Sometimes, an idea is straightforward. Something is broken. Something could be better. You want something, but it doesn’t exist. One problem, one solution. One size fits all. For us – the idea behind Wears was a bit more complicated. Had a few more layers.
It began in a Mexican loft.
It was hot. We were sweaty. Bad for us, even worse for our 3-pack department store undies. They weren’t breathing. We weren’t comfortable. No one was coping. As we talked and sweated and turned up the fan, something came to us. An epiphany. An epiph-undie, of sorts.
Our undies work hard. Really hard. They’re the first thing we put on and the last thing we take off. They come with us everywhere: to work, to the gym, to weddings, on first dates and bad dates and sexy overnight dates. They should be the softest, comfiest, best things we own. We should take pride in what’s under our pants. We should know them better than we know ourselves.
But we didn’t. We didn’t know where they’d been. We didn’t know what they’d seen. We didn’t know who’d touched them.
We didn’t really know our undies at all.
We weren’t OK with this – so we checked them out. We googled, asked around, and looked a little closer. And, the closer we looked, the more bad stuff we found. Undies being produced for 30 cents and sold for 30 dollars. Cotton draining the earth’s water and land resources. People working terrible hours, for wages they couldn’t survive on.
We had to do something. We wanted undies that looked good, felt good, and did good – but it seemed they were nowhere to be found. So, we decided we’d make them ourselves. But, we’d do it our way. By doing it properly. By doing less damage.
We had the vision. Now all we needed was the growers, shippers, fabric-makers, designers, dyers, and manufacturers. We packed up our things, said goodbye to the loft, and pooled our savings to buy flights across the globe. To Portugal. Where the sun shone bright and the working conditions shone even brighter.
We saw many different factories and met many different people. We toured state of the art machinery, shook hands with countless men in suits, and fumbled through translator-led conversations about minimums, profit margins and scalability. And then, we found our perfect manufacturer. And in there – beside the sewing machines and the smiling workers – we found its owners, Ana & Paulo. We had nothing to show. They had everything to lose. But, they decided to take a chance on us – to listen to our dreams and make us our undies. Turns out they believe in doing things properly too.
Over the next few months, we met our designer, we found our yarn-spinners and dye house, we fell head-over-heels for Lenzing’s TENCEL (trust us, it’s the goods), and finally – after months of meetings and muck-ups and measurements and mistakes – the first ever pair of Wears underwear were drawn, chopped, stitched … and transferred into our hot little hands. They were soft. They were subtle. They were sustainable. From source to seed to stitching. They were undies worthy of a great first date. They were undies that deserved to be seen.They felt great on our skin and good in our souls.
It felt like we’d known them all our lives. And now, we’re ready to share our undies with the world. Because we believe in our undies, and we believe in you. Let’s do right. Let’s do better.
Know the ones closest to you.
Know your undies.