Cathie and Bob Jung - College Days l
Queen of Hearts
Queen Of Hearts
True Story Of Cathy Jung And Her Incredible Figure
WHO MEASURES 39”-15”-39”?
The Queen of Hearts, of course. She’s had the patience,
persistence and the urging of her husband Bob to slowly
reduce her waist an incredible ELEVEN INCHES!
Cathy Jung is not diminutive above and below this tiny stem
waist either: her bust and hips both measure 39 inches!
That’s a 24” differential between bust, waist and hip
measurements, and we don’t know anyone else in the world who
can match it. So Cathy is our undisputed “Queen”.
In 1992, twenty-four-hour-a-day tightlacing is a lifestyle
for Cathy and Bob. But it wasn’t always that way. They were
married back in 1959. Bob loved the look of a nipped-in
waist. It was popular then with “inch reducing” waist
nippers advertised and sold everywhere. Some of the most
famous of these figure shaping garments were the “Merry
Widow” and “Lady Marlene". Cathy, like so many young women
in ‘50s prom dresses, wore them too. But Bob wanted more for
his bride. So, with Cathy’s approval, a real lacing corset
was purchased for the wedding.
Cathy was a stunning, small-waisted bride 5’6” tall, 130
pounds (for the record, PPI of 1.96). She told me she went
back recently to see if the corset could be used for her
daughter’s wedding too. It had a 22” waist when laced
closed. So Cathy entered her marriage with a 26” waist
whittled down to 22”. And that was just the start. But
during many years that followed the wedding, serious corset
training was only a dream in the back of Bob’s head. There
was a career to pursue—and the raising of a family—two sons
and a daughter.
Cathy in a 16" Zoers Corset.
1985: SERIOUS TRAINING
I first met Cathy and Bob in 1985, just at the start of what
was to be a seven year adventure in reducing Cathy’s waist
seven inches beyond what it was on her wedding day. She told
me they had visited England in 1983. On that trip they met
several women who wore corsets ALL the time (including one
who laced to 16”), some tight lacing enthusiasts (who had a
formed a tightlacing society called “Les Gracieuses Modernes”)
and Diane Medeq, a corsetier of some repute.
These connections made the dream of a small-waisted Cathy
seem more like a real possibility. As Bob said, “We lived in
a small community in eastern America where tightlacing and
wasp waists were unknown. We always considered it too
different before our trip. But we met a couple of people
(into tightlacing) who looked like they were relatively
normal otherwise—and that’s how it started.”
After the trip, Cathy and Bob were also freed of another
consideration. Their daughter, who objected to a mother in
bizarre fashions, left home. Cathy said, “She was very
opinionated about what I was wearing and what I looked like
and would say ‘you’re not wearing this to MY school!’ and
things like that.” So in 1985, with visions of returning to
England for the corset society’s annual ball, Cathy ordered
a 22” black leather corset from Ruth at B.R.CREATIONS. A
curious twist of fate. On her return from the post office
with the new corset, her puppy ripped open the package and
chewed a hole in the garment! Heartbreak.
Instead of waiting for a mail order repair, Cathy & Bob
decided to visit California, see Ruth and the Ol’ Corsetier
in person. That’s how we first met. Cathy got her corset
back and ordered another one the same size. On my advice,
she also saw Mr. S Leather in San Francisco and got a wide
training belt. Serious waist reduction was about to begin.
For the first year, Cathy put on the 22” leather corset only
in the late afternoon, for the evening home with Bob, and
wore the wide belt to sleep in every night. She alternated
between a snug belt and corsets, but did not wear a reducing
garment most of the workday. Cathy & Bob did go to their
first Bal Des Gracieuses the end of that year—Cathy in 22”
During the second year of training, more B.R. leather
corsets were ordered, this time with 21” waists. Now Cathy
began to wear corsets most of the day and also started to
sleep in them every night. Valuing the need for custom
corsets to fit her unusual figure (small rib cage), later in
the year she ordered corsets from other sources too (some
with 20” waists). Cathy found that corsets from different
corsetiers felt different and fit differently with specific
clothing. So variety was required at this stage of training.
The goal for the next Bal Des Gracieuses was a 20” waist.
Getting a little smaller for each ball would soon become a
tradition for Cathy & Bob.
For their second Bal Des Gracieuses in 1986, the target of a
20” waist was not only met, but exceeded. Cathy wore a
German corset that was 19” on the inside and slightly over
20” on the outside when laced closed. After the 1986 ball,
corset wearing became a full-time affair for Cathy. More
corsets were ordered and trained into. When they reached an
18” waist (inside the corset) they decided to stop the
laces the 16" Zoers corset closed.
