San-Francisco’s WaterField Designs engaged over 700 customers to collaborate on the design of the new Hip Sling Bags, sleek contemporary takes on the traditional waist pack with interchangeable straps so users can wear them belt-bag style or over either shoulder as a fashionable sling.
A plush-lined pocket stores eyeglasses, double zippers allow multi-angle access, and an innovative strap system fastens with a self-finding magnetic Fidlock buckle. Full-grain leather with waxed canvas or ballistic nylon satisfies survey participants’ foremost desire for a professional look, and three sizes accommodate everyone from the minimalist to those who require a protective pocket for an iPad plus space for a day’s essentials.
“The great thing about involving customers in our design process is that we gain insights we otherwise wouldn’t,” said company owner, Gary Waterfield. “Whether they called it a waist bag, bum bag, crossbody bag, fanny pack, or whatever…customers overwhelmingly requested a professional-looking version. We discovered that the vast majority want the flexibility to wear their hip bag as a sling and that many plan to carry an iPad and/or a Nintendo Switch. The refined look, flexible strap system, and two sizes with padded iPad compartments, really differentiate these from other hip bags.”
To address the various use cases customers described, WaterField designed three sizes and two dual-compartment styles. Four pockets in the spacious main compartment of the Full and Compact Hip Sling Bags include a padded pocket for an iPad mini (Compact) or a 10.5-inch iPad Pro (Large) and a padded, scratch-free zippered pocket for glasses or other delicate items.
The Mini Hip Sling Bag is ideal for the minimalist who prefers the hands-free convenience of a waist belt or sling to overstuffed pockets. Large pleats keep the Mini slim enough to hide under a jacket while holding just the and iPhone and a few essentials and expand the bag’s capacity by 50% when needed.
All three sizes share the unique features of a gold water-repellent liner that makes it easy to locate items, moisture-wicking padding on the back for comfort, high-quality metal hardware, waterproof zippers, and a 12- inch leashed key fob that keeps keys safely tucked in their own pocket and extends far enough to allow keys to be used without detaching them from the bag. For ultimate flexibility, users may choose from two hi-tech, easy-to- adjust straps: a hip-only or an adjustable hip-to-sling strap. Clean design and premium leather accents create the polished look customers sought.
“When I wear our Hip Sling Bag, I love the comfort of empty pockets, the convenient hands-free access, and the security of keeping my valuables close,” said Waterfield. “I think we’ve dialed in a style that people can wear with their heads held high.”
The Hip Sling Bag Collection joins WaterField Designs’ assortment of sling and crossbody pouches, including the Sutter Tech Sling, the Field Sling, the Sling Pouch, the Marqui Crossbody Pouch, and the Zoom Laptop Crossbody Bag. All WaterField bags and cases are handmade to exacting standards in the company’s San Francisco workshop.