Wednesday, August 25, 2010

My Sewing Double in the Works

I've been eying the adjustable dressforms every time I go to Hancocks for some time now, and really wanting one every time I have to fit a shirt or dress with a zipper and Daniel has to help me. I tried to just bite the bullet and buy one about a month ago when I **thought** Hancock was having a sale on them, only they weren't on sale when I got to the store so I talked myself out of it.

Part of the argument to not buy one yet was the fact that I am curvy, so just adjusting to my numbers would still give a fairly skewed impression of "me."

Then, I started looking into the homemade doubles. I read about the duct tape one, the brown paper tape, and on and on. I wasn't excited enough about any of the methods to jump into it until I came across a plaster cast method. Basically, you use the plaster strips that casts are made from to make a mold of yourself, then use your desired method to make a dummy. I was stoked.

We went out Sunday and bought about 10 yards of 3" rolled gauze and the smaller bucket of plaster of paris....and we used every last bit of it.

  • Standing in a big cardboard box in the kitchen wearing just a bra and undies (and shoes and socks to keep my feet comfy on the hard floor), I had Daniel wrap me in a firm, but not tight, layer of plastic wrap (I helped out along the squishier areas holding things in place so they didn't get smushed).
  • He then whipped up a batch of plaster, cut some strips of gauze, and went to work starting at the top. Since gauze is flexible, getting good curves around my curves wasn't a problem. The plaster of paris was the quick dry (20-30 minutes) kind, so he had to work very quickly covering me in the gauze. Having another set of hands would have been seriously helpful.
  • We let it dry, then he cut me out with pruning shears (a little stressful).
  • The whole process probably took about 45 minutes all together.

(If you could see my feet, you would see the shoes and socks, with little plastic wrap booties)

As a claustrophobic, this was not exactly the most pleasant experience of my life. I kind of had the sensation of being buried alive in something clear (since I could obviously see), especially once the plaster started to dry and I could feel the weight and wasn't able to move. Daniel did well keeping me calm while it was still wet so I could keep my breathing steady and not alter the mold (or pass out, of course, since sitting down wasn't an option).

After cutting me out, we noticed a little spot that was missed in the shoulder, but we'll just tape over it when we fill it. Now all we have to do is go buy some foam insulation to fill it with! Once that's set, I'm just going to buy some fleshy colored tricot or ribbed knit to cover it with, then come up with a name :) Suggestions??

1 comment:

  1. I would love to have been a fly on the wall with this project. It must have been one interesting day. I just want to know if Daniel threatened not to cut it off of you once it dried? I'm pretty sure that would have caused some real panic on your part:)
    Hope it works out as planned.