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Company Proposes to Bring Custom Dress Forms to the Stitchy Masses With 3D Scanning Tech

And a bit of elbow grease.


Calling all seamstresses, hobbyists, LARPers, and cosplayers! DittoForms wants to offer dress forms patterned precisely on their users bodies, for roughly the same price of a basic pro dress form.

Now let’s make the distinction before anybody gets confused: DittoForms isn’t 3D printing a dress form (although I can see that being a pretty decent use of the tech… provided those forms were pretty hollow so that they don’t weigh a ton). Instead they’re using 3D scanning technology to create a snapshot of a customer’s size and shape, from mid-thigh (for pants and skirt fittings) to neck, and down to the beginning of the arm (to retain the shape of the shoulders).

Then a computer slices the shape horizontally into about eighty cross-sections, and prints the shape of those sections on to pieces of paper. The paper is glued to foam sheets, those foam sheets are cut into the shapes, and then those shapes are stacked and glued together to make the dressform. A layer of batting, a cover, and the application of alignment lines and the entirely customized dress form is done. One of the benefits of the process is that you only have to stand still for a few minutes, and don’t have to be wrapped up in tape or plaster as with other homegrown methods of creating custom dress forms.

One form will run you $495, but the good news is you can knock more than $100 off that price with the application of some elbow grease: cutting and assembling the foam slices with guidance from the DittoForms folks. The bad news is that at the moment DittoForms can only make their product available to folks who are able to stop by their Washington D.C. location, the Bits of Thread sewing studio. They say:

We’re working on that… baby steps. If we see that there is enough demand for this product we will look at expanding scanning stations to other locations, so please contact us so we know you want it.

Having to show up and build your own form might sound a bit sketchy, but Bits of Thread is a program that seems dedicated to community outreach. They stress in their description of DittoForms that the way the process works now isn’t necessarily the way it’ll always work: just the way it needs to work in order to get bigger and serve more people.

So what I’m saying is, if there’s a D.C. local 3D printer out there, maybe you should reach out for a partnership…

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Susana Polo thought she'd get her Creative Writing degree from Oberlin, work a crap job, and fake it until she made it into comics. Instead she stumbled into a great job: founding and running this very website (she's Editor at Large now, very fancy). She's spoken at events like Geek Girl Con, New York Comic Con, and Comic Book City Con, wants to get a Batwoman tattoo and write a graphic novel, and one of her canine teeth is in backwards.