These Seattle Women Started a Fashion Company That's Changing How Shoppers Think About Size

Online clothing brand Universal Standard's new program program allows customers to exchange sizes that are too big or too small for new ones
The Talfer Cocoon Coat from Universal Standard

This article appears in print in the March 2018 issueClick here to subscribe.

Friends Alexandra Waldman and Polina Veksler want women sizes 10–28 to rethink their relationship to that number on the label. In 2015, the pair cofounded online clothing brand Universal Standard, and recently opened a Redmond location (by appointment only; Redmond, 4138 148th Ave. NE, Building H; 425.896.8584), inspired by the philosophy of “Buy for who you are today,” as Waldman says.

Knowing that bodies can—and do—fluctuate, the brand’s Universal Fit Liberty program allows customers to exchange sizes that are too big or too small for new ones from its core collection (a selection of high-quality neutral tops, bottoms and dresses) within a calendar year.

The brand offers silhouettes tailored for larger frames, using fabrics such as Peruvian cottons and creamy vegan leathers. Order individual pieces, or a starter kit of four- or eight-piece sets ($340–$570) that allows you to mix and match items, such as merino wool cardigans, jeans in three washes and cashmere-blend sweater dresses, for multiple outfit options.

Universal Standard is aiming big in 2018, hoping to add athletic wear, footwear, business attire and more to its offerings, giving plus-size women what they should have had all along: quality choices. 

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