Designing Children's Clothes with a 3-Dimensional Parametric Dress Form

Written by: Golubeva T. A., Getmantseva V. V. and Andreeva E.G.

Quality children's clothing should give reliable protection to a child from harmful effects of environment. It should also be comfortable, durable and safe, provide psychological comfort and contribute to natural physical, mental and artistic development, though production and distribution should be economic.

Experience shows that current technologies and ways of production at industrial garment manufactories that correspond to highest standards and use CAD systems [1, 2] cannot always satisfy every customer's demands. Clothing made on an industrial scale often lacks in quality and unique style. Therefore make-to-order companies have such an importance in children's clothing production.

Since the quality of garment depends from design point on how it corresponds with a child's body (it's shape and size) the development of a method of virtual parametric children's clothing design with the help of 3-dimensional parametric child dress form should in many ways accelerate the task of designing new individual garments for children. The development of a 3-dimensional dress form requires methodology for its construction based on biosocial information on child body.

The characteristic feature of a child's body is its constant irregular physiological as well as psychological variability. That is why children's clothing design still remains a byway of consumer goods manufacturing compared to adult clothing. The basic data source for developing a methodology of 3-dimensional interactive child dress form is a mathematical description of child body surface. It is known that a child's posture has a direct influence on his/her body shape. That is why posture divergence from the one applied to clothing design induces major defects to fitting [3].

Generic body shapes are thought to account for 70% of all child population of our country. Though recent research done at MSUDT on Artistic design, styling and technology of wearing apparel department shows that children of pre-school age with standard posture account for a little more than 2/5 of all analyzed body shapes. These findings led to a conclusion that modification of child posture types classification by N. Volyanskyi is advisable for children's clothing design. Recommendations for individual body shape design were developed not only with consideration of spinal contour but also the frontal contour of a child's body (fig. 1, 2).

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Figure 1 - Child posture types based on spinal and frontal contours.

Figure 2 - A drawing that displays an example of child posture types with kyphotic posture type I and with various frontal contour types.

Information on child body contours gained as a result of this research was integrated into the virtual 3-D environment CAD system. The method of 3-dimentional parametric child dress form construction was also developed.

By assigning the necessary sizing characteristics the user of this system obtains in his disposition a 3-D dress form with the proper posture type. The use of parametric model for child body shape provides a possibility of describing quite a number of body shapes with a relatively small number of mathematical objects.

Thus the use of this approach to constructing a 3-D child dress form and childrens garments design makes the division of body shapes on standard and non-standard unnecessary. Therefore the program in development is universal, i.e. suitable for industrial manufactories as well as small businesses with individual approach. That is critical in the current unstable economic situation.


  1. N.N. Razdomakhin Basic theory and methodic support for 3-D clothing design [text]: D.Sc Thesis St Petersburg, 2004.
  2. L.O. Galtsova, V.V. Getmantseva Development trends for 3-D CAD clothing design [text]: Report at Russian conference of young scientists at Vladikavkaz in May, 2010.
  3. E.B. Bulatova Methods for body posture research [text]: Review Moscow, 1975.

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