While everyone loves a healthy dose of retail therapy, shopping isn't always what it's cracked up to be — especially when you've stumbled upon something you love, but wish you could change, add, or remove one detail. Luckily, Frilly, a website where you can custom-make your own clothes, is the perfect solution for consumers.
Jeni Ni, co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Frilly, had spent five years as a buyer in the fashion industry before going into marketing in New York. During her time in the industry, Ni always found herself thinking of changes she'd make to the clothes she came across, whether it was for work or for own personal wardrobe. "[I was] like, I wish I could just change this one detail," Ni shares. When she moved to Los Angeles in 2014, she met her now business partner Shangwei Ding, who had a background in tech. "He said, 'I have this idea. I want to do customizable fashion," she tells me.
In addition to always wanting a bit more control over what she's buying, what Ni really wanted was to bring the fashion industry back to where people were investing in themselves and their closet, and getting something that is really well-made. And that's how Frilly was born.
So, what is Frilly exactly? It's more than just adding your initials, embroidery, or embellishments to a garment. You control what your clothing item looks like in every detail, which means you're the designer. From the type of fabric and color to length and hem options, even what type of stitching you want, the choices are all yours.
If you're not one for endless choices, navigating the site might be overwhelming at first, but Frilly makes it a bit easier by organizing its garments into three different collections: Herron, Saltt, and One Fifty Third. According to Ni, Herron is most like an "elevated boho," while Saltt has an edgier, sexier look. One Fifty Third, on the other hand, has a bright, preppy feel. Frilly will also be launching a fourth line, FOUR, which will have more structured, Scandinavian-inspired pieces on Oct. 16.
Ready to get started? Here's how Frilly works.
1. Select Your Item
First things first: Choose what you'll be designing. Currently, Frilly has over 60 items to customize, which means the number of possibilities for your perfect garment (blouse, skirt, jacket, blazer, dress, pants, or you name it) is infinite.
Be sure to take your time and play around with the different looks. Something you might have never considered could be the ultimate piece for you with a few personal changes!
Not entirely sure where to start? Frilly also provides some examples, designed by other Frilly users, to fuel your inspiration.
2. Choose Fabric And Color
Each item comes with a set of different fabrics to choose from to your liking. These, for example, can be created in chambray, chino, viscose, or striped polyester. Each swatch you see on Frilly is a photograph of the fabric, which means you know exactly what the look and texture will be like. When you hover over the fabrics, you'll also get a description of what fibers each fabric is made from, as well as how to care for your garment and the fabric's origin.
Once you've decided what type of fabric you want to use, it's time to choose the color. Some fabrics might only come in one color option, whereas others come with multiple selections.
3. Switch Up The Details
Here's when you get into the nitty gritty of Frilly, which is the most fun. Depending on the item you choose to customize, you can decide every little detail of your piece. If you can imagine any part, chances are you have a few options for it. Whether it's adding sleeves to a shirt, changing the stitching, the garment's length, or taking away some extra details, this is the step where you have complete control over making this garment truly your own.
4. Prepare For Your New Outfit
Once you've added all your designs to the cart and made your purchase, Frilly will keep you updated on every step of the way, from when the material's being cut to the moment it reaches your doorstep.
You'll no doubt fall in love with your new creation. But if you don't, or if something doesn't fit quite right, you can contact Frilly within 30 days about returning or exchanging your item for store credit or your money back.
Of course, custom clothing isn't cheap. Depending on your design, Frilly can cost anywhere from $80 to $1,300, which can definitely put a dent in your bank account. But think about it this way: Frilly not only acts as an online tailor, but also uses top quality fabrics put together by one person who works on your garment from start to finish. This means no assembly lines and complete care when it comes to your purchase, not to mention, a one-of-a-kind piece that you can proudly say you designed yourself.
You won't be able to help but feel yourself when strutting down the sidewalk in your new Frilly piece. After all, the world is your runway, and when you've designed your 'fit, you truly own it.