I got the basic directions and idea from here: http://www.taunton.com/threads/pages/t00002.asp
But since they didn't really go into that much detail, I've made an Instructable (my first! yippee!) since I was originally looking for one here anyway.
Making the dress form is pretty easy, and only took us about 2 hours to complete.
Step 1: What you need
- a roll of kraft paper gum tape (its the kind with dry glue on one side)
I got mine relatively cheaply at Staples. To make my form (I am a size 4), we used less than half the roll, if you are larger, you will need a bit more tape.
If you can't find the paper tape, I think you can also use duct tape, but you will need a few rolls to make the layers stiffer since it is flexible. The beauty of using the paper tape is that it shapes itself after drying like instant paper mache strips. And later on you can put pins through it without lots of sticky residue getting on your sewing pins.
- scissors (make sure they can cut through fabric)
- a rag or sponge to wet the tape, maybe a bowl to hold a little water (or just do it by the sink, and keep the rag damp)
- an old turtleneck or fitted t-shirt that you are willing to sacrifice to this project
The shirt should be as close fitting as possible and not too thick or textured. Crew neck or turtleneck are ideal, and the length should not be too short. If you don't have a turtleneck or longer shirt, don't fret, it is easy to extend the length of the form to cover your hips and neck.
- someone to help you
- a hanger (to make a hanging dressform)
- old pillow or polyfil to stuff it when finished, or a bag of packing peanuts, packing foam or a few cans of spray foam (if you want to stuff/coat the inside for reinforcement- not necessary since it holds itself in shape but maybe it keeps the thing more durable)
- old lamp base, tripod or music stand (to make a standing dressform)