Thursday, December 25, 2008

Draping the Form - Part 1

Neck and Shoulders Above All

Many people I admire display and photograph their jewelry using forms, body-shaped sculptural sewing or draping forms.

I always thought it looked really great.

I used to have two bamboo torso shapes, but in the several relocations and moves both of them are now with someone else. One was just a torso, and sat on a metal base. The other one was a full length bamboo mannekin from neck to feet, free standing on her own.

I thought I'd be able to easily replace them, but haven't had success in finding something similar to them again.

I didn't have access to a mannekin or bust, cast off from a store or clothing design loft, something like that. And some of the antique sewing forms, although lovely, are out of my price range. If you find one sometime, give in to that impulse and take it home with you.

This made me start thinking about how I could possibly make something myself. Using wire sounded time-consuming, and possibly difficult to solder. And I wanted something that looked soft and padded. The wire dress forms sounded like something hard and firm, not soft and padded.

I mentioned a while back that I had some ideas about how to make one. I gathered up the things I thought I needed, and last weekend I gave my idea a shot.

Trying it out in the basement, I came up with a greek-looking neckline form, draped in cloth with a long thin neck. It looks like it's wearing a toga, wrapped and draped in folds.

I like it, and I think it will be great to dress it with lace and other trim to accentuate the jewelry photos. I want to try it with some lacy shirts or turtlenecks, to see if it can wear clothes and accessories.

Wouldn't that be fun?

While in this process, I photographed the steps I used to make the form you see pictured here. I had been saving up some items that normally would go into the recycle bin, to use to build this lightweight bust.

So, as a little gift to those of you who might be interested in having a bust like this for yourself, I'll be posting a tutorial and photos the next few days.

I hope you are having a lovely day, with feasting, family and friends - Happy Happy Merry Merry!!

1 comment:

Cindy said...

This is fascinating. I love your inventiveness and adventurousness! I had been thinking about ways to make a necklace form, maybe out of wood, but then that could be a lot of work. It will be fun to see how you did this. Thank you for posting it.