What online retailers can learn from Fever London’s ‘Perfect Fit’ campaign

Fever London Perfect Fit Models

Fever London’s five ‘Perfect Fit’ models

Every time the “real women” Vs “anorexic models” (we hate both of those terms, but they’re the ones that tend to be bandied about…) comes up, we find ourselves thinking that what the fashion world REALLY needs isn’t plus-sized models instead of super-skinny ones: it’s a RANGE of models, of various different sizes and heights, so we can better imagine what the clothing would look like on US, whatever size or shape we happen to be.

Well, this month Fever London have done just that. They recently ran a Facebook contest, with the aim of finding five “real” women to model the brand’s clothes, with each model showcasing a different size. The five ‘Perfect Fit’ models (one of whom just happens to be one of our favourite UK fashion bloggers, the fabulous Not Dressed as Lamb) wear UK sizes 8 – 16, and have done a great job of showing how Fever’s vintage-inspired styles look on their different shapes.

We love this idea, and while it would presumably be impractical for brands to shoot ALL of their clothes on a variety of different models in this way, it’s refreshing to see someone attempt it, even if it’s just a one-off. And if it’s not possible to take this kind of approach all the time, here are some other ways online retailers can help us decide whether or not to order their clothes:

1. Show the clothes on a real, live person, rather than a mannequin

The Fever campaign reminded us how much more appealing clothes can be when you see them on a person, rather than on an oddly-shaped plastic mannequin, or – worse – just kind of floating there in mid-air. Clothes hang totally differently, and can be completely transformed simply by being worn, so let’s see your clothes fulfil the purpose they’re designed for, retailers!

2. Tell us the model’s height and size

We’re not asking for her actual weight, but some stores (ASOS, Shopbop and Fever themselves) do state the model’s height in their item descriptions, and also tell us which dress size she’s wearing. OK, you may look nothing like the model, but this information is nevertheless useful when it comes to working out which size you should go for, or whether you should buy that item at all. If the model is 5″11, for instance, and the dress she’s wearing reaches her calves, you can at least work out that it’ll be even longer on your shorter self…

3. Show us the item from different angles

ASOS provides a video of their models on a runway; Shopbop films them doing a little twirl; Zara photographs them from the back, and from the side. All of these angles help us see what the item REALLY looks like, and video is particularly helpful, as we can also see how it falls, moves, and what it looks like when it hasn’t been pinned to the model.

4. Allow users to post reviews

We don’t know about you, but we trust our fellow shoppers more than we trust the people who are trying to sell us the clothes. Sites which allow users to post reviews seem more transparent, and the information in the reviews can also be really helpful when it comes to working out whether the item runs true-to-size, or looks like it does in the product shots.

These are just four things we like to see on retail websites: what kind of features help persuade you to make a purchase?

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