The man who said, “Everything that can be invented has been invented,” never wore a bra.
When the head of the U.S. Patent Office said this in the late 1800s, he clearly had no idea of the future need for a bra that slims a woman’s torso without causing age-revealing bulges. Amanda Horan Kennedy invented Sassybax bras for real bodies, and in 2004 she introduced them to the high-end market, selling $1 million wholesale within the first year.
Amanda thought that if control-top pantyhose could tame and slim a woman’s bottom half, a control-top bra should be able to do the same thing for the upper half. She created a crude prototype, specified exact design and function criteria, and together with a textile company manufactured Sassybax’s flagship seamless bra.
The dual role of designer and president of Sassybax is Amanda’s third career, following a decade of television acting and then seven years as a psychotherapist. Amanda derives great satisfaction from her new line of work and innovation. She is amused by the old quote from the patent commissioner, but prefers one attributed to Thomas Edison when it comes to designing for Sassybax: “Anything that won’t sell, I don’t want to invent. Its sale is proof of utility, and utility is success.” With many of its bright ideas already on the market, Sassybax vows to create only useful, solution-based apparel that women with real bodies can enjoy.
My background in the fashion world started at Hallmark Cards in Kansas City. I was 14 years old and was asked to model for a line of their cards. I had no idea what I was doing but was excited to have on the job training. Fashion modeling came next at 16, for department stores as a runway model where I was chosen by a new young designer named Calvin Klein to model his swimwear collection for a local show. He suggested I come to New York and model when I finished high school. I thought that sounded like a great idea! My parents did not. They insisted I go to college and then enter the work force in whatever field I chose after graduation.
While attending Southern Methodist University as a Fine Arts major, my love for fashion and a substantial clothing habit, prompted me to model part-time in Dallas. That led to becoming Miss Dallas and Miss Texas USA where I hoped to gain exposure for what I now knew I wanted to do after college. I no longer aspired to modeling but instead had fallen in love with acting. I had been introduced to drama and it was like a dream come true. The costumes, the characters, the camera, the mystery and glamour of it all seemed to encompass everything I had grown to love.
Before my junior year, I moved to Los Angeles and promptly became a working actress. This was beyond my wildest imaginings. I co-starred in BJ & The Bear, I guest starred in such TV shows as Cheers, Remington Steele, Hart to Hart, TJ Hooker, Dallas, among many others and did 200 national commercials for such products as Gallo Wine, Michelob Beer, Clairol, and Lean Cuisine.
Having acted for 11 years and gone through hundreds of successes and thousands of disappointments I needed a change. Hollywood takes a toll on a woman's self esteem even when they're successful and it had certainly taken its toll on mine. Shortly after my 31st birthday, I re-entered college and finished my degree with a BA in Psychology. I earned my Master's Degree in Clinical Psychology and became a therapist. My main objective was to help women with an issue I had now come to know intimately, self esteem.
I have created Sassybax as a way of helping women look and feel more confident and comfortable in the fashions they love. Sassybax gives women the freedom of a more natural non-restrictive kind of support. The stretchy smooth microfiber moves and breathes with your body, allowing you the freedom of being more of who you are. Now isn't that where self esteem comes from?
Amanda Horan Kennedy
President & Founder