How has the retail end of the fashion industry changed? During the Renaissance, fabrics were bought from markets and pedlars, as they had been for centuries. Textiles were relatively expensive. In the early 1800s small specialist shops continued to be important but larger establishments began to emerge, able to group together a wider range of goods. Herein was born a new era of shopping. These developments not only changed the ways in which people could buy fabrics and clothing; they shaped ideas about how to behave and dress. This resulted in an explosion in consumerism and fashion that continues today.