When we found out that good customer Alison Muscutt had an accessories label producing printed tote bags with friend Fran, we were intrigued to find out more. When samples were brought in to Colony, we were quick to place our first order. A year later and My Bag and Me is selling strong in-store and online. We love the stylish simplicity of the product and that they are an eco friendly (bag for life) product.
We were interested to learn how My Bag and Me got started and where they see themselves going with their brand
COLONY: What’s your background and how did you get into making tote bags?
ALISON & FRAN: We formed My Bag And Me in the Summer of 2016, we got together and created the brand after a few glasses of red wine one evening and it has grown from strength to strength.
With the introduction of the 5p carrier bag and “bags for life” which were still made of plastic, we wanted to create something that people could use on a daily basis that would be practical, stylish and personalised rather than advertising major corporate brands.
As busy working mums with young families, we wanted to work for ourselves, allowing us the flexibility to be able to work when we wanted to and when family commitments allowed us to.
We job share during 9-5 and thought it would be a great idea to start a joint venture, sharing the experiences and opportunities along the way.
C: Who or what are your biggest influences on your work right now?
A & F: With both of us loving the idea of creating unique tote bags with a funky edge, we spoke with other sellers/makers who produce hand crafted items and asked for their advice in getting things started. These people were definitely key in helping us to gain confidence in what we wanted to achieve and get things off the ground.
C: What’s your favourite piece from your collection?
Fran – I really like the ‘Love Tree’, it’s a simple, effective design, which can mean different things to different people
Alison – I really like the large black slouch shoulder bag with the simple star or heart design, ideal for any outing, full of your day-to-day things.
C: What advice would you give to someone starting out, making their own line of accessories/products?
A & F: Just go for it! Identify your product line, think about a unique selling point, how is your product different from other people’s? Get a couple of designs created, ask for feedback from friends, give out samples for people to use and ask them to pass on feedback they receive. Try not to spend too much up front, keep it simple at first and then grow as things start to get established. Definitely do your research with local independent shops, find out what they think would sell well and even offer to work with them exclusively to stock your products.
C: What exciting things can we expect to see form mybagandme for 2018?
A & F: We’re continuing to build the brand, there will be some new additions to the range and the we’re working on the launch of the mybagandme.com website!