Kickstarter Wants To Crowdfund The Future Of Menswear

by MR Magazine Staff

As a fashion customer, you accept waiting as just part and parcel of buying your clothes. You wait as omniscient figures in penthouses play a high-stakes game of Red Light, Green Light and wave on or turn away the trendiest styles, hottest designers, and game-changing technologies. You wait as investment firms, luxury conglomerates, swagless executives, entrenched designers, and retailers all get to take a crack at a brand and its clothing before you ever get a say. Kickstarter’s biggest in-an-ideal-world promise is that they’ve done away with all the waiting. Unlike clothes shopping, the crowdfunding platform gives you the chance to peruse a marketplace of ideas. “People on Kickstarter aren’t shopping,” says Kickstarter spokesperson David Gallagher. “They’re supporting the creation of something that doesn’t exist.” In the fashion space (the site’s seventh largest category, but a “strong and growing” one, Gallagher says), the promise of the crowdfunding site is that a creator—shaken loose from the chains of powerful investors or the ruling luxury conglomerates that own the luxury houses where creators are forced to cut their teeth for years and years before finally getting the chance to install their singular vision—can easily connect directly with you, a paying customer. “I love Kickstarter because they’re opening it up,” Josh Gustin, founder of Kickstarter-funded denim brand Gustin, says. “If you have a good idea, give it a shot. You don’t have to win the approval of Barneys anymore.” Instead, you need the approval of the masses, or at least enough of it to reach your funding goal. But what does that look like? Read more at GQ.