Sunshine Coast Mum wins awards with her innovative ‘Croc’ beach bag

Sunshine Coast Mum - Krystal Rand - Kove and Co

Design a ‘Croc’ bag but make it cute. That was the mission of Sunshine Coast Mum Krystal Rand when she set about creating her cult classic Kove & Co Tribe Bag.

The idea was born not long after her daughter arrived, when Krystal’s days were spent rushing around doing errands with a toddler in tow and dealing with swimming lessons and beach trips.

“I was heading to swimming lessons and lugging around multiple wet towels, water bottles, wet swimmers etc. and it was just a breeding ground for bacteria,” Krystal said.

“I wanted a bag that was sturdy and large enough to fit all the things in the one place, but also lightweight and waterproof.”

After a bit of research, she discovered a bag in the United States that seemed to tick the boxes, but when it arrived, it was bulky, heavy and ugly.

“I couldn’t find anything that was exactly what I needed. I started chatting to other Mums at swimming lessons about what they wanted in a swimming bag and decided to design my own version.”

That was the start of an 18 month journey that saw Krystal design and manufacture her very own bag, and in October 2022, the Kove & Co Tribe Bag was launched.

The bag is made from EVA foam, the same material as the popular ‘Crocs’ shoes, making it 100% waterproof and lightweight.

It features holes for ventilation, interchangeable straps and a waterproof pocket inside for valuables and plenty of storage.

With a flat bottom, it’s designed to stand up and easily store a water bottle without it tipping, and it’s the perfect width to fit in a shopping trolley or beach trolley.

“It is so easy to clean and maintain. I spilled an Up & Go drink in mine the other week which normally would be the end of a bag, but I just wiped it out with a baby wipe and it was as good as new. We’ve had grease from a tow bar on it and it wiped straight off with no stains,” Krystal said.

“They are basically indestructible and so versatile. From work, a baby bag, grocery shopping, beach bag, they are so useful for everyday life.”

While many may think a ‘Croc’ bag has the potential to be less aesthetically pleasing, Krystal has chosen timeless, neutral colours and design elements to add a touch of class.

Kove & Co Tribe Bags took off immediately after launching, turning over $250K in its first 12 months.

So far, the business has made $380K with its best month bringing in $50K in revenue.

Kove & Co has sold out three times since its launch, and Krystal has recently quit her day job to pursue the business full-time.

“I got listed in the Top 10 Beach Bags for 2024 on One Fine Baby and Highly Recommended in the national SHE-com Awards in the Women’s Bags category, so it was really encouraging to see how our product is filling a gap in the market.”

Krystal has thought of everything – even putting her logo on the bottom of the bag backwards, so it leaves the Kove & Co stamp on the sand.

“I had someone say to me once, ‘I saw this logo sitting on the sand, there was nothing else around it so I googled you, and I found your bags!’ I was so happy about that!”

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