Early 1820’s metal grommets were not…

strong or durable yet, but they were stronger than hand sewn eyelets!  Corsets were not yet capable of tight cinching in the ’20’s and ’30’s.

Of course, that being the late Regency period, most corsets were only used for smoothing and slimming, and many were corded, not boned, so there was no need for more than “gentle lacing” of the bodice or corset.

(And 1830 approx. corded (strings run through channels instead of metal or bone) wedding corset with the new and improved metal version of grommet.. which rusted)