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HONG KONG – Smart new modelling technology can digitally map a person’s body shape and size in just a few seconds – opening up enticing possibilities for online apparel retail. Developed by researchers from Hong Kong Polytechnic University, the kit requires two full body photographs to digitally reconstruct the shape of a person.

Existing methods of shape modelling often involve expensive and bulky scanners and a significant amount of approximation, resulting in questionable accuracy.

By integrating cutting-edge computer graphic and vision technology, this new innovation is said to allow a customised model in arbitrary dynamic poses to be created automatically within 5-10 seconds. The system can reconstruct the 3-D shape and extract over 50 size measurements of different parts of a person, including the girth of bust, waist, hip, thigh, knee, calf and neck, as well as arm length, shoulder slope accurately. The discrepancies in tight-fitting and loose-fitting clothing are said to be less than 1cm and 2cm respectively, which are precise enough to fulfil the specific requirements of the clothing industry for fashion applications and comparable to body scans.

The technology has been developed by Dr Tracy P.Y. Mok, associate professor from the Institute of Textiles and Clothing at PolyU, and Dr. Zhu Shuaiyin, Ph.D. graduate of the same institute.

Said Dr Mok: “The digital reconstruction of human subjects can provide competitive advantages for the fashion industry. With an accurate projection of the size and shape of the human body, these customised models will enhance online shopping experience, and stimulate growth in fashion online shopping.

“The output models can also enable customers to visualise try-on effects before purchases in online stores. This frees us from the limitations imposed by taking body measurements physically, helping customers to select the right size in online clothing purchases.”


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