MIRROR, MIRROR: There is only one thing better than a mirror that doles out compliments — one that offers styling tips as well, based on body type and lifestyle, weather and geographical location.
Three companies have come together to take the Magic Mirror from “Snow White” to a whole new level, creating personalized, life-sized holograms of shoppers’ figures. Those avatars aren’t idle either; they’re able to dole out advice, pull items from fashion web sites and help shoppers plan for changes in weather and special occasions.
The Fashion Innovation Agency at London College of Fashion; Reactive Reality, providers of 3-D captures on mobile, and Microsoft have clubbed together on the AI project known as the “Personalized Digital Human Stylist of the Future.” The project will debut Tuesday.
According to the developers, the men and women who create an avatar can virtually try on outfits and get uniquely customized style tips. The avatar/stylist will also be able to learn and predict behavioral and style preferences based on a user’s existing wardrobe, and provide outfit suggestions for the user to view instantly on their 3-D avatar.
The avatar will be able to connect directly to online sites and pull clothes, and tap into people’s calendars to plan for upcoming events.
The avatar/stylist will have natural animations and speech via Microsoft Cognitive Services and will offer up style tips based on a variety of data as well as pre-scanned 3-D garments stored in the user’s “digital wardrobe.”
Stefan Hauswiesner of Reactive Reality said the three companies will be able to “turn the user’s home into a virtual fitting room” and said that users will have all of the advantages of an in-store shopping experience online, “allowing anyone to virtually try on their favorite clothes and make smart outfit choices.”
The inventors said that the avatars will also help shoppers to reduce waste by allowing them to engage in “more considered browsing” that will result in “fewer unwanted item returns.”
Life-sized hologram technology has been gaining momentum in the past months at the industry level.
Over the summer, JW Anderson partnered with the augmented reality start-up HoloMe, which saw the designer Jonathan Anderson and his team create holograms of models wearing pieces from the spring 2021 men’s and resort collections.
HoloMe was then able to livestream those collections into people’s homes and offices.
Using their mobile phones, buyers were able to write their orders as they watched high-definition, life-sized holograms model the clothes in their homes or offices. They could also zoom in on garments to examine the fabric and styling details.
In July, Bruce Pask, men’s fashion director at Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus, posted pictures of JW Anderson’s hologram models hanging out in his kitchen.