Blog: Leonie BarrieAre you up to speed on 'The Fit Factor'?

Leonie Barrie | 27 February 2015

A special event on ‘The Fit Factor – World class wisdom on fashion sizing and fit’ will bring together speakers from Marks & Spencer, Tesco, C&A and Debenhams in the UK next week.

The conference will look at a number of issues facing the industry, including insight into specific challenges for the lingerie, tailoring and plus-size sectors.

The keynote presentation from Ed Gribbin, president of apparel size and fit expert Alvanon, will discuss ‘Rethinking, redesigning, reinventing apparel sizing and fit strategies,’ with ideas on how the fashion industry can learn new strategies for product design, development and customer communication from other industries.

Aiming to suggest solutions to the difficulties of lingerie sizing and fit, Julia Mercer, technical manager for lingerie at Marks & Spencer, will explain how the high street retailer is working to tackle the problem of women wearing the wrong-sized bra, in ‘Keeping abreast of regional bra sizing differences’.

Going back to basics with a live demonstration of the key requirements for taking accurate sizing measurements will be Philip Parker, vice chairman of Savile Row tailor Henry Poole & Co, in ‘Perfect fit in an imperfect world'.

Following on from this theme, Graeme Pratt, technical designer at BMB Clothing, will focus on ready-to-wear, personal tailoring and made-to-measure and bespoke garments with a discussion on ‘The challenges of fit for mass production – high street to higher end’.

Alan Wragg, technical director at Tesco Stores will then discuss ‘How F+F use 3D Virtual Fits to Become More Efficient and Improve Lead Times’.

Investigating the plus-size topic will be Ian Mitchell, business unit director at Kantar Worldpanel Fashion, looking at the importance of plus-sizing in menswear and womenswear in ‘The bigger issue – latest market intelligence on the plus size sector’.

‘Realising the opportunities of the plus size market’ will see Helen Jack, market and customer insight, JD Williams advising attendees on the importance of constantly listening and responding to consumers’ ever-changing demands.

Jackie Lewis, UL technical services at international retailer C&A, will discuss the real costs of consistent fit in a market where the retail ticket price still drives consumer behaviour. The ‘Value approach’ will explore whether fit integrity can be a lever to success and if so, what level of investment is required.

And looking ahead, Fiona Graham, head of quality assurance at Debenhams, will focus on ‘Fit for the Future’, offering solutions to the challenges of communicating size to online customers, developing fit strategies for the growing market, and customer returns.

Organised by the ASBCI (Association of Suppliers to the British Clothing Industry), ‘The Fit Factor’ is being co-sponsored by Alvanon and Lectra, with just-style as media partner. The event will take place on 5 March at the Peterborough Marriott Hotel. For further details or to book your place at the conference, please click here to contact Louise Adu, or by calling +44 (0)1422 354666. 

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