Your corset order has arrived. You rip open that box or cardboard priority mail envelope and out you pull beautiful white bones. And there’s the busk too. How pretty it looks!
You examine it’s little bumps attached firmly to the steel bone. The knobs that easily fit through the rounded loops. You figure out how to get the two pieces apart – amazed how the loops are woven over & under the opposite bone. Now they are apart and you set the busk pieces down on the table. You’re not quite ready to put it in your corset yet….
Later you notice the cat (or your toddler) has found a play stick. Uh-oh…. Now how do the two bones with their silver loops and studs go back together?? You know you have to get them matched back up correctly or your corset is going to turn out horrible.
If you’ve ever taken apart your busk bones and jumbled them up before you were able to set them in, here are 3 simple tips to keep you from ever mixing up your loops and studs again (even when they become play toys).
#1 – THE LOOPS ALWAYS GO ON THE RIGHT HAND SIDE
Well… they are always on the right hand side for women. If you are a man who wears a waist slimming corset for Regency, Early Victorian or Late Victorian historical wear, then the loops could be on the left.
This follows the modern dressing method that women’s bodices close right over left. You can easily tell what are the right and wrong side to the loops – the single rivets are on the wrong side, loops on the right side. This allows for the loops to stick out past center front and connect to the studs.
To determine the top of the busk, hold the loop side up to you with the loops pointing toward your left side. Hopefully you know where the top is from here. 🙂
#2 – THE STUDS SIT CLOSER TO CENTER FRONT
When you look at the stud side of a busk you’ll notice that they are not riveted in the center of the bone. They are off-set. How to tell which end is the top is to look at the studs and which edge of the bone they sit closer to. That closer edge is center front.
Now that you know which edge of the bone is center front, hold the stud side up to you and you’ll know what end is up.
#3 – TWO LOOP SETS RIVETED CLOSER TOGETHER SIT AT THE BOTTOM
Not all busks are made like this, but some are and you’ll especially find this on longer busks. The lower two sets of loops & studs are set closer together than the other sets along the bones. These two friends are always on the bottom – making you aware which end is up. 🙂
My favorite trick to always know which end is up on each side of the busk is to mark it immediately after my order arrives. Busks nearly always come fitted together. Don’t take them apart until you mark them!
I determine which end is up by using the above tips. Then I use a felt-tip pen (I like Sharpies as ball-points and pencils don’t work) to mark the busk length at the top of each bone. Now if and when the two pieces ever come apart I don’t have to re-figure which end is up!
Have you ever mixed up busk pieces? Do you have your own trick of finding out which end is the top of each piece?