I think the corset on Amazon looks about right, appearance-wise. with the dress and pauldron and everything, I think it'll look great.
I understand about putting things aside for a while - that's usually how I do it. I get really excited about something for a few weeks, then I'll move onto something else for a while and come back to the first thing a month or two later.
On the corsets, it just takes time to get used to wearing them, as well as having corsets that fit you well (which can be tricky if you have a long or short torso). I've found I can't really wear overbust ones often - I prefer underbust, and certain brands/shapes fit me better than others. I started off with only cinching them in a couple of inches, and just realized over time that I was getting more and more comfortable with a tighter corset.
Also... *pokes thread* Anyone else still around? Anyone working on costumes at the moment, or just taking a breather after con season is mostly over?