Updated: Mar 22
Hello all – nice to meet you! My name is Ana, and I am a product developer at the Clutch Made Factory where I have been designing every imaginable type of bag for over five and a half years. I have also been lucky enough to travel a bit, which has made me extra attentive to what constitutes a good bag. When you move or travel, you’ll likely only take your favorite bags with you. Readers, take note.
In this blog, I will discuss what the designing process at Clutch Made looks like. Although almost every bag has been designed before – people have literally been carrying things around in bags for thousands of years – each project that we are presented is still unique in its own way. Each designer has their own creative process. Putting together mood boards, hand-sketching, creating paper mockups – these are all great strategies for creating the concept of a potential product. However, a technical document is necessary to take that concept and turn it into a real product: this is what is known as the Tech Pack or what we refer to in the business as a 'TP'.
The TP is an international document that has all the necessary information for a factory to create your item, which includes all specs, measurements and details along with a materials' list. Personally, it is my favorite part of developing a product: it brings together the creative side and the technical side of designing. It is the best of both worlds.
Most people don’t realize how much time and attention goes into a technical drawing – each and every line that our client views in their finalized TP was drawn by one of our team members. There’s no magic brush that creates them automatically.
My designing process for Tech Packs usually goes like this:
1. I begin the process by gathering all the notes related to the item that will be developed. These notes include (but are not limited to): the client's vision of how the item will be used/or the intended function; the overall size and the materials; what items are intended to fit into the bag; the intended final retail price point, cost etc.
2. I do a lot of researching – what are the current trends? What are the possible constructions for this item? What materials will we be able to use to give it the intended shape?
3. I create a rough sketch – this can be done by hand or digitally – it varies from project to project. This step is the first in the actual designing of the shape and details. It is the bag or product's inception stage.
4. I refine the technical drawing and add the details. Most people are not aware of the amount of information that goes into a technical drawing. It’s not just an illustration saying
"it is a tote bag made of leather". Every measurement and detail must be considered and accounted for.
5. I, along with the Clutch Made Team, create any necessary collaterals such as: labels, logo stamps, custom hardware, or even custom artwork for the lining or exterior material, etc.
6. I take a break… and then come back! One of the most important parts of designing is coming back to the project with fresh eyes and a rested mind for a final analysis of the project, making sure everything is where it is supposed to be.
7. Getting feedback from the client, and going through stages 4, 5, and 6 again.
With a finalized TP, a sample can be created. But it is important to keep in mind: there are things that cannot be predicted through a technical drawing – the only way to truly test your product is by making a sample. You can see some of our recent ones here: https://www.clutchmade.com/products
Article written by Ana Petri.
Ana Petri has been part of the Clutch Made team for 5+ years. To create her designs, Ana draws inspiration from craftsmanship, art, and fashion.