Adjustable mannequins aren’t essential when making and designing clothing but they really can help especially if like me you struggle to visualise the 2D element of patterns.
I always like being able to use a dress form to help me visualise the garment in the 3D form as it is intended and will be once made. While this doesn’t require the mannequin to be an adjustable one, I always find it can help massively.
Adjustable mannequins are few and far between but it doesn’t always mean there isn’t any worth buying on the market. On my hunt for the best adjustable mannequins, I came across the Celine Deluxe Dressmakers Dummy and I was blown away.
The Celine Deluxe dummy was by far the most comprehensive adjustable mannequin I have used in my 10+ years of sewing. What worked really well was the initial form was stable, well-built and very easy to use.
First I appreciated that there were 12 dials in total, 3 on each major surface of the mannequin, the front, back and both sides.
These 12 dials of cogs or as they are also known, controlled the measurements of the bust, waist and hips. This made it super easy for me to set my measurements up and have a symmetrical and accurate form to work from.
Another great feature of the mannequin was the adjustable neck, simply push down and twist to widen or narrow the neck.
This was great as this also helped open up the shoulders and chest area to create a more realistic representation of the natural body.
I found the cogs very easy to work and adjust even with one hand while the other was pinning or holding onto fabric etc.
Each of the 12 cogs had measurement guides to follow so you could easily set your model measurements easily and not have to get out a tape measure to check.
The actual form was made from a lightweight plastic-like material covered in thin foam and topped with nylon. The foam layer paired with the soft touch nylon was easy to use, pin through and hold onto.
This made it very easy to work with the dress form, adjust the pins in my work and just be able to use it freely without having to put too much pressure on pinning the fabric to the mannequin.
Another great feature of the mannequin was the stand and base which were very simple and easy to put together.
The stand had 3 different places in which you could adjust the height or even add a bar to make it taller if needed.
The stand also comes with 2 different hemming tools, one of which was already attached and a separate one. The one already attached is very handy to have and easy to use.
The base was easy to set up and adjust the height in multiple places which meant I could maximise the most of the stand when needed. The legs of the base are very similar to a tripod system in that they collapse together so they can be folded away and packed away quickly and easily.
One part of the dressmaker’s dummy I especially liked was the foldable base/stand, it was easy to set up and take down. I appreciate that not all sewists have room to work in and may need to pack away much of their sewing equipment after using it.
This mannequin allowed for that which I found amazing, though the actual form didn’t get any smaller the ability to easily fold away the stand and tuck it away was so helpful.
While I had no major faults with the mannequin there may be some features which you don’t like or find hard to work with.
I did like that at the top of the neck there was a small patch for storing pins while working, I do feel however that it could have been better and more stable as I think over time it would lose its hold on pins and be worn away and useless.