With the “Knit for You” pop-up store, Adidas innovates by enabling customers to have a made-to-measure sweater knitted for them in the store.
A store that’s a mini production factory
In partnership with the Germany Ministry of Economy and Energy, Adidas has installed a pop-up store in Berlin that features a mini production factory.
Customers are provided with a 3D scanner that records their measurements, and they can design their own sweater by choosing from among more than a dozen options (colors, patterns, sleeve length, etc.). However, the process is not immediate, and production takes about four hours.
“Knit for You” may seem anecdotal, but it offers ways to resolve two issues in the ready-to-wear industry: waste material from the manufacturing process and the long wait between first design of the product and its final availability in stores.
The production chain generates a large number of scraps that cannot be used. Twelve- to eighteen-month delays between design and availability oblige retailers and manufacturers to bet on trends. This betting can lead to unsold items in stores that end up marked down, which reduces margins.
Looking for new ways to manufacture
“Knit for You” is part of the search for new ways to manufacture, like the Speedfactory Project, with a pilot factory that was launched in Germany in 2016. It features automatic, decentralized and flexible manufacturing processes. These two initiative share the goal of making production more flexible and closer to the consumer site. In this way, consumers can find what they want locally, when they want it, and very quickly. Adidas hopes to cut manufacturing time for its products in half by 2020, which would allow reducing risk, as well as production waste.
We like: the search for production closer to the consumer site and a manufacturing pace that is more in phase with the expectations and desires of consumers.
We were inspired by: installing 3D printers and scanners in the store, which could allow the production of made-to-measure items at a lower cost and in record time.
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