Modular Mannequin#

digital bodies

I. About#

My modular mannequin is made up of six parts. The goal for this project was to create a self-supporting that combines the outer shell of a traditional tailor mannequins with the interior supports. And therefore make the inner and outer parts whole.

The modular mannequin requires no support even when using thinner paper like bristol. There are notches of velcro that allow movement and give insight into the process of how it was made. The different parts were sliced through a mesh using a 3D voronoi algorithm in Grasshopper and the cut files were produced in Peperkura.

Production files#



Peparkura cut files#

II. Materials#

III. Process#


I downloaded a mesh from this site.


I then imported the figure into Rhino. To get a cross section of the torso I drew a rectangle solid and used the MeshSplit command.

Then I used the ReduceMesh command to reduce my drawing to 100 polygon count mesh.


Working with Grasshopper I was able to section the reduced mesh into 6 chunks using the native voronoi algorithm.


Working with Pepakura was fairly straight forward, for more information i recommend this tutorial:

Here’s a screen shot of the the interface:


OOF: assembly is done by hand#

It takes a while.

IV. Results#

I am pretty pleased with the mannequin. My only issue is that the figure was slightly larger than life[-size]. This was a consequence of using multiple softwares with different units: Rhino for modeling (cm), Pepakura for cut pattern visualization (mm), and Illustrator for cutting (in). Not exactly human scale

And she’s a little off-balance


Side view

V. Etcetera#

MakeHuman = disappointment#

I had some issues with using MakeHuman. The program took forever to install on my Mac and when I finally exported the figure to an STL it was not in a form of a closed mesh. When I tried reloading the model again to export as an OBJ file –– it wouldn’t load.

The issue was resolved the second time I tried, but I had to create a new model and enter my measurements again – not sure what/who is to blame.

Other design explorations#

I was interested in what makes a human figure recognizable. To what extent can it be abstracted away? So I produced a grasshopper script to create a medial surface inside the mannequin. Generating a supporting frame in a series of steps.


3Gatti Architecture Studio
Clara Davis