No more worrying about sizes buying clothes online with Shavatar, Belgian based fashion tech startup

Today we can buy almost anything online. Some things are more difficult to buy correctly, though. One example: clothes! How can you know if a dress will fit you nicely? Popular web shops have tried to circumvent this problems by offering customers the possibility to order multiple sizes with convenient shipping costs and return methods. You just buy more sizes of the same dress, try them at home, and return the rest. But this is not efficient enough. And web shops are aware that some customers will just give up buying online altogether because of the fitting problem.

Femke Danckaerts, Belgian PhD in physics at the University of Antwerp, used her experience with statistical shape modeling to find a solution to this problem. With only a few simple parameters, Femke is able to build a human body shape, or avatar. The accuracy is up to 7 millimeters. The avatar will try on the clothes for you. The innovation consists in the fact that a digital twin of yourself will be able to try on clothes for you, adding to what digital twins will be able to do for us in the near future, including health risks simulations. All based on a few simple parameters that do not require the use of a camera for pictures or video. The required parameters are gender, age, height, and weight, with the addition of simple measurements like your chest circumference, waist circumference, hips circumference, and cap size.

Femke is the CTO of a startup called Shavatar, which provides this service to web shops for them to implement it on their platforms. Customers will then use this as part of the services offered by the web shop. The next step sounds exciting: to provide a visual preview of your avatar wearing the dress, thus not only giving you the information whether the dress will fit or not, but to show you what it will look like.


Federica Bressan is a researcher and science communicator. She holds two MDs in Music and Musicology and a PhD in Computer Science. The vision underlying her work concerns the co-evolution of technology and culture. As a Marie Curie and Fulbright researcher, she has published 30+ peer-reviewed articles, chaired international events, and guest edited a special issue of the Journal of New Music Research. As communicator, she conducts video interviews and hosts the podcast Technoculture, and writes about science and society. Visit Federica's podcast at: