EXCLUSIVE: Balmain Partners With Fashion Tech Firm Bods for Virtual Fit Experience

PARIS — Going forward, findng the perfect fit at Balmain will be virtually a breeze thanks to a new 3D fit function making its debut on Wednesday.  

The French luxury label revealed it had teamed with Los Angeles-based fashion tech firm Bods to embed its 3D digital styling and try-on experience on the Balmain website.

Clients will be able to create 3D avatars matching their measurements and virtually slip into a selection of photorealistic Balmain designs capturing the brand’s textiles, tones and embellishments in addition to the cuts.

For the launch, seven historic ready-to-wear designs will be available in the tool, as well as two handbag models and a boot design that have been recreated digitally. The function is accessible through a “3D Fitting” button that will be available worldwide.

Over time the range replicated by Bods will include a fuller selection of Balmain iconic pieces as well as the latest designs offered on the runway by creative director Olivier Rousteing.

Lauding the faithfulness of their virtual counterparts to the originals, Balmain chief digital officer Simon Cottigny said the functionality “will improve our conversion rate and, ultimately, lower return rates” by helping consumers make “more confident decisions.”

B Buzz 19 Mono close up

Close-ups of jacquard textures and knit leggings recreated by Bods for Balmain.

The virtual fittings are expected to cut down the number of returns, which can be attributed to improper fit in 70 percent of cases, said the fashion company.

And this is a right fit for the sustainability goals the brand has set for itself, according to Balmain chief executive officer Jean-Jacques Guével, who said that reducing the label’s carbon footprint while enhancing the consumer experience “clearly [was] a win-win.”

The fashion tech company’s CEO Christine Marzano said it was Bods’ mission to “honor [the] distinct attributes while integrating our technology to create an elevated experience” congruent with its luxury brand partners.

Created in 2021 by Marzano, Bods closed a seed round spearheaded by Stellation Capital for a total amount of $5.6 million in 2022.

Balmain is no stranger to high-tech endeavors, having previously launched an app that included augmented reality content and livestreaming of its fashion shows, as part of Rousteing’s drive to democratize fashion.

The French brand also opened a digital flagship in partnership with Yoox Net-a-porter Group in 2018, later experimenting with virtual reality through headsets and VR elements in its latest Milan flagship that year.

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