned in order to keep the material new and fresh in appearance. To wash a corset, proceed as follows:
Lay the corset out on a clean table or in a wash tub, and then scrub it with a brush and good, hot soap suds. A corset should not be boiled, because boiling will ruin the elastic in the hose supporters; nor should it be run through a clothes wringer for fear of injuring the clasps. After scrubbing it well, rinse it several times in order to remove all the suds. When the corset is rinsed, pull and stretch it lengthwise so that there will be no wrinkles in the stays; then hang it in the sun, and when it is almost dry put it on for a few minutes so as to stretch it into correct shape. Finally, hang it on a line and allow it to remain there until it is perfectly dry, when it will be ready for wear.