"We would truly regret if they were used for illegal substances."
It's a challenge faced by many a raver: how do you wear the least amount of clothing possible while also having somewhere on your person to store your valuable possessions? A group of Dutch rave fans aims to solve this dilema with a new clothing line targeted specifically to festival fans. Amsterdam-based Happy Smugglers is a line of undergarments designed with a gigantic smile on the back and an ingenious small pocket on the inside. The launch of this festival underwear by a group of enterprising festival fans in Amsterdam is being crowd funded by Kickstarter. According to two of the creators, Eric and Henk-Jan, the garments are meant to hide your most private items, whatever those might be.
How did you guys come up with the idea for the Happy Smugglers?
Henk-Jan: It all started at Lowlands Festival two years ago. A friend of mine wanted to store something in his briefs–probably a lip balm or something–and he was taping it to the inside of the fabric. What a drag, we thought, how come there are no decent types of underwear available with pockets to store small but necessary items?
Like… lip balm?
Henk-Jan: Yeah, anything imaginable. Lip balm, hemorrhoid cream, that XS-sized condom you're slightly embarrassed about. Imagine getting that one out of your back pocket just as a hot chick is standing behind you. In these cases, Happy Smugglers can turn out to be a true lifesaver.
You initially made a couple hundreds of prototype. How was it received?
Eric: We already had that idea for a long time, but then we found an Iraqi in Amsterdam with a sewing facility who helped us with the design. The first two hundred Happy Smugglers were sold within a few weeks.
Henk-Jan: Many people were interested, and by then we figured we should take it to the next level. That's why we put the project on kickstarter.
What is the amount of money you need to crowd source in order to get the product on the market?
Eric: We need at least $22,000 before we can launch Happy Smugglers on a larger scale. We are hoping to get to that point. And considering the positive feedback we're getting from people around us, we're convinced this can work out.
Henk-Jan: The funny thing is, Happy Smugglers is especially popular among women.
You'd expect it to be more of a men's boxer, though.
Eric: It might just be that women often buy briefs for their boyfriends. Or it may have something to do with the cute logo, with those lips on the back.
Most people who take a look at these underpants, assume they're meant for smuggling drugs.
Eric: They're definitely not created for such purposes. Drugs are everywhere. You can't prevent people from doing them. But we'd be really disappointed if our underwear was used for illegal purposes.
Henk-Jan: Absolutely, that would definitely harm our brand.
Aron Friedman is the Editor of THUMP Netherlands, where this story first appeared.
Translation by Amber Mitchell.