When you think of mannequins, your mind is often not drawn to the mannequin itself, but the clothes that it is showcasing. Therefore, when you think of mannequins reflecting trends, you automatically think fashion and style trends. But what about other trends that mannequins can reflect?
In this article, we are going to delve into the various aspects of society that mannequins can reflect. Let’s jump straight in.
First things first: Fashion trends
Mannequins main aim is to showcase clothes that are going to sell. Therefore, you would hope that they (usually) are dressed in clothes that reflect the fashion trends of that season. For example, in 2022 and 2023, mannequins were dressed in chunky knits and boots in shades of burnt orange and forest green during the autumn, and shorts and floaty dresses in pastel colours and patterns when it hit summer.
By dressing mannequins in these ‘trendy’ clothes, shops are able to show their customers what the item is likely to look like on them, therefore improving the possibility of a sale.
Another trend that is often showcased in mannequin form is the ever-changing standards of beauty. Mannequins in the 1980s and 1990s were all thin, able-bodied forms. In fact, a 2017 study found that 100% of female mannequins in UK highstreet stores represented an underweight body size.
Now, however, more and more companies are requesting plus-sized and disabled mannequins to improve diversity and inclusivity of their visual merchandising.
American apparel brand, Target, began adding size-inclusive mannequins to its stores back in 2018, including mannequin forms in UK size 8, 14 and 18 to showcase its activewear brand – All in Motion.
Sportswear brand, Nike, also introduced more inclusive mannequins to their London stores in 2019 to represent physically disabled and plus-sized athletes.
A strive for sustainability
In recent years, the focus on environmentalism and how to become more sustainable has become much wider-spread. In an era where consumers are growing more conscious of the sustainability of their clothes, how do they feel about the mannequins that showcase them?
Sustainable forms are becoming increasingly prevalent in the mannequin industry. Here at Proportion London, we create environmentally-friendly papier-mache bust forms, produced in either raw finish, cream and black calico, or an array of conservation-grade fabrics.
These mannequin forms allow our customers to reflect this societal strive for sustainability both in their garments, and in the mannequins that they display them on.
Why the change?
Mannequins are vehicles to display a store’s core values and beliefs. If customers align with a particular belief, they are more likely to shop in places that represent the same, and so by showcasing these changing societal trends, stores and museums may be more likely to convert their visitors.
How Proportion London can help
Here at Proportion London, we have various different mannequins available, either to buy or hire, depending on your requirements. We also can custom-make mannequins to fit your exact needs, whether they be disabled forms, plus-sized mannequins or require exact body measurements, we also offer bespoke busts using eco-friendly materials.
Contact us today to discuss your requirements and find out how we can help you.