Victorian Secrets: What a Corset Taught Me about the Past, the Present, and Myself by Sarah A. ChrismanVictorian Secrets: What a Corset Taught Me about the Past, the Present, and Myself by Sarah A. Chrisman

Victorian Secrets: What a Corset Taught Me about the Past, the Present, and Myself

bySarah A. Chrisman

Paperback | April 21, 2015

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On Sarah A. Chrisman’s twenty-ninth birthday, her husband, Gabriel, presented her with a corset. The material and the design were breathtakingly beautiful, but her mind immediately filled with unwelcome views. Although she had been in love with the Victorian era all her life, she had specifically asked her husband not to buy her a corset—ever. She’d heard how corsets affected the female body and what they represented, and she wanted none of it.

However, Chrisman agreed to try on the garment . . . and found it surprisingly enjoyable. The corset, she realized, was a tool of empowerment—not oppression. After a year of wearing a corset on a daily basis, her waist had gone from thirty-two inches to twenty-two inches, she was experiencing fewer migraines, and her posture improved. She had successfully transformed her body, her dress, and her lifestyle into that of a Victorian woman—and everyone was asking about it.

In Victorian Secrets, Chrisman explains how a garment from the past led to a change in not only the way she viewed herself, but also the ways she understood the major differences between the cultures of twenty-first-century and nineteenth-century America. The desire to delve further into the Victorian lifestyle provided Chrisman with new insight into issues of body image and how women, past and present, have seen and continue to see themselves.
Sarah A. Chrisman was born in a suburb of Seattle and graduated from the University of Washington in 2002. Alongside her husband, Gabriel, she gives presentations on nineteenth-century clothing, dress, and culture. Chrisman is also the editor of the upcoming True Ladies and Proper Gentlemen. She resides in Port Townsend, Washington.Sue...
Title:Victorian Secrets: What a Corset Taught Me about the Past, the Present, and MyselfFormat:PaperbackDimensions:264 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.75 inPublished:April 21, 2015Publisher:Skyhorse Publishing Inc.Language:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1632206366

ISBN - 13:9781632206367


Editorial Reviews

"In a personal account of the social and historical evolution of the corset, Sarah Chrisman provides a distinct and revisionist analysis of Victorian attire. This book encourages us to put aside our assumptions of the oppressive nature of fashion. Chrisman thoughtfully focuses on the ways women of many classes within society sought to create impressions, still critical in today's political economy." — Christine Ingebritsen, professor, the University of Washington"Reading this book reminded me of just how much what we wear shapes us—both figuratively and literally. . . . Chrisman’s experience pushed me to be not only confident in what I choose to wear, but knowledgeable as to why and how I am choosing to wear it." — WORN Fashion Journal (Toronto)"In Victorian Secrets, Sarah Chrisman shares what it’s like to live a Victorian life in today’s modern world. In an attempt to further understand the nineteenth-century lifestyle and truly connect with the past, she began wearing a corset on a daily basis—and now rarely takes it off! A stately lady with the twenty-two-inch waist, she uses her experiences to teach others about the past, the present, and the future. You won’t regret—or forget—reading this book." — Hilda Meryhew, treasurer and historian, Neely Mansion Association"Wherever Sarah Chrisman goes, she turns heads. Now, you can turn pages to find out why that is. What has been viewed as restrictive has freed her to live a life of her choosing—that elusive thing we all seek. In her fascinating book, whether you agree with her or not, Sarah captures the essence of living a truly authentic life." — Terry Murphy, Seattle TV Producer/Writer"While it seems these days everyone is trying some sort of personal challenge or experiment to blog about it, Chrisman's experience is much more genuine. She didn't challenge herself to 'a year of corset wearing' to advance her fame and fortune. Her memoir of her transformation into a twenty-first-century Victorian lady is candid, funny, and offers new perspectives on the assumptions and biases of our own era and astute observations on timeless human tendencies." — Debra Alderman, The Woman’s Century Club