For a showcase you will never forget; step inside the V&A’S latest spring exhibition ‘Wedding Dresses 1775-2014’. An illustrious collection of over 80 of the most romantic, glamorous and extravagant wedding outfits from the last two centuries, are presented across two floors within the museum. Including garments from recent years such as the purple Vivienne Westwood dress chosen by Dita Von Teese (2005) and Dior outfits worn by Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale (2002). In addition, there are designs from the 1920s and 1930s, which demonstrate the beauty of this genre.
However you choose to think about a wedding, a bride, wearing her dream “once in a lifetime” bespoke dress is one of the most memorable moments of that special day. With this in mind the V&A wanted to represent a real bride by using mannequins which would fit the dresses perfectly. Choosing the right mannequin may seem like a straightforward task for some, but for an exhibition which showcases a chronological spectrum of 200 years’ worth of wedding dresses, the diversity of requirements to be fulfilled is complex. It will come as no surprise then, that proportion>london were the go-to mannequin manufacture for this project, owing to their wealth of experience in bespoke figures and dedication to the task, with as much love to their creations as a bridal wear designer.
The V&A and proportion>london teams worked closely together for many months, coupling their skills to form an ideal marriage in the customisation of female mannequin range, FLUID. Crafting calico mock-up costumes in order to perfect pose and fit, and amending measurements and shape of the figures, were all part of the journey to achieving a mannequin with a flawless silhouette, perfect for the ‘Wedding Dresses 1775-2014’ exhibition.
The FLUID collection was developed by the proportion>london design team, who have captured 25 dynamic poses, each portraying feminine movement infused with character. Initially FLUID was produced to appeal to high-end fashion, however, the unprecedented flexibility of the range has proved, to somewhat blossom into a display kit suitable for a variety of demographic groups.