Spirella

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For the bacterium with a similar name, see spirillum.
Advertisement drawing of a Spirella corsetier delivering and adjusting in a customer's home.

Spirella was a company which manufactured made-to-measure corsets. It was founded on a patent of dressbone,[1] for bustles (Spirella 1 and Spirella 2), but started corset manufacture in 1904.

Its most popular corset was the Model 305. Spirella products were not sold in shops. Instead, female staff called corsetiers were sent to customer's homes.

After an ill-fated attempt to market garments of "Stub-tex", a form of Gore-Tex being used under licence from W. L. Gore & Associates, the company was sold in 1985 to the rival Spencers of Banbury and finally closed in July 1989.

Locations[edit]

A 180 degree panoramic view of Oxford Circus, looking south down Regent Street. Spirella House is the second building from the left fronting onto the circus.

At its height the company had factories in the USA (New Haven, Connecticut, Meadville, Pennsylvania), the UK (the Spirella Building in Letchworth) and Sweden (Malmö). Their flagship location was Spirella House on Oxford Circus, London.

The western wing of the Spirella Building in Letchworth

The Spirella Building was created between 1912 and 1920 . Kincaid commissioned architect Cecil Hignett to design a state-of-the art factory of great beauty. The factory was completed in 1920, Kincaid had achieved his goal; The Spirella Building provided the perfect environment for his workers to be happy, contented and highly productive, and was worthy of being called "The Factory of Beauty". In 1979 it was Grade ll* listed.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Julie A. Lauffenberger, "Baleen in Museum Collections", Journal of the American Institute for Conservation (1993), Volume 32, Number 3 (pp. 213 to 230) [1]
  2. ^ English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (161840)". Images of England. 

External links[edit]