It started with the simple idea of wanting an athletic bottom that could actually hold a phone.
“I was never going to wear a fanny pack because I don’t like items bouncing around and they look ridiculous and arm bands chafe, get sweaty and hot and still only store a phone,” said Leigh Cockram. She started the company in 2012 and it took her two years before she arrived at her final design of a 360-degree pocket. She began selling her product in 2014.
Her casualwear will launch by the end of July and will include maxiskirts, palazzo pants, capris and under-tanks. Cockram says she is picking her fabrics now.
At the time of the award, Under Armour executive vice president of innovation Kevin Haley said, “It came from someone who I don’t think had any experience in the industry, but we’re very excited to see this go across a lot of our products because it is such a great idea.”
What makes the RaesWear waistband unique is its simplicity and functionality. There is a pocket opening in the front and back, so you can slip a phone in one pocket, keys in another. The pocket holds the items completely and securely. Things don’t pop out no matter how you bend. Cockram has patented two ideas and has three other patents pending.
The company is named after her grandfather Raymond Maxwell Hite Jr., an Army veteran who flew 25 missions in World War II, shooting down two German planes. He died attempting to break the world’s low altitude speed record in the F-4 Phantom.
“He was an American hero and out products are made in the USA,” Cockram said. She sources her line in Martinsville, Va.
The product is only available online at this time, but Cockram is in talks with a specialty retail owner and a boutique owner.
“My goal is to see RaesWear through boutiques and to license the pocket IP to other brands looking to give customers functional, fashionable storage,” Cockram said.