Distracted drivers have caused Brad Dubrowsky’s friends and family a lot of harm.
It all began when his children were young and one of their peers was tragically hit by a distracted driver. Later in life, his friend’s widowed father and fiancé were walking across a street, and a distracted driver hit and killed both of them.
As a result of these incidents Dubrowsky believes technology has become so ingrained in society that people don’t view it with a critical eye anymore.
Despite knowing how dangerous technology is, most people still text and drive on a daily basis — putting family, friends and strangers in danger — a phenomenon that Dubrowsky is working hard to change.
In 2015 he launched his athleisure brand, Inside Pocket Co., as a solution to help deter the negative affects of too much interaction with technology.
For the past 15 years, Dubrowsky has had a pocket sewn on the inside of all of his shirts where he keeps his phone when he’s driving, which is what inspired the name of his company.
Growing up, Dubrowsky was exposed to the industry through his parents NYC-based fur company Dubrowsky and Joseph’s. He credits this experience to where he developed his eye for design and trends. He gained further experience working at various apparel companies, most notably at Perry Ellis Outerwear.
To fund his brand Dubrowsky turned to Kickstarter with a twofold plan. First, to see if there was an interest in what he was launching and second, to secure as much startup capital for the brand as he could.
To keep interest in the project, he launched the brand’s e-commerce site with the $42,730 he raised from Kickstarter at the same time the campaign ended.
“With the internet, you can create a demand online easier than sending out or hoping someone else will want to help you,” Dubrowsky says.
The brand goes by the motto T.H.U.M.B , and it stands for Teaching Humans Universal Mobile Behavior, which inspired the brand’s logo, a thumbprint in an exclamation point. Another reason for the design, according to Dubrowsky, is to start conversation.
Some of these conversation starters featured on Inside Pocket Co.’s graphic t-shirts include “hold a hand not a phone” and “#KeepItInYourPocket.”
The most notable of the brand’s hoodie designs is The Truman Jacket. It features multiple inside pocket designs meant for a variety of items, as well as traditional outer pockets. Dubrowsky says that no other retailer carries a jacket with this many pockets.
Though the brand is still very young Dubrowsky says he plans to launch into mainstream retailers by April 2018, which also happens to be Distracted Driver Awareness month.
At the end of the day, Dubrowsky says his brand is for a specific group of people that have an “activist type of personality,” are driven by a socially responsible message and want to do something to change the world around them.
“[It’s] not about a collection,” Dubrowsky says. “We’re starting with a message.”