So, the boning turned up just in time for the weekend, both the steel and the reed. I found that because I would be a bit short on the steel boning, I would use some reed as well. I ended up making the whole mid-front panel boned with reed, and I'm very pleased with how it turned out. I also handstitched eyelets for the front and back opening (they need a final finish, but they'll do for now) and cut the pieces that will become the shoulder straps.
Now, I had hoped to finish these off over the weekend, but no plan survives contact with the enemy... I was getting closer to the binding stage, I realized that some of the boning would cause discomfort and I had to re-do the boning on most of back section, plus allow a lower line underneath the arm. I've decided that, although it will take longer, I will try to do reed boning on this section instead of steel, and I'm currently working on that for the left section. Once that's done on both sides, I can start attatching the shoulder straps and the binding. If I'm not running short on time, I will sort out the lining as well.
Back before re-doing it:
Back after I starte re-doing it: