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Leatherette Boot Liner (Development Blog)


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#1 roberts

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Posted 04 July 2022 - 08:26 AM

It’s incredible to think that we initially launched a boot lining kit way back in 2004, after I (Andy) had made one for my own Classic Mini and a fellow TMF member said "that looks great, can you make me one?”. The boot liner was the beginning of Optimise Automotive, it was the first item I developed, the first item I released for sale and the first inkling and inspiration behind the process of turning my pass time into a career.

From day 1 our boot liners have lead the market and we have continually developed the range, to keep on top of the game.

Back in the olden days (circa 2008 to 2012) we would regularly be commissioned to create bespoke leatherette boot lining kits, this trend then near enough disappeared until late 2019, when out of the blue we have been receiving a high number of requests for leatherette boot liners.

As a result, last October (October 2021) we made the decision to add a leatherette option to our boot lining kit range.

This was music to my ears, as I’ll always have a special affiliation to the boot lining kit (as mentioned above, it’s where this journey started) and they will forever be my favourite item.

As I start to write this development blog on the 4th July 2022 we are several months into the research & development stages, having initially spent a considerable amount of time researching “what you want” and then progressing with the mechanical design development (ensuring that everything works correctly).

Developing a leatherette trimmed kit isn’t simply a case of trimming our carpet kit boards in a leatherette, the kit needs many modifications & alterations to allow for different material thicknesses and trimming features. Testing the kits to iron out fitment problems with piping rubbing and imprinting on panels has been a longer process than we hoped, but an essential process to ensure the quality of our kits.

We don’t need to bore you with further details and the process of mechanical design, as you can tell from the photos below, it’s not very interesting.

 

Mechanical_Design_01.jpg

 

 

Mechanical_Design_02.jpg

 

 

Mechanical_Design_03.jpg

 

 

Anyway, I’m pleased to announce that we are now happy with the mechanical design aspects of the kits and we are finally ready to progress with the design development process.

From concept to launch, over the course of the next month or so, you will be able to follow our journey, as we design, develop and launch our new range of leatherette Classic Mini boot lining kits.

Make sure you check back here regularly for updates and also to take a look behind the scenes, as we work our magic, across our social media:

 

Have a great day.

Kind regards,
Andy & the Optimise Automotive team



#2 coopertaz

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Posted 04 July 2022 - 12:22 PM

2008 olden days?? Really, makes a fossil like me feel old!



#3 roberts

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Posted 11 July 2022 - 03:04 PM

Digital Concept Design

For the past week we’ve been busy with the initial concept design work, with one simple objective:

 

“Design a leatherette trimmed boot lining kit that perfectly compliments our Classic Mini product range.”

 

As a boot lining kit is made up of panels, it is logical to use our door card range as inspiration for the leatherette boot liners. Our starting points are the Monte-Carlo Plus (our best selling single colour option) and the Wide-Stripe Fluted (our best selling dual colour option).

 

Monte-Carlo_Plus_Door_Cards.jpg

Monte-Carlo Plus Door Cards

 

Wide-Stripe_Fluted_Door_Cards.jpg

Wide-Stripe Fluted Door Cards

 

As mentioned above, our product range kits need to perfectly compliment our standard product range, which poses numerous design questions:

  • Should the direction of stitching run parallel with the piping, as it does on our door cards, in this instance the stitching will run vertically throughout the boot liner (the opposite of the door cards) or, should the stitching run horizontally on the boot lining kit panels (so it matches the stitching direction on the door cards) but runs piping to piping?
  • Plus, do we consider introducing different colour layouts? Essentially, additional colours on the base board, which will undoubtedly look great, but will this option match our standard interiors?
  • Finally, a boot liner is meant to be practical item so should we introduce a mixture of carpet and leatherette? Or is a leatherette kit simply for show, rendering the practicality of the kit unless? Also in this instance, what kind of combination (panel combinations) match the interior?

For reference, we finalised panel design concepts (this included the idea of treating each board individually, like a door card set, or combining the kit together, with interlocking design from one board to another) as part of our research and mechanical design process.

 

The joys of digital design have allowed us to generate numerous design concepts, playing around with the stitch patters, colour layouts and material mixtures. So without any further waffling, lets get straight into it with stitch patterns:

 

Concept_Design_01.jpg

Single colour concept with vertical stitching.

 

Concept_Design_02.jpg

Dual colour concept with vertical stitching.

