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定制文胸,女性新宠?

更新时间:2016-6-12 10:05:52 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

A New Step in Wrestling With the Bra
定制文胸,女性新宠?

They are the measurements that many American women (and not a few American men) know so well: 32A, 34B, 36C.

这些尺码是很多美国女性(也包括相当一部分美国男性)所熟知的:32A、34B、36C。

On they go, the canonical brassiere sizes, up to at least a 50N. They have been around since the 1930s, maddeningly unconventional standards, varying from brand to brand, from demi-cup to strapless — a kaleidoscopic vision, in lace and elastic, of fashion, culture and the enduring power of marketing.

一直往上数,公认的胸罩尺码最高至少可以到50N。它们产生于20世纪30年代左右,各种不循规蹈矩的标准令人发狂,从一个品牌到另一个,从半罩杯到无肩带,皆不相同。它们镶着蕾丝花边和松紧带,令人眼花缭乱,成为了一种时尚和文化,还成了市场营销的持久动力。

But is anyone ready for measurements like 1-30, 7-36 and 9-42?

但是,有人准备好接受1-30、7-36和9-42这样的尺码了吗?

Those are just three of 55 new sizes that a major American manufacturer has devised to address a lament as old as the bra itself: many don’t fit.

美国一家大型制造商设计了55个新尺码,以解决自胸罩产生以来就一直存在的烦恼:很多都不合身。上述的只是55个新尺码中的三个。

The undergarment industry, eager to sell its wares, has seized on the complaint, offering an ever-growing assortment of sizes and shapes — often at ever-growing prices — to entice women to buy that next bra.

急于卖出自家产品的内衣行业抓住了这种不满,正为女性设计出越来越多不同尺码和形状——其价格也往往在不断上涨——来吸引女性购买新款胸罩。

Jockey International, a grand old name in undergarments, if a somewhat unglamorous one, has spent eight years developing the new measurement system, which the company says takes into account the shape of a woman’s breasts, not merely bust size. The bras are a mass-market answer to custom fittings that have become increasingly popular in boutiques and high-end department stores.

Jockey国际(Jockey International)也许不是那么耀眼,但却是内衣行业享有盛誉的老品牌。这家公司花八年时间开发了新的尺码体系,说这种体系考虑了女性乳房的形状,而不仅是胸部的尺寸。如今,在精品店和高端百货公司,定制服饰越来越流行,而这些胸罩就是为大众提供的定制服务。

Whether Jockey’s approach will catch on is uncertain. But the Jockey Bra, formally introduced Thursday, is nonetheless another step in the evolution of the modern brassiere.

究竟Jockey的策略是否会受到欢迎仍不得而知。然而,于本周四正式推出的Jockey胸罩(Jockey Bra)无疑是现代内衣发展史上的新一步。

In the 1920s flappers opted for snug bras for a boyish silhouette. By the 1950s bras that created a fuller, pointier bust were the rage. The ’70s brought more comfortable, unstructured bras — and then Victoria’s Secret.

20世纪20年代,年轻时髦的女子为了使自己的身形像男孩,往往会选择紧身内衣。20世纪50年代,能使胸部看起来更饱满、更坚挺的文胸非常流行。70年代出现了更加舒适的、不定型的胸罩,然后就诞生了维多利亚的秘密(Victoria’s Secret)。

By the ’90s, the Miracle Bra was battling with the Wonderbra for the title of queen of cleavage. The 2000s brought larger sizes for bigger women.

20世纪90年代,奇迹胸罩(Miracle Bra)和神奇胸罩(Wonderbra)为了乳沟皇后的头衔而争得不可开交。而21世纪的头10年,则出现了一些供体型较大女性穿着的大号内衣。

Now, as the cycle turns again, the industry is talking up the benefits of a better fit. The pitch may appeal to women newly conversant in fashion. “People are becoming more knowledgeable about fashion minutiae, and they’re focusing on things like fit,” said Valerie Steele, director of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology.

现在,情况再次发生了变化,内衣行业开始大声宣扬更合身的胸罩有什么好处。这种说辞对那些新入门的女性时尚达人或许会有一定的吸引力。美国时装学院(Fashion Institute of Technology)博物馆馆长瓦莱丽·斯蒂尔(Valerie Steele)说,“人们对时尚细节的了解更多了,他们现在更加关注合身等问题。”

It may seem surprising but the lingerie industry itself pushes the notion that off-the-shelf bras often don’t fit well. The bra manufacturer Wacoal, for instance, says about eight out of 10 women wear the wrong size.

尽管听起来似乎令人惊讶,但是内衣行业的确在推广这样一个概念,即批量生产的胸罩通常都不是很合身。例如,胸罩制造商华歌尔(Wacoal)就说,10名女性中有八名都穿着错误尺寸的胸罩。

Until now, however, standard sizes have barely changed, although the range has expanded. Cup sizes are based on two measurements — the breast at its fullest point, minus the rib cage measurement. If it’s a one-inch difference, it’s an A cup; a two-inch difference, a B cup; and so forth. That approach, Jockey executives say, doesn’t account for different breast shapes.

