When she decided to reform the traditional, rectangular yoga mat, Desiree Kleemann turned to someone who works outside the box.
Kleemann's brother, 50-year-old Joe Kleemann, devised a way to cut polyurethane yoga mats in 6-foot-diameter circles at his garage in Eagle Point.
More than a year and hundreds of mats later, the Kleemanns have a trademark for Mandala Yoga Mats, which allow a wider range of movement than rectangular mats.
"I was the one that came up with the idea, and he made it happen," said 48-year-old Desiree Kleemann, who owns a yoga studio in Point Roberts, Wash.
With a massive mat on their hands, the siblings recently had to design a bag large enough to carry it. Joe Kleemann's solution is a rectangular satchel that measures about 24 by 20 inches to hold a folded, rather than rolled, Mandala mat.
Like the mats (priced at $69), the $44 bags can be purchased online at www.mandalayogamat.com.
The simple concept would challenge do-it-yourselfers to maneuver the heavy rolls of material that make Mandala mats, Desiree Kleemann said. That didn't stop YogaAccessories.com from copying her design, she said, and dropping the price by $5 apiece.
"You can't patent a shape," she said.