Our design philoshopy is simple. Make a product that looks good, make it last and make sure it performs its intended function as good or better than anything else on the market. If it can perform multiple functions really well, we want that too.
Function is paramount and that starts with materials. If a material costs more or is harder to sew (i.e. neoprene), that's fine as long as it performs better. The stretch, light weight and padding characteristics of neoprene make it worth it. Ditto for the seam tape. Our seam taping adds significant material and labor costs, but it makes our bags much more durable and weatherproof.
Besides using superior materials, you can design durability into a bag by reducing the amount of seams, zippers and other fastening and closure mechs. Zippers are the #1 cause of failure of bike bags, so we got rid of them. Same with seams, less it better: our Beanies have one seam.
Aesthetics count too. A bag isn't very good if it dorks out your bike. Bicycles are beautiful and anything you attach to it should be as well. We try to integrate our beanies and bags as much as possible with the bike frame. Our "lighter and tighter" mantra is as important to aesthetics as it is to functionality. We want our beanies cinched up tight to the frame/saddle. Better looking and performing with a bonus of being more aero.
Another critical design element we take pride in is being ORIGINAL. After all, its in our name. Why create a product that looks like something you can buy from someone else? Don't get us wrong, we don't want to reinvent the wheel, just make it better. And we'll gladly "borrow" good ideas and make them our own, but we'll never copy others.