Some quick snippets of good news:
a) Backpack interest was enough so that we can make a run, probably. Now the next step is to get back with the bag guy, determine a price, and then we can go back to the interested parties and get payments and start the run. This is for the black/black daypack. Helmet bag interest wasn’t really strong enough for the time being. it’s possible that we may get more interest in that over time.
It’s pretty much a reboot of the original TOJ daypack, but I liked the idea of adding the leather bottom and the further reinforcing the top strap part, this go around. It should add a bit of durability. We had a couple sendbacks on the green ones only a few years ago, turned out the maker had decided on his own to make the suede a bit thinner on those, and so a couple straps broke and we had to fix them. The other colors were fine. This time around, we’re reinforcing further and doing some reinforcement to them internally where they take stress. Still, they’re good when used within reason.
b) We’ve found two further production facilities for jackets that meet our quality standards. We’ll start spreading out production and lead time will decrease from here on out. If you order now and in the near future, lead time will have decreased pretty significantly. For orders extant, they’ll benefit from a quicker turnout. We had 2 full time facilities, one kinda part-time that we’re bringing up to full time status imminently, and then we have two new ones to make it five. The new two facilities seem ready to go full-tilt, and one is possibly capable of turning out standard-sized runs for us, to create in-stock stuff to instantly ship. More on this in a second.
I’m thinking of doing another ‘hiatus’ but probably not as long as last time - rather, this time I’d treat it as an order freeze so that we can catch up and clear some of the log before tackling new things. I’d still like to make new things, and we have a bit of an archive of samples to release as product, but we need to do first things first. That won’t happen right now, but maybe soon. Last time, too many people ordered in the last few hours of the cutoff. We will probably name a sliding window of a date and maybe just cut things off when we’ve reached a certain number, in order to make sure it doesn’t go on forever. Last time the sheer number of orders made me appreciate those who timed the cutoff and ordered well ahead of closing, because by the last days the plot just went vertical, and one day of orders became like a full month of production.
As for the in-stock items, it’s a new thing for us, but I know what I want to make - the 4th anniversary of TOJ is coming up very soon. We have made a celebratory model most years and I think I’d like to do the same this year. I don’t know exactly what it’ll be yet, but we’ll make it soon and rather than adding to an MTM log, we’ll just run some standard sizes up and sell them as stock. They should fit 95% of people out there this way. Maybe we can get around to making MTM versions of the same at a later date. I am thinking a Baseball jacket v2, and maybe another Harrington variant both in light calf suede for summerweight wear for the Anniversary model, as those models have been well-liked but probably ripe for alternate variants.