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1.Q. I have a limited budget and don't know if I should indulge in a corset. I'm thinking about first trying an inexpensive readymade style I've seen for about $50 to $100. Can you help me decide?

A. Let's start with the old adage that you definitely want to avoid when it comes to corsets, waist training, and tight lacing: being "penny wise and pound foolish".

During a recession or tight times, you should buy up, not down. That is because prices are likely to have declined for top quality, and may rise again when the economy recovers. Also you should clearly define your goals for corset-wear, and tend to think long-term, not short-term.

If you just want a "costume-style and quality corset for a one-night stand, then $50 to $100 for a factory-made corset in standard sizes just might suit your needs. You then don't need to be concerned about durability, precise fit, or comfort that much. However, take a look at the white corset pictured on this page NOT made by a ROMANTASY corsetiere. Note the uneven vertical length and severe fabric wrinkling. Note the wrinkled back protector that will surely be uncomfy. Plus, will that uneven, slipshod appearance in the finish be worth what you spend for it? Likely not if you expect to look your best, and surely not if you expect your corset to endure 60 to 90-pounds of waistline pressure when you lace down about 4" for some hours, and you expect an excellent fit that you deserve. For those purposes a corset must be of superior strength in construction and fabric so that fabric does not shred, stretch, or wrinkle, or bones dig in or poke out. It must be of superior and comfortable fit such that it hugs your body, doesn't pinch, damage the skin or press on nerves, roll up at top or bottom edges, or wrinkle.

Consider these wise words by John Ruskin, and English scholar and writer from the 19th Century:

"It is unwise to pay too much, but it is worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money -- that is all. When you pay too little you sometimes lose everything because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot -- It can't be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will have enough to pay for something better."
Delivering top quality and comfort in a corset require an enormous amount of experience in pattern-making and production. At ROMANTASY, each member of our highly-skilled team has from four to 20 years of experience and has produced from 200 to over 1000 custom corsets, sometimes in the same style! -- an experience level that is certainly rare to find in the world around!

Since typically only a half deposit puts you into our valuable production queue with the balance due a few weeks or months later when we are ready to ship, your corset purchase is akin to layaway. Considering our broad range of price points and the quality we deliver, plus followup advice and refurbishment of your corset over the years at cost plus a bit, a corset purchase is truly a modest cost for what you desire and for what you deserve -- only the best!

"The marketplace is full of inferior 'corsets'; they give true corset artistry a bad rap. For those who are serious and interested, high quality corsetry makes this interest quite enjoyable." Bernice (1/8/08)

How Can I Evaluate Cost vs. Quality?
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