Module 15: The Future of Textiles and Fashion
Presented by Frances Harder and Kristine Upesleja (Madisons Innovative Textiles & Materials Consulting)
It is a fact that the economic downturn of the past few years has created a new type of retailing environment. ‘Speed to market’ has become the norm, as have reduced profit margins for both the retailer and manufacturer. Trends today are more vague than in the past, with no true trend direction. In the past the fashion industry was more predictable. The lack of obvious trend changes has in some ways forced retailing to redefine itself. ‘Customer Specialization’, ‘Mass Customization’ and ‘Omni Channel Retailing’ are the future. Understanding the needs and the demographics of your customer base is the KEY. As we know Internet shopping is here to stay for it provides instant gratification. The future of mass customization will soon be providing personalization for each and every customer who walks through the retail doors and/or logs on to online stores. Retailers are keeping (or at least trying to keep) current with mass personalization in order to retain and serve better the ‘walk-in’ customer.