About this project
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A poorly fitted shirt or dress makes you look sloppy, lethargic, and unprofessional. The ZipSeam is a patent pending breakthrough invention that allows the user to quickly and inexpensively tailor their own shirts in the comfort of their own homes; turning any off-the-rack item into a sexy, sleek, fashion piece.
In an attempt to purchase collared shirts for my workplace, the only options offered were shirts of different neck sizes. The resulting shirt fit well around my neck, but my torso looked like I was wearing a one-man tent. Actually tucking in the shirt turned me into a hot air balloon, but leaving it un-tucked gave me an irresistible urge to do twirls in my button-up dress. I’d always noticed a similar ballooning effect on my other collared shirts, albeit to a lesser extent.
I wanted my shirts to fit something like this:
All of the department stores have mannequins outfitted in sleek dress shirts, but what matters is this, which isn't immediately apparent…
A quick glance at the back of the mannequins revealed many folds of cloth, hidden from the shopper, beguiling them as to the true fit of the “off the rack” shirts.
Traditional tailoring is often expensive/cost ineffective, time consuming, and commonly permanent. If you were to take needle and thread to cloth, tailoring one shirt would take the average person well upwards of an hour to possibly result in a questionable result. A whole wardrobe? The thought of tailoring my entire closet is horrifyingly daunting.
A sewing machine is faster than sewing manually, decreasing the time commitment necessary, but the initial cost at minimum is $50 for a passable machine, not to mention the steep learning curve.
Visiting a professional tailor entails the drive there, the drive home, and then another drive there and back to pick up the finished product. Hopefully the result is satisfactory; otherwise you’ll unfortunately have to plan for another trip for whenever the touch-ups are done. And at the end of the whole ordeal, expect to pony up $15-25, per shirt!
Having a shirt custom made will cost you even more, running anywhere from $50 to upwards of $100 per shirt. Those costs didn’t fare well with my budget bruised with student loans, so I had to try something new.
The ZipSeam combines material and structural design to create the strongest seam without compromising flexibility and comfort. The patent pending design allows the ZipSeam to be lightweight, removable, AND reusable; users can tailor a shirt in minutes (demonstrated very clearly in the video). The ZipSeam turns clearance rack items into sleek shirts with excellent custom fits.
Comfort- Who would want to wear a piece of plastic inside their shirts? All my friends asked me that, until they tried the shirt with the ZipSeam in it. Thanks to the ridges, the ZipSeam is as flexible as your cell phone charging cord and can easily bend and flex with your body. Though it is a different feel from fabric, it is very much comfortable (I myself wore a shirt with the ZipSeam for 3 straight days).
As you can see, the prototypes all have unsightly burrs; but final products will be injection molded, which would eliminate the burrs whilst keeping the required dimensions and structural integrity consistent (most certainly better than my own unsteady hands with a knife).
To mass produce the ZipSeam, we would need to purchase tooling for production. The tooling will be quite costly, so I am looking for help from Kickstarter.
The ZipSeam will be manufactured in the USA.
Kickstarter is launched and funds raised
Manufacturing of the ZipSeam after tooling and die are made
Tooling: 2-3 Weeks
Production Lead Time: 2-3 Weeks
July to August -
Shipment of orders
Risks and challenges
We have a manufacturer lined up and ready for the volume. I believe the biggest challenge for this project will be shipping; there will be two manufacturers to complete the ZipSeam, and getting the product to you in a timely fashion will be of the utmost importance. Being my first project, I plan on playing the overprotective mom and keeping close contact with both manufacturers on the timeline and production.
Another challenge will be shipping all the products in a timely manner; for this I will be enlisting the help of my friends and family to get your Zipseam shipped on schedule. If orders truly become overwhelming, I will use a local fulfillment company.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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