The Visualist Blog

The future of retail: Projection-mapped mannequins & interactive window displays

Projection mapping, a form of augmented reality, is an interesting mix of physics and engineering; mixing together projector technology, aspects of projective geometry, optics, computer graphics and experiential art.  I’ve posted multiple times about how projection mapping is a great tool for artistic expression, ranging from sophisticated art installations to projection-mapped bodies in live performances. Now projection mapping is even beginning to play a role in the fashion world as a way to give customers a virtualized impression of an article of clothing or an entire fashion line without changing out the mannequins’ attire.

Projection-mapped mannequins & interactive window displays

Lil Wayne’s clothing line, TRUKFIT, took an interesting approach at a show in Las Vegas last month when it used this technology to showcase the newest line of clothing instead of just outfitting fashion models and mannequins. I’m sure this created a unique experience for the consumers who were more immersed and able to view an entire fashion line while looking at a single mannequin. Reminds me a bit of the wearable computing fashion shows more than a decade ago – with a more commercial focus.

I obviously find projection mapping to be a promising approach to augmented reality projection in any field, but I find it to be fascinating when used in this setting because it opens up the door for all sorts of new uses for the technology in the fashion world.

Projection-mapped mannequins & interactive window displaysAdidas has also been mixing technology with fashion as a digital storefront that offers a new approach to shopping in the form of a touch screen interactive window. Users are able to interact with the virtual products and mannequins, and they take it even a step further, allowing visitor to drag the items they like onto their own smartphones for easy purchase and sharing on social media.

Virtualizing clothing like this allows for retailers to display more clothing than they normally would be able to do, and this means more options, combinations and products presented to cutomers, which could potentially lead to more impressions and transactions for the retailers.

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