I really enjoyed taking part in my first webinar with Kimberley Carr (above left) of Rakuten Fits Me yesterday.
For the uninitiated, a webinar is a seminar held online. I've been a viewer before, but this was my first experience of presenting one of these events. As I sat down at the desk I was thinking about a webinar that I attended last year, presented by Paul Pallin, the Development Director at Rakuten Fits Me. The subject, of course, was my favourite... it was all about bodyshape and fit.
Even though I've been in the bodyshape, fit and customer service business all my professional life, there were several seminal moments in his talk (quite appropriate for a seminar, after all). One that will live with me until my dying day was when Paul showed images of women who did not have 'standard' bodyshapes (i.e. their hips and bust may be a size 10, but the waist was a size 8, or their bust and waist was a size 12, but their hips were a size 10). While they were on screen he asked what we noticed about these images. Actually, it was nothing at all... which was rather the point.
These women's figures (they were computer generated, so no models were hurt in the making of the talk) were perfectly normal looking even beautiful and aspirational. Paul made the point that should have been obvious. These bodies looked normal, because they were normal. It's far more usual to see figures that do not fit into the classic standardised sizing that our clothes are made to. They are the shapes that we all see in the real world.
As I sat down at the desk yesterday I aspired to give similar revelations to my audience it never hurts to aim high! I'm lucky in that the subject I was talking about (the webinar was entitled 'Womenswear Sizing: Consistency versus Diversity') is one that involves every person I know... why is it so difficult to find well-fitting clothes and what is being done about it?
Now there's a solution to buying fashion online... At Last!