[Casavva Chats] is a monthly series capturing eclectic conversations with the people we meet along the journey of building our humble company.
Greg Schwartz - always make quick, calculated decisions
Greg is co-founder and CEO of Stork, a company not only re-thinking the undershirt, but also how men purchase them. Casavva x Stork has been a partnership two years in the making, and ahead of our collaboration coming out in a few weeks, we'd like to get to know Greg a little bit better on a professional and personal level.
Where were you the moment you came up with Stork?
I was on the treadmill running in an old shrunken, yellow undershirt, and thought to myself ‘why do I still own this shirt?’ It was several years old, and I was too lazy to throw it out and buy new ones. Partly because you can’t try on an undershirt before you buy a pack of them, and also because I would simply forget. Stork seemed like a logical way to ‘scratch my own itch’. As it turns out, many others feel the same way too.
What is the single most surprising thing you learned in founding or running your business?
I learned how hard it is to make a good shirt. Our shirts have over 15 different measurements, which makes it a much more complex product than most people realize. Our first version truly wasn’t what we envisioned, and we had to go back to the drawing board to find the right fabric and the correct fit. Through really helpful customer feedback, we’ve made a product that people really like. Now as we roll out new products, we’re prepared to meet the expectations of our customers on day one.
What is the most under-appreciated part of being an entrepreneur?
Asking for help is the single most important skill for any entrepreneur, and the most underappreciated part of being an entrepreneur is how helpful your friends and network can be.
How many Stork t-shirts do you go through per year?
I go through the average subscription of Stork shirts, which is about 15 shirts per year. I don’t wear a button-down shirt everyday, however, I like to wear a Stork underneath a quarter-zip pullover or a sweater. Also, I’m more of a crew neck than a v-neck guy.
It's the day of Stork's IPO, presumably you're wearing the Stork t-shirt on top...what are you wearing on the bottom?
Navy blue J. Crew chinos, Stork socks and underwear (both coming soon), and a pair of dress shoes which I don’t yet own.
Which movie/TV character would you envision wearing Stork t-shirts?
We like to think of Jon Hamm as Don Draper from Mad Men as the ideal TV character/spokesman for Stork. Don was the self-made executive that launched his career out of persistence and routine. He wore the same thing every day; a white undershirt, white collared shirt, slacks and black shoes, and it worked for him. At Stork, we believe that routines are a large part of success, and Don Draper (despite certain other flaws) captures this idea really well.
And which car goes well with your shirt?
To stay with the Mad Men / retro theme, I would say that a Stork shirt pairs well with a 1965 Cadillac Coupe De Ville. If you’re looking for a more modern car, we would go with the latest Audi A Series.
One piece of advice of someone starting a clothing company.
It’s better to be out of stock, than sitting on inventory.
Your favorite place to shop for clothes in New York City.
SoHo is the hotbed for shopping if we’re talking neighborhood, but if we’re talking my favorite brands other than Stork, in no particular order: J. Crew, Scotch and Soda, Urban Outfitters, Nice Laundry (funky socks), Public Rec Apparel (athleisure), Nike, and Everlane.