As everyone knows, I prefer the flat pattern method of patternmaking … especially considering I work mostly with stretch fabrics. I tend to think draping is for those who can’t visualise a three dimensional form in two dimensions. Well that really isn’t very fair of me. Not everyone is a geometric and mathematical nerd. I must admit to using a body form now and then … but it’s not really something I tend to use for ready to wear so I never bothered to buy one in any kind of standard size like all those professional designers do.
Karen asked me how I could so quickly brush aside the need for one when I’d never actually used one in standard sizing. I rattled off the fast excuse of …
me: “Well darling there is no such thing as a standard size and besides the professional one’s are way too expensive to justify changing my techniques”.
Again she came back with the well thought out response of …
her: “If nobody wants them then why do they make them?”
me: “They are fine if you are happy to stick with the manufacturers idea of what a standard size is.”
her: “Why don’t they adjust?”
me: “The cheap home sewist versions do adjust to the shape of the person, but professional ready to wear types are of a fixed proportion and can only be bought in set sizes.”
her: “Isn’t that what you do though?”
her: “So because you do something slightly different then they are wrong and you are right?”
About this point in time I was thinking she’s just trying to be smart but I found her challenge quite fair …
me: “Well I don’t think they, whoever they is, are wrong … just different?”
her: “If I bought you one would you use it?”
OK, I thought, she’s been planning something all along and she’s fishing for information on what to buy … let’s see if she’s done her research and realises exactly how expensive they are!
me: “I’ve never really thought about it … I’d certainly like to give it a go but I really wouldn’t be bothered with the adjustable types … I’d want to be able to stick pins straight in and have something strong and sturdy.”
her: “I figured that. They sell those on Amazon. Do you want one?”
Cough, splutter … well duh … of course I want one if she’s offering! But I did just got beaten at my own game. I really don’t deserve her do I? So off we went to look at PGM body forms on Amazon. These are awesome … they have legs! … of course the only real problem is deciding which standard size to buy.
I usually work in an Australian size 10 and grade up or down from there … it’s what I’m used to. There isn’t a direct equivalent to my idea of an Australian size 10 however. See the following table …
|Aus Metric 10||Aus Imp 10||Dummy 4||Dummy 6|
|Waist to Knee||58.5cm||23in||22.38in||22.68in|
The first two columns of measurements are my idea of an Australian size 10. The second two columns are the closest PGM dummies in USA size 4 and 6. I’m leaning toward the Size 6 dummy but as I’m not used to selecting these things, could someone offer their opinion on which to select? I’m quite used to adjustables at college and I know how to pad up … but when it comes to professional fixed dummies … wll I’ve only ever used what was already supplied by the employer … I’ve never had to actually buy one … oh how ashamed am I right now! I figure, my alternative fashion experiment may well be the perfect opportunity to … err… try something new.