The design started with a simple email:
"Hi, would you consider making a pouch suitable for an iPhone. The small pouch at 100mm is too short and the large pouch is a little too long. Love one to keep my phone dry when riding. Cheers. Great work. "
A little more discussion ensued, and it turns out that:
"All my cycling friends use zip top plastic sandwich bags to carry their phones and protect them from sweat. Hence my first thought of the rubber pouch. Besides, it just screams cyclist."
Wow, why didn't we think of it before! So we sat down to brainstorm a solution, and discuss the potential problems with the design.
Problem #1. Rubber is sticky. Inserting and removing a phone would be a royal pain in the arse.
Problem #2. The current pouch design uses velcro which can potentially scratch the phone.
Problem #3. The current pouch design has two sharp corners in the opening which can also potentially scratch the phone.
And so we toyed with design ideas...
A top opening pouch, minus velcro
Problem with this design was the rubber was definitely too sticky! We really had to wrestle the phone in and out of the pouch. So we played with the idea of a side opening pouch. Technically this should be less painful to insert and remove the phone as it would be a larger opening.
Side opening pouch, minus velcro
Yes, this design was easier to insert and remove the phone! But an aesthetic problem arose... the opening became wrinkled and saggy. Not the simple solution we were looking for.
What about a top opening pouch, but with lining to reduce drag of the rubber?
Bingo! Problem solved.
Phone could be added and removed quite easily with little to no drag. The above solution also removes Problem #3 being the sharp edges at the opening of the pouch (through folding and hiding of exposed seams during manufacture. However this means that there is an incredible amount of bulk in the opening of the pouch.
And so we tweaked the design yet again to reduce this bulk and come up with our current solution....
Bulk is mainly reduced by not folding the rubber around the mouth/opening of the pouch, as well as using a lighter liner material. This does mean that the liner is more visible on the outside of the pouch (a bigger mouth), but this doesn't affect aesthetics.
And so we have it, a 100% reclaimed iPhone pouch! Rubber inner tube outer, 420D Nylon liner (scrap from bag manufacture).
Although only a "simple" pouch, we had quite a lot of fun resolving all the issues in its use and manufacture! Custom designs such as this shakes up our thinking somewhat, keeping us on our toes!
Big thanks to Graham for his design suggestion! Enjoy your new pouch!
Also, stay tuned as we show some of the more interesting custom pieces!