It's taken a bit of time, but I can reveal the secrets on how to DIY your own Elastic Harness now. You will need to rely on looking at the pictures to get this look as it is pretty difficult to explain in words. If I give measurements, please do not use them exactly as everyone will have different measurements depending on their size and how they want it to fit. All of the elastic should be slightly stretched when fit around the body to give it that body hugging look. It would be easiest if you had a mannequin that is your size to fit and adjust the harness, otherwise you will need your best buddy to help you out with all the pinning and fitting. Good luck!
You will need -
- Approximately 3m of 2cm wide elastic
- Approximately 1m of 2.5cm wide elastic
- 1 metal zip, around 15cm long (it should fit from the lower part of your chest to your waist)
- sewing pins
- black thread
- a lighter
- sewing machine (you can hand stitch this, but it will be much neater/sturdier/easier to use a machine)
1. Cut the thicker 2.5cm elastic into 2 pieces that are as long as the length of your zip. After you cut every strip of elastic, lightly singe the edges with a lighter to prevent it from fraying. Pin your 2 strips of elastic on either side of the zip, making sure they're even and stitch them down on the inner edge onto the zip.
2. Using the thicker elastic for the waist and thinner elastic for the chest, wrap it around your torso and secure on the top and bottom of the zip. The zip should sit between the lower part of your chest and your waist. Make sure there's a bit of tension in the elastic so the harness fits snuggly against the body. Place the ends of the elastic under the zip piece for a neat finish. I like to sew a shape like the one below to make it really secure.
3. This is where it is handy to have a mannequin or a friend to help you. Starting from the back, pin down some thinner elastic under the waist strap. Then pin it under the chest strap and stretch it over the shoulder to pin it under the zip piece. Repeat on the other side and make sure they're both even. Before you sew it together, try it on to make sure it is comfortable to put on and take off.
4. Taking some thinner elastic, pin it to the side of your waist strap then chest strap (where a shirt's side seam would be). Pull the elastic on a diagonal to pin it onto the shoulder strap, this should create a triangle bra shape. Because of the slight tension in the elastic, it should also slightly curve the shoulder strap. Do the same to the other side and try it on to make sure both sides are symmetrical and the desired shape before you sew it together.
5. Now place the thinner elastic on a diagonal line on both sides, from the bottom of the side straps to the zip piece, sitting just under the chest strap and sew in place. Again, secure the elastic ends under the other straps for a nice finish. I sewed a tidy triangle shape onto the elastic to firmly secure these ends.
6. Finally, take the thinner elastic and secure it half way down one diagonal strap and stretch it all the way around under all the straps to secure it on the other side. Wear it and check it's even before sewing it altogether.
And there you have it! A cool unique accessory to play around with your outfits. You can also try being more adventurous with the strap designs or even try embellishing the harness with some studs. Have fun!