The Mannequin: A Soulless Salesman

The Mannequin, and it’s growing role as a mainstay in the modern shopping environment and beyond.

A mannequin (also called a manikin or dress form) is essentially a life sized doll used to display merchandise to potential customers in a more realistic and aesthetically appealing manner. Since the industrial revolution, mannequins have been an asset for many shop owners. With unlimited display potential, modern mannequins have enabled today’s consumers to visualize just how their potential purchases would fit on a body or perhaps to see the practicality of the items for sale.

Mannequins however are no longer just for clothing. Today they are used for much more. Artists, tailors, dressmakers, window-dressers and others all make use of the mannequin to enhance the appeal of their products. Mannequins are also key in helping to create a mood. Most people associate mannequins with the display of clothing. However mannequins can also be seated on furniture to create a sense of realism. They can be used to portray a scene by wearing headphones in a music store. Mannequins can be used as merchandise displays. For example putting several bracelets on an arm can show a variety of one product. And yes, they can portray a mood like a picnic in the park.

Mannequin comes from the French word mannequin, which had acquired the meaning “an artist’s jointed model”, which in turn came from the Middle Dutch word manneken, meaning “little man, figurine” (just in case you cared…)

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