Brides-to-be say ‘yes’ to their dresses in AR

Discussion
Source: David’s Bridal
Oct 06, 2020
Tom Ryan

David’s Bridal has become the first bridal brand to use augmented reality (AR) technology to virtually bring a gown-wearing mannequin into living rooms.

Brides or bridesmaids heading to David’s website can use their smartphones to load a 3-D image of a mannequin in a selected wedding or bridesmaid dress. A 360-degree angle feature enables brides to virtually walk around the dresses to closely inspect beading, fabric and trains. Brides who already have their gowns can upload shots of themselves in them and virtually stand alongside bridesmaid dresses to see which colors and prints match best.

Lizzy Ellingson, David’s chief digital experience officer, said the 3-D renderings help brides gain “confidence to narrow down options and buy online, which is something we know brides are becoming more comfortable with every day.”

David’s has also introduced virtual stylists and consultations this year as in-store shopping has faced pandemic restrictions.

Initially used to enable consumers to virtually try on make-up and see how furniture would look in homes, AR-applications have extended into apparel, jewelry and sunglasses. Particularly for a category such as apparel, a side benefit is expected to be reduced returns as virtual try-on provides more confidence in purchases.

For back-to-school, Levi’s partnered with Kohl’s to enable customers to use Snapchat’s Selfie Lens feature to virtually try-on apparel and then mix and match. Levi’s is also rolling out virtually rendered models across different body types, helping customers imagine how items will look on their body size.

According to a new survey from Vertebrae, an AR-technology solution provider, of more than 1,100 consumers:

  • Seventy-two percent of Americans are familiar with AR and 39 percent have experience with AR while shopping — nearly twice as many as in 2018;
  • Thirty-seven percent want to use AR to virtually try on makeup or new looks — twice as many as in 2018;
  •  Fifty-four percent would like to use AR to place items in their environment prior to purchase;
  • Seventy-six percent of shoppers that used AR say that the experience increased their confidence to make a purchase.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you see augmented reality giving brides enough confidence to purchase their wedding gowns online? How would you rate the benefits and limitations of using AR to guide online apparel purchases?

Please practice The RetailWire Golden Rule when submitting your comments.
Braintrust
"The technology has to enable the customer-centric vision to be successful."
"Not a chance. While trying on a dress virtually will help in the short term, it will not replace the magic of actually trying on wedding gowns."
"Ultimately the final dress fitting may be in person, however the initial visits and consultations could be done virtually through the power of AR."

Join the Discussion!

11 Comments on "Brides-to-be say ‘yes’ to their dresses in AR"


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Dave Bruno
BrainTrust

I see lots of goodness here, and the interface seems pretty simple – which is key to AR adoption. I just wonder how many store visits it will save without providing any help with fit…

Richard Hernandez
BrainTrust

I see AR being used to view furniture in customers’ homes so using AR to view wedding gowns is not a far reach, especially now in the time of COVID-19.

I remember my then-wife say one of the best days was trying on wedding dresses but I don’t know if women will feel the same about trying on dresses AR style. Comments?

Georganne Bender
BrainTrust

I’m with your then-wife. Choosing my wedding dress was a once in a lifetime experience. And I wouldn’t trade that day with my daughter for anything. AR is great for many things but for wedding dresses it’s a stopgap.

Bindu Gupta
BrainTrust

Using AR to try on wedding dresses is a great option especially during the pandemic. However retailers have to provide options for inputting one’s own measurements to personalize this experience and also enable easy returns in case the fit isn’t right. The technology has to enable the customer-centric vision to be successful.

Neil Saunders
BrainTrust

I think this is a sensible step given that we are still in the middle of a pandemic. However it is a compromise rather than the best solution. For a lot of brides, their dress is vitally important and the experience of being fitted and seeing things in person will remain a key element of the wedding preparations.

Rodger Buyvoets
BrainTrust

I can’t speak on behalf of brides-to-be, but knowing how consumer behavior is about to be shaped by these technologies, I think this is a good way forward. Plus AR not only provides the customer with personalized, distanced shopping but feeds back valuable data to the retailer about what the shopper likes and dislikes, and how they shop, so that they can further tailor the experience in a more unique way. After all, saying yes to the dress is all about the experience before and after, not the actual purchase itself. If AR can provide a unique, personalized, and efficient experience then yes, I see this going a long way. But if they can’t then this is an obvious limitation.

Georganne Bender
BrainTrust

Not a chance. While trying on a dress virtually will help in the short term, it will not replace the magic of actually trying on wedding gowns.

Buying a wedding gown is an experience. There is champagne, friends and family and a trained associate helping you choose just the right gown. After that come the accessories and, most importantly, fittings to ensure the gown fits perfectly. Buying your wedding dress is a part of life that needs to be experienced, not chosen on a screen the same way you order socks.

Gary Sankary
BrainTrust

I think this is great and it will certainly have traction in the market. Brides in their 20s and 30s are digital natives. They’re comfortable with technology and quite comfortable buying apparel online, this will be a win.

Gene Detroyer
BrainTrust

This technology goes way beyond brides.

The challenge is that the technology will advance faster than the behavior. But if we are looking at a 10 or 15-year time frame, this may be the way we all buy our apparel.

Brandon Rael
BrainTrust

The COVID-19 pandemic has required creativity and innovative ways of doing business, in light of all the social distancing regulations and apprehension of shopping in person. While shopping for the wedding dress is one of the most magical moments for a bride-to-be, AR and virtual reality enable these experiences to happen from the safety and security of their own homes.

Ultimately the final dress fitting may be in person, however the initial visits and consultations could be done virtually through the power of AR. The modern day consumer is digital-first and has adapted during the pandemic to new and interesting ways to shop and engage with brands.

Mary Henslee
Guest
18 days 20 hours ago

As a mother-of-the-groom to be, I think AR try-ons can work really well for bridesmaid dresses. Friends in different states who can’t travel to shop together (currently, due to quarantine restrictions, and in future due to time and money limitations) can still enjoy a fun, shared virtual experience. AR for apparel shopping is definitely only going to continue to grow.

wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"The technology has to enable the customer-centric vision to be successful."
"Not a chance. While trying on a dress virtually will help in the short term, it will not replace the magic of actually trying on wedding gowns."
"Ultimately the final dress fitting may be in person, however the initial visits and consultations could be done virtually through the power of AR."

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