Tuesday, 15 December 2020

FFORA Product Review*

FFORA are a brand that design bags, cupholders and tumblers that go with a magnetic attachment system that attaches to your wheelchair.

From FFORA I got the Essentials Bag Plus with the silver (Nickel) pebble which comes in black, the Essentials Bag in electric blue, the cupholder in white and silver and silver tumbler and the attachment system also in silver. (I like to coordinate myself)

Collage of photographs of my FFORA product on my wheelchair including the black Essentials Plus bag and another of this bag but showing it from the back attached to the attachment system, a photograph of the white cup holder with the silver tumbler in place, the silver attachment system and also me (sat in my wheelchair) bending down unzipping using the zip loops on my blue Essentials Bag

Check out the FFORA Website (Link) 

Bags

I love being able to choose between my two bags to go with my outfit. They're a good size to keep my essentials bits and bobs in (see my video on what I was able to fit into my Essentials Bag - it was quite a lot!). I still do need my other bags which attach to my wheelchair unless I'm travelling light. I see my bags more as a giant purse.

What I like is that normally I keep my purse in the bag that is behind my knees (I don't keep it in my handbag that attaches to the back of me wheelchair for security). But I find bending down and then having to search for my purse quite difficult as I don't have much core strength. So when I went to the Post Office (I travelled light on this occasion). It was super super easy to just pull my Essentials Bag Plus up and un click it from the magnetic attachment system to get my letters out of the back section and to access my phone to pay for my postage and stamps and the then to easily click my bag back in place. It also felt really nice to choose the bag that went with that day's outfit and it felt nice to accessorise and include my wheelchair in with my outfit.

On the Essentials Bag Plus you have a loop at the top of the bag and inside in the main section you have space for your cards; some hidden pockets (which I've used to put in some medical information), then a purse section and two compartments then it's deep to put other essentials in. Then in the back section it opens out to put other bits and bobs in.

The Essentials Bag is very similar except it's a bit smaller and it doesn't have the loop and you just have one compartment behind the zipped purse and just one hidden section behind the card slots. Then on the bag it's smaller to just be able to slip your phone in and a face mask.

The Essentials Bag comes in different colours. I was a bit torn between the blue bag and the pink bag but I though the blue would go with denim which I wear a fair bit. The Essentials Bag Plus just come in black. 

All the bags come with a magnetic pebble on them and to attach it to the attachment system it just very easily clips on and off. The bag also come with a cross-body strap which is great from people like myself who are ambulatory wheelchair users, or for when your in the car and then going to transfer into your wheelchair. I also though that it would be great for being ale to wear your bag when you're sat in your wheelchair if your using your attachment system is in use with your cup holder and tumbler to save you having two attachment systems.

The design feature I love most about these bags is that all the zips come with big zipper loops which is great for people like myself with limited hand function as the zip loops makes it a lot easier to be able to open ann close my bag if my hands are in spasm or if I'm wearing my splints etc.

The bags come in a fabric bag which I'm using to store them in to keep them nice when they're no in use and sat in my bag storage box.


Cup Holder & Tumbler

This cup holder is a solid ring (I thought I was squidgy silicone until I opened the box. Again it has a magnetic pebbled that clicks onto the attachment system. As it's ridged not everything fits in it. My FFORA tumbler obviously fits it and some of my other lidded mugs but unfortunately my water bottle is too slim to fit in.

The tumblers come in 3 colours (Nickel/silver, Champagne/Pale Gold and Midnight/Black - it now also very recently comes in white) and I went for the silver tumbler. The lid is ver spill proof and it comes with a straw. Again like with the big zip loops on the bags I'm not sure if the tumbler includes a straw because some disabled people like myself require straws to drink with or FFORA are just offering a plastic straw as an alternative to the paper straws now offered in caf├ęs. The tumbler is very insulated; if I want to drink my coffee straight away I have to put in plenty of cold water. The size of the tumbler is also pretty big which I like.


Attachment System

The first thing I want to say about the attachment system is the brilliant design of the allen key that I needed to attach the attachment system to my wheelchair. The handle was a giant metal loop (you can see this better in the video) so design wise it's extremely accessible for people with limited hand function like myself and I was able to very easily use this on my own. Normally with things like screwdrivers etc I have to get someone else to do it for me.

The attachment stem has rubber guards to protect your wheelchair and you get two spares of these. The attachment system comes in 3 colours - Nickel/silver, Champagne/Pale Gold and Midnight/Black.

It's very simple and easy to attach and comes with instructions. Both the attachment system and cup holder where presented in a really nice box which was a nice touch. I ensured it was on tight but I didn't fully tighten it to allow me to be able to reposition my bag when it's clipped in so I can reposition the angle the bag is at on my wheelchair.


Downsides & Design Suggestions

To make the bag more accessible like FFORA has done with the hand loops it would be helpful to have bigger clips on the cross-body strap as they're a little too small and fiddly especially if you don't have brilliant hand function.

My design suggestion it would be nice to see the Plus bag also in a brown/tan colour and the for the Essentials bag to see it in a brown/tan colour, an aubergine sort of colour and maybe some toned down colours as currently they're all quite bright colours at present. It would be also nice to see the active bags in other colours too other than white and black.

I also think that it would be good to have wider availability of these bags to countries other than the USA and Canada as the products are so fantastic, helpful, fashionable as well as functional for wheelchair users it would be good to offer the bags to other wheelchair users in other countries too.

The white Active Bag had been out of stock in the UK for quite a while.


Positives

The bags are great for ambulatory wheelchair users due to the fact that they come with a detachable cross-body strap.

Though I did suggest some additional colour options there is still a good selection of bags to choose from. 

The selection of Nickel/Champagne/Midnight for the attachment and magnetic pebbles though small is a good choice selection and I like how they've now added a white tumbler. (I probably would have chosen this if it was available at the time).

They are now adding a water bottle and bottle holder to their collection, I'm keen to order one but I'm waiting for them to get round to designing more accessible lids on the water bottles which they are in the process of doing.

I love how many features have been designed with accessibility in mind and for those with limited hand function and also including a straw with the tumbler.

Taking things like the bag and cup holder off the pebble is so so easy - no having to fiddle around to detach and attach.

I like how deep the bags are so you can fit quite a lot of your essentials in the bag (see the video and I've done a clip showing how much I was able to fit into my Essentials Bag).

Screen shot of FFORA's website where you can search for you brand and model of wheelchair to see if the attachment system is compatible with your manual wheelchair
It's really nice to be able to decide which bag of mine to choose from to go with my outfit. It's also really helped my confidence to feel able to include and accessorise my wheelchair by having my bag on their that goes with my outfit that is attached to my wheelchair.


The attachment system will fit most manual wheelchairs (over 180). Just go onto the FFORA website and scroll to the bottom where you can search for the brand and model of your wheelchair. If you don't see your wheelchair you can contact FFORA below the search.

The postage costs are also really good.


Video Review on my YouTube Channel

SUBTITLES

If you click the link to go to the YouTube video you can access the subtitles (I always subtitle my videos)

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* This is a sponsored promotion by FFORA who gifted me some of their products