There is no argument that the industrial revolution and the advances in medicine at the end of the 19th century have been life-changers which have shaped our modern societies and improved our life expectancy. But they are also the major culprits of the rather depressing lack of taste and double-sword standards we witness in the 21st century global economy, where everything is available, accessible and democratised, making us feel that we have simply become clones of ourselves.
With burdensome bureaucracy and cumbersome regulations, we find it difficult to know where and how products are manufactured, whom by. There is a kind of opacity which destroys the value of each product not only on a monetary aspect but also at an emotional level.
When the global economy became the paradigm in the late 1980’s, I was always among those who were convinced that the future of the global economy would quickly transform into the return to localism. We might ‘“Think global’ but what we see today is a growing interest in the ‘’Act local.”
In the somewhat standardised and sterile pattern of our lives, Made to measure is the exception. With the popularity of Web stores such as Etsy, many individuals have chosen not to pursue money but to express their creativity. It has never been easier to have your own unique piece of anything made. Made to measure has become the way to ‘act local’ in the worldwide economy. Thanks to the Internet and fast communications, you can be in any country in the world but dream of your unique jewel, your unique car or your unique dress made by a tailor near or faraway from you. You can commission your unique perfume –reflecting the essence of your personal moment-to remember what you like. Made to measure is like the blueprint of our personality to remind us that we are not clones or only a number but that each of us is truly UNIQUE.
We all long to express the unique part of our personality and this transforms the idea of Made to measure into something magical, starting with a meeting of two individuals who are going to have a special relationship: the creative person becoming the maker for the client who has a dream.
The true luxury today is about reviving the tradition of ‘Made to measure’ in the same way the dressmaker used to take your measurements and fit the dress of your dreams, the shoemaker used to shape shoes to your exact size or the perfumer would create your own Madeleine de Proust. It is about rediscovering what a tomato really tastes like, a rose smells like, a dress or suit that fits feels like, the touch of pure satin or silk. Made to measure appeals to all the 5 senses. The pure luxury of Made to measure is not about money. It is truly about caring for humanity.