FREE SHIPPING ON U.S. ORDERS $50+

FREE SHIPPING ON U.S. ORDERS $50+

Frequently Asked Questions

Which came first: the corset or the renaissance faire? If a fairy falls in a forest but there’s no one there to hear, does it make a sound? You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers.

Still not satisfied? Start a chat or send us an email. We’ll get right back to you.

We are located in the lush green forests of the Pacific Northwest in the city of Portland, Oregon.

We are located in the lush green forests of the Pacific Northwest in the city of Portland, Oregon.

All of our corsets and made-to-order items are handmade in our studio in Portland, Oregon. Some clothing, jewelry, and other accessories are not made by us, but are designed in collaboration with like-minded designers. We do receive some help in manufacturing these items so that we can focus all of our attention on making corsets.

Since most of our items are handmade, the time it takes to produce your order varies. Our typical processing time for most made-to-measure items is 6-8 weeks. Shipping is an additional 2-4 days after that if you are located in the U.S. Handmade items take special care and attention to produce, so we appreciate your patience in giving us the time it takes to make these items.

If you need your order sooner, you can add rush processing to your order. This is available in variations of 1, 2, 3, 4, or 6 weeks, depending on how soon you need your items. Please note that the rush fee applies to only one item at a time, so if you need to rush multiple items, you will need to purchase multiple rush fees. You can find the listing for the rush fee under “Customizations and Add-Ons.”

Items such as jewelry, belts, and other accessories are ready to ship within 3-5 business days and ship via USPS First Class Mail.

Custom Fit Corsets, Skirts, and Chemises: We do not accept returns or exchanges on custom fit items as these are made especially for you. We are not responsible for items that do not fit because measurements were taken incorrectly. We will make your items according to the measurements you give us, therefore, please be extremely careful when taking your measurements. We want your item to fit as perfectly as you do.

Ready-to-ship and standard sizes corsets: You can exchange your corset for a different size within 30 days of receiving your order. If none of the standard sizes work for you, you can upgrade to a custom fit corset for an additional $50.

Accessories and Ready-to-Ship Clothing Items (Excluding Corsets): Items that are unworn and unused may be returned within 30 days of delivery for a full refund, minus shipping costs. Items that are damaged or show signs of use cannot be refunded. Return shipping is the responsibility of the buyer.

Yes! All of our corsets and skirts can be made in any size. Many of our chemises (excluding cotton chemises) can be made in plus size as well. 

We can accommodate most customizations for an added fee. Submit a request for a custom order through our Custom Requests page  or send us an email directly at hello@frenchmeadowscorsets.com.

Synthetic whalebone is a plastic boning made to mimic the qualities of whalebone or baleen, which was historically used in corsets for hundreds of years. Steel boning is made of steel and is commonly used in corsets today.

There is a common misconception that steel boning is better than plastic or synthetic whalebone boning for use in corsets. We prefer using synthetic whalebone over steel boning because whalebone is lighter, more flexible, and actually molds to the shape of the body over time as it is warmed by body heat. Steel boning is heavier, stiffer, and will never change shape to adjust to your body over time.

Yes, we ship worldwide! Please note that your items may be subject to duties or import taxes depending on your country. If you live in a country where your postal system is not reliable, we recommend you do not select the cheapest shipping option. If you select the a more expensive option, your package will be sent with UPS or Fedex, a more reliable courier for international orders.
While I can make a custom corset or set of stays reversible, I strongly advise against it for several reasons:

1. The boning used in my corsets (synthetic whalebone) has the natural characteristic of molding to the shape of your body over time. That means that as you wear your corset more, it will become more and more comfortable as it adjusts to the shape of your body. If you wore the corset inside out, it would not only reverse that process, but likely become more uncomfortable for you to wear until the boning re-adjusted to your shape.

2. Many of the fabrics I use on the outside of my corsets/stays are delicate, like silks and brocades. Wearing these fabrics next to your body would cause excess rubbing to the fabric surface. This, combined with the addition of your body’s oils and sweat will cause damage to the fabric over time. My corsets/stays are lined with cotton canvas, which is more durable than the outer fabrics I typically use, and is a reliable lining fabric for protecting your corset.
 
If you would still like to have your corset or stays reversible, you can request it for an extra fee by sending me an email.

The main differences between corsets and stays are the era from which they originated, and the silhouette they create.

Corsets extend past the waist and over the hips, creating the curvy, hourglass shape of the Victorian era, and the S-curve shape of the Edwardian era. 

Stays typically end at the waist around the sides and back, with variations on how much the waistline curves down in the front. Stays create a triangular shape, which is more common of Renaissance, Elizabethan, 17th and 18th century silhouettes.

While both corsets and stays are traditionally a type of undergarment and were never worn above the clothing, bodices were a stiff outer jacket-like garment that were worn over corsets or stays. In the technical sense, everything we make at French Meadows would be considered a bodice, as it is meant to be worn over clothing as a fashion item, not necessarily as an undergarment (though it does function as both).

You will see throughout our site that we use the terms corset, stays, and bodice somehwhat interchangeably. That’s because most people are familiar with the term corset and aren’t aware of the differences in terminology. As corsets and stays become more popular in the modern era, the term “corset” is being adapted as more of a blanket term for all of these variations of silhouettes.

Our corsets are not medical corsets and should be used only for fashion and costuming purposes.

Processing Time

All made-to-order items are handmade in Portland, Oregon. This means that your item will take some time for us to make — typically between 6-10 weeks, depending on our current order volume.

You can guarantee your processing time by selecting a Priority Processing Upgrade from the drop-down menu.

Please note that the processing time does not include shipping time. For example, an item purchased today with a 4 week processing time will be shipped 4 weeks from today.

Standard size corsets/stays are considered made-to-order unless otherwise noted. For custom fit items, this processing time begins from the time you submit your measurements. Failure to submit your measurements in a timely manner could result in your order being delayed.

Please note that the estimated delivery date is just an estimate. We only have a small team of fairies to help pattern, cut, sew, and ship your order, so sometimes orders can get delayed by a week or two. If you need your order by an exact date, we highly recommend adding Priority Processing to your order.

*Please note that the estimated delivery date will not update on this page, regardless of which Processing option you select.