Slanket Inventor: There’s a Good Reason You Can’t Do a Pub Crawl in My Product

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The cast of <i>How'd You Get to Be So Rich?</i> Clegg is the young dude in the back right peeping out from behind the redhead.
Photo: Patrick McMullan

Did you, like every wacky kid in this town, buy a Snuggie to wear out on pub crawls this spring? It seemed like the perfect product, didn't it? Coat, dress, and Jesus costume all wrapped up in one. But what happened when you took it home to use it for its primary purpose, as a nice cozy blanket with sleeves? Were you satisfied? Gary Clegg, inventor of the Slanket — what he claims is the Snuggie's far superior predecessor — thinks he knows the answer.

"I am not a trash-talker, but you know why you can't do a pub crawl in our product? Because it's meant for lounging around. It's big!" said the cute, 29-year-old University of Maine alum when we met him at last night's launch party for Joan Rivers's new TV Land mini-series, How'd You Get So Rich? (held at Rivers's amazing gilded penthouse, no less). "So fine," he went on, "you can walk around with a Snuggie and it won't touch the floor, but when you're really trying to use it for what it's supposed to be used for — lying on the couch with your feet covered up — it's not gonna work." Don't believe him? Check out this side-by-side comparison.

"Don't even talk to me about the Snuggie," said Clegg's mom, Marilyn, who, at Clegg's request, had made him his first blanket with sleeves during his freshman year at college so that he could use his TV remote without exposing his arm to the harsh Maine winter. The rivalry between the two very similar products is legendary. "It's like a well-written fairy tale," Clegg says. "They're the black side and we're the white side."