Fashion retailers, brands and manufacturers are facing a "moving target" when it comes to garment sizing and fit. A focus on changing consumer shapes, communication with both offshore factories and customers, pattern blocks and fit forms, as well as processes and training are all needed now if the industry is to prevent problems in the future, say leading executives.
Clothing brands and retailers are "facing a moving target" when it comes to sizing and fit, and that target "is moving faster than ever," according to Ed Gribbin, president of fit specialist Alvanon.
Speaking at a conference organised by the Association of Suppliers to the British Clothing Industry (ASBCI) last week, he explained part of the problem is due to the fact that consumers are constantly changing shape.
Around 40% of the US population is likely to be obese by 2025, according to Gribbin, and the UK is not far behind at 35%.
"As we tend to gain weight, we tend to morph our body shape, making pattern cutting, sizing and fit a particular challenge for the retailers and brands today," he said.
Other issues compounding the problem include high number of stock-keeping units (SKUs), seasonal innovation, the need for shorter time to market - and the fact "there is no one definition of fit."
One reason that I think that lingerie is so distinctive by country is the fact that bra pattern drafting seems to be a skill disseminated in very narrow, specific ways– there are very few books on how to draft bra patterns, but it’s clear there are a wealth of ways that are passed down though schools and companies that aren’t available to consumers. Of course, plenty of companies imitate each other, even across state borders, but any themes by nation are interesting to note.
Another interesting piece of this puzzle is that American brands do not seem to have the same strong tradition of bra drafting that some of these other countries have and often pick and choose the aesthetic they embody, based on access to materials, where the product is manufactured and their own knowledge.
Now, what about the women-watchers who feel they are the victims of another kind of put-on? We're talking about the men who think there is nothing in this world (or beyond it) as mentally, physically and spiritually inspiring as a beautiful pair of female legs, improved by the addition of sheer, skintight hose. These men -- loyal, upstanding Americans every one -- have spent their whole adult lives admiring the legs of American girls and bringing them the worldwide recognition they deserve. And for these men, nothing did it like nylons that ended halfway to two-thirds of the way up the thigh, supported by taut garter straps. There was no reason, in their view, for women to change this fashion. Perfection had been reached -- with the possible exception of slightly shorter skirts to enhance the tease.
There's nothing wrong with lingerie so frilly you feel silly -- what's there not to love about giggles? Giggles go perfectly well with girlie blushes. And this vintage nightgown is a lovely blushing (sheer) pink nylon. Perfectly suitable for giggles. Now, about those frills... For starters, note the ruffled bodice!