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Tailors in trailers

by Contagious I/O

This story originally appeared on Contagious I/O, our bespoke research platform featuring the world’s most creative, ingenious and effective brand-funded ideas

Truck-based bodyscanner takes to the road

Upstart men’s tailoring company Arden Reed has applied a neat combination of technology and pragmatism to the tradition-steeped art of creating custom-made suits. Having fitted-out a truck with a state-of-the-art bodyscanner and an array of fabric swatches, the brand has taken to the road, travelling the USA with a series of scheduled stops.

Customers in a variety of cities, from Phoenix to Washington DC, can make an appointment to be electronically fitted for a bespoke suit, stepping inside the van, and stripping down for the minute or so it takes the scanner to record a complete 3D image of their physique. Accurate to within a margin of 5mm, the scanner provides the many measurements required to ensure a perfect fit, information that is used by Arden Reed’s fulfilment partners in Asia where patterns for each suit are created and made-up for each customer before being shipped back to the US.

The service brings an optimal fit at a price traditional tailors simply cannot match – from $400 for a wool suit that might otherwise cost upwards of $1000.



Contagious Insight

The Arden Reed Tailor Truck combines two of our favourite pop culture phenomena, the rise of the food truck and the spread of Kinect-style scanning technology, to ingenious effect. The company’s original approach asks customers to measure themselves, inputting the information when they order a suit via the online store. For new customers, that’s a pretty big leap of faith. Despite the generous alteration and return/refund options, people still need to be feeling pretty confident to spend north of $400 on a suit that may not fit, in a fabric that may not be quite what was expected.

The Tailor Truck is a great way to offer a solution to those issues, bringing a little face-to-face service into the experience, providing a reassuring degree of digital accuracy to the measuring process, and allowing customers to handle and assess the fabrics in-person. Getting past that initial hurdle of new customer acquisition is an important hurdle for online retailers, and this service allows Arden Reed to establish trust, as well as provide its customer with an electronic profile that can be used to place further orders for suits.


This story originally appeared on Contagious I/O. Contagious I/O is our bespoke trends, inspiration, insight and analysis service, providing daily innovative marketing intelligence across a comprehensive range of sectors to brands and agencies across the world. For more information about Contagious I/O contact