What's in a bag?

As it is always in history, a great design or idea is quickly copied lending itself to an array of knock-off and copycat products.  While being copied is an odd form of flattery, it is also quite frustrating for the original creator who spent countless hours designing, redesigning, testing and marketing their product.

Sadly, I recently found several shops creating almost exact replica's of my best selling Emma Messenger bag. These shop owners have copied not just the super functional design of the pocket system inside the Emma and Stella bags, but also several accessories and even part of my logo and  my label style and placement!

So I thought maybe you'd like to know what is in these bags?  How are they set apart from other similar bags that you might find floating around out there.

I designed my first bag shortly after the birth of my second son in 2009. The original bag included the 6 pockets (3 slip and 3 elastic) inside a stylish pleated bag that you've come to know as the Emma bag.  Over the past 4 years, I have worked to perfect that design and the bag pattern to make the bags what they are today. But know that I am always working to make every item better and more functional, more durable and more beautiful!

Why an O-ring and not a traditional rectangle slide on the strap? 
-I have owned bags with that rectangle slide on the strap and found myself a little unhappy when slide shifts so that the strap rests in the smaller side of the rectangle, not how it was designed and making it more difficult to adjust the strap.  The O-ring moves with the strap so you NEVER have to worry about it shifting out of place or fighting the slide when adjusting your strap!

What's inside?
-I've had many customers ask what's inside the bags. Normally a cloth bag is soft with little structure, collapsing onto itself when set down and looking saggy. Not so with ML bags! Over 4 years, I've perfected a structural system for the bags that not only give the bags structure you might find in a bag made with a stiffer material, but it strengthens the stitching giving the bag more durability. You  might call it my secret ingredient!

What about lining blow-outs?
-Most commercially made bags are lined with a thin polyester-based fabric that is prone to ripping and over time stressed seams fray and shred leaving you with a lining  blow-out-eek!  The way ML bags are design and reinforced this doesn't happen.  I use quality cotton and through the structural system mentioned above, the lining of every bag is created with function and durability in mind.

Uh-oh-the bottle spilled inside my bag!
-No worries!  Every item is made with quality cotton and washable materials. Visit the Care page for more instructions on how to care for your bag and when needed-WASH it!  No more crusty milk and crumb abyss in your bag!

Hand-crafted attention to detail
-Every item is cut and sewn to order! This means that each and every bag, changing pad, clutch, accessory is cut by hand (not by machines) and sewn using the highest quality cotton and materials, using INDUSTRIAL sewing machines and threads giving you a professional looking and quality product.  Using industrial machines allows me to create a more durable product. I have bags still being used from the early days of 2009!

Made in the USA!
-When I'm not playing with my boys, you'll find me contently working in my studio tucked into the mountains of Montana. Know that with your purchase you are receiving a hand-made quality bag and at the same time supporting our local economy helping another American family put food on the table. With that in mind, I work hard to source and buy my materials and supplies from other USA companies.  While most fabric is created overseas, I diligently work with USA manufacturers and suppliers which keeps more of your dollars within the USA supporting other USA companies and families.

A face and name behind the company!
-Hi, I'm Maranda, a mom and wife, designer and business owner. I have 2 amazing boys that inspired me to design bags and accessories for moms and women. I am married to the love of my life who happens to be my high school sweetheart. My goal is to create items that women will love to use. You can say that I bring the "fun" into functional bags! Putting your own name on a product sets a really high bar and I work hard every day to create the best possible item for each and every customer. I grew up in a family business and understand that a great product is only great when paired with fantastic customer service. My customers are my business and I strive to offer the BEST customer service at all times.

Contact me!
-I am always here to answer your questions regarding an item. Feel free to email me at hotmamahandbags at gmail dot com. I try to respond to every inquiry within 24 hours. If you don't hear from me, it means I didn't get your communication so please try again or stop in my etsy shop www.marandalee.etsy.com and send me a conversation. Occasionally I am away from the computer as you could say this is a one-mom-shop and sometimes we're off on a little adventure. However, I will always be in touch as soon as possible and also note any vacations in my shop and on my website.