In the industry it normally takes about a year for a new clothing design to make it to the stores. Adidas wants to shorten that wait to a matter of hours. Adidas has opened a shop in Berlin, Germany that allows customers to design, manufacture and buy a customized merino wool sweater for €200.
The process starts when a customer enters a room where dozens of different designs and patterns are projected onto their chests. The customer picks their favorites, then adjusts the color combinations on an adjacent touchscreen. To get the size right, the customer can choose between the standard S/M/L sizing, or strip down for a 3D laser scan fitting. Once the order is in, the sweaters are machine knitted in the store, then hand-finished, laundered, dried and packaged for pickup – all within four hours.
This isn’t the first time that Adidas has tried to speed up its merchandise manufacturing. The company employs robots extensively throughout its operations and has dabbled in 3D printing.
The “Knit for You” store has been open for a couple months now and sells about 10 sweaters on a busy day.
Photo by MIKI Yoshihito. (#mikiyoshihito) (cc)