I’ve been thinking a lot about my wallet lately, thanks to Billetus. When I was a kid in the nineties obsessed with sci-fi, I always thought wallets would be touchscreen or something. We may not be there yet, but wallet design has certainly come close to sci-fi-esque practicality. I’m used to the standard wallets from brands like North Face. When I stuff multiple bills, coins, keys and business cards in there, the slim wallets usually become overstuffed luggage that no longer fit in my back pocket. It feels like an orthopedic coccyx support pillow to sit on my wallet when driving.
Thankfully, at least for non-innovators like me, there was a man who was already thinking about these wallet problems. Dennis Kaping, the founder and chief designer at Billetus. He started Billetus as a Kickstarter campaign to redesign a hip, carbon fiber wallet with all the practicality and style a modern professional man needed. And Kaping doesn’t seem to have stopped with just one. Last Christmas, I got the latest Billetus Helios clip wallet as a gift from my partner, who has had just enough of my complaining. Who gives a wallet as a Christmas gift? Well, it apparently costs some 120 dollars and looked like a wallet version of the iPhone 6. I mean the Helios was sleek and extremely stylish enough to make everyone in the room do a double take.
I had never owned a clip wallet before. I have the bad habit of cramming bills into leather pockets and always dropping them when I have to untangle them at the supermarket. The Helios clip wallet, therefore, was fascinating. The clip that actually holds the money looked like it was painstakingly designed to look good while being secure. I found out it could hold about 20 bills, which is quite an achievement. My old leather wallet could only hold 10 or 15 tops. It felt good to hold the Helios wallet in my hand, and being slim enough it slipped easily into my jean pockets. It was lightweight and not annoyingly bulky like most regular wallets. I’m not going to pretend to be someone who has given wallet design a lot of thought, but the Helios, and the apparent thought and consideration that had gone into it, certainly impressed me.
Looks wise, it was refreshingly minimalist. No nonsense, but completely practical, like a Ford Focus Hatchback. The glossy Darth Vader black color is quite attractive, well, at least to me. The Helios could hold about 15 business and credit cards at a time, which is fine. Wish it could hold more, but still that’s an admirable number for such a thin and feather-light wallet. The material chosen was quite sturdy and durable—carbon fiber and ballistic nylon, the same used in flak jackets of WWII airmen. Buyers can choose a color for the nylon and card holder. (I chose ballistic black.) Clearly, this is a wallet designed to last through the battles. Can’t help but love it.
Billetus Helios clip wallet is available online for $85 introductory price. Regular price $120. Exact dimensions are 66mm wide x 76mm x 12 mm (id).