At first glance this seems like a really good idea, an adjustable dress form that could be used by women of varying sizes and ages. The examples show a slim teenager, a young woman, and their mother all using the same device. The bust, waist, and hips have expanded a good seven to eight inches from youth to maturity, supposedly showing the changes in a woman’s body as she ages.
But wait! If you chart the measurements closely, you will see that the proportions remain pretty much the same. Young Joan, whose measurements are 31” x 23” x 33” has an eight inch difference between her bust and waist and a ten inch difference between her waist and hip. Ruth, with the measurements of 34” x 24” x 35.5” has a ten inch difference between bust and waist, with a 11.5 difference between waist and hip.
The woman who interests me the most is Mrs. Marsh, no first name mentioned, with her “matronly figure.” She measures up at 38” x 30.5” x 40”. Although the numbers have increased, she has almost the proportions as her youngest daughter Joan, with 7.5” between bust and waist and 9.5” between waist and hip. In other words, Mrs. March still has a version of an hour glass silhouette. Isn’t this a false assumption, since many women gain weight in their middle as they age?
Of course, most women in the forties and fifties wore girdles that would probably cinch in their waists. But for many, it would take some serious shape wear to create a waist that was a seven to eight inches smaller than the bust. In my case, for example, the difference is only four inches. Without extra padding around the waist, this dress form would be very difficult for me to use.