 

Concept_Design_03.jpg

Single colour concept with horizontal stitching.

 

Concept_Design_04.jpg

Dual colour concept with horizontal stitching.

 

I’m sure you will agree, that’s a very easy decision (we weren’t expecting it to be so easy), running the stitching parallel with the piping looks miles better (I can’t get it out my head that the the horizontal lines of stitching make the panels look like ladders, especially on the smaller panels). Plus the parallel stitching definitely matches our objective of perfectly matching the kits to our product range interiors.

 

To be honest, I think we’ve accidentally stumbled across the final design, with the first concept.

 

Despite that, lets double check everything else to make sure.

 

Updates to follow shortly...

 

Have a great day.

Kind regards,
Andy & the Optimise Automotive team



#4 roberts

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Posted 18 July 2022 - 09:35 AM

Time for another update and next up, colour layouts:

 

Concept_Design_05.jpg

Single colour concept with contracting coloured base board.

 

Concept_Design_06.jpg

Dual colour concept with contracting coloured base board.

 

As mentioned already, introducing a complimentary contrasting colour to the base board undoubtedly looks great and as a bespoke option (if you have large areas of a second colour in your interior) works brilliantly. However, this doesn’t perfectly compliment our product range interiors and as suspected, will not be something that we will be adding to the standard kits.

 

Finally, lets have a play with the idea of introducing a mixture of carpet and leatherette panels:

 

Concept_Design_07.jpg

Single colour featured leatherette rear panel with predominately carpet kit.

 

Concept_Design_08.jpg

Dual colour featured leatherette rear panel with predominately carpet kit.

 

Concept_Design_09.jpg

Single colour featured leatherette wall panels with carpeted front, floor and boot panels.

 

Concept_Design_10.jpg

Dual colour featured leatherette wall panels with carpeted front, floor and boot panels.

 

Concept_Design_11.jpg

Single colour featured leatherette “boot” panels with carpeted front and boot panels.

 

Concept_Design_12.jpg

Dual colour featured leatherette “boot” panels with carpeted front and boot panels.

 

Concept_Design_13.jpg

Single colour featured leatherette kit with carpeted floor panel.

 

Concept_Design_14.jpg

Dual colour featured leatherette kit with carpeted floor panel.

 

Concept_Design_15.jpg

Single colour featured leatherette kit with carpeted floor panel & carpeted boot lid centre panel.

 

Concept_Design_16.jpg

Dual colour featured leatherette kit with carpeted floor panel & carpeted boot lid centre panel.

 

I’m personally a massive fan of combining the two trimmings, essentially creating a boot lining kit which has the perfect mix of stunning appearance and practicality. In my opinion, the option of featured leatherette wall panels with with a carpeted floor panel & a carpeted boot lid centre panel creates the perfect “practical” leatherette kit and I’m really glad that we had a play with the combinations.

 

However, from our research and also from our experience in the market (no one has ever asked for anything like this), it's not something that you lovely lot want. We’d love to know your opinion though and we’d love to know if you think we should launch a half and half style kit as part of the product range. Obviously we will be offering this kind of thing on a bespoke basis, but I have a sneaky feeling that it is also will be something we could be reconsidering in the near future (especially when we make up an example in the next few weeks) and adding to the product range.

 

Anyway, enough jibber jabbering, it's time to make a few decisions.

 

Updates to follow shortly...

 

 

Have a great day.

Kind regards,
Andy & the Optimise Automotive team



#5 roberts

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 09:36 AM

Time for another update and as suspected we accidentally stumbled across the final design (for the full leatherette kits), with the first concept.

 

Final_Design_01.jpg

Chosen design concept, single colour.

 

Final_Design_02.jpg

Chosen design concept, dual colour.

 

 

It’s time to get these stunners made.

 

 

Updates to follow shortly...

 

 

Have a great day.

Kind regards,
Andy & the Optimise Automotive team



#6 GraemeC

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 09:51 AM

I probably have no qualification to comment as I don't (and won't) have a boot kit as my car is competition based. However.... 

 

I think the design would be better with the pinstripes, or blocks of colour, running horizontally as they do on the door cards - to me they don't match the interior kit other than in colour. And for the pinstripe option, a simple single line, again as per the door cards.



#7 roberts

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 01:00 PM

I probably have no qualification to comment as I don't (and won't) have a boot kit as my car is competition based. However.... 

