About this project
100% Merino basics. No middle men. Made in America.
I started Model Citizen because I didn't want to spend the rest of my life in Spandex. My days are unpredictable and they often involve a bicycle, work, the climbing gym, and happy hour if I'm lucky. Model Citizen is about more than just getting there, it’s about arriving. What you do when you get there is up to you.
3 CORE VALUES
1 – We don't believe that a stylish fit and performance materials must be mutually exclusive. Model Citizen makes beautiful clothes using a beautiful textile. The end.
2 – We keep pricing competitive because we cut the overhead incurred by a third-party retailer.
3 – Made in America. Always.
Why are we different than the other Merino wool companies?
1. Price: The equivalent tee by Ibex is $75 before shipping. (Icebreaker & Smartwool are around the same price point)
2. Fit: All of the men's shirts from Ibex, Smartwool etc. are cut either like an Underarmor compression shirt, or like a $5 Hanes tee. At Model Citizen, we take fit very seriously and make no sacrifices.
3. Manufacturing: We only make our garments in the USA.
4. Durability: We use a much more time consuming, but much more durable stitch called flat stitching.
5. Quality: We only use the best Merino wool available. If you want to find another merino shirt for under $50, you can do it, but they will be using a lower grade wool (closer to 21 micron) to off set the cost. Model Citizen only uses 17.5 micron Merino. If you look on Ibex's website you can actually find a men's tee shirt that is made in the USA and constructed from their "finest wool fiber" which means 17.5 micron and it's going for $110.
6. Direct Sales: By NOT going through a traditional retail mark-up we can save our customers around 50%.
DESIGN: Uncompromising fit and finish
This Merino you speak of...
Merino wool is the ultimate everyday performance fabric. It wears much like a regular tee shirt except it drapes better, dries faster, keeps you warm when wet (and never looks wet—i.e. shows no sweat), and best of all is unbelievably antimicrobial. Lightweight Merino wool is made wonderfully soft, and light enough to wear against the skin.
Model Citizen sources its wool from the world leader in Merino sheep and only uses the very softest of wool, measuring in at 17.5 microns—eleven times finer than human hair.
How do we keep pricing competitive?
By selling direct to consumers through our website, Model Citizen cuts out the overhead and markups associated with retail sales.
With our supporter-generated Kickstarter funds we will be partnering with like-minded companies by providing Model Citizen apparel at-cost to be printed with company logos/graphics for sale within retail environments as well as online through Model Citizen.
Your funding goes toward:
Ordering the first run of wool from New Zealand, plus a little extra for working out future designs — including a women's line and color options. Merino wool is expensive but your donations will allow Model Citizen to invest in our first stock of fabric and begin production. Thank you so much in advance.
- The minimum order from the textile mill in New Zealand is two rolls—about 345 meters, and each shirt requires roughly 1 meter of fabric.
- The fabric must then travel 7013.6 miles.
- Each shirt, headband, bandanna, or scarf must then be sewn, packed, and shipped.
Note: Patterns and manufacturing are secured and ready to go.
Stretch goal of $25,000
A huge thank you to all of our supporters, your response has been so great that we can now get serious about making a women's tee. Since I first announced the project, the #1 question I have received is "when will there be a women's line?" To make this a reality, we are setting a stretch goal that would allow us to offer the option of a women's tee to our Kickstarter supporters, future and current.
I came into this project with the perspective of a designer (I actually have a degree in architecture from the Rhode Island School of Design) and the intent of changing the way we look at high performance clothing for both men AND women. With your support I want to apply the same approach to a woman's tee designed to handle a night out no matter where you go or how you get there. If our project reaches $25,000 we will have enough to produce at least 3 women's prototypes (a Model Citizen fit is a perfect fit) as well as a digital production-ready pattern. Supporters would then have the option to receive a men's or women's tee.
We think this is a very realistic goal, but to reach it we need your help spreading the word. If you think this sounds like a great idea, click that "share button" or email a friend to let them know "I want this to happen, check it out! http://kck.st/QC139o "
We can't do this without you!
To see more of my sketches for the future of Model Citizen, click here.
Risks and challenges
To make our price point as low as possible, we're working within a very small margin. This means we need to be very effective at managing our overhead expenses. With the success of our Kickstarter, the challenge will be bridging gaps between fulfilling donation rewards and achieving long-term operational sustainability.
Supporting our Kickstarter campaign may produce the urge to replace your entire wardrobe with Merino wool.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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