I met Krista Davis a few years ago in Ohio at the REALIZE Firearms Awareness Coalition’s Concealed Carry Fashion Show. At the time, I had no idea she was a vendor with products featured in the show. We just started talking and having fun, and I admired Krista’s fun and spunky personality as well as her equally fun and spunky style.

In the fashion show, models walked the runway while displaying a variety of ways to effectively carry concealed firearms — from ankle to underarm and everywhere in between. And one of those ways included Urban Moxy, Krista’s line of designer concealed carry handbags. The website aptly states that the bags are “made for today’s woman who craves fresh fashion,” and each is “’Loaded With Style’ without sacrificing function and safety.”

The fashion show was a bit of a whirlwind for me, so I’m glad I got to catch up with Krista again at another industry event: the 2018 SHOT Show. I immediately noticed the bag Krista had with her, so I inquired about it and discovered that it was, indeed, one of her concealed carry purses (the Kat, to be precise). I loved the fun style, which was kind of a mix between a fashion-forward mom and a biker gal. This grey bag with silver accents was my favorite color, and it appeared large enough to tote around all the things that a wife, dog owner and mom of three children tends to get stuck with on a daily basis. So I knew I needed one of my own.

I’ve been carrying my Springfield Armory 9mm XD-S with extended magazine in the Kat bag for a few months now, and I love it. It’s roomy and has some great compartments. For instance, I get a lot of use out of the large zippered pocket in the middle as well as the handy business card and cellphone pockets on the interior of the front side. It’s just as easy to carry as a tote as it is to use cross-body with the detachable strap. I get compliments on this handbag just about everywhere I go. Of course, if anyone looked closely enough, he or she might get the hint that I am a firearms fan, since the signature “lock it pocket” charm features a high heel, a handbag, a revolver and the company’s signature custom charm (the cylinder in the Urban Moxy logo). This adorable accent is more than just for looks though. In an emergency, the user can quickly and easily grab the chain and yank open the holster portion of the handbag to access and retrieve a weapon.

Urban Moxy’s lockable handgun compartment has some other unique aspects as well. It’s not ambidextrous as many bags are designed and advertised. There is only one way in and one way out. This is intentional, however, so there is less chance for confusion or mistakes when the user is accessing the gun. Also, the gun pocket angles down to secure a firearm without any additional holsters or retention devices, and it’s constructed of a water-resistant neoprene material that’s thick and flexible enough to conceal a handgun.

Of course, for me, there’s always so much more to a company than just the products themselves. I love getting to know the people behind the ideas. So, I asked Krista a few questions to get to know more about Urban Moxy, the handbags and the woman behind it all. Here’s what she had to share:

Q: How did you get into the world of concealed carry bags? And how long have you been involved with both firearms and fashion?

A