Back in May, 2009, we talked about the Breville Espresso Machine, the 800ESXL model that is a die-cast steel espresso maker machine. We liked that it had very few movable parts and that it was made of steel. We hoped that it would last longer than the Krups plastic model that had lasted about 2 years. Here we are about 1/2 year later and it still functions well and produces marvelous cups of espresso. It is noisy though so if you don’t want to wake the others try brewing your golden goodness in the cellar or with the room doors closed.
This brings us to wallets. We like things that make life easier and better. The WalletBe men’s and women’s wallet product line is a smarter and smaller design (and unique – we’ve found that there are many that try to copy them but none that produce the quality and durability) that really does make life easier. WalletBe wallets – despite its logo insinuation is located in Sacramento, California – are manufactured with genuine leather (you can smell it when you open the gift box), are ridiculously priced (where else can you get genuine leather, designer-type wallets for less than $30?), and the story behind the founding of the company is a true American success story that proves anyone with a good idea and persistence can make it.
A little less than 10 years ago, Jim Dimataris stumbled upon an ad that was promoting QVC’s annual product “try-out” where anyone from the United States or from around the world could come to Minneapolis to demonstrate their products. If QVC liked them, they would sell them on their cable TV show. Jim had just designed and manufactured a unique men’s wallet that was slimmer and more compact than the average men’s billfold wallet. In fact, it was not a billfold at all. It didn’t open! It was a smarter design in that essential items could be located without having to flip open and thumb through the non-essentials. The idea was to minimize the amount of actions needed to retrieve a credit card, license or receipt.
The front pocket wallet was still capable of holding a good amount of credit cards and pictures. The inner (or outer) identification window prominently displayed the license which meant that there was no fussing, not even a flip over, needed to display or access the license. As important, the front pocket wallet design did not create those unattractive impressions in shirt pocekts or in the back pockets of jeans or slacks. And for the money we spend on jeans today, saving on the wear and tear of jeans meant men could wear them longer and save more money.
Jim’s front pocket wallet was selected (with 7 other products) from a pool of hundreds of product contestants by QVC for retailing over their cable TV programs. The story gets better, and riskier. He had to basically mortgage his home to gain the financing to produce the amount of wallets that QVC wanted. There was no guarantee that they would sell and QVC was not in the business of buying wallets. If they didn’t sell, Jim lost his home. If they did, he lived for another day.
Thankfully, Jim’s risk and vision paid off. The wallets sold on QVC, by the thousands.
Today, 1 in 300 Americans now own a WalletBe wallet. He has a great online wallet store at WalletBe.com where he annually sells hundreds of thousands of his wallets to men and women of all ages across North America, Europe, Asia and beyond. Given his vision, Jim has expanded his product lines carefully yet aggressively. Today, he offers about 20 different categories of wallets, all made of genuine leather – some from the Tuscany mountains of Italy, in addition to laptop sleeves, folding reading glasses, business card holders, and travel money belts.
WalletBe’s mission is to help people solve the daily inconveniences of life by designing and manufacturing fashion accessories that are smaller and smarter. We’ve owned many of his wallets for men and women over the years. None have disappointed; none are in disrepair; all are attractive and all have made our lives easier – well, at least anything that has to do with the things that we put into our wallets or travel money belts.