 

I think the design would be better with the pinstripes, or blocks of colour, running horizontally as they do on the door cards - to me they don't match the interior kit other than in colour. And for the pinstripe option, a simple single line, again as per the door cards.

 

First up, thanks for the feedback (always welcome and encouraged).

 

As mentioned above, we are several months into the research & development stages, having initially spent a considerable amount of time researching “what you want” and then progressing with the mechanical design development (ensuring that everything works correctly).

 

To elaborate a little on what is detailed above, part of this process included finalising panel design concepts and this actually included the idea of treating each board individually (like a door card set), or combining the kit together (as you have suggested), with interlocking designs from one board to another.

 

Throughout late 2021/early 2022 we fed these initial concept ideas out across our social stories, with polls, and it was an overwhelming result in favour of treating each board individually.

 

Following that initial feedback, we dropped the idea of an interlocking design and focused our efforts on what you see above.

 

 

Kind regards,
Andy @ Optimise Automotive



#8 roberts

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Posted 26 July 2022 - 01:27 PM

Mockup Design

 

Absolutely no point in messing around here, we’ve made up several examples of the kits and as I'm sure you will agree, they look absolutely stunning - a picture paints 1000 words and all of that.

Quite frankly, job done:

 

Mockups_01.jpg

 

Mockups_02.jpg

Platinum Boot Lining Kit - Single Colour

 

Mockups_03.jpg

 

Mockups_04.jpg

Platinum Boot Lining Kit - Dual Colour

 

As demonstrated by the images above both single colour and dual colour options completely compliment our standard product range interiors. Plus, as demonstrated by the images below, the layout is easily customisable, suiting different requirements depending upon your interior.

 

 

Mockups_07.jpg

 

Mockups_08.jpg

Bespoke Platinum Boot Lining Kit - Horizontal Stitching

 

 

Mockups_09.jpg

 

Mockups_10.jpg

Bespoke Platinum Boot Lining Kit - Diamond Stitched

 

 

And as already mentioned, we think we could be readdressing the half & half option (photos below) and potentially launching them to the product range, but we will await your feedback first.

 

Mockups_05.jpg

 

Mockups_06.jpg

Bespoke Platinum Boot Lining Kit - Carpeted Floor & Boot Lid Cover

 

 

In terms of research & development we are now done and it’s time to finalise everything for the launch, we can’t wait to get these beauties launched ASAP.

 

Updates to follow shortly...

 

 

Have a great day.

Kind regards,
Andy & the Optimise Automotive team


Edited by roberts, 26 July 2022 - 01:27 PM.


#9 KTS

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Posted 26 July 2022 - 02:46 PM

they do look good

 

the diamond stitched example made me wonder whether a net pocket could be a useful addition to a side/back panel 



#10 roberts

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Posted 27 July 2022 - 07:52 AM

they do look good

 

the diamond stitched example made me wonder whether a net pocket could be a useful addition to a side/back panel 

 

Although that sounds like a great idea frustratingly the ergonomics of the Mini boot (the boot lid folding down and sitting right in your way of access to the boot) would make it very different in reality, as access to the boards (especially the back board) is limited and difficult, unless you've got Stretch Armstrong arms.

 

In terms of a feature to look good though (ignoring the practicality of the pockets), it would look brilliant and also very period with a retro build - definitely something for the bespoke options list, if looks not practicality is the reasoning behind it.

 

 

Kind regards,
Andy @ Optimise Automotive



#11 roberts

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Posted 29 July 2022 - 12:49 PM

There's absolutely no point messing about here as you've all been following the design and development progress over the past month or so… drum roll please!

 

We are delighted to announce that our stunning leatherette “Platinum” bootlining kits for the Classic Mini are LAUNCHED.

 

Mockups_01.jpg

 

 

All the usual trim and spec options are available, to ensure that they perfectly compliment your Optimise interior and can be found on the website here: LINK

Please celebrate the launch with 5% off from us:

  • Discount Code: Platinum

To claim the discount add the discount coupon code above into the ‘Coupon code box’, that can be found on the Optimise Automotive shopping basket. The discount is valid until August 31st at 23:59.

 

We hope you have enjoyed following our development journey on our Blog and across our social media, plus may I also take this opportunity to thank you for all the feedback.

 

 

Have a great day.

 

Kind regards,
Andy @ Optimise Automotive






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