The dressmakers dummy is an essential tool to the professional dressmaker and a handy piece of equipment to have if you sew at home. The dressmaker dummy is a torso. It does not have limbs. It has the trunk of the body. Dressmakers can use these for dresses, skirts, shorts, pants and other wearable garb. The beauty is the dressmaker can visualize the outfit more easily on the dressmakers dummy.
There are several types of dressmaker dummies and the one you select will depend on your budget and needs. The cheapest is the homemade version. With this style you simply wrap duct tape around your clothes while you are wearing them. Then carefully cut the duct tape off. Naturally you will want to have a friend help you make this as it would be hard to duct tape yourself!
Another type of dressmaking dummy is the adjustable model. These are usually very affordable and made of plastic.
You can use these to adjust for different sizes of people. They tend to be very light though so they don’t stand up well and may need to be weighted down. Also since you can’t pin in plastic you have to pin sideways.
Some of the torso dressmaking dummies are fixed to one size. These are used by filling foam into material that has been sized to the individual using it. They can be great if the garments being made are for just one person but if there are multiple people that the dressmaker dummy will be used for it can be a pain to keep resizing it.
Purchasing a dressmakers dummy should be done after careful thought is given to how it will be used. Though you can get a cheap one, it may lead to a lot of frustration. If you plan to use it a lot consider purchasing the best you can afford. You will want to think about fixed size versus adjustable and other factors.
You can pick up a nice dressmakers dummy at an affordable price at stores where dressmaking supplies are sold and sometimes in arts and crafts stores. You can also buy them online. In some cases these can be very heavy so you will want to factor in shipping fees when deciding what the best purchase is.
You will find that the dressmaking dummy is a very useful tool and over the life of this piece of equipment if you stitch a lot you will get a lot of value from it.