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This archived content is from Mary Wilkins’ sewing and quilting message board “Sew What’s New,” which was retired in August 2007. It is being provided by “Sew What’s Up,” which serves as the new home for many members of “Sew What’s New.”
From: MaryW
Date: 11-05-2004, 10:40 AM (1 of 12)
I got this from another list. Picture this.

A Uniquely You dress form consists of a foam core shaped
like a well-endowed woman, and a cloth cover which you sew to fit your own
dimensions, then stuff the foam core inside, yielding a dressmaker's form with your
own measurements.

This is the lady's story.

I recently bought the Uniquely You dressform, and my mother agreed to fit the
cover for me. Well, about 1/3 of the way through the fitting, she is running
into problems she didn't expect, and doesn't feel secure trying to finish the
project. Can anyone give advice?

Okay, I think I'm brave enough now to tell everyone about my experiences with
"Uniquely You". I ordered mine from National Thread and Supply Company (in
Atlanta, Georgia) who, in turn, get their supply directly from the UY folks but are
able to discount it quite a bit. I ordered the "extra small" form and from the
measurement range given it should've been just fine.

Unfortunately for me, I ordered at the time that the U.Y. folks were trying out a new
foam extrusion mix. Somehow I got one of the "test" dummies instead of the real
thing. The problem with the new mix was that it discoloured and expanded (greatly)
when faced with humidity. I didn't know that when I got my dummy; I just knew it
looked a bit mottled and way too big to "squish" down to my size.

In fact, the dummy had a 44 DD bust! I called the UY company about this but they
assured me that I must be wrong, that the bust couldn't be that big and that even if it
was it would shrink once the cover was applied. They explained that the foam was
much bigger than the cover, but that the foam would compress greatly and that I
should just go ahead and make my cover and all would become clear soon. They
explained that a lot of force was needed to compress their foam, but compress it
would and I should just try it and see.

After I got off the phone, I remeasured the bust and it was, indeed, 44DD (it was
HUGE). It looked like some bizarre, life-sized headless Barbie. Encouraged by the
phone conversation with the UY people, I started sewing up my cover. I fitted the top
half, on me, just fine. I zipped it off and tried to zip it on the dummy. It wouldn't go;
it wouldn't squish.

I asked my husband for help. Eventually we had the dummy on the floor with my
husband kneeling on top of the breasts and me pushing from underneath the cover
trying to compress everything into place. Then we started wondering what this must
look like to our neighbours, so I got up and closed the curtains! :-) Continuing our
wrestling match, we managed to stuff MOST of the breasts into the cover, but we
couldn't, for the life of us, compress them so they all fit into the cover.

We managed to get the cover zipped into place but there was "breasts" popping out
all over the place! We decided to see if we could squish the breasts into place any
further. My husband pushed from above while I pushed from below. Whammo, side
seams gave away and we had breast "leaking" out the side. We tried again. And again.
It was a hot and humid summer day and we were not enjoying this strenuous activity
very much.

Finally we achieved some measure of success, with the cover "centered" over massive
"breasts" peering around all sides. We stood back. BLAMMMO! The cover seams all
gave way at once and blew off the dummy, leaving "Barbie" once again standing
naked before us. Not only that, but the "breasts" appeared to have grown! They
certainly looked bigger to me, and a check with the measuring tape now clocked them
at 50 DD!! Help, it's Barbie from Hell! :-D

We called UY and complained strenously this time. I pointed out that my dummy
was "growing". They put the owner/creator on the phone and he realized that we had
gotten a "bad" dummy, that is, one made with the bad experimental foam. The
discolouration was the key to recognition. He asked me to send it back to him for
inspection and replacement.

You'd think that would be the end of it, wouldn't you? Well, think again! :-) I
packaged the dummy up, in the original box, and sent it off UPS-insured. I got a call
a couple days later because UY had *refused* my shipment! I couldn't believe it!
After they had asked me to send it back directly to them! I couldn't figure out what
must've gone wrong so called them back, immediately. The told me they didn't take
damaged goods. What?! What did they mean "damaged" goods? I sent back an intact
product! It was a defective product, but then they knew that as they were the ones
who had asked me to send it to them for inspection. Unfortunately the person who
handled the shipment was away and all the woman on the phone knew was that the
shipment had been refused due to "damage", so I would have to wait a few days for
the original person to return to explain why she refused my shipment.

I got my answer a couple days later when a "hit and run" UPS driver lobbed a
grotesquely-deformed (previously-a-box) shape over my fence and ran for the truck.
It seems that somewhere along the line the package must've fallen off the truck and
been backed over several times by a truck. The rectangular box was now a triangle
and the remains of the dummy had tire tracks on it. Not only that, but it seems it had
expanded some more, in transit, and one breast had blown a hole in the box and was
now sitting there "staring" at the world rather ominously. The other breast had been
ripped off, mostly, and was attached to the dummy by only a wee bit of foam.
Numerous other cuts and scrapes told tales of some type of weird raging battle that
had been fought between this dummy and who-knows-what! :-)

I called up UPS wondering how the heck they managed to turn my package into the
deformity before me and they offered to send another driver out to pick it up for
inspection. By this time I wasn't about to trust another "ride" on the truck, so I
insisted that they send out an inspector directly to inspect the damage here. Under the
circumstances, and considering the amount of money involved, they agreed.

