By Lisa Maurer
I know mannequins……………
Reading the article, Why Some Mannequins Are Turning Blue, Taking a Dive and Putting on Weight by Lorynn Divita in the Shop! Insights newsletter, I felt a need to update this information. As in all industries, there have been major changes in access to materials and the mechanics of designing mannequins. This one truth stays the same: We as an industry can design fantastic new poses, body shapes, and sculpt wonderful and beautiful mannequins. But if the clients don’t order them, we have zero say in what goes to the retail floor. I read this article, and as a mannequin sales person, I felt thrown under the bus a bit. We don’t make the choices once they leave our warehouse on how they are handled.
“Packing pounds” on the mannequins is not the issue. We all have a line of varied sized forms and mannequins. I have a wide range, as do my competitors. The material cost is nominal. But the retailer needs to order them. A size 4 is felt to be a better proportion for clothes than an 8. So many things in our society need to change to change that. I am a plus shopper. I have personally designed several body shapes with my sculpture and take great pride in that. I can design it, produce it, and show it. But if the mass retailers don’t buy them as often that is not because they were unavailable.
“Kardashian Culture” makes us now look to the corset shape. That is fine. I have that. When the clothing designers that buy real estate to have their clothes on the floor of major department stores want that … then the public will be represented.
As for the blue, the swimmers, the yoga, these are also not new. They have been in our showrooms for decades. We sell what the buyers want. We customize and show and innovate. Lorynn [the author of the article] can give me a call. I will catch her up.
Last notes: Plus mannequins are easy to dress the same as a size 4, Barneys Co-Op had blue mannequins for the last 15 years. Mannequins have the same size charts as clothing stores ( Wolf, Stockman, and Superior are also fit forms that the clothes are designed on.)
Lisa Maurer is VP of Siegel & Stockman; works with Superior Model forms, Manex, Wolf, and Cofrad; and represents in the USA Nanasai, Bonami and Hansboot.