Choosing a dress form

- - Draping

For those of you ready to take the plunge and purchase your first dress form, our newest video is for you. And for those of you who have been draping, but would like to be well-versed in the technical names for commonly used measurements on the dress form, our newest video is you as well. In fact, even a seasoned designer will benefit from watching Introduction to Dress Forms.

Though videos at the University of Fashion are categorized as Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced, each video is packed full of information that is sure to teach even an experienced designer something new. In Introduction to Dress Forms, instructor Francesca Sterlacci (and founder of U of F) gives you a peek into what goes into construction of a dress form.

Did you know that all dress forms are not created equal? Take a look at Wolf Dress Forms’ construction process below:

Then compare Alvanon’s construction process here:

Though you will certainly learn what to look for when purchasing a dress form for design, we will also teach you the difference between a dress form and a mannequin and what it means to select a pinnable dress form. Take a look at the different types of dress forms that are on the market for your use in our latest video below.

While we are on the topic of dress forms and mannequins, take a look at this and this and even this. Remember, there is a difference between a dress form and a mannequin, but ultimately, they are both parts of fashion industry standards. Recently, there has been much press surrounding body types both on the runway and represented in retail stores. Where do you fall in terms of these debates? And how can a designer accommodate the needs of his/her clients? Please feel free to weigh in on this fashion food for thought.

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Kara Laricks is a regular contributor to the University of Fashion. She’s also a New York based women's wear and accessories designer. As the first winner of NBC's Fashion Star, Kara has designed collections for H&M, Macy's and Saks Fifth Avenue. Her masculine meets feminine line, Kara Laricks, debuted at New York Fashion Week in 2012 and her S/S 2013 collection sold exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue. Kara's designs have been featured on the Today Show and HBO's True Blood as well as covered in Women's Wear Daily and on Kara holds Master's degrees in both Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Kansas and in Fashion Design from the Academy of Art in San Francisco. An educator turned designer, Kara is dedicated to supporting emerging designers and inspiring others to follow where dreams lead.