Our Purse Hook Samples are Here!

About a year ago from this date, I dreamt of Taryn Zhang purse hooks, and even blogged photoshopped renditions of what a Taryn Zhang purse hook might look like. (Sooo glad the actual ones look better than my photoshopped renditions…) There was also this post that disclosed some of the conception and design processes behind making a purse hook.

It’s real now. I’ve got samples of Taryn Zhang purse hooks sitting on my desk. In the above photo you can see my sketched out idea for the design that I sent to the factory and then the actual sample purse hook they sent back to me. These little guys are made in Taiwan. I’m Taiwanese American. So my purse hooks getting made in Taiwan means something poignant to me. Doing business in Taiwan has been a joy. The factory is prompt, candid, provides exceptional customer service, and we talk off-business a lot about the differences between growing up in Taiwan and growing up in the States.

The top of the medallion (the darker circle part) is black nickel plated. For the geeks among us, and I’m certainly one of them, here’s a quick wiki on nickel electroplating. When I first started design of these, I wanted black nickel because I thought they looked prettier and assumed that wear resistance and corrosion protection would be the same as the pure nickel plates (which are silver, rather than the darker metallic tone). So I chose black nickel plating because I like the darker tone look. However, after more research, it seems like the pure nickel plating is more durable, with better wear resistance and corrosion protection than the black nickel plating. Now I have to figure out a way to quantify the trade-off and determine whether I want to go with the black nickel or the pure nickel.

Overall, I love these purse hook medallions. They’re small and compact. The medallion is less than 2 inches in diameter and less than 0.5 inches in thickness. They’ll tuck away quite nicely in a clutch or small evening purse, and yet they hold 10 pounds, so you can hang any one of the TZ briefcases and even the weekender off this thing and it’ll do. (Though I wouldn’t advise that you hang it with your laptop computer or law school casebooks in the bag… 10 pounds isn’t that much!)

The little stick part connected to and jutting out of the medallion pulls out, and then slips back into the circle when you store it away. Also, the stem part that wraps around the medallion (or whatever you’re supposed to call it) is magnetic, and will cling to the medallion nicely when the hook is not in use. If you feel one of these things in your hands, you’d note they’re heavy, quite sturdy, and are of better quality than a lot of the medallion-type purse hooks that are sold on the general market.

That said, I don’t like how the black nickel part smudges. Brush a thumb across the medallion and CSI would be like, “Bingo. This is too easy. Run it through AFIS now!” I believe there is a coating we can apply to the purse hooks so that they don’t smudge and take fingerprints as easily, but the catch is two-fold: the coating would take away from the elegant sheen that you see now on the medallion (probably not that discernible in these photos, sorry) and also I’m sure the chemicals for such a coating aren’t happy stuff. I kind of like how the purse hooks right now are au naturale. I am also one of those OCD personality types and would literally go nuts every time I saw fingerprint smudges on the medallion. So that’s another trade-off I need to consider. Happy green sustainability or my sanity… haha, for anyone into logical fallacies, what a false dilemma I’ve presented myself with there.

The biggest bag in our debut collection is the Peripatetic weekender tote (see above). I suspended a reasonably filled Peripatetic, with the heavy chains of the detachable shoulder strap attached, and suspended it with the purse hook to see how it’d do. There are several file folders, notebooks, my Kindle, makeup bag, and typical stuff women have in their purses currently inside that Peripatetic and yet it hung quite securely off the hook. I wouldn’t bat the bag around while it’s on the hook, but as long as you don’t kick at it or beat it about, your purse will stay off the ground.

No clue how I ever dined out before without bringing along a purse hook! These things are fantastic! We haven’t figured out exactly how we’ll be packaging the purse hooks yet. Are we going to sell them separately? Are they going to come with every purchase of a bag? Should they come in pretty little boxes? Or drawstring velvet pouches? These are business questions for Hubby to decide on. =) Sigh… our work here is never done. Ever.

About tarynzhang

Visit us at www.tarynzhang.com.
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  • http://twitter.com/czilka Christine Lee Zilka

    i’m telling ya–i looove purse hooks! and yes–yours looks more fantastic than any i’ve seen on the open market (sans those Franklin Mint ones that are just crrrazy cloisonne). yours are awesome! i so want one. how much?

