Reed between the lines

The round reed boning from Cane & Reed arrived today. Oh dear! It's giving me a panic. To start with 1/4" is a lot thicker than it seems when you see it in person. It's more like 4 strands of the Hemp cord. And it's stiff. Very stiff and hard. But pleasantly light weight. I can't see the stays being heavy, more rigid though. There is no way I'll need or even want a busk with this. I'm understanding why the Empress had me do the fitting with cardboard. Even the heaviest canvas couldn't hold a candle to how stiff this reed will make the final stays.

Now I just need to get up the courage to cut the fabric & start putting these together.