The sharing economy has built its way into many businesses across the world. Now the fashion industry too has been designing its own version of on demand. The sharing economy is also called on-demand.
As the name suggests it gives customers the benefit to share goods and services. Reduced costs and availability to more number of people makes this model all attractive. Sharing economy accommodates a lot of similar business models under its name that is every business activity that takes place through online transactions. In a way on demand to comes under this.
The rage of on demand began with uber introducing its network based transportation. Today every country has a company which operates like uber. The taxi aggregator however does not own a single car and owns the software to run the platform. This became an instant hit because of the ease of availability through your mobile phones and Uber maintained a standard which was lacking in the taxi industry. The prices were also in favor of customers and thus uber has become a global icon.
With its massive success today all industries try to replicate the model into their business.
Wedding gowns or expensive clothing which we expect to use just once are quite expensive to buy. So the industry has now started an online market place where people can obtain clothes that are for rent. This is a win-win situation to both the owner and the buyer. The clothes that lie sleeping in your closet fetch you money and the buyer doesn’t need to spend huge chunks of money for just one wear.
Usually the cost for renting would be around 10 to 20 percent of the value of the goods for a restricted amount of time. Usually in peer-to-peer business the increasing number of sellers would mean there is less market for an individual. But in fashion larger the inventory better is the market and sales.
Also the platforms that facilitate the transfer of goods should have a check over the quality and transportation of clothing. This will help them hold on to their reputation and attract more customers. If not the sales would dwindle down to nothing in a matter of time.
Fashion rental companies
They do not act just like a platform for owners and buyers. They rather own the whole set of wardrobe and rent it out.
The companies or the third party platforms need to maintain their laundry services to maintain a clean and attractive inventory. Also on returning the clothing quality check is very essential.
Online shopping in a sense is also on demand service where you get your clothes as you demand with major e retailers like Amazon promising one day delivery online shopping has become a lot more comfortable.
Like an outfit that you saw in the picture but you are pretty sure that it wouldn’t suit you like it does for the model. Now you can get them stitched according to your fitting. There are online websites which provide you with the comfort of tailoring your outfits based on your size requirements.
Issues in sharing clothing
It is difficult for people to share their clothes like they do for accommodation or travel people deciding to share clothes requires a lot of behavioral shift. Also clothes are not like cars or rooms. They need to have the fit and other personal comfort.
Inventory should also be updated with ever changing fashion or else it would be difficult to keep up with the expectations of customers.
The feel of buying latest apparels lies in the fact they are wearing it for the first which a rented cloth cannot give. And people are not comfortable that you need to wear something that someone else wore.
It is highly unpredictable to say whether this would affect the mainstream sales of outfits. But if at all the industry flourishes it would have a lot of effect on the standard clothing sellers’ community.
Customers would continue to buy everyday clothing like a jean or a t-shirt but will turn towards sharing for occasion wears. There would be a line drawn between want they want to wear repeatedly and want they want to wear once.
Though thinking laterally it could reduce the number of clothes you buy the overall money you spend might increase. There will be a lot economic activity for shipping and renting of clothes.
Around 5 percent of the waste in landfills across the globe comes from textile waste. America is said to dump 70 pounds of clothing every year. Apparel rentals are an eco friendly alternative to this problem.
A smart phone enabled society can easily avoid all this junks with rental applications flooding app stores.
A whole new level of on demand designs
If the entire above section is dedicated to renting out clothes or buying high end designs imagine designing your outfits and get them tailored as you demand.
That’s what the start-up “unmade” is all about. The pop-up shop in London located in Covent Garden makes what you want with every design demanded by you.
The shop contains industrial knitting machine and a few clothes on display. Though you cannot walk-in and get the cloth you want, you can definitely design your own.
You can use iPads and create the outfits. As the name of the shop is unmade no dress is complete without you designing it.
This can be seen as the response to the mass producing stagnant fashion industry. It is a personalized knitwear, users can rearrange patterns choose colors and yet pay the same amount of money they do for a normal clothing.
The shopping can be seen as more of a 3-D printer for clothes or a mass customization. After the buyers design their clothes they can hit the buy option and the request will join a digital queue and will be stitched with in a stipulated time.
This also makes sure that not many of the clothes get dumped according to the unmade team. As the buyers are part of the design they might hold to the clothes for a longer time.
The start-up will definitely reflect the statement that your dress partly reflects your character.
The company wants to move their business across the globe as industrial knitting machines are already available across the globe. They want to take the mass customization a local option to many.
On demand and sharing in fashion is very wide there are lots of avenues where once can incorporate this new model of business. The above mentioned places might be just the scratch of the surface.
Think in the future where one might hire a designer on demand for creating their clothes similar to many professions which are currently working for on demand like photographers. This will be a huge option for budding designers they can put up their designs and get hired by normal people for designing their apparels.
This might be the next big revolution of fashion industry similar to the industrialized mass production of clothes in the 20th century.
Anand Rajendran is CEO and Co-Founder of Dectar, best PHP scripts development company located in India. Dectar is a part of Casperon Technologies a leading social and mobile development company which is Developing Uber for X apps like Couriero – On Demand Delivery Services App for the past 3 years. I’m a Tech geek, Digital marketing expert, Entrepreneur, and Atheist who loves to write everything about PHP Scripts and mobile application development.