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21st Century corsets for the ideal male shape?

This is not about simply trying to help men hide their beer bellies.

13th July 2021

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Nottingham, United Kingdom

Clothing/​Footwear

Nottingham Trent University student Zdenek Lusk is demonstrating how the corset could become a solution for men wanting to achieve a V-shape appearance, with a prototype design turning the garment into an item of streetwear.

“I wanted to take men’s fashion forwards and noticed that many male gym-goers are looking to create big, square shoulders that taper down into the waist,” he said.  “That’s essentially what a corset is creating – it pushes out the shoulders and creates a triangular shape. There’s no reason why this item of clothing cannot be appropriated for men, as I see it. It’s not about me saying that all men should start to wear women’s clothing – far from it. Nor is this about simply trying to help men hide their beer bellies.

“But the corset could serve all men’s interests in the modern day. It’s about accentuating what’s already there and creating a garment which enhances the look many men want.”

Zdenek’s corset is made with fuse tape with plastic boning which is covered in webbing. It features a toggle elastic band at the back, in place of traditional laces. Alongside his white corset, Zdenek has created three toiles made from cotton drill, heavy cotton and utility wear.

“There’s a whole world out there we can explore without losing our identity as men,” said Zdenek, originally from the Czech Republic, but who also spent many years growing up in Northern Ireland. “I think it’s good for people to be proud of their masculinity, but it can be done in a more intelligent way.

“I like the idea of having the corset in a street style with jeans and a bomber jacket, but my aim is to create a concept here for men to use individually in the ways they feel appropriate. You could wear it to a club or out for drinks, for instance, in place of a formal shirt. It is more wearable than people expect and is designed to comfortable.”

Emma Prince, Fashion Design Course Leader at Nottingham Trent University, said:

“Although historically men's corsets were worn discreetly under garments in the 18th and 19th century, Zdenek is looking at the garment in a new way to show styled with streetwear which he developed through his final collection research,”

Zdenek’s work will feature in Nottingham Trent University’s art and design Summer Show, which will see graduating artists and designers displaying their work as part of an online public exhibition at:

www.wearecreativesntu.art

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