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Behind the Brand : Smuggling Duds

Behind the Brand : Smuggling Duds

Your choice of underwear speaks volumes about the person you are and the ca

2018/02/01

Your choice of underwear speaks volumes about the person you are and the carefully crafted image that you have created. Smuggling Duds are as unique as you are and a core part of your lifestyle, designed for absolute comfort – whatever you are doing!

Here, we go behind the brand to find out more…

When did you launch the brand and what was the reason behind it?
I first came up with the concept behind the Smuggling Duds brand after a friend of mine was mugged on holiday in Magaluf. During his ordeal the thief patted down his jean pockets to check that he had everything. This made me start to think of ways to keep your money or any other valuables safe when traveling, and came up with the idea of boxer briefs with a secret pocket. The built in stash pocket concept was born, my thoughts being that nobody would check near your private area! The brand itself was started as my final year project whilst completing a Multi-media Design degree at Northumbria University in 2007. I created the branding, website and marketing material to help promote the idea as a business.

Whats your background?
I am a Graphic/Web designer with a strong passion for extreme sports. My passion is Motorcross and actually raced from the age of 5-19 years. These days I enjoy training and watching MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) in my spare time.

How many people are involved in the company and what are their roles?
I oversee the creative side of the business from product design to ad creative. I also arrange packing and delivery, a job I hope to one day pass-on as it can be time consuming.

Graham looks after the manufacturing and business admin of the company.

David Kirkland is used on freelance basis to help with promotions, blog posts and our famous UFC gambling guide.

If you could start over with the business, would you do anything differently?
Yes everything! Only joking. I have had to learn a lot, quite often as I go with a few wrong decisions along the way but I am told making mistakes is the best way to learn and I whole-heartedly agree. Creating a final plan to follow has been key in the development of the brand. In the early days I definitely think I did too much myself and have learned to delegate jobs to ease personal workload.

What is the hardest challenge you have faced since you started the company?
Being sold on the high street.

Tell us one fact about you that people wouldn’t know?
I am a member of the Northern Magic Circle!

2018 is almost here, where do you plan on taking the brand?
We have some compression shorts ready to launch in the New Year so very much looking forward to see how we fair by expanding our product range into the sports/performance market. I’m also looking to add a female boxer shorts range.

To date, what has been the highlight since launching?
It has to be seeing some of my sporting idols wearing our products. We’ve had the likes of Dan Hardy, Ross Pearson and Jimi Manuwa all wearing Smuggling Duds at UFC weigh-ins that are viewed by millions of people all over the world. Top Motocross stars Max Anstie, Brad Anderson, Billy MacKenzie and downhill mountain bike legends Steve Peat and Danny Heart have all repped us since launching.

Which city do you feel most at home in, London, Paris or New York?
My ideal answer would be Newcastle but I guess I’ll have to say London. I’ve been to Paris and New York, they are both great cities in their own different ways but I would be in holiday mode when visiting them.

Style means….?
Looking good and being comfortable at the same time.

Best thing about London to you?
The hustle and vibrance of the city, always something to do.

If you had to, what piece of clothing from your wardrobe would you wear everyday?
A pair of Viking Smuggling Duds boxer briefs.

Favourite love song?
I’m more of a house music fan to be honest.

Most memorable piece of advice given to you?
Never give up

Laura Bartlett

Laura Bartlett

Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.