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The shirts in your closet fall into two categories: the ones you wear and the ones you don’t.
It’s depressing to see how many shirts fall into that latter category. Most are off-the-rack shirts, which are an absolute crapshoot in terms of getting a good fit. But some of those “never wear” shirts are altered shirts that you actually had tailored to fit your body. Yet they still don’t.
There’s a reason for that. Customizing a shirt to an impeccable fit is complicated. People are not as average-shaped as the clothing industry would like them to be, and many times, if a company gets it right for you, it’s because of luck. You call it a minor miracle and you wear that shirt over and over and over again.
I don’t have to tell you all that. You know the frustration of trying to find a shirt that fits just right.
The difference between the two categories of shirts in your closet? Those that fit great and make you feel awesome when you wear them – the shirts that are slim but have just the right amount of room to be comfortable all day, no pulling of the buttons when you move your arms; the tails fall at that perfect sweet spot that allows you to wear them tucked or untucked; the shirts that you’d wear on a first date or a job interview.
And, well, all the rest of your shirts.
I’ve recently made a wardrobe standard for myself: I want everything that I buy to fall into the first category. If there are any doubts – “If it shrinks it might be too small…” “the body fits great, but the sleeves are a little short…” – it’s not good enough. And when you think about it, why buy anything if it wouldn’t become one of your favorite things to wear?
However, the practical downfall of this sartorial commitment is it can be damn hard finding those items. As we come across things we think stand up to this, we try to feature them on Primer as much as possible.
But what if there was a way to stop looking and instead take the best fitting shirt you have in your closet and clone it?
Well wouldn’t you know it, you can.
I found an innovative brand that does just that. Deo Veritas has multiple different ways to get the perfect fit that they guarantee (more on those later) but the method that I was most excited to try was having my new shirts made based off of the measurements of my best fitting shirt. Their site provided an easy tutorial for measuring my shirt, then I designed my new shirts the way I wanted and bam: Three new shirts that fit the exact same way were made.
Which, when you think about it, is the smartest way to order custom shirts. The problem with traditional made-to-measure methods is that they aren’t personalized. While they are based off of your measurements, there are too many unknowns. You can never tell how much clearance a brand is going to add on to your measurements. Are their patterns a billowy cut or a trim fit? Are they extra long in the tail or can you wear them untucked? And they don’t know your preferences or your body shape quirks. Deo Veritas solves that with a novel approach: they ask you. They get that information from you either by having you measure an existing shirt and making one just like it or through their algorithm-based Qsizing survey.
Founded in 2007, Deo Veritas took a modern approach to solving an age-old problem: they developed an algorithm. The way Deo Veritas tells their own story, this is how they got their start. The algorithm-based sizing method they developed was so accurate that it allowed them to guarantee a perfect fit for every shirt they make. Underpinning the slick design and UI of their online ordering process is a deep understanding of the details that contribute to a perfect-fitting shirt. To me, this is what differentiates Deo Veritas.
When you buy a shirt, you don’t just order it. You design it. Deo Veritas takes your custom design and makes you a shirt from literally whole cloth, and they somehow get it to your doorstep in an industry leading 10 to 14 days. Hell, you’re lucky to get your J.Crew order in that time unless you splurge for expedited shipping. As part of the process, there are three ways you can customize your fit:
The first and most innovative is a process they call Qsizing. This is the algorithm-based sizing method that doesn’t require a measuring tape. They get your customized measurements just by having you answer an eight-question survey. This is a great method for guys who’ve never ordered a custom shirt before or may not already have a great fitting shirt to start from.
The method I used was the second one. I took one of my favorite shirts (one of those lucky fits from another brand that has been discontinued) and I measured it. The website gives you specific instructions on how to measure your existing shirt and they design you a new one based on that. It’s like putting your favorite shirt on a copy machine and hitting “print.”
Deo Veritas also lets you use traditional body measurements that a tailor might take. I know we’ve just talked about why this method falls short of the other two innovative methods that Deo Veritas offers. But this is where the perfect fit guarantee comes in.
On your first shirt, Deo Veritas offers free alterations regardless of fault. No questions asked. They recognize that for your first shirt, it may take incremental amendments to get an absolute perfect fit. This is true for bespoke shirts you’d buy from a tailor in a brick-and-mortar store, and it’s true for their made-to-measure shirts. Deo Veritas offers free repairs and alterations for all of their shirts, no matter which method you chose. They even offer this guarantee on their predesigned shirts (which has sizing similar to what you’d see on an off-the-rack shirt).
The shirt I was most excited about was made out of a blend of cotton and bamboo that the company developed. It feels softer than cotton, and the fabric is moisture-wicking and has antibacterial properties that hold odors at bay for 3+ days. It’s also a wrinkle-resistant shirt, which is unusual for organic fabrics—typical iron-free shirts release formaldehyde due to their chemical treatment. With the bamboo blend, it’s naturally wrinkle-resistant—you can take it out of the wash and hang it in the bathroom while you shower and it’s ready to wear in five minutes.
If you already own a few custom shirts, or even if you’ve never ordered a custom dress shirt before, then Deo Veritas is worth a try. Even if you only buy one shirt, you’re guaranteed to get a perfect fit. And with that first perfectly-fitting shirt, you’ll get all the data you need to order a perfect-fitting shirt each time.
Plus, Deo Veritas is offering an exclusive discount to Primer readers — created just for us; check it out here. Once you have the offer, head on over to Deo Veritas and try them out. And be sure to leave us a picture of your perfect fit in the comments below or @primermagazine on Instagram!