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With a tailor-made dress form made to your exact personal measurements and body shape, you can unstitch, drape and sew as a professional. All you need to make it: a half-day, a helper and lot’s of tape! Read on to see how…


- A stand (for example, microphone stand)
- 2-3 rolls of duct tape
- Cardboard for the lower end
- An old, hip-length shirt or dress
- Filling
- Scissors
- Clear plastic film for the neck (saran or cling wrap)
- Glue

Step 1

Step 1: Put on the long-sleeved T-shirt or dress. A garment as close as possible to the body is best suited. Remember that the shirt is cut up, so take an old one that you no longer need or want.

Step 2

Step 2: If you have a shirt that is low cut and without a roll collar, protect the cleavage and the neck with fresh plastic film.

Step 3

Step 3: Glue a strip of tape directly under your chest around the body. Pull the tape taut so it feels like a second skin on your body, but not too tight so it doesn’t alter your measurements.

Step 4

Step 4: Defining the breast: To keep the chest area from being flattened, but keep its natural shape, work crosswise. Start under the left chest and pull the strip along the inside of the chest to the right shoulder. Proceed on the other side the same way.

Step 5

Step 5: Continue working in the chest area with obliquely glued strips until everything is covered.

Step 6

Step 6: Work from the chest downwards with horizontal, parallel strips. Glue 2 to 3 layers in the front and back so that the necessary stability can be achieved.

Step 7

Step 7: Again, protect the neck with glue, before gluing, then glue short strips horizontally around the round. Do not make them too tight!

Step 8

Step 8: The finished taped look from the front…

Step 9

Step 9: … and from the back.

Step 10

Step 10: Mark the natural waist to perfect later. Bend slightly to the side. Where a crease occurs in the tape, mark a point with the marker. Just the same way on the other side. Then connect both points to a line that runs around the waist.

Step 11

Step 11: With bandage scissors (has a dull tip, so there is no danger of injury) cut the back along the back center (including the shirt).

Step 12

Step 12: Carefully pull the sleeve forward so that it retains its shape as much as possible.

Step 13

Step 13: Use a short strip of adhesive tape to glue the seam again.

Step 14

Step 14: Glue the neck opening.

Step 15

Step 15: Also close both arm openings with the tape, allowing the form to be stuffed.

Step 16

Step 16: Tightly fill the torso with filling wool (or plastic padding). It should really be as compact as possible, so that you can later stick pins and fabric to the bust.

Step 17

Step 17: Place the bust on the cardboard, the outline for the ground record. Cut a cross for the stand in the center of the ground. Stick the cardboard to the bust, push the stand through the cross into the bust, if necessary fix it.




  • Bespoke_large

    Mar 22, 2017, 09.29 PMby Belinda B

    Really bad for the environment. Loved the concept, but can you find better materials?

    5 Replies
    • Logo4957b_large

      Mar 22, 2017, 10.54 PMby jenss-1

      I have seen something similar out of paper mache, but its more complicated and definitely more messy. Non-plastic tape will not hold the shape, but I have reused newspaper and such for the stuffing.

    • Bu_large

      Mar 24, 2017, 07.52 PMby tyui2

      Here is my dress-form tutorial, no need for plastic tape

    • Autumn_by_bionic_woman-d4be3b6_large

      Mar 27, 2017, 04.44 PMby vinabelm


    • 21486_ea79a_large

      Mar 27, 2017, 07.18 PMby phillsantos72


    • Images-mf-209844-15884_large

      Mar 28, 2017, 06.17 AMby robertfring53


  • Missing

    Mar 22, 2017, 11.17 AMby danutzafly

    make sure not to cut your bra when taking it off

    1 Reply
    • Meg_healy_burdastyle_90_90_large

      Mar 22, 2017, 05.31 PMby MegH

      Haha totally!

  • Missing

    Mar 21, 2017, 11.22 PMby Autore

    Will try this for sure! Amazing idea :)

  • Missing

    Mar 21, 2017, 02.46 AMby Tash MiChelle

    Thank you for this tutorial. I’m very new to sewing so any little thing I can use to make this experience easier to me will be less overbearing lol.

  • 03003e1f_2_large

    Mar 20, 2017, 02.56 AMby sewing fanatic

    brilliant idea for a mannequin made to measure, i probs should try this one day =)

  • Image_large

    Mar 18, 2017, 07.57 PMby calatrava92


  • Burdacom_logo_90_clip_large

    Mar 18, 2017, 01.35 PMby Stacyco

    Good idea for personal mannequin!

  • Missing

    Mar 17, 2017, 07.22 PMby Tlbzy

  • Logo4957b_large

    Mar 17, 2017, 04.13 PMby jenss-1

    I’ve made one of these and used it for years. A few points from my experience… To prevent bust from collapsing, use a firmer or stiff filling. I used that spray foam stuff. Styrofoam spheres from a craft store would probably work well also. I also put some firmer fill (foam again) in the shoulder line to maintain that shape. I did not use batting, but stuffed the rest with old newspaper (economical reuse). Pack in a lot of filling to keep the form from collapsing. Use more tape than you think you need, and when applying it to the body, make it a little bit tight. It does seem to stretch out a bit. For me, cheapo duck tape was better than the expensive stuff. ( I would avoid a certain U.S. brand that begins with a “G.” It is thicker and the ends tended to peel up.) Measure the form afterward to compare it with your measurements, and if it has stretched out, you can trim, take out a wedge, or make some other adjustment. Observe the shoulders above. I first made the mistake of adding on more there, so I had a bit of the upper arm. That does not work very well for fitting under the arm and I later trimmed it back to the edge of the should curve. I did not make a stand but instead I put a hanger in the top with the hook coming out of the neck. It’s lasted about 5 years, and I’m probably due to make another. Happy taping!

    3 Replies
    • Missing

      Mar 17, 2017, 06.18 PMby lindaslee

      Thank you so much for sharing your experience!

    • St_patty_90x90_large

      Mar 18, 2017, 05.06 PMby Mokara

      Thank you for the tips! I’m so happy I read your comments.

    • Missing

      Mar 18, 2017, 08.37 PMby okeeg8tor

      Excellent ideas, I had the same issues years ago with the bust caving in..I cave up and purchased the pinnable mannequins on Amazon for around 75.00 and then the padding to fit…I have about 5 different sizes in my studio now from child to adult, but you are very right…the bust and shoulders to collapse and the spray foam does help…it also makes a great use for a mold to iron breast cups when sewing ;) And it is nice to find another lover of PVC for the work area lol I use it for everything!

    • This is a question
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