Ditto – World’s Best Mannequin

For years now, I have been in search of a better mannequin. Try as I may, due to the lack of stability and fit to my own form, it was impossible to make effective alterations or create custom-fit garments. In addition, all the best mannequin’s were very pricey.

Then, a miracle occurred – I lost over 50 lbs! With this new me came a renewed desire to find the right dress form so that I could create some truly amazing garments.

But how could I do this on a limited budget?

YOU TUBE to the rescue

I checked out YouTube and found a variety of different How-To videos to create a better mannequin.. The one below was one of my favorites:

Youtube Duct Tape Mannequin video

From a variety of different videos and tutorials, I created my own process. Here is the first draft of the plan for my own version. Please note that this original drawing changed in some of the dimensions, but the overall concept was solid.

Quilt retreat and duct tape

Sometimes you need a little help from your friends. In this case another Robin came to my rescue and was eager to wrap me up in tape!

After a lot of tape and even more laughter, we had a shell that I could work with. I actually extended it down past my hips so that I could utilize as much of my form as possible.

Next – Hardware

Shopping at our favorite store – Home Depot!

The trick to the stability of this form is in the frame. We used 2″ PVC with a variety of connectors. A “T” shape is created inside the form itself with drain flange terminations on the neck and both arm holes as well as the bottom of the form. The value to this is that you can use them to connect other elements as well. (Such as hanging arm sections or a head).

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Can you say a better mannequin?

The finished product has made a LOT of difference in the quality of garments I have been able to create.

Working on a new gown

My newest project (previewed here) fits the same on me and the mannequin.

The proof is in the picture – and a perfect fit is worth the effort

In the end, I spent some time and less than $100 to create a DITTO of me that will allow me to get the best fit possible. The gown above was created from some original design and some patterns that were altered for the look I wanted. Soon, I should be able to showcase the creation of this gown as well.

If you like garments, check out a this other post:

Green Fleur Renaissance Gown

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