I recently had the opportunity to visit Ruben Opheide at his office in Antwerp for an interview. A young entrepreneur and fashion designer, he used Kickstarter to launch a new label (Ruben O) which offers affordable, custom-made trousers to the everyday person. And they’re available online. We talked about the environment, and how the pollutive way that we buy our clothes affects it. We also discussed hopes that the clothing industry will one day come full-circle and return to the glorious days of only offering custom-made clothing. It’s a big idea, but he’s realistic, and knows that it’s something that would take far more than one company to accomplish. Ruben also told me about the way that 3D printing will change the world once it can be done with other materials like metals and stronger plastics. He clearly knows his industry, but his knowledge permeates not only fashion, but logistics and production too.
Now, about the actual trousers. They’ll be available in casual, business, and golf styles ranging from black to lime green. The Kickstarter funds will be used to create a configurator, like those on the websites of high end car companies, where you’ll be able to place buttons, zips and pockets to suit your own tastes. This is excellent for the many people out there who find only one or two brands make trousers that properly fit them, if any. Rather than being limited to those brands, an affordable and customisable option means that a long lasting pair of trousers is obtainable in any style you want.
Pre-orders on Kickstarter range from 119 to 129 Euros, and prices after launch are expected to be in the range of 150-175 Euros.