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What a beautiful Vancouver day. I just watched a hail storm with the sun coming through the clouds, just magic. The hale wasn’t big and it may have only happened up in my neighbourhood, but, it sure made lots of noise.

In the last post I showed a picture of Rina that wasn’t extremely flattering. I was just showing the moment, and it was eerie lighting from the computers, but, I just did’t see her as looking bad, but, she’s my friend and I just see how beautiful she is in her ways. Here’s another picture of her, just to show that she’s looking good the rest of the time…

Rina

I woke up with a super runny nose this morning, making it difficult to accomplish much without the tissue break every 2-3 minutes, but, I have to get back to my grading. Grading is when you take a base pattern, say it’s a sample size medium, and grade it up and down to the other sizes. For instance the new style of Buggy Bag® lap blanket that I’m doing for next fall is going to be available in sizes XS, S, M, L, so I’ve had to grade it by 4 sizes. It will fit more wheelchairs this way. This is what a “graded nest” of one pattern piece looks like.

pocket pattern graded nest

It’s called a “graded nest” because the sizes have not been traced off and put onto individual pattern pieces, instead they are nestled together on one piece of paper. I have done this for each of the pattern pieces.

Did I mention the sneezing? OMG… I am planning on making my body a very uninviting place for this cold…. it’s going to be fleeing from me by tomorrow, if it knows what’s good for it!

Ever wonder what it would be like to audition for the Dragon’s Den? Well, I took the Buggy Bag® Lap Blanket and Stroller Blanket today, and it was a lot of waiting with really cool people.

The day started out kinda funny because I was up until 3:30am fixing up a little mistake I made on the calculations, but I slept really solidly for the whole 4 hours. Got up and got ready for the day… shower, smoothie, and to top it off a Late. Hauled a baby stroller down the 3 flights of stairs at my place, and jammed it and the samples into my trunk along with my file folder including all the stats and info my friend Rina and I had compiled.  Just waiting for my friend, who is also heading down there to do her own pitch.

When she drives up we all leave for downtown Vancouver. I had been given the advice by someone who was on the show last season, not to show up until the time they say….. fine we’ll be there for 11am then. We get there and the room is already packed, which means, we have to wait through 48 other pitches. Red-faced I make the apology to my friend and her model, as I know that if we had come an hour earlier we would have been up in the 1st hour….. who knew how long it would take to get through 45 others. They are all pros working at the CBC, and it did go as fast as humanly possible. We were all seated at tables with our ideas and coffees, chatting about various things. I met some fun and interesting people.

After about 3 hours one of the people that works there came up and asked Wendy what she had and what her sales were last year. She was suitably impressed, as Wendy is the owner of PumpEase hands free pumping bras. http://www.pumpease.com/ they are not only a functional product, but also, practical and fashionable….. and she has sales….. lots of sales.

Then the woman turned to me and asked me what I’ve got. I pulled out the product and she said, it looks like a good product, what were your sales? I told her and she said that I should come back next year when I have greater sales…. I asked her if I would still get to pitch and she told me I was doing that right now! Turns out she was one of the producers…. anyway, that’s a good goal for me and I’ve got a couple of ideas about how to improve the sales…. if any of you also have any thoughts about how I can do that, let me know. It’s a useful and much needed product, and I intend get it out there to the people that need it, in whatever way I can.

I decide to stay and offer support to Wendy while she waited, and just hang out and enjoy the scene. By now, everyone has been there so long that, there is a much more relaxed feel in the air… almost jovial. By the time Wendy went in with her model Donna, she was feeling pretty good (as she should; she has a great product and it has a certain appeal in terms of  “show value”, if you know what I mean). When they came back they were excited. It was a good experience.

Who knows what the future holds for any of us, but, if we can just take each moment, as it is, and cherish it, it is all good!

Rina at the computer

Rina has been so much help to me through this. She does freelance marketing for small and start-up businesses. She also did the photo shoot with Jessica (see “photo shoot” post) or visit her blog at http://www.liddlethought.blogspot.com/

Dragon's Den Audition Day

from left to right—- Donna (PumpEase Model), Wendy (Owner, PumpEase™),Leslie(Owner, Buggy Bag® Mobility Accessories), with the new Buggy Bag® Lap Blanket…. hot off the press….

Thanks for stopping by, love you guys, Leslie

As you may have guessed, I’ve been pretty busy in the last two weeks. I know, I know, no excuses…. but really, I’ve drafted patterns, cut out and constructed 3 leather coats, 3 leather vests and 3 leather dresses. But, that’s another post, and I will describe these in more detail in another post. For now I have something more exciting.  I met the most amazing guy the other day. He had the most wonderful energy and positive outlook, I just liked him right away. I’m always looking for new ideas for adaptive clothing and new Buggy Bag products, so I was really happy when he agree to work with me to develop a few new things (tell you about those later). He took a couple of Lap Blankets from me to try out with his “InterFit” organization when they go out on hikes. He started this group in North Vancouver to provide people with disabilities, the opportunity to get out into the woods and enjoy the fresh air. I just love this idea. Seeing the news story that was done on the group, and the huge smile on the girls face as she was escorted through the BC woods, on this really cool unit by volunteers brought tears to my eyes. I never saw such wonder and joy on one face. Such a great experience.

InterFit is holding a fundraiser in North Vancouver, so if you’re interested in helping out a really fantastic organization, here is a link  http://www.interfit.ca/news.htm

I also want to show you a pictures of the rigs used on the trails.. they’re so cool! I can’t wait for my first hike as a volunteer.

