Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
A merry widow is a short, strapless corset with half-cups for the breasts and long garters. It was first made by the lingerie company Maidenform in 1952, to coincide with the 1952 film, The Merry Widow, starring Lana Turner. The original Merry Widow foundation garment was a full-length corselette , cut with attractive panels of black and white lace, incorporating slim panels of black elastic yarn net. A heavy-duty zip was inserted behind a velvet-backed hook-and-eye flange, and the whole garment was lined with nylon voile. Nine long spiral wires were cased in black satin. Turner is reputed to have said, "I am telling you, the Merry Widow was designed by a man. A woman would never do that to another woman." To this day, merry widow is the generic term for a corselette bra in the United States.
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