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Digital is the new way to enhance apparel value chain

"As Industry 4.0 is slowly making its place in manufacturing, retail diaspora too needs to catch up as it’s not an advantage, it’s a dire necessity. Today, digital transformation is not about speed and reduced time to market, it’s about efficiency, earlier validation, creating better products and, more importantly, the ability to focus on creativity and innovation. In short, there is a need for digital solution that will disrupt the entire supply chain. With shoppers turning towards online channels, brands and retailers are in the process of stepping-up their game in order to provide the goods. Added to that, ‘see now, buy now’ concept is forcing brands and retailers around the globe to not only adapt to a new digital reality, but also push towards an even more innovative environment that will allow them to compete in their market without wasting valuable resources."

 

Digital is the new way to enhance apparel value chain 002As Industry 4.0 is slowly making its place in manufacturing, retail diaspora too needs to catch up as it’s not an advantage, it’s a dire necessity. Today, digital transformation is not about speed and reduced time to market, it’s about efficiency, earlier validation, creating better products and, more importantly, the ability to focus on creativity and innovation. In short, there is a need for digital solution that will disrupt the entire supply chain. With shoppers turning towards online channels, brands and retailers are in the process of stepping-up their game in order to provide the goods. Added to that, ‘see now, buy now’ concept is forcing brands and retailers around the globe to not only adapt to a new digital reality, but also push towards an even more innovative environment that will allow them to compete in their market without wasting valuable resources.

3D technology at the back of everything

The real digital disruption started with the 3D technology as it has a 95 per cent accuracy rate and can enable the production of a digital sample that isDigital is the new way to enhance apparel value chain 001 similar in appearance to what a physical sample would look like. Photorealistic rendering, advanced fabric and texture properties, along with the ability to easily embed rigid parts such as buttons and trims, can allow decision makers to see how a garment will act and look without needing to create a physical sample. A recent study revealed apparel industry spends approximately $7 billion per year on samples alone. An extremely high financial cost in addition to the aspect of pure waste, which could easily be reduced by 75 per cent using 3D technology. The ability to finalize prototypes within hours instead of weeks, review collections within weeks instead of months, and change colours and graphics at a push of a button is revolutionising the way garments are being produced. Moreover, the way the entire supply chain functions.

3D technology was integrated through advanced plug-ins into existing tools such as in the case of Adobe Illustrator, whose 3D plug-in allows designers the freedom to validate and customize garments in 3D without abandoning the reliable graphics editor. Today, designers can visualize 3D garments with accurate proportion and scaling, customise the garment’s fabric, texture, print patterns and graphic placement without waiting for a printed sample, all by using a 3D plug-in that runs in the native design environment on a PC or a Mac. The use of technology led to reduced waste both of time and fabric as 3D technology enables brands to cut development time in half and reduce the use of physical samples by nearly 50 per cent, which further resulted in the massive reduction in ecological damages.

Newer dimensions of growth

Emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality and augmented reality are fast dominating the online sphere and personalise content for every single user. The fashion playing field is now more global than ever before. The only way to fully optimize the supply chain and focus on creativity, is by going digital.

 

 
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