  • http://made-to-travel.com/ Jamillah

    OMG!! I love purse hooks. I received one as a gift and really took it everywhere with me till it sadly broke. 

    I can see that it would be sad to lose the pretty patina on the black nickel but really smudgy is not good, I would go with it. 

  • http://highmaintenancewoman.blogspot.com MizzJ

    I love these! Unlike most purse hooks I’ve seen out there, these are simple and elegant, while most have some kind of bedazzaled crap on them. I totally want one of these RIGHT NOW though I don’t envy your dilemmas on the final design. I like the look of the dark nickel too, but I think smudges would drive me insane. Hmm if they came in little velvet pouches though, could those pouches also double as a smudge removing cloth? 

  • http://www.kirstinmarie.com Kirstin Marie

    These are fabulous!! Congratulations to you in making your dream become reality.

  • http://www.memorybeandesigns.blogspot.com Tamara Nicole

    Great job! I love purse hooks, they are so handy and keep my bags all clean.  Love them.

  • http://www.asiancajuns.com Asiancajuns (Cath)

    So cool! I’ve never used a purse hook before, but I love how compact it is! I love seeing your ideas become real – it’s so inspiring!

  • The Versastyle

    so brilliant… i don’t know many handbags that also have purse hooks! i know you can always buy them at various places… but so smart putting them together! 

    hope everything is going well dear! 


  • Anonymous

    I love purse hooks they are so fun to use. Yours is beautiful, I like how you design your initials!


  • http://thereafterish.wordpress.com/ Mae Lu

    Yeay!!! I love these, and I love how strong it is. I need one of these in my life. AND, I WANT to buy one of your prototypes of the black  or red executive. I’ll be moving soon, and I need a statement bag like, soon.

    I still think all of them are fucking gorgeous, I don’t care that you think they’re bad. I think they’re GREAT.

    Mae Lu @ thereafterish.!

  • http://thereafterish.wordpress.com/ Mae Lu

    PS. I absolutely adore that you love Jeannie Mai! She’s so frakking awesome.

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    One remaining gripe, though, is I have yet to find a purse hook that will work off conference tables. You know how those long office conference tables always have these really bull-nosed curved edges? Can never find a purse hook that will work off that kind of edge. Phooey.

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    I got two samples, one is sandblasted (meaning if you look carefully, it’s got a bunch of little dots on it…it’s more matte) and the other is smooth (total high gloss). The sandblasted one doesn’t smudge as much. The high gloss smooth one though.. yowsers.

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    Oh, I know what you’re talking about. They all have those huge fake gemstones and stuff on it. Those kinds are cute when you’re 21. When you’re our age, it gets to be a little silly looking. =/ That’s why I very consciously stayed away from the bling bling for this one. No rhinestones, no little crystals, etc. All metal.

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    Thanks! Sigh… though there’s still a loooong way to go. =)

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra


  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    Cath, you are missing out! We need to get a purse hook in you and Lar’s hands then. Purse hooks are awesome!

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    I hope that’s one prospective customers think too! =D

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    Hehe thanks! We embossed our logo plate onto the purse hooks, which yeah, is essentially the brand name’s initials. =P

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    Haha okay we’ll talk off blog about this more. =P

  • http://blog.tarynzhang.com AppleSidra

    She IS so frakking awesome! I *LOVE* her, her style, the persona she presents, everything!

  • Lamod Christina b

    They look great sunny!! Congrats!!

  • http://twitter.com/cncliving Chic ‘n Cheap Living

    Wow, I love seeing your design process.  I would go with the pure nickel – while shinier, the possible smudging from the dark nickel would be worrisome.  You could give them out with bags as first or as part of a promotion!

    Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely weekend!

    xoxo,Chic ‘n Cheap Living

  • melissa

    I love your design! I always have issues when I eat out and don’t know where to put my bag.  I’ve seen other hooks (that were super tacky) but your hook is perfect =)

  • melissa

    forgot to add my blog: lovelylittlethingsblog.blogspot.com

  • Nemo Siren Song

    I love your design and super cute hair <3