How Data Is Helping Fashion Brands Cater To Customers

How Data Is Helping Fashion Brands Cater To Customers
Design

PSFK's Fashion Debrief surveys the rise of API apparel, which sees brands leveraging data to design the clothes that their customers want to wear

PSFK Labs
  • 28 september 2017

PSFK’s Fashion Debrief spotlights how key brands, designers and figures in the fashion industry are leading the way toward eco-friendly production. Developed alongside perspectives shared by industry experts like Jessica Graves (Sefleuria), Simon Collins (Fashion Culture Design UnConference) and Timo Rissanen (Parsons School of Design), the Fashion Debrief will guide producers and designers in any industry to create sustainable product cycles.

Trend forecasters are an essential resource for designers who want colors, styles and fabrics that not only appeal to the masses, but are essential for years to come. Accessible data science and AI tools allow in-house design teams to quickly and easily conduct pattern recognition across a customer’s purchase habits and style interests. This ensures fashion designs are desired at scale and reduce the risk of wasted production.  

“Some of the practices of data analysis in relation to inventory management in fast fashion brands could be rethought for more mindful industry practices. Right now they are geared in the pursuit of limitless growth, which is inherently unsustainable.  As body scanning is now widely accessible, for example through apps like Nettelo, I don’t expect we are far from brands being able to offer better fitting garments to individual customers. This has the potential to reduce both returns and unworn, because they are unsatisfying, garments in people’s closets, and potential to build brand loyalty and trust.” Timo Rissanen. Assistant Professor of Fashion Design And Sustainability, Parsons

“Data science is going to be a great resource for proposing new designs and styles… We’re getting to a point where you can get really specific with search and AI’s starting to understand with seeing. I think the role in fashion’s going to be to parse through all the different options we have, and then help people make better guesses about how deep they should go with their inventory.” Jessica Graves. Founder & Data Scientist, Sefleuria

“The biggest evolution in fashion right now is the bit you don’t see. I think trends are evolving—they come and go. They perhaps evolve a bit quicker now, but that is a hint of what the radical change is. I think the radical change is the behind-the-scenes business of fashion, which enables designers to respond very, very quickly to a trend that they perceive.” Simon Collins. Founder, Fashion Culture Design UnConference

Stitch Fix: AI Identifies Desirable, Untapped Design Styles

The retailer’s in-house development team, Hybrid Design, uses data science to aptly predict clothing styles that customers would want to wear, and that designers haven’t made yet. AI algorithms sift through Stitch Fix’s inventory to cull a list of “suggestions” from parent styles, along with style attributes from a secondary tier of clothing options. The final data-generated designs of nine styles are allocated to the design team who use these as inspiration or references for Stitch Fix’s design blueprints.

Le Tote: Customer Data Informs Clothing Creations

Fashion rental service Le Tote collects ongoing data about its customers’ style preferences to help its design team create affordable items, which account for half of their product offerings. Le Tote beings its data collection process when customers sign up for the service and select their desired clothing options and as they browse and choose favorite items. Machine learning also analyzes written feedback that customers are asked for after they receive their clothing items, which is outsourced to the clothing designers that Le Tote also uses in its service.

For more, download the full Fashion Debrief!

PSFK’s Fashion Debrief spotlights how key brands, designers and figures in the fashion industry leading the way towards eco-friendly production. Download the full report here, or request a meeting for your office. For full access to all of PSFK’s reports, debriefs, articles and archives, become a PSFK Member today.


Lead Image: Le Tote via Facebook

PSFK’s Fashion Debrief spotlights how key brands, designers and figures in the fashion industry are leading the way toward eco-friendly production. Developed alongside perspectives shared by industry experts like Jessica Graves (Sefleuria), Simon Collins (Fashion Culture Design UnConference) and Timo Rissanen (Parsons School of Design), the Fashion Debrief will guide producers and designers in any industry to create sustainable product cycles.

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