January 26, 2012, 10:39 AM

Designing clothes isn’t just for professionals anymore

More than 50,000 shoppers have designed their own clothing on FashionPlaytes.com.

Lead Photo

FashionPlaytes.com aims to attract girls who want something different. Since 2010, the retailer has helped more than 50,000 girls create customized clothing using a design tool on its web site. Last year alone, consumers created more than 400,000 designs.

A shopper starts by selecting a garment, such as a dress, in a preset style. She then chooses various customization options, such as decorative trim or graphic designs on the dress label. Users also can create customized clothing for dolls.

The site invites girls to create their own designs with a banner describing the three-step process across the top of its home page.

Fashion Playtes, No. 897 in the Second 500 Guide created the customization technology using HTML5, a web programming language, and other unspecified web technologies, says Sarah McIlroy, founder and CEO. “Everything is proprietary,” McIlroy says.

The challenge, McIlroy says, is having fresh designs and styles available so that the retailer stays in front of fashion trends for girls.

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