What can I use instead of a mannequin?

Creating a great retail shopping experience for your customers is essential if you want to attract them through the door and keep them coming back. Many fashion retailers operate on a tight budget, especially small boutiques.

The good news is that using a little imagination can go a long way in creating an amazing visual display for your shop.

The time-honoured way of displaying those hot new fashion items would, of course, be to use a professional mannequin. Unfortunately, these can be quite costly especially if you want more than one in your shop to create something like a window display.

Here we look at some more affordable alternatives that you can use in your store. We suggest that you use a mix of display ideas, always looking at the world from your customers’ point of view. You’ll be surprised what can be achieved!

Displays don’t have to use traditional mannequins. There are plenty of options from dress forms and ghost mannequins to shopping baskets and dump bins that work. Combined or in isolation, they offer you the chance to build spaces that catch the eye and sell more items.

1. Partial mannequins

Depending on what you sell in your store, you might not want to invest everything you have in a whole mannequin. Not to worry, you can also get quality partial mannequins at a fraction of the price.

For example, if you deal in colourful socks to stockings, a foot and ankle form that you can display in your windows or on the counter is a great solution. If you sell bracelets or rings, a mannequin of the hand and wrist will suffice and will add dynamism to your store.

2. Professional dress forms

The most obvious and widely used alternative to the store mannequin is the dress form. You may well see these in businesses such as dressmakers and tailors. They’re usually a headless dummy which the tailor can use to create a jacket or dress.

These also tend to be set on wheels so can be moved to different parts of your store as and when needed. Another benefit is that you can get dress forms in different designs and colours to match your branding. They’re ideal for showing off dresses, blouses and shirts (you can even get some that are perfect for showing off pants).

These types of display can be used almost anywhere instore, even in window areas where passersby can see them. Because they’re mobile, you have plenty of different options that certainly match anything you can do with a traditional mannequin.

3. Ghost mannequins

Ghost mannequins are displays that fit inside the clothes giving you an almost ‘invisible man’ effect. If you’re searching for a more professional touch in-store, these give you a lot of different options. Ghost mannequins come with detachable body parts and are great if you’re also selling online and want to create images for your products.

You can see more of the item you’re displaying with a ghost mannequin, such as the collar labels. What many store owners like about this sort of display is that it gives them a clean look that easily aligns with their brand. There’s also more flexibility with the visuals than you get with a traditional mannequin.

4. Shopping baskets or dump bins

You shouldn’t underestimate the benefits of shopping baskets or dump bins in your store. The great thing about these is that they can be used to display a wide range of products and give you the chance to create several multi-level areas that drive interest.

Shopping baskets and dump bins are often used for sale items but they’re also perfect for new clothing products that you have in store. They can be branded or have colourful designs, encouraging people to step forward and take a much closer look.

Because you have items that are loose in the basket or bin, of course, customers are more likely to pick them up. People love to rummage, it’s in our DNA. Shopping baskets and dump bins also don’t have to be on the floor or a counter. They can be attached to the walls to create intriguing little areas for your store.

5. Coat hangers

Coat hangers when arranged properly can certainly drive interest and make an amazing display for your fashion store. There is a range of different coat hanger designs that you can use in-store. Costumers, for example, have more shape and add dimension to your clothing displays.

You can also use coat hangers practically anywhere in your shop. They don’t just have to hang from rails. A little imagination here can go a long, long way. What about hanging your new, amazing branded clothing from the ceiling?

The challenge with using coat hangers is how to make your display look dynamic and not cluttered. This can take a little time and effort but it’s certainly cheaper than many other options.

6. Clothes rails

The same challenge arises with clothes rails. Some business owners make the mistake of trying to get as many clothes as they can onto them. The customers then have to fight to see what an item is and get it out to have a closer look.

Clothes rails come in different shapes and sizes from circular to rectangular and everything in between. Our advice is to reduce the clutter on your rails and go for more eye-catching displays. Like coat hangers, clothes rails are a relatively cheap investment and, once organised in-store, they can be extremely engaging.

Why buy from Valentino’s?

If you are searching for alternatives to mannequins, we stock a wide variety of clothes rails, hangers, tailor’s dummies, baskets and drop bins. We have everything your retail store needs to help it stand out.

At Valentino’s Displays, we understand that many retailers operate to tight budgets. That’s why we work hard to supply high-quality products at a great price. We’re able to deliver anywhere in the UK all with a no-quibble 14-day money-back guarantee if you’re not satisfied.

What can I use instead of a mannequin? Valentino's Displays Blog
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What are the best coat hangers?

Valentino’s Displays provides all sorts of coat hangers and as industry experts and market leaders and premier coat hanger suppliers UK, we endeavour to provide our clients with top-quality products in the form of versatile coathangers for every garment. Since our inception, we have provided thousands of happy customers with coat hanger advice built on years of experience and working with notable experts within the fashion world. Our knowledge and passion for the business is exemplary and we are happy to share our coat hanger wisdom to further satisfy our customers with this handy blog on the best coat hangers;

Wooden hangers

Wooden hangers are more often than not, more robust than plastic alternatives. The sturdy wooden hangers from Valentinosdisplays are no exception. These stylish and popular hangers sometimes consist of a non-slip trouser bar that prevents items from simply sliding off. Typically when this occurs, your garments get lost at the foot of your wardrobe or on your closet floor. They also are trendy enough to provide a polished finish in your wardrobe. Practical and aesthetically pleasing you cannot go wrong with this product choice.

