Get your unique wardrobe: Why custom fits are the future of fashion
In the olden times, donning customised clothes was the norm of the society since the availability and accessibility of readymade brands were restricted.
Readymade clothing was considered to be a passing trend, which only rich and fancy people indulged in, given its characteristic expensiveness and limited usage. However, the tides turned with the passage of time as machines and factories came into existence.
Readymade clothing now became much cheaper and easily accessible owing to the efficiency of machines and the economies of scale. This made readymade clothing the popular choice who naturally preferred cheaper and easily available products. Thus, the demand for clothing became concentrated in the readymade segment around this time.
This transformative change in the customer preference and demand patterns was not instant or without reason. Long before this shift became so evident, readymade clothing suppliers made substantial changes in their business model.
It was the successful implementation of these changes that shifted the consumer affinity from customized to readymade clothing. The business plans were changed so they would become more tailor-fitted to the expectations and needs of customers.
Some of the changes that were made to inspire this demand shift were sourcing raw materials from nearby locations and conducting mass manufacturing in factory units to save costs by generating economies of scale.
Further, the available variety in terms of patterns, colours, and sizes was increased, prices were slashed and manufacturing processes were quickened to further bolster the pace at which the market develops an affinity to readymade clothing.
As these steps were taken, the clothing market transformed and readymade clothing emerged as the most feasible and sensible option for the customers to avail themselves. This led to the start of the rule of readymade clothing.
As it happens, as the rival clothing segment surged, the sector manufacturing bespoke clothing fell through. It witnessed progressively declining demand in the wake of the comparatively high prices and longer processing times that now defined the customised clothing industry.
This led to customised clothing transforming from an item of regular wear for all to a luxurious segment that was only meant for the rich to be worn as a status symbol.
After so many disturbances and shifts, the internet era has spelled out a comeback for the industry in recent times. As fashion and trends changed and designer labels came into being, the prices of readymade clothing climbed to dramatic heights.
Now, as the prices of readymade clothing, especially the designer and trendy ones reached heights that were unattainable for a regular middle-class person, the public has again turned to bespoke clothing to have their fashion needs met. Thus, a large number of people are now getting designer items and fits customised locally at affordable prices.
Further, as technology and digitisation have grown, the internet too has become an exercised option in the market of bespoke clothing.
Online selling and buying of customised clothing are feasible, easy, and economic, which has given a new shape to the way this industry functions. Virtual marketing enables sellers to have a wider reach for finding new customers.
The internet and rampant globalisation has also enabled sellers to make their goods available across boundaries within understandable timelines. As for the most important way in which technology has strengthened the market of customized clothing, it has to be the use of new-age immersive technologies in customer service.
Technological advancements have made possible virtual tryouts and sampling which allows people to see and experience how a certain design or colour would look on them.
Now, through the use of techs like AR and VR, customers can 'try on' customised clothing before even placing the order.
3D customisation apps and websites are commonly used tools that make it possible for buyers to avail this option. This trial option makes the job of both the buyers as well as the manufacturer by giving the buyer a taste of their purchase before it takes place and by giving manufacturers deep insight into the required look and fitting of the garment.
The fashion domain has changed comprehensively in the past few decades. The industry has fluctuated several times in terms of demand dominance between bespoke and readymade fittings. These fluctuations have come as a result of the ever-changing prices, market trends, and customer tastes.
The trends of today are in the favour of tailor-made clothes and are anticipated to stay favourable for them in the near future as well. Thus, custom fit is, conclusively, the future of fashion.
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)