Patterns and Books for 18th Century Stays

Simplicity 8579 Stays, 1700 – 1770.

With the release of our book, The American Duchess Guide to 18th Century Dressmaking, we’ve given you patterns and instructions for a great many lovely 18th century gowns, accessories, and skirt supports.

…but one thing we did *not* give you in the book were patterns for stays. Stays are a complex subject that warrants an entire how-to book of its own. We knew their absence would be vexing, so to not leave you totally in the lurch for what-stays-when-how-where, here is my list of 18th century stay patterns sorted by time period:

Printed Patterns for 18th Century Stays

1700 – 1770 – Conical Silhouette

1770 – 1790 – Prow Front Stays

1790s – Transitional Stays

Tight Lacing, or Fashion Before Ease – Bowles & Carver after John Collet, 1777, The British Museum 1935,0522.1.227

Books With Patterns for 18th Century Stays

18th Century Stays by Redthreaded – Ready Made!

Other Resources for 18th Century Stays

  • Redthreaded – High-quality ready-made stays for the general 18th century, 1780s, and 1790s.
  • Period Corsets – High quality ready-made stays for general 18th century, 1725, 1770s, and 1790s.
  • Custom Corset Pattern Generator – Use your measurements to draft a custom pattern. This is originally for Elizabethan bodies but with some ingenuity can be used to made an 18th century pattern. Experiment!
  • Kleidung um 1800 – Sabine’s study (and patterns) on 1790s stays. 1, 2


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