After finding one book in the library by Natalie Chanin and making my quilt, "Keystones," my tendency for obsession (call it research) kept me browsing the Alabama Chanin website and ultimately buying the digital pattern for the "corset" as well as The Geometry of Hand-Sewing, the book of stitching patterns, which comes with plastic pre-punched cards to practice stitching or use as a template.
The corset, like all of her patterns, is meant to be hand sewn, the pieces held together with running/straight stitches that are then folded over and stitched down (felled). For the binding, a decorative and stretchy stitch is suggested: the Cretan Stitch. I have a little trouble following hand-drawn diagrams, so I had to study it a while.
I was able to understand the stitch, get the pattern like a dance step, and work on getting the stitches even (not quite there yet), and finish the garment. Good enough for a first try, is my thought. (The Little House pins are small and very sharp, both they and the pin cushion ring are from Kimonomomo).
It also occurred to me that it would be a nice decorative stitch for a side or stab binding of a book. For the garment, the bottom stitch (in my case) wrapped around the raw edge of the neck and arm edgings and just pierced at the fold. For a book, in place of the top set of holes, the thread could wrap around the spine. The example has exaggerated holes for clarity. It would work and look better with a smaller needle and soft covers.
Here's the actual pattern. There are four rows of holes. One row instead of holes could be around the edge of the book (as shown above) or the raw edge of cloth (as shown with the corset).
- lower (or lower middle zig-zag)
- upper (or upper middle zig-zag)
- and bottom