The idea of
window shopping was the spearhead for getting the mannequins we
know of today. While the idea of displaying the clothing for those that want to
shop is not necessarily a new concept, but the use of the mannequin is
definitely something that is distinctive to the past century. The use of a
mannequin has varied through their long history; however, they were always used
in terms of clothing just not necessarily used as selling tools in displays.
article by Mannequin Madness that was originally found in the
Smithsonian Magazine actually puts a mannequin in King Tut’s Tomb. The article
states that Howard Carter, an Egyptologist, opened the tomb there was a wooden
torso that was actually made to the Pharaoh’s measurements. As old at 1350 BCE
the first mannequin actually describes what the first forms were used for.
would have the dress maker, according to Street Directory, take their measurements and make a
mimic of the royal body. This would allow their clothing to be tailor exactly
to their body dimensions when they were made. That way the royals would have
the best fitting clothing possible without the need for the royals to be
indisposed for many hours at a time for precise measuring.
dressmakers used mannequins in order to properly form the clothing to the
bodies form. This practice is still how many clothing articles are produced to
fit a certain form of the body. The first mannequins after the wood ones were
probably wicker filled with leather.
expanded and clothing was able to be made at high speeds thanks to sewing
machines and electricity. The invention of plate glass allowed for store fronts
to display their goods to draw individuals attentions in the early 1900s during
the Industrial Revolution according to Hopes and Fears.
incorporation of head on the mannequins would display hats of the time that
were worn to accentuate the outfit. Many mannequins could weigh up to 300
pounds at the time. One particular mannequin maker, Pierre Inman made mannequins
that were up to a female size 18. As styles move through the 1900s the designs
of the mannequin changed.
Victorian era, they boasted stiff Victorian poses and big busts, highlighting
the importance of the time. Until The Great War, this design was the
predominant form of the mannequin. Once men were on the front lines however,
flexible mannequins became a necessity because they had to highlight the
working woman, thus becoming more practical.
flapper era, the mannequin got thinner and a little more boyish to accentuate
the flapper style of the time frame. These mannequins
lost 100 pounds with the creation of the papier mache mannequin. With a short
burst of model inspired mannequin designs, with the onset of WWII the mannequin
became a simple wire frame and was smaller to conserve precious materials
needed for the war.