She then measure a scant
5 1/2" wide at the front.
But resolves like stopping at 18” have a way of dissolving
for devout corset enthusiasts like Cathy & Bob. For the
third ball, Cathy again appeared smaller than the year
before. Now having the 18” waist achieved that year. For the
fourth and fifth ball, more slight reductions of about
one-half inch. By the sixth ball, in 1990, Cathy was laced
to 17” and almost able to lace to 16”. By the seventh ball
in 1991, 16” was a reality for Cathy and still smaller
corsets were ordered and tried.
their next visit to the Ol’ Corsetier’s in March this year,
Cathy was able to quite comfortably lace into 17” and 16”
corsets for the photos you see with this article. For the
Grand Finale, Cathy brought out a very special, very long
Van der Klis (of Amsterdam) corset with NO front busk and NO
backlacing eyelets. Bob and I struggled to pull it closed
(see photos). We had to make an eyehook to work the waist
section down because this corset had no back puller loops
either! This corset is so small in the waist (supposed to be
15”), it was difficult for us to get an accurate measurement
of Cathy’s true waist size inside it. The best we can
estimate is between 15.25” and 15.5". For all practical
purposes, I’m rounding out the fractions and calling it 15".
I know that by the time Bob & Cathy settle down from the
eighth Bal Des Gracieuses, the figure will be an undisputed
into 15" corset that has no front busk or
eyelets at the back. Holding loose corset.
her breath before the lacing ordeal begins.
Bob draws the
long lacing closer and closer while Cathy kneels
on a chair.
astoni- shing proportions when the corset is
finally closed and tied off.
In conclusion, I feel BP&MPQ readers should know more about
Bob & Cathy’s adoption of tightlacing as a lifestyle. So
here goes. On the phone yesterday, I asked Cathy what her
uncorseted waist now measures just after she takes off one
of her smallest corsets (my criteria for amount of body
modification that has taken place). She replied, “When I
take off my Van der Klis Waspie with a 15.5” waist, I’m 19".
That’s a big difference from Cathy’s starting point of 26".
Seven inch reduction in normal waist size, 10.5” reduction
I asked Bob & Cathy if they were aware they had achieved
some major body modification. Cathy replied, “No. We had no
real intention of modifying my body when we started. We just
wanted to make my waist smaller.” In reality, what Bob &
Cathy have done equals or exceeds the modification achieved
by Ethel Granger of 13” waist fame (for years undisputed
small waist champion, see Guinness Book of World Records,
1959 and the website of Ethel Granger). Ethei started with a
23” waist which was 16” when released from her smallest
corset: a SEVEN inch reduction. Cathy started with a 26”
waist which is 19” when released from her smallest corset: A
Seven inch reduction. Ethel corsetted her waist from 23” to
13”: a TEN inch reduction.
Cathy tries on Ethel Granger's 15"black
corset in 1992. Ethel Granger herself in white 15" corset in
I asked Cathy about the “downside” of
tight lacing, the negatives. She replied, “Of course it’s
hard to get around and do a lot of normal things. . . like
driving a car. I can’t see well or react well. Or you can
only sit comfortably in certain chairs. And then there’s the
social problem. Not everyone understands what we’re doing
and thinks a small waist is beautiful. And it takes a lot of
time. You know, dressing and undressing and taking care of
my body. I have skin problems".
I asked Bob & Cathy about the continuity of the tight
lacing, about "gaps” and “breaks". Bob replied, “She’s worn
them night and day now for about five years". Cathy added,
“No breaks. Not really. First of all, I don’t have any
clothes to wear without a corset. Also I find I’m more
comfortable with some support when I’m active or working.
The only time I make an exception is when we’re out boating
or fishing, when it’s very hot. Then the corset is very
irritating so I take it off for an hour or two. But I always
put it back on at the end of the outing, even if I don’t
want to. I don’t want to lose ground. it’s a mixed
I asked two last questions. “Cathy, how do you feel about
yourself, your image?” She answered, “At first I was very
self-conscious about my figure. But not anymore. When I take
the corset off I seem to expand very quickly. When I look in
the mirror, from the front, I don’t see much difference".
suggested that perhaps this was an illusion because her
modification had been done so slowly and over a long period
of time. Finally I asked her, “Do you intend to go smaller?”
“Possibly, a little bit. Maybe another inch?”