Tuesday, July 19, 2005

A Cooler, Hipper Fanny Pack?

Is that even a possibility? The accessory designers in the 80's that offered fanny packs as a viable alternative to handbags were on the right track. But they never figured out how to resolve the frump factor. Exotic animal skins and glitzy hardware called attention to a design that might have worked for an afternoon hike in the woods but failed to transition to fashion.

Why a cooler, hipper fanny pack? Clutches tie up a hand or create that tight elbow to the waist posture. Shorter handled bags hang off the elbow and tend to bang into store displays and children's faces. Shoulder bags just beg to be overfilled, creating dented shoulders and lopsided posture.

So, are you nuts, you ask? Why would a handbag designer spend time figuring out how not to carry a purse? Let me be clear about what I'm doing here. I am simply determined to create an alternative to all of the clutches, hobos, totes and shoulder bags that we love to collect. That sometimes annoy us. That we could never eliminate from our lives.

I've been experimenting with recycled black lambskin and designing pocketed belts that will hold a cell phone, lip gloss, cash and ID. So far I've developed three styles...."biker chic", "holster variation", and "tool belt retooled". Inspired by Harley enthusiasts, the Old West, HGTV home makeovers and racy lingerie, I'm shooting for broad appeal.

My original target audience was the club scene. After admitting to myself that my knowledge of clubbing was limited to the words themselves, I widened my market to include anyone who has hips and would like to have their hands free. Think shopping. Pushing a stroller with a toddler in tow. Working the refreshment stand at a Little Leaque game or a t-shirt booth at the Warped Tour. Dancing. Imagine being able to turn your back to the shopping cart at the grocery store and actually inspecting those Granny Smith apples. The possibilities are endless.

I'll post some images soon. Then you can tell me whether you agree that a cooler, hipper fanny pack is possible.

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