Clever little Squirrls

Lynda Ford and Frank Wyatt deliver Squirrls while walking their dogs, Hamish and Kira. Photo: Damjan Janevski 213050_01

Goya Dmytryshchak

An inner-west business manufacturing undies that hide your valuables has turned its hand to masks amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Squirrls – pronounced ‘squirrels’ – launched its pickpocket-proof travel undies for women in December.

Now the brand has adapted to make microfibre polyester masks – and despite travel bans, its briefs have taken off in the US.

It’s the brainchild of Lynda Ford, who launched the global phenomenon from her Yarraville home using locally-sourced materials and manufacturers.

The underwear is designed to store items such as a passport and credit card in a secret pocket with no bulge.

“We launched on December 1, 2019, and we were going really, really well making lots of sales and local women were supporting us really well,” Ms Ford said.

“Then COVID happened in mid-March, and so there weren’t a lot of women travelling, obviously, after that.”

Ms Ford said she used the time to redesign the undies and consider the other safety needs of women.

“We could see right back then that women around the world were wearing face masks and that would be something, probably, that we would need down the track,” she said.

Ms Ford said while the masks were in high demand from men and women locally, the undies were currently very popular in the US with numerous orders coming in.

Mask orders are now coming in from New South Wales and Queensland. Ms Ford personally delivers masks locally within the allowed distance under stage 4 restrictions.

“We go around within five kilometres of Yarraville dropping off these little parcels taking the dogs for a walk, so it’s actually been quite good,” she said.

“I can wear [the mask] when I’m walking for an hour, which I couldn’t do even for 10 or 15 minutes with those cloth masks.”

Details: Squirrl website: