Fitcode co-founder and CEO Rian Buckley is also a model who has fashion insider’s experience with jeans. She says there can be a big difference between how they look in pictures and how they really fit.
What: Fitcode, a website that helps women find which denim jeans will fit them
Who: Rian Buckley, co-founder and CEO
Clips and pins: With no technology experience, Buckley started Fitcode with an intimate understanding of how hard it was for women to find jeans online that fit. Working at Nordstrom and other retailers, she saw the gap between jeans in pictures and how they really fit. “All the clothes on models are clipped and altered and photoshopped,” Buckley said.
Universal standard: Buckley got a start in the modeling industry as a jeans model. “I was really able to try on thousands of pants and thought, ‘Wow, there’s no standard here.’ ” She set out to create one so women would know what jeans would fit their body types.
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Three-digit code: Women visiting the Fitcode website answer a four-question quiz to determine their three-digit Fitcode. The quiz asks women to pick pictures most similar to their body type and list problems they have, such as gapping or muffin-top. Buckley says the company focuses on fit, not numerical size. “To me, size is a byproduct of a good fit,” she said.
Jeans galore:Fitcode buys one of every pair of jeans its team matches users to on the site. Based on measuring and testing of each pair, the company’s algorithm determines which jeans go with specific three-digit codes. It then recommends jeans to the customer and directs her to a brand’s website for purchase.
Browser extension: Women don’t have to come directly to Fitcode to find jeans. A company-developed browser extension makes small medallions show up on jeans that will fit while a user is browsing retailers’ sites — if the user has already taken the Fitcode quiz.
Profit strategy: Fitcode plans to partner with retailers and brands and work out licensing deals. It raised a $1.9 million Series A financing round last week from Kirkland-based Harvey Partners. The company is adding its 11th employee Monday.
Perfect fit: Buckley still models while running the company, frequently working with Vancouver, B.C.,-based activewear company Lululemon. Lululemon has set up a table in a dressing room where she can park her laptop and answer emails between shoots.
Fun fact: Buckley attended the University of Washington on a swimming scholarship.
— Rachel Lerman
Information in this article, originally published Sept. 27, 2015, was corrected Sept. 28, 2015. A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Fitocode received financing from New York-based Harvey Partners. In fact, Harvey is based in Kirkland.