Plastic hangers

Probably the most common hanger worldwide due to its ease of use and cheap selling price. Can be mass-produced quickly and are mostly always recyclable which adds to the modern-day appeal. Valentino’s Displays endeavour to use sustainable products and suppliers wherever possible without sacrificing any item quality. Plastic hangers are our best seller and come in a variety of different packages for clients to bulk buy and make even further savings. These hangers are versatile enough to hold light and delicate garments. Depending on the hanger length they can store heavier items such as coats and jackets. Reliable and sturdy enough to be classed as a medium to long-term purchase unless directly sabotaged.

Trouser hangers

At Valentino’s Displays, we have the knowledge and experience to adapt our products from customer feedback and address common problems within the clothes storage industry. This is evident with our range of open-ended trouser hangers. This innovative design streamlines your wardrobe by taking up less room in there than the traditional trouser hanger with clips. It allows a more spacious closet and enables you to get your garments quicker as you can just snatch them rather than go through the annoying unclipping procedure. You don’t even have to take the hanger off the rod so you reduce time and become more efficient as well as looking very smart and organized.

Final thoughts on the best coat hangers

These are just a selected few examples from our extensive range at Valentinosdisplays. Our depth of knowledge and expertise is renowned and our reputation speaks for itself within the industry. Alongside the products discussed above, we also have a comprehensive stock of both traditional and modern alternatives in other key storage areas such as skirt hangers, space-saving hangers, tank and bra hangers, and clipped hangers. If there is something you require that does not appear on our website, please get in touch. During our many year’s experiences, we have built up reputable and established contacts with authentic products and would be happy to point you in the right direction if we cannot source your desired item ourselves.

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Can you buy mannequins?

When it comes to buying things for your business, the chances are that mannequins might not be that high up on your must-buy list. However, if you are a retail store that sells clothes or any other accessories, then a mannequin might just be something you need. 

Mannequins are a way to showcase the items you have for sale, and they allow you to generate interest in them rather than them hanging on the rack. Some places manufacture and sell mannequins, which means that the answer to your question is yes, you can buy mannequins. 

But, what do you need to think about before you buy?

Think about your store and your style 

One of the first things that you will want when you buy a mannequin is to make sure that it can fit in with the overall theme of your store and the look you have created. Thankfully, there are several mannequins that you can choose from, and they not only come in different poses and a wealth of different styles.

You can even pick abstract mannequins in their design, which may be more suitable for you if you take pride in offering modern style within your store. 

Also, think about your customers

Another essential thing to think about is your customers. You want them to see mannequins that reflect what they look like and their body type or age. For example, if you target teenagers, you want to make sure that your mannequins fit in with this age group. Or, another example is that a plus-size store will want to have plus-size mannequins within your store. 

Are they stationary, or do they need to move around?

Some stores have mannequins that never need to move too far, that can simply be dressed and then changed as needed. Others have mannequins that need to be carried regularly. Perhaps they need to be relocated in the store, or they may even need to travel with you when you are heading off to events, exhibitions, trade shows and anywhere else that you may want to display your stock and try to get it to be sold.

Some mannequins are not easy to move around and transport, but equally, those can be transported with ease thanks to being compact or lightweight. 

Need inspiration? Check out what your competitors are doing

No one should copy their competitors; however, there is no harm in getting inspiration from them if you feel stuck. If not to see what is working well for them, but to see what isn’t. You might check out their store set-up and see things that you don’t like or think you could do better. Which could help give you the push to make your decision on which mannequins to buy.

Once you have decided which mannequins are suitable for you, the next thing to think about is where you can buy them. Mannequins can be purchased online or in person, and it is always worth taking the time to shop around and find options that are of excellent quality and at the right price.

Can you buy mannequins? Valentino's Displays Blog
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How to display clothes?

You might think that when it comes to displaying clothes, it’s actually quite a straightforward process. However, you would not be correct in this assumption. Many people think that they could display clothes in the best possible way because they own a wardrobe, and they know how to arrange their outfits.

Ultimately, this is not the case. If you are going to properly display clothes, then you need to appreciate a few concepts regarding space. You’ll need to look into things like mannequins for sale UK because these are going to be a vital resource for you. Still, confused? Not to worry, we will be explaining it properly.

The wall space

It is important to consider how you are using wall space when it comes to displaying clothes. Make sure that you are not overfilling the space that you have because this will distract your customers and make them less likely to purchase something.

You need to make sure that there is a suitable amount of space for each item to shine. It’s important to consider how high you stack clothing because you want people to be able to reach it easily.

The mannequins

Ultimately, if you are going to display clothes in a sensible fashion, you do need to make sure that you have the best possible choices when it comes to mannequins. It is not just a case of using coat hangers, so looking for coat hanger suppliers UK is only half the battle.

Your typical mannequin is a powerful tool when it comes to showcasing an entire outfit. You can use them to demonstrate how certain articles of clothing belong together. So, if you wanted to demonstrate how a cute top would pair with a nice summer skirt, then you would need to make sure that you use the mannequin to do so.

Diversify merchandising options

One of the best things that you can do to get the optimum results is to diversify the merchandising options that you use. This means that you should use coathangers, you should use mannequins, you should use display cases, and pretty much every type of method at your disposal for showcasing an item of clothing. It will definitely help a lot in the long run. The end goal is to demonstrate your clothing in as many different styles as possible, so that has to be your main focus.

Final thoughts

So, when it comes to displaying clothes, it’s important to have a critical eye and to focus on the use of different merchandising options, whilst being aware of space. Displaying clothing items can take time to get right, but it is vital for getting the best results that come to your sales. Don’t hesitate to take the time to experiment. This will give you the best results and will make sure that you have the ideal experiences when it comes to generating what you need.

How to display clothes? Valentino's Displays Blog
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