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Publication Date : 21-02-2013
Aeskimo camera bags, with their posh Polar skin, bring elegance and reliability to a neglected market
Nont Pongpairoj, overseas degrees in industrial design and science management in hand, couldn't even get hired in 2008 when the economy was tanking. Fortunately he noticed a hole in the market for camera bags. People were making do with totes that were clumsy, shoddy - and very boring.
So, after a little research, Nont launched his own Aeskimo line of bags at the 2010 Thailand Photo Fair. His smart and simple but solid cases, in several sizes and colours, sold like hotcakes. "It's a small brand and we're new in this business, but I want to offer different choices to match people's varied lifestyles," he says.
"After coming back from the UK I got inspired by my friends' passion for taking photos, but they often complained about the design of their camera bags, and that got me thinking about starting a business sooner than I'd planned."
Using only top-grade materials, Nont's bags won Demark's Design Excellence Award last year. He chiefly utilises "ultra touch" nylon, anti-slip polymer and Polar skin from the US - artificial leather normally found on cushions aboard luxury yachts. The lining is a blend of soft-brushed tricot and premium nylon fabric.
All the bags are lightweight, durable, practical, scratch-resistant and easy to clean. There are three "Aive" series in different sizes and designs, in black, yellow and rose. The smallest model, the BabyAive, is ideal for compact cameras and has a loop cord for hooking onto your belt.
The MiniAive has room enough for a DSLR camera with a small zoom lens attached, along with a compact lens and a small light. It has pockets for a memory card, water bottle and other accessories.
The LittleAive is more spacious than its name suggests, able to carry more than a kilogram of gear. It offers compartments for all sorts of items so you can stay organised, and room to spare for a DSLR camera with a 70-200mm lens attached, plus extra lenses and a light. The buckle-up shoulder strap can double as a belt.
Nont plans to expand soon into computer bags and other camera accessories. As well as his own premises in Laksi, his Aeskimo bags are available at Loft at Siam Discovery, Big Camera and Digital 2 Home in Bangkok. Or visit www.Aeskimo.com.