Skidaddle Bags: Diabetes bags just got fashionable
It all began with a diabetes diagnosis.
In November 2004, Maiya Lester was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Her parents immediately set about doing everything they could to help their child cope with the disease. From blood sugar checks to insulin injections, life became a merry-go-round of the treatments, worries, highs and lows of living with diabetes.
When Maiya told her mother she wished she had a 'happy bag' to carry her diabetes supplies, her mom was determined to make it happen. What began as a small, custom-made bag for her daughter has turned into Skidaddle -- a company that creates vibrant diabetes supply bags suitable for men, women and children.
Designing practical, useful diabetes bags
Skidaddle Bags wants to change the look of diabetes. These colorful bags are designed to corral all the necessities of a life with diabetes into a single neat package. Each bag contains plenty of pockets, mesh holders and elastic loops perfect for those little diabetes staples. From messenger bags that hold everything from test strips to lunch, to the smaller meter bag that holds just the essentials, all Skidaddle bags are created by Maiya's mother, Skidaddle CEO and founder Maria Lester.
"I brainstorm and sketch first," Lester said.
"Once I have decided on a design I cut out each section of the bag on fabric. I sew the pieces together by hand and add elastics, zippers, etc. I place my daughter's medications inside and test out the dimensions. Next, I scan the design and the selected material and place it into Adobe PhotoShop. This is the most fun part of designing the bags because I get to create different options and come up with the final look. Once I have finalized those details, I send off everything to my manufacturer and begin the prototype process."
Skidaddle offers a variety of "happy" diabetes bags
Maiya was ecstatic about her first Skidaddle bag. Now that her mom runs a company that creates them, which of these "happy bags" does she use today?
"This is a fun question to answer since before Skidaddle Bags was born, she didn't have a selection to choose from," Lester said.
"Today, her bag option of the day depends on what she is doing. When in school, she prefers the hipster bag style. When traveling, or going for an all day outing at one of the theme parks she takes a messenger bag. When she goes to the pool or just outside to play, she usually takes a small clutch with her immediate essentials. The options help her feel more in control of the situation and she is not ashamed to take her cute bag with her everywhere she goes."
Today, there are several Skidaddle bags to choose from, with many more on the horizon. Lester plans to add new prints and designs to the "For Her" line, as well as new collections designed for the guys.
"I also have some very exciting ideas on the designing table right now that I can't reveal just yet," Lester teased. "Stay tuned!"
Maiya got a bright, colorful bag, and her mother found a mission.
Interview with Maria Lester, CEO of Skiddadle Bags