LOS ANGELES — It’s become a daily ritual to pack the Aerrem bag with reusable bottles for coffee and water.
As for other essentials, Aerrem co-founder Steve Bauerfeind said it’s all now routine.
“Our tagline is phone, keys, wallet, Aerrem, just a reminder of what you have to bring with you," said Bauerfeind.
The Aerrem bag is a purpose-driven creation, that Steve and his husband Paul Kradin came up with together.
Their idea was a durable, fashionable bag, that can hold reusable bottles. It’s their way of shifting human behavior away from their love of convenient single-use plastic bottles and coffee cups.
“We thought what we need to do is create a campaign to get people to bring their refillable bottles with them whenever they leave the house, but realistically no one is going to do that if they didn’t have a place to carry it," Kradin said.
Never having developed a product before, Steve tapped his network from working in advertising and production.
GQ’s longtime creative director Jim Moore introduced the pair to designer George Esquivel, who helped bring their vision to life.
“It was challenging, which I love challenges, and that’s one of the reasons why I took it on, but I also think it’s a great cause and we have to do something to give back," said Esquivel.
Plastic is contaminating our oceans and every corner of the world, yet global plastic production is expected to triple by 2050.
So the guys didn’t stop with their bag, they also found a green way to transport their product from their factory in Mexico, separating each Aerrem bag by paper, inside reusable duffel bags, that go inside a box.
“In the end it was like ‘this much’ plastic tape from the boxes, a bunch of cardboard boxes that can get recycled and our duffel bags that we ship back to Mexico," said Bauerfeind.
Aerrem bags can be purchased on their website or by appointment at George’s atelier in downtown LA.
Upon special request, George will also monogram your bag by hand.
Steve and Paul estimate in a year, their Aerrem bag can save each person 720 plastic bottles, 250 coffee cups and 684 pounds of CO2
“Aerrem’s goal is to help people establish a new habit, a day-to-day habit that empowers them to say no to single-use plastic when they’re out of the house," said Kradin.
Just like the shift to reusable grocery bags, Paul and Steve hope their Aerrem bag will help people become even more mindful of their relationship with plastic.
“If you used our bag, regularly, if lots of people did it, the collective numbers are massive," said Bauerfeind.