The Story of My Utility Bag: Meet Andy Gugenheimer

The Story of My Utility Bag: Meet Andy Gugenheimer

What do I pack for a day?

Being an entrepreneur, father, biker, runner and a creative mind, I like to be prepared for every situation. For a busy day full of work. For creating new ideas and sharing them with partners and friends. For taking a break with my kids and wife, the most important part of my life. For a workout after a busy day to free the mind. It's my personal life formula. A balanced day is what keeps my spirits up and my ideas coming.

Sometimes I spend a whole weekend working away from my home in Biarritz, it's as wonderful as it is jarring. It's been a part of my life for the last 20 years.

And again the question - what do I pack?

I've never been a fan of carrying around too much - it's not only a burden for your body, but also for your mind. Also, like anyone who's flying frequently can tell you: The best way to travel is with only one piece of hand luggage. It's a time and nerve saver. No 2-hour-before check-in and no waiting for your luggage to drop after the flight.

Hands down, I know exactly what to pack.

  • My working gear (notebook, smartphone, documents)
  • Life essentials (keys, wallet, tickets)
  • A second outfit and/or sports clothes
  • A toilettery
  • Pen and paper
  • The recent newspaper


That's never been a brain-wrecker. My personal struggle has always been how to pack to get everything organized in just one bag. In almost quarter of a century of traveling I had the chance to test plenty of bags. To be honest, none actually satisfied my needs - and one after another was doomed to end up in the exile of my closet, to be never seen again.

If you're one of the people I met, you probably know - for anyone else, let me tell you: I am a hands-on person. If I see an opportunity, I will take it. If something doesn't satisfy me, I will change it. As a consequence, the only possible solution was creating my own bag.

My goals:

  • travel easy
  • have everything packed for any kind of situation
  • be well organized even during a trip
  • have easy access to my gear
  • keep my gear safe
  • be able to combine my daily needs of work and work-out
  • even when rushing from one place to the next, always feel comfortable and without pain


And so I did. And it increased my daily routine a lot.

Even though I have been developing whole collections for Rip Curl and Oakley before, the bag I had in mind required some on-the-point conception and design. Thankfully, a friend of mine is product designer and has a great experience in backpack-design. Together we formed the idea of how a backpack had to be organized to be perfect for all situations.

You know how it is with good ideas? If you have one, share it.

I've never been the only one struggling with packing. Especially in times of digital nomads and work-life-balance, a lot of people share a similar active lifestyle. The more friends asked if they could get my backpack, too, the more it occured to me to produce it.

What followed, was the creation of the Only One backpack and in 2017, the creation of a whole range of bags for the life on the road. You can read all of this in The Brand's Story.

Being still in the middle of my journey as an Entrepreneur, for now I can tell you: I still struggle sometimes in my daily life, but what and how to pack is - fortunately - not one of the things that occupies my mind.

I hope you enjoy My Utility Bag and that it will improve your life as well.

All the best,

Posted on 2018-03-31 0 1653

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