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February 15, 2016 12:11 pm

Multi-Functional Hair Clip Inspired by Yarmulke a Big Hit on Amazon

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

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The multiple functions of the MTA hairclip highlighted by the product design studio Monkey Business. Photo: Monkey Business.

The multiple functions of the MTA hairclip highlighted by the product design studio Monkey Business. Photo: Monkey Business.

The designer of a multi-purpose hair clip said he was inspired by his Jewish friends who wear hair pins to hold in place their kippot, also known as yarmulkes or skullcaps, The Algemeiner has learned.

Jerusalem native Yaacov Goldberg, who designed More Than A (MTA) Hairclip, told The Algemeiner that the idea for the product came to him during his military service in the Israel Defense Forces. He would see his Jewish friends often used their hair pins as tools to open boxes or unscrew items, so he decided to create a stainless steel hair accessory that also serves as a multi-functional, miniature tool.

After he finished his Army service in 2013, he studied industrial design at the Holon Institute of Technology (HIT) and made the first MTA clip –previously called “Clippa” — as part of a student project. The assignment required him to make any kind of product out of metal.

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“I thought that’s my chance to take my idea from my Army service and to turn it into a real product,” he told The Algemeiner. The UK’s Daily Mail, which first highlighted the clip, quoted Goldberg saying“I thought of all the useful little things people always want to be close to them and tried to incorporate them into the clip.”

Goldberg’s MTA clip, which sells online for $9.99, features a screwdriver, an 8 mm wrench, a ruler, a nail file, a trolley coin, a bottle opener and a serrated knife. He said the knife can cut “all sorts, from fruit to rope,” but assured users it won’t cut their hair. The silver version of the clip is 6 cm long, while the black and pink models are 5 cm. The pink version has a nail file instead of a knife.

“There are various tools on the market but you have to remember to take them with you,” said Goldberg, who told The Algemeiner that he keeps the MTA clip on his key-chain at all times. “Often people will leave it in their kitchen or their bag and they don’t have it when they need it. With the hair clip it’s on your head all the time, you don’t need to think about it and remember to carry it with you.”

Goldberg explained that the hardest thing about designing the MTA clip was creating multiple functions for something so small. He said, “Trying to make everything work was difficult.  I made a lot of samples of each tool and then had to work out how to combine them.”

The designer said the clip has so far received great feedback, and user reviews suggest the product is an ideal gift, the Daily Mail reported. One reviewer on Amazon wrote that she bought the clip for an 11-year-old girl who “had been complaining that multi-tools were made for boys,” and said that she “loved it.”

Goldberg told The Algemeiner he is surprised by the positive feedback the MTA clip has received and the amount of attention its garnered. He is also shocked that it has attracted such a large audience since the clip was originally designed with only religious, Jewish men in mind. He did not think it would be a “product for everyone.”

“At first I cut them with my own laser cut machine and just sold them on eBay or just to friends and family,” he said. “I just took the improvisation of my [Jewish] friends — they used this clip as an improvised tool — and I just thought why not make it with better steel, and with more tools and functions. It was really aimed for that audience, but luckily it started to be a much bigger thing…Apparently a lot of people found this multi-tool very useful.”

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