Ministry of Supply
The pitch: No one wants to choose between dress shirts that breathe or stay wrinkle-free, that fit perfectly or have a classic look. Ministry of Supply shirts, made from advance materials tested in space, offer all of the above features at a down-to-earth price.
The goods: Co-founder Kit Hickey says that the Ministry team, all college athletes, wanted to feel as "comfortable and confident" in their business clothing as their sporting gear. Toward that end, they utilized MIT resources and research to create Apollo shirts, with a "proprietary blend of high-grade synthetics" that breathes, wicks moisture, fights microbes, and stretches at all the places a shirt tends to strain during the day. All that engineering also yields "clean durable seams" and very precise sizing. On the style side, check for remarkably thin collars and cuffs that maintain crispness without ironing.
The result: Nearly $430,000 pledged by about 2,800 backers on crowdfunding site Kickstarter financed the creation of a simple, three-product online shop. The new goods are a departure from traditional designs, but not from traditional cuts. They are both futuristic and familiar – and the fabric feels good. [$98 per shirt; ministryofsupply.com]