Industrial Design

X-Pand Briefcase

project information

year:1985-91
client:Ajioka, Inc.
  • We sought to design a line of briefcases that would expand to a greater capacity within the parameters of the traditional size group range. A patented elastic panel was developed allowing the briefcase to expand or contract according visually suggesting the contents of the bag. This panel is composed of alternating overlapping strips of synthetic leather and stretchable nylon. Synthetic leather does not have a memory of its shape. In order to manufacture these panels cost effectively, a special multiple stitching head machine was developed that would first roll the materials' edges over and then sew all stitches whether structural or decorative simultaneously. This produces a continuous panel that can be cut to size as needed. Additional components (leather covered handle, side panels) are injection molded in plastic. The briefcases are formed of an aluminum frame with die-cut plastic side panels covered.