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Seattle pocket bra inventors are sued

Photo courtesy, which sells this pocketed bra for $19.99.

It seemed like a brilliant idea.

As I reported earlier this year, a Seattle duo invented a bra that has a pocket to store a smartphone, credit card, or even keys.

Now the UW students who came up with the idea are being sued by a British man who claims he has a patent on a bra with pockets.

The Joey Bra was designed by Mariah Gentry and Kyle Bartlow who created it for women who are constantly on the go and struggle to find a place to put their ID, keys, or phones. They were juniors at the University of Washington’s Foster Business School at the time.

Charles Robinson filed a design patent application for his bra in November 1999, with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issuing the patent two years later, according to Geekwire’s John Cook.

Robinson filed suit and asked a court for a preliminary injunction against JoeyBra in May in an effort to stop the young entrepreneurs from selling their bra. The injunction has been delayed, as a federal judge decides on the proper venue for the case, which is now being argued in the Western District of Virginia.

Gentry and Bartlow say the JoeyBra has a different design and purpose than the creation patented by Robinson a decade ago.

By LINDA THOMAS, maybe a key or a credit card, maybe, but I’d never store an iPhone in my bra.


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