When the UPS claims person came out to inspect the damage she asked me what on
earth this "thing" was used for. She treated it like she thought she could get Bubonic
Plague from it. She started shaking her head and complaining about all the weird sex
toys she was forced to inspect now that she was based out here in San Francisco and
not back in good old Illinois... I tried to explain that it was a manequin for sewing
and fitting clothes, not some "sex toy". She didn't believe me. She wrote it up as
"inflatable foam doll" and treated it like it had some disease she didn't want to catch.

She had to remove the dummy from the box, and in order to do that you had to
compress the one "escaped" breast to get it back through the hole so the rest of the
dummy could come out of the box. She didn't want to touch the breast. No sirree!
She was NOT going to touch another breast, not even a foam one! It was very
amusing to watch. She honestly believed it was some kind of sex toy and I was some
kind of pervert... :-D I finally got the dummy out of the box for her, but even then
she wouldn't touch it to inspect the damage. :-) It was very embarrassing! She
quickly agreed that UPS would give me a full refund and I don't think I've seen
anyone leave my house so quickly... :-D

Anyway, all's well that ends well, and I got my money back in full from UPS. I
didn't have the nerve to try another "Uniquely You". I bought a Dritz Double. I don't
really need the "fits your shape" capability of UY, as I'm pretty well the industry
standard shape anyway. Yes, I'm one of the rare few who can use patterns directly
from the envelope and have them fit perfectly. Do the Dritz Double turned out to be
just fine for me.

I hope this helps someone! :-)
owner/editor of Sew Whats New
User: MaryW
Member since: 06-23-2005
Total posts: 2542
From: Sewhappie
Date: 11-05-2004, 02:34 PM (2 of 12)
I have never laughed so hard!!!!!!
User: Sewhappie
Member since: 10-27-2001
Total posts: 1427
From: beachgirl
Date: 11-05-2004, 08:35 PM (3 of 12)
I am so sorry that something like that happened to you BUT I could just visualize all that like a cartoon. If you'd only video'd all that & sent it to America's funniest home videos. No one would have believed it was true but you'd have won for sure. I'm still laughing !! Sorry.
User: beachgirl
Member since: 08-31-2004
Total posts: 615
From: abear
Date: 11-06-2004, 05:20 AM (4 of 12)
Omg! it is four in the morning and I am sitting laughing my behind off! That is the funniest story!!
User: abear
Member since: 08-08-2004
Total posts: 27
From: mommydionne
Date: 11-06-2004, 09:10 AM (5 of 12)
That is hilarious, I think you should send you story to uniquely you and see if you can get a freebie!!!
User: mommydionne
Member since: 01-08-2004
Total posts: 838
From: DorothyL
Date: 11-06-2004, 10:45 AM (6 of 12)
Jeanette -
I was thinking the same thing about sending a copy to Uniquely You. Also, I'd mention the story is making the rounds on boards like this. Maybe they would look into their customer service. I'm willing to bet this writer wasn't as amused while all this was going on as she sounds in the retelling.
User: DorothyL
Member since: 12-09-2002
Total posts: 3883
From: dyna
Date: 11-08-2004, 05:46 PM (7 of 12)
Thank you for the best belly laugh I've had in a long time. I've got to send this on to my friends and family.

Still Smiling
User: dyna
Member since: 11-08-2004
Total posts: 21
From: paroper
Date: 11-09-2004, 10:54 AM (8 of 12)
My husband thinks that you should send it in to Readers' Digest...Life in the US section. He thinks that you'll get a little money for your story.

Bernina 200e, Artista V5 Designer Plus, Explorations, Magic Box, Bernina 2000DE & 335 Bernette Serger, Bernina 1530 Sewing Machine, Bernina 1300 DC Overlock (with coverstitch)
User: paroper
Member since: 02-03-2004
Total posts: 3775
From: Magot
Date: 11-09-2004, 11:57 AM (9 of 12)
It does paint a picture doesn't it! Remember people, it wasn't Mary's story but one she picked up so she won't have the rights to it :wink:

You can just imagine it eaking it's way out of the packaging, boob first, think, it is october 31st in the darkened post room when an ominous creaking can be heard from the rough human shaped parcel....
love and kisses, Jan
Cells a Speciality
DNA to order.
User: Magot
Member since: 12-22-2002
Total posts: 3626
From: DorothyL
Date: 11-10-2004, 07:45 AM (10 of 12)
Oh Jan,
What a movie it would make. Instead of The BLOB it would be The ... Nevermind.
User: DorothyL
Member since: 12-09-2002
Total posts: 3883
From: paroper
Date: 11-10-2004, 07:59 AM (11 of 12)
If it had been left alone longer, I wonder how much it could have grown. I can just see it towering over the Empire State Bldg with the National Guard protecting New York. It does inspire horror movies, doesn't it?

Bernina 200e, Artista V5 Designer Plus, Explorations, Magic Box, Bernina 2000DE & 335 Bernette Serger, Bernina 1530 Sewing Machine, Bernina 1300 DC Overlock (with coverstitch)
User: paroper
Member since: 02-03-2004
Total posts: 3775
From: Magot
Date: 11-10-2004, 09:35 AM (12 of 12)
Godzilla versus ?
kinda reminds me of the Staypuff Marshmallow Man!
love and kisses, Jan
Cells a Speciality
DNA to order.
User: Magot
Member since: 12-22-2002
Total posts: 3626
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