Regarding Cricket Lee’s handy dandy Fitting SystemTM aka Fit Logic comes Clothes That Fit the Woman, Not the Store from this morning’s NY Times. Not surprisingly, the system hasn’t been a big hit (my previous article is here). From the NYT article:
So perhaps it is unsurprising that the sizing system, called Fitlogic, has hit some bumps in the road. Macy’s, which stocked a single style of Jones New York pants made with the Fitlogic sizing system, said it would cease carrying the line. And Nordstrom, which is carrying a single style of pants from Garfield & Marks, said it had no plans to expand use of the sizing system.
The reporter Michael Barbaro, lists the downsides as:
…what would make the system appealing to shoppers – multiple versions of the same size – is what turns off retailers and clothing makers. Three times the number of items requires more display space and creates more risk of unsold inventory.
Retailers that commit to it must find space for more merchandise, train workers to understand the new sizes and explain the new system to customers – a struggle for stores that already have few employees on the sales floor.
…that retailers and clothing makers thrive off sizing confusion. Consumers who find a brand that fits are likely to stick with it and a standard sizing system would encourage them to visit other stores.
The system also creates more work for clothing manufacturers. To make one pair of pants using Fitlogic sizing, Garfield & Marks, which designs clothes by hand, had to create three patterns.
As I’ve said over and over until I’m blue in the face, the solution can only be derived by making the details of sizing more transparent. In other words, we need to put actual dimensions on product hang tags. The downside to this practice would be that many consumers don’t know their actual measurements. They tend to under report their measures in much the same way they under report their weight.
There’s a related article, A Woman, Full of Hope, in the Dressing Room too. It’s a very short article, a critique from a reporter who tried the FitLogic system and found it lacking -ultimately due to the styling which is nothing I haven’t already said before.
…it certainly makes sense to acknowledge that not all women are built alike. But despite the fit, I did not rush over to the cash register to buy the pants. If I wanted high-waisted black pants without front pockets and a narrow waist band, I very well might have. But they looked more like something my mom might buy.
This of course, directly relates to designing your styling and sizes to suit the needs of your profile customer. One such company I profiled recently was Al Qud jeans. Their jeans are sized specifically to permit the range of motion common to Muslim worship practices. Still, I have no doubts that the average (non-Muslim) consumer would still say these jeans were vanity sized just because they didn’t fit them. I give up.