SEATTLE - If you're looking for a place to work where it's easy to get a head, or a hand, you'll find it in Seattle's Magnolia neighborhood.
"I had no idea someone made a living out of doing that," is the usual reaction Tim O'Neil, President of Measurement Technology Northwest gets when talking about his company that designs and makes measuring devices, including state of the art mannequins.
"Mannequins are used to test full clothing ensembles. So, we make equipment that just tests the fabric parts of the fabric. We make hands, feet, legs, butts everything," said O'Neil.
Thermal mannequins, as they are known, can simulate various body behaviors as well as measure the results.
The feedback companies get by using the mannequins goes towards making more comfortable, safer, and more effective products.
"Pretty much all the textile laboratories around the world have our equipment," said O'Neil.
They may be used around the world, but they're made right here in Seattle.
"This is actually where they manufacture items," said Kevin Bengston, Operations Manager. "They take composite materials whether that's fiber glass, carbon fiber and they actually lay it up into models and they actually build the body parts that we see."
With demanding clients from Nike to the U.S. Army using their mannequins, Tim's proud of the reputation his company has achieved.
"We have a lot of creative people who are doing really great work," said O'Neil.
So the next time you try on something, chances are pretty good one of O'Neil's mannequins tried it on first.