HOW DID THIS ALL HAPPEN?
We’re proud to announce our 10th anniversary in 2016.
ROTERFADEN AND THE TASCHENBEGLEITER (»bag companion«) are the result of a design diploma in 2006. The topic for the thesis was »the calendar«. What do the organizers and calendars look like that people carry around in their bags?
What can be done to improve the situation?
BEATE MANGRIG realized that all the different forms of self-organization needed a »system with maximum freedom«. Her search for a modular solution had to tick a lot of boxes — it needed to work without a hole punch, and all the notes and other scraps of paper had to be allowed to stay too. Working with different pieces of paper doesn’t necessarily mean chaos.
She tried out lots of different ideas, asked lots of questions, came up with lots of designs and finally ended up going to the patent office!
The degree at the UNIVERSITY OF ARTS AND DESIGN SAARBRÜCKEN can have an interdisciplinary nature — so our product designer was often in the typography studio as well as the workshops and the materials library during the development process.
THE AIM The clip mechanism inside the organizer allows for »maximum freedom«. Another design aspect: DIN formats are »allowed«. Where perhaps »old-school businessmen« used to dream up special formats and hole punch patterns in order to sell you more of their own special inserts, Beate Mangrig focused on giving customers the freedom to choose how best to meet their own needs. All sorts of papers fit in a TASCHENBEGLEITER — an A4 page that you have printed out will fit, for example, in an A5 TASCHENBEGLEITER when folded in half.
THE NAME and the corporate design were also part of the diploma — it had soon become clear that this concept was going to go further after university. Seven months later, ROTERFADEN was born, and the thesis was awarded a distinction from the university — as well as finding its first customers.
The photos are of the final year exhibition at »Haus der Architekten« in Saarbrücken.
IT TOOK ALMOST A YEAR to get from the prototype to the first proper production run. It took quite a while to find the right manufacturer for our clips and a number of »teething problems« needed to be dealt with.
Our seamstress, who has always tested and improved our products in close cooperation with Beate Mangrig, still sews nearly all of our TASCHENBEGLEITER. The first retailers were lined up and the online shop was set up. The business was officially opened in July 2007 and the online store went live in November 2007.
BEING SO PRACTICAL, the demand for TASCHENBEGLEITER was high from the very beginning. A number of positive reviews in the press in 2008 helped the business get off to a flying start. And that is how the project turned into a flourishing business. Other TASCHENBEGLEITER formats were then added to the range.
The company was born in Saarbrücken and is still based here. We opened our own store at the beginning of 2011 in Rosenstraße 11, in Saarbrücken where we are pleased to welcome visitors and customers.
100% MADE IN GERMANY Our booklets and all TASCHENBEGLEITER are hand made with joy in Germany. We only use high quality materials to produce durable and sturdy »bag companions« — many are customized one-offs. The sewing takes place in a small workshop in the Saarland region; our stainless steel clips are made in Bavaria, where every clip undergoes several tests. ROTERFADEN combines traditional craftsmanship, a modern concept and timeless design. Something useful, not just nice to look at.
Communication with our retail partners and customers is crucial for us to develop and improve our products. We take critique very seriously. Our customers’ suggestions and ideas have helped us improve and expand the range. Rather than configuring your own TASCHENBEGLEITER in the CONFIGURATOR, you can always choose from new TASCHENBEGLEITER EDITIONS.
Our range now includes cases for electronic devices such as tablet PCs and smartphones. Our TASCHENBEGLEITER for the iPad were given good reviews by several weblogs.
THE RANGE OF BOOKLETS continues to grow. Take, for example, the TEACHER’S CALENDAR, which we added in 2012 after receiving numerous requests.
Our customers play an important role in deciding how the range develops, which is why we like to keep in touch.
MORE ROTERFADEN RETAILERS are joining us all the time — in Germany and Europe, as well as in Los Angeles and Toronto. In addition to our online shop, we also work with a growing number of retailers. You will mainly find ROTERFADEN products on sale in owner-run stationery, book or concept stores.