然而,直到现在,标准尺码几乎没有什么变化,尽管尺码范围有所拓展。罩杯的尺码以两个尺寸为基础,即乳房最饱满处的周长减去胸廓尺寸。如果差值为1英寸(约合2.5厘米),则为A罩杯;如果差异为2英寸,则为B罩杯;依此类推。Jockey的高管说,这种方法没有把不同的胸形考虑进去。

Jockey began the project by scanning 800 women, getting “data points about all of the different measurements of a woman’s torso and the breast size,” said Sally Tomkins, a senior vice president. Researchers followed women in their homes as they chose bras and dressed, and heard “complete dissatisfaction about every aspect of the bra purchasing process, from the inaccuracy to the way you get measured,” said Dustin Cohn, the company’s chief marketing officer.

Jockey的这个项目首先为800位妇女进行了测量,获取“女性躯干和乳房各种尺寸的所有数据,”公司高级副总裁萨莉·汤姆金斯(Sally Tomkins)说。研究人员跟随这些女性到她们的家中,看她们如何选胸罩、搭配衣饰,听到“她们对购买胸罩过程中各个方面的完全失望,从尺码不够精确到测量的方法,”公司的首席营销官达斯廷·科恩(Dustin Cohn)说。

In the end, Jockey came up with 10 cup sizes. “Our bras don’t necessarily get bigger, bigger, bigger, but in different proportions — they get larger, but in different shapes,” Mr. Cohn said.

最后,Jockey开发了十个不同的罩杯尺码。“我们的胸罩未必是越来越大,而是比例有所变化——它们的确变大了,但形状是不同的,”科恩说。

To fit the bras, Jockey uses a kit with 10 plastic cups in varying shapes, along with a measuring tape. Customers are meant to try on the cups and see what works best, then measure their rib cage. Someone with a 34-inch rib cage and medium-size breasts might wear a 5-34 or a 6-34, for instance.

为了能让胸罩合体,Jockey提供了一套共十个形状不同的塑料罩杯以及一把量尺。顾客们应试戴这些不同的罩杯看哪个最合适,然后再测量她们的胸廓。举例说,一些胸廓34英寸、乳房大小中等的人可能需要穿5-34或者6-34的胸罩。

Charla Welch, who reviewed the fitting process on her blog, The Bra Crusader, said the plastic-cup approach “wasn’t very comfortable.” “Maybe it’s just larger breasts, but I had to work it into the plastic cup,” she said. In standard sizes, Ms. Welch is a 32H, a 9-32 in Jockey’s size.

夏拉·韦尔奇(Charla Welch)在她的博客“胸罩斗士”(The Bra Crusader)上评论了这个测量的过程,她说这种塑料罩杯“不是很舒服”。“可能只是乳房大了一些,反正要戴上塑料罩杯不太容易,”她说。按照标准尺寸,韦尔奇是32H,按照Jockey的尺码,她是9-32。

The Jockey Bra confronts several business challenges. First, the sizing kit costs online customers $19.95, although Jockey says it includes a $20 coupon, plus a money-back guarantee on a bra if it does not fit. Other companies that sell difficult-to-fit items, such as Warby Parker with eyeglasses, send customers try-on versions at no cost.

Jockey胸罩面临多重商业挑战。首先,那套测定尺寸工具在线购买的价格是19.91美元(约合122元人民币),虽然Jockey说,这其中包括一张20美元的抵用券,另外,如果胸罩不合体还能保证退款。有的公司在出售对贴合度要求较高的商品时,例如瓦尔比派克(Warby Parker)的眼镜,则会免费寄给顾客商品的试用版。

“Essentially they’re being asked to shell out cash upfront to be part of this experiment,” said Jennifer O’Brien, director of strategic planning at Laird & Partners, an advertising agency, who did not work on the Jockey bra. “At least for the introductory phase, I would think that would be free. You want to remove as many barriers as possible to get people engaged with this, because it is a new world.”

“从根本上来说就是,他们要求顾客先付钱参加这场试验,”广告公司莱尔德(Laird & Partners)负责战略策划的珍妮弗·奥布莱恩(Jennifer O’Brien)说,她没有参与Jockey胸罩的工作。“我以为,至少在刚推出的阶段,这会是免费的。要让人们理解它,你应该尽量扫除任何障碍,因为这是一个完全不同的世界。”

And the bra itself costs $60, more than many competitors, despite its functional looks and a limited choice of colors: beige, white or black.

Jockey的胸罩价格是60美元,要高过很多竞争对手的定价。而它的外观却不甚美观,也只有有限的颜色可选:米黄色、白色、黑色。

“It is a high price point,” Ms. Tomkins of Jockey conceded. She said the company was selling the bra only online and in its boutiques to try to get women to understand what is behind it.

“这的确是一个高定价,”Jockey公司的汤姆金斯承认。她说,公司仅在其网站和时尚精品店出售此款胸罩,希望能让女性了解它的价值所在。

As for converting women to new ways of sizing, Ms. O’Brien pointed to premium denim jeans, where women now shop by waist size, but most other approaches have not caught on.

如何能让妇女们适应新的尺码标准,奥布莱恩指出应该向高级牛仔裤学习,女性现在是按腰围尺寸来挑选这类商品,但其他多数都还没有跟上。

Ms. Tomkins said that had been a concern.

汤姆金斯说,这一直都让他们担心。

“It’s something that worried us all the way through,” she said. “It’s always a risk when you change something that’s been in the market for a very long time, but not only are we changing the fit, we’re changing the whole product.”

“这是让我们一直以来担心的一件事,”她说。“要去改变任何在市场上存在已久的东西,总是会有风险。并且,我们现在不只是改变胸罩的合体性,我们在革新整个产品。”

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