This is the ORC – Off Road Chair

And this is the Trail Rider … read more at http://www.bcmos.org/main/index.php

Hi guys, just putting this post up because I got a question from a reader and fellow blogger, asking if the buggy bag® came in smaller sizes. It does. The product line actually started with stroller and jogger stroller blankets and then expanded to cover wheelchairs as well. The stroller model works really well on small wheelchairs and has 3 shock-cord adjustment points, so you can snug it in to keep your little loves cozy.

I went to check out this readers blog, and it is simply amazing. Beautifully written and OMG…. the photos! WOW thebuggslife.blogspot.com Truly a special child that chose a special family to bless.

Here’s picture of the stroller blanket,  you can order at 1-888-814-1588

Sells for $125 CAD plus $21 S&H  It’s also guaranteed

A few days ago, we did a photo shoot to highlight the buggy bag® wheelchair lap blanket. Fortunately, I know a brilliant photographer/visual artist (see http://www.liddlethought.blogspot.com/) who was willing to help me out. Rina found our model, location and even drove. We headed out to Coquitlam, where we would be doing the shoot with our model Jessica. We met up with Jessica and headed off to the park. Boy, did we ever get lucky with her! Jessica is nice, funny and pretty, and I think all of these traits shone through in the shots that Rina got. The best part of all though, was that Jessica got me thinking about new products for the buggy bag® line. I just get so stoked when people offer great feedback. My brain goes into overdrive thinking of new things to make. I love making things. I’ll tell you more about that next time!

Jessica took a Navy Lap Blanket home that day.

Hi, I’m Leslie Cairns, Owner/Designer for Buggy Bag Mobility Accessories. People often suggest that I should be talking more about who I am. I didn’t really think that you guys would want to hear about me….  I was wrong though….afterall, buggy bag® is about me, and my values and feelings about things. I’ve got some funny stories, I’m told that I’m extremely opinionated and I’ve also done a lot of really interesting things in past years. Do I dare say how many years? Well, let’s just say 40 some odd years. Like my time working at “the Hoagie House”… or maybe that 1st date that whisked me off to a hockey game in another province. Never mind my personal feelings about hockey. The Tragically Hip said it best in the song Fireworks… “You said you didn’t give a fuck about hockey, I never saw someone say that before”. As a Canadian, I do tend to be reluctant to admit such shocking truths. I almost feel like a bit of an alien for saying it, but, hockey just doesn’t give me the joy that I get from so many other things. In fact, I liken it to watching someone play Bejelewed on their iPod….Yup, that exciting. Not to mention, that you have to sit in a giant refrigerator to watch it! I hate being cold.

Owner/Designer Buggy Bag Mobility Accessories

The hockey enthusiast!

As some of you already know, the new buggy bag® lap blanket was introduced on October 1st.  My very first customer emailed me and said,  “… like your video demonstrates. I’m right hemiplegic.”

When I started  this project I was certain that I could come up with a product that would be really useful for a variety of people, and I think I succeeded at that. But, I have to admit that that comment made by my first customer made me really happy and so appreciative at the same time. You see, I had not thought of the need to have an opening going from the right side. I’m not sure why I picked the left side to be the opening side….maybe, because I’m a “lefty” myself, maybe, because the first person I worked with to develop the product happened to reach over and pull his blanket back from the left….. It doesn’t really matter why…..

What matters is that I will always feel thankful to that first customer for helping me see yet another way of looking at things.  It’s because of people like him that I can make the lap blanket a better product and be able to help more people be more comfortable.

This and your new water-proof Buggy Bag® Lap Blanket.....

This and your new water-proof Buggy Bag® Lap Blanket.....

It’s been a long time and a lot of work, but the time is here. The buggy bag® Mobility Site is launching in the morning! I’m so excited! I feel like I’ve been pouring my heart and soul into this thing…. and that, is good feeling. I love this product and I hope it is comforting and useful to all of the people who decide to buy it. It’s guaranteed, so if it’s not exactly working for certain people they can return it…. but, if you are one of those people…. please send it back with suggestions as to how I can make it better, or more suitable for certain needs in the future. Now that the ball is rolling and things are in place it will be easier to add more products and do different designs and variations of the primary product!

Let me know how you like it… and keep reading the blogs, because I will be keeping you posted about new styles and colors, among other things..

Time to get out and enjoy some fresh air!

www.buggybag.com

www.buggybagmobility.com to view a video of me talking about the new Lap Blanket.

I need to have the first batch of buggy bag® Lap Blankets ready for October 1st…. That’s the day that the site launches this product. Getting things produced here in Vancouver can be a bit of a trial, to say the least. We do have some great manufacturers here, but not very many, so when they are busy…. well, that’s it!

I have a friend with a factory and I was able to borrow her cutting table to cut out the first batch. That took from 9am- 3pm today, but they are now ready to be sewn. Did I mention that I work in film? I make patterns/costumes for TV and Film. I work as a contractor and am always juggling different jobs. Always challenging, always new and always fun!

The buggy bag® Lap Blanket is close to my heart though, and is a special thing that I make time to do because I think it’s important. I want to make traveling in a wheelchair a warm, dry and safe experience.

COMING SOON

www.buggybag.com October 1st, 2009

Who knew that music would be so tough? Costa put some digital piano in and it was pretty nice music considering that he isn’t a musician. Thing is, it just wasn’t uplifting in any way. I searched on-line for royalty free music and came across a piece that we ended up using. It’s warm and exciting… Just like the product. I hope all the buggy bag lap blanket customers like it.

buggy bag® mobility products

Buggy Bag® Mobility Products is dedicated to helping loved ones stay warm and dry while on the go. Buggy Bag® Stroller, Jogger and Wheelchair blankets protect against the cold and wet, while offering visibility in low light conditions.

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