Friday, January 4, 2008

Mannequin Shopping

I've been debating whether or not to use a mannequin as a model for my clothing accessories, hats in particular. Here's a list of the options I've found and my thoughts on each... (feel free to comment please).

Foam Heads - I see lots of styrofoam heads out there modelling hats these days.
Pros - They're cheap and light-weight, and their stark white faces certainly don't compete with the garment. Its a cheap, sanitary, no-frills option to display hats.
Cons - They are bald, and adding a wig doesn't make them look any more human, just makes them look like a wig stand. The baldy head makes the hats appear larger than the actual adult fit. Not a great option for modeling scarves either.
Retro/Cartoonish/Costume Heads - An artful, funky approach.
Pros - They're definitely different and fun if that's what you're looking for! :P
Cons - They are usually colorful and busy, and can easily be distracting to the buyer. They obviously are not a true representation of a human head. Some are downright frightening.

Cosmetology Head Models - Not a fan of these for my purposes...

Pros -I can't think of any :(

Cons - The face is not a selling point on most of these heads. They have natural human hair (or yak hair) that is usually in dire need of a make-over, hence their purpose. They also don't have much of a neck base because they are designed to be clamped to the back of a hair dresser's chair. Most of what I've seen looks like someone ripped a head off of a giant, worn-out Barbie doll. Next...

Department Store Fiberglass - Probably the most variety...

Pros - Reasonably priced, you can find quality heads for under $30.00 USD. A huge selection of faces and skin tones; coupled with a mannequin wig (another $12.00-$30.00) which really customizes the look. Do they look real? No, but they are good enough for Saks Fifth Ave!
Cons - Shipping these babies can run $15.00-$25.00. If you're in the metro NY area, take a drive to Rox Studio Mannequin Warehouse- 105-25 180 Street, Jamaica, NY. They are open to the public Mon-Fri. Call ahead to check their hours of operation 917-459-8873.
Photogenic Quality - These mannequins are extremely realistic.
Pros - The faces have a subtle expression and soft vinyl skin (like the kind found on quality baby dolls) mimics the way natural skin would reflect light. They photograph remarkably well. With the right wig, you're talking Madame Tussaud.
Cons - much more expensive than fiberglass.


Callista said...

i guess i missed that one lol, i like th last one you put up for he heads....your blog rocks! thanks for looking at mine :)