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Defend Your Kickstarter: Solace

Scott Lucas | December 5, 2013 | Story Tech World

Defend your kickstarter is our look at the wild, wacky, and just plain wonderful world of Kickstarter projects.

Today's Kickstarter project: Solace, a hood specially designed for listening to music.

Kickstarter defender: Jessica Chan, a Bay Area soft goods designer and intern at Betabrand.

In her own words: "Solace was inspired by the hustle and bustle of city life. All the sights, sounds, smells, people, feelings and emotions that it evokes. Sometimes to drown everything around you out, you'd plug in your headphones and it takes you somewhere else. But what if we could be further immersed at times where we really need it? What if we added a degree of tactility and blocked out visual distractions as well?"

San Francisco: Solace is a hood that lets you listen to music. What makes it better than a sweatshirt and a pair of earbuds?
Jessica Chan: It's just better. It's a comfortable way to mimic surround sound. You also don't have to worry about the earbuds falling out of your ear, or even needing a hoodie. It's all in one.

What's it made out of?
The outer shell is a lightweight, water-resistant fabric, while the lining is cotton. The headphones are removable—making Solace machine-washable.

How's it work?
It's a basic hood with headphones inside of them. Simply plug them in and you're ready to listen to you music, podcast etc. The idea of having the hood element is to visually block out some of the distractions as well. It's creating the illusion of a private bubble in your head.

But wait, shouldn't we expect some level of distraction when we're out in public? An illusion of a private bubble could be, you know, dangerous.
Distractions aren't necessarily bad, but sometimes you just don't really want to be around others or you just need to be productive and there's no physical way to escape it.

It makes sense if you're working in a coffee shop. But where else could you use it? Walking down the street, subways, public bathrooms.
Solace can be really practical on the airplane. It would allow you to comfortably lay your head, tune out everyone else, watch your movie or listen to your audio.

Have you worn it around town yet? Do people ever ask what happened to the rest of your sweatshirt?
Some people notice it, others don't. But then again it's San Francisco—the last thing people are worried about is where the rest of my sweatshirt is. More likely they're concerned about whether or not they just dodged animal or human feces.

What's next?
World domination! Children's versions!

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