TL; DR: For nearly two decades, SCOTTeVEST has been helping tech lovers haul their devices hands-free with sleek clothing that’s packed with hidden pockets for cellphones, charging cables, and even full-sized tablets and laptops. The company’s revolutionary Personal Area Network® allows wearers to route cables between different pockets using flexible access points, while its Weight Management System® ensures they can carry all their gadgets without neck or back strain. With a recent expansion into dedicated women’s apparel designed by and for women, the company’s technology-enabled clothing continues to bridge the gap between fashion and function for both the everyday consumer and dedicated IT pro.
As a tech enthusiast, chances are you’ve experienced the heart-stopping panic that strikes as your phone or tablet slips out of your hand and tumbles toward the ground. It seems that, as our gadgets have gotten smarter, we’ve become clumsier than ever. Since purchasing an extra set of hands for the multitude of devices we wield on a daily basis is not (yet) an option, the folks at SCOTTeVEST have come up with a close second — an intelligent clothing collection featuring a clever system of pockets that can store a variety of gadgets and accessories.
The company was founded in 2000 when Laura and Scott Jordan realized there was a major disconnect between clothing design and the needs of modern professionals. Scott, a lawyer and frequent traveler, couldn’t carry all of his devices in his pockets, and Laura was tired of stuffing them in her purse. After one particularly gruesome mishap — Scott snagged his headphones while running through the airport and injured his ear — the couple got to work on an alternative.
“Scott thought of a way to wire charging cables, headphones, and all of that through garments so they wouldn’t get snagged or tangled,” Luke Lapella, Director of Communications at SCOTTeVEST, said. “He wanted to be able to carry all of his gadgets while routing the wires through it.”
The idea led to the creation of Technology-Enabled Clothing (TEC), which Scott and Laura initially planned to license to other clothing companies.
“They made SCOTTeVEST as kind of a proof of concept,” Luke said.
The pair outfitted a traditional fishing vest with pockets customized for popular electronic devices, creating the world’s first eVest, with Scott’s name aptly incorporated into the brand.
The SCOTTeVEST prototype was an instant hit.
“It was super popular among the techy and travel crowd,” Luke said. “It’s really been amazing to watch it evolve over the last 18 years from what admittedly was kind of a fisherman’s vest to what now looks like, for all intents and purposes, normal clothing with all these hidden functionalities.”
Indeed, the brand has evolved into a complete line of technology-enabled apparel, which now includes options for both men and women, including vests, hoodies, shirts, dresses, and suit jackets. Most garments feature pockets large enough to carry a full-size tablet, and many can even hold a water bottle. Now with a revolutionary Personal Area Network® that allows wearers to route cables between flexible access points and a Weight Management System® that prevents garments from becoming too heavy, the company is striking the perfect balance between fashion and function.
Wire Your Electronics Through a Wearable Personal Area Network®
Technology helps streamline our lives in many ways, but we’re still dependent upon multiple devices to meet our needs.
“It’s been interesting to watch as technology evolves,” Luke said. “The need for the clothing doesn’t decrease; if anything, it increases.”
And, from phones and Kindles to iPads and laptops, SCOTTeVEST helps wearers carry it all.
Key to SCOTTeVEST’s adaptability is its innovative Personal Area Network®, which allows wearers to route cables between different pockets using flexible access points. The network consists of a layer between the exterior and interior portions of the garments that serves as a conduit for cables.
“You can reach into each of the interior pockets, and most of the exterior pockets have a little button hole in them, so you can route cables through that interior space and you just stick them through any of the button holes in any of the pockets,” Luke said.
For example, if you need to charge your phone, you can easily route your charging cable from an external battery in one pocket to the phone in another. Later in the day, if you need to charge your tablet, you can pull the cable out of the phone pocket and quickly route it to the tablet pocket.
“The beauty of the clothing is its versatility,” Luke said. “A pocket is what you need it for and what you make of it.”
A Weight Management System® to Effortlessly Carry All Your Devices
One of the company’s initial challenges was to maximize both carrying capacity and comfort in their garments, making it possible for wearers to carry all their tech (even tablets and laptops) in as many as 42 pockets without the system becoming too heavy.
“Scott and Laura actually worked with a bra designer and figured out different stitch patterns and support mechanisms to place throughout the garment so everything is layered and dispersed evenly across the body,” Luke said.
The designer also focused on preventing strain on the back and upper neck. Luke told us this represented a big step in the apparel’s evolution, as wearers could carry everything they needed and still be comfortable.
As technical developments dictate the number and size of devices we carry, these considerations are more important than ever.
“It’s about staying ahead of tech trends,” Luke said. “We have smartphone pockets, and with all of our new garments we keep having to make the smartphone pockets a little bit bigger, and then a little bit bigger, and then a little bit bigger because the phones keep getting bigger.”
A New Apparel Line Designed for Often-Underserved Women in Tech
Over the years, SCOTTeVEST has expanded into different niches, but it took a major leap in 2017 with the introduction of apparel designed for women by women.
“We realized we were really underserving our female customers,” Luke said. “We heard them loud and clear and got to work and launched a ton of products.”
Up until the recent launch, the pieces in SCOTTeVEST’s women’s line were the same as those in the men’s line, but in different sizes. Today, they are designed uniquely for women.
Luke noted the company’s launch of dresses, skirts, yoga pants, a hoodie, and jackets, among other apparel for women, has been well received.
“[We now offer] all sorts of products that we don’t have a men’s equivalent for,” Luke said. “Customers are very happy we’ve finally done that.”
An Engaging Company Culture for Employees and Their K9 Companions
Although SCOTTeVEST has grown tremendously over the past 18 years, Luke told us the company has managed to retain its startup feel.
“We all wear a lot of hats and get interesting experience in different fields that we might not otherwise have been accustomed to,” Luke said. “It’s a close-knit team where we all work hard and play hard.”
Nestled in the small mountain ski town of Ketchum, Idaho, the company has a unique corporate culture and benefits program.
“We have full health, dental, vision, and also ‘powder days.’”
That’s right; if there are six to eight inches of snow on the ground — not unheard of in central Idaho — employees are free to spend the day skiing.
The company also is notorious for its love of dogs, which are welcomed in the workplace.
“Scott and Laura will pay adoption fees at a local shelter if you want to adopt a dog,” Luke said. “We name a bunch of our products after our dogs and have paid dog walkers once a week. It’s always a bunch of fun.”