Culture Trips

How the controversial corset made a comeback

The corset scene does drive home a truth – that women such as the unmarried Bridgertons and Featheringtons did what they had to (or were told to), when “climbing socially and marrying well” was their best chance of improving their lot. “A blossoming of the bosom,” was the effect costume designer, Ellen Mirojnick, sought to create for the Bridgerton’s female cast, from the young lead, Daphne, to the more mature Lady Danbury.

“That was the emphasis of the woman’s body at the time, your eye went directly to the top of her décolletage,” says Mirojnick. In creating the “1813 silhouette”, the corsets were key. For the job, they hired Mr Pearl, whose name is sacrosanct in corsetry. On hearing she had him on her team of more than 200 artisans, Mirojnick says she “almost fainted. It was a gift from the gods. [Mr Pearl] is the foremost corset maker in the world today”.

Mr Pearl (born Mark Erskine-Pullin) has worked with UK performance artist Leigh Bowery at London’s Royal Opera House, and with fashion designer Thierry Mugler. He also made Kylie Minogue’s dazzling corset costume from a John Galliano design for her 2006 Showgirl tour.

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