Plus-Size Fashion Problem Solved By 2 Brainy Students

Well this is awesome - two students from Cornell University have created a mannequin modeled after real plus sized bodies, building the most accurate curvy shape the fashion industry has ever used.

That sounds a little strange (why would an accurate plus-size mannequin be revolutionary?) but until now, most mannequins for larger clothes were made by just magnifying the general proportions of smaller mannequins. That means the proportions of plus-sized mannequins have been pretty far from the real proportions of your average plus-sized bod.


Sophomores Brandon Wen and Laura Zwanziger are Cornell fashion design students who created the first authentic size 24 mannequin. They had set out to design a plus-size women’s collection but soon ran into a huge problem: they couldn't find a mannequin with a realistic full figure. Apparently, those didn’t really exist.

Instead of giving up and using enlarged versions of smaller sizes, Wen and Zwanziger built a more pear-shaped mannequin that better represents the median plus-size woman's curves. While every body is different, the pair used thousands (thousands!) of 3D body imaging scans gathered by Cornell’s Fiber Science & Apparel Design to find the most accurate shape of a plus-sized body.

With plus-size women holding over 28 percent of purchasing power on the market, the new mannequin is an innovative step towards body diversity in retail clothing. Wen and Zwanziger unveiled their collection, Rubens’ Women, on May 13. It featured four jackets, a skirt, and a pair of pants designed to accentuate curves, not hide them (halleloo).

The name of the collection itself calls for some serious compliments: it’s inspired by Baroque painter Rubens’ preference to paint plus-size figures.

It’s unknown whether the awesome duo will sell their mannequin to brands in the future, but isn't their drive to go beyond industry expectations encouraging to see? More mannequins like Wen and Zwanziger’s would mean more realistic bodies showcasing clothes as they're meant to fit. It could even help designers better create clothing to fit real women's shapes. That’s a makeover worth fighting for.



Source: Yahoo! Shine

Photos via The Cut and The Cornell Chronicle.

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