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OFF THE CUFF: Ravi Ratan, who founded Cufflinks.com and sold it in 2012 after volume reached nearly $10 million, is launching his first women’s venture: Double R custom shirts, sold almost entirely online.
“I was looking for a new challenge that leveraged the experience and resources we had,” Ratan explained at his Dallas office and showroom.
Those resources include Q Clothier, the family business started by his father that has been manufacturing custom-fit men’s wear in its Hong Kong workshops for 46 years. Q Clothier has stores in Dallas, Houston and Tulsa, Okla.
When DoubleR.com goes live late this month, it will offer 10 styles in 120 fabrics from top European mills including Thomas Mason and Tessitura Monti. Videos will demonstrate how to take four measurements (bust, under the bust, waist at the navel and hip), which will be crunched via an algorithm to produce an individual pattern. Customers will also be invited to provide information regarding shoulders and arms.
“I spent the last nine months doing R&D to make sure we got it nailed down,” Ratan explained, noting he produced 1,200 shirts for 100 friends and family members. “It’s not a smaller men’s shirt.”
Retailing from $195 to $295, silhouettes include a tunic; a fitted Western style; a camp shirt; dress shirts with contrasting yokes, plackets and backs, and two shirt dresses. Ratan hopes to appeal to Lululemon-type customers — women from 25 to 65 who are active and fashionable.
“We’ve never done women’s and this really rounds out the entire offering,” he said. “Next, we’ll do jackets.”