Matt Hornbuckle and Kirk Keel have had it with ill-fitting men's shirts, and they're taking matters into their own hands.
The co-founders of New Jersey-based e-commerce startup Stantt want long-sleeve button-ups to move past the limits of generic small, medium, and large sizes and into the realm of the customized perfect fit. So they've launched a Kickstarter campaign that promises to deliver casual shirts that "fit like they're tailored for you."
"You know that feeling of putting on your favorite suit? That empowered, I feel f'ing awesome feeling? We want you to feel that great every day in everything you wear, and the first step to that is an amazing fit," reads the description for Stantt's campaign.
From whence does that fit come? From technology.
Hornbuckle and Keel -- former Johnson & Johnson consumer-brand managers who have no experience in fashion but clearly have experience with overly baggy shirts -- worked with apparel and university experts to create a patent-pending sizing technology they call DataFit. Doing that involved mining 200 measurements from more than 800 3D body scans to yield some 70 sizes of men's shirts. Wait, do they make men in that many sizes? Apparently so.
"People come in an incredible range of shapes and sizes, which is why it's such a hassle to find a good fit with the traditional S/M/L approach," Hornbuckle tells CNET.
Buyers of Stantt shirts (the company name comes from "constant improvement") enter a few measurements online -- chest, waist, and sleeve length -- and choose from one of five colors. An algorithm matches them to the right size. A (hopefully) perfectly tapered cotton shirt, made by a third-generation US custom shirt maker, arrives on their doorstep a few days later.
This isn't the first time fabric has met algorithm in the quest for perfect-fitting menswear, and the fashion world seems ready to try on that pairing. Stantt's campaign quickly blew past its $15,000 Kickstarter goal to hit more than $79,000 in contributions, with 17 days to go. With the initial round of funding, Hornbuckle and Keel plan to create a first run of casual button-up shirts and get their new sizing system up and fitting.
"We want to make sizes true to the people wearing them," they say, "instead of the industry selling them."