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Nordstrom Goes Hard on Mass Customization With Knot Standard

Custom clothier Knot Standard is bringing its personalization capabilities to the masses through new wholesale partnerships with mainstream retail.

The on-demand menswear DTC—which specializes in suiting, shirting, performance apparel, outerwear, black tie and wedding apparel—launched a new tech-powered platform that will enable brands and retailers to deliver tailor-made apparel to their shoppers.

The company spent nine years developing its AI measuring tools, recently launching a line of womenswear to complement its men’s offering. Knot Standard co-founder and president Matthew Mueller believes that wholesale expansion is the next frontier for the customization specialist, as partnering with established retailers will provide a new platform to showcase its capabilities.

“Knot Standard’s Custom OnDemand platform is a first for retail,” he said. “Never before has custom clothing been possible for anyone, anywhere, without any special training, inventory, or infrastructure.” The retail-focused program merges virtual styling tools with Knot Standard’s proprietary fit tech to enable stores to create custom options without entirely revamping their assortments or undertaking costly or labor-intensive upskilling initiatives, he added.

Knot Standard will bring its custom capabilities to mainstream retailers like Nordstrom.
Knot Standard will bring its custom capabilities to mainstream retailers like Nordstrom. Knot Standard

Retail is already buying in. Knot Standard’s platform has been adopted by retailers from Bloomingdale’s to Nordstrom. Brooks Brothers, meanwhile, worked alongside the company to create capabilities for seamless measuring, ordering and production for its men’s shirting line, and implemented a made-to-measure menswear program at 21 of its stores that will soon expand to suits, jackets and pants.

Nordstrom and Bloomingdale’s plan to expand to an undisclosed number of locations in the “near future,” Knot Standard said. While both offer limited tailoring services on site, the platform will act as a “draw for increasingly selective clientele looking for something new and unique.”

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“This isn’t just the future for our brand—next-generation client experiences like Custom OnDemand will become the future for every brand looking to stake their claim in an ever-changing landscape,” Mueller said. “We’re excited to see where we can take the customer next.”

The expansion comes seven months after Knot Standard launched its consumer-facing virtual showroom experience, following funding from growth equity investor Decathlon Capital Partners. Dubbed Stylist Store, the showroom gives shoppers personalized wardrobe recommendations through a portal accessible through the company’s e-commerce site or its digital measuring mobile app.

The feature bridges the gap between Knot Standard’s 10 nationwide showrooms and its online presence by recreating a personalized in-store experience through the digital channel. Customers can browse their wardrobe of previous purchases, communicate directly with stylists, track orders and access new features and product offerings.

Knot Standard’s partnership with Nordstrom comes after the department store retailer recently announced plans to add 21 Indochino shop-in-shops to its full-line locations. “Together, we’re enabling more individuals to showcase their personal style through custom clothing that delivers high value by combining a premium customer experience, high quality product and accessible price,” Drew Green, CEO of the made-to-measure menswear label, said at the time.

“We have long admired Indochino as a leader in made-to-measure suiting and apparel and we are excited to bring the Nordstrom customer a new bespoke experience in our stores,” Shea Jensen, executive vice president, general merchandise manager of women’s and men’s ready to wear at Nordstrom, said in June. “As we continue to expand our offering within our men’s category, we are always thinking about how we can best serve a wide range of customers. Through this partnership we will provide an approachable and convenient way to shop whether it be for work, special occasions or everyday wardrobe essentials.”

Additional reporting by Jessica Binns.