By Theresa Braine
New York Daily News
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) After finding no affordable bulletproof wear on the market, and seeing a distinct lack in smaller sizes for women and children, entrepreneur Vy Tran set out to create her own.
New York Daily News
Widespread shootings are the tragic inspiration for a new product created by an enterprising woman from the tech world of California’s Bay Area: a line of Kevlar clothing.
“This is just me doing my part,” said Vy Tran, who started her company, Wonder Hoodie, after her neighbor, a single mother of two, was shot for her pocketbook right outside the families’ adjacent homes in Seattle. “That if someone like my mom or brother was looking for a product like this, it would be made available to them.”
After that horrific incident, the 25-year-old entrepreneur told ABC affiliate KTRK News, she became worried about her family members, whose route home from work is the same as her late neighbor’s.
After finding no affordable bulletproof wear, and seeing a distinctive lack in smaller sizes for women and children, Tran set out to invent her own. Once her wares were certified as body armor by the National Institute of Justice, Tran established Wonder Hoodies last year. She now sells hoodies, jean jackets, vests and other accessories.
“Meets NIJ IIIA standards to defend against 357 Magnum, 44 Magnum, 9mm, .45, hollow point ammunition and more,” reads the description on a comfortable-looking, casual hoodie that comes in Bold Black, Natty Navy and Gracious Grey. “Provides the highest level of bulletproof protection currently available from concealable body armor.”
That one will run you about $600. But it looks just like regular clothing, according to one satisfied customer who was not even questioned by the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA).
“I MADE IT TO FRANCE WITH IT ON and it took my buddy two days to notice I had it on,” the customer testimonial reads on the company website.
Given the constant barrage of bullets in American lives — most recently with the shooting at the STEM School Highlands Ranch in Colorado on Tuesday, in which one student died and several were wounded — it’s a product that Tran told ABC News she wishes there was no need for.
For every 10 hoodies sold, Wonder Hoodie will donate one to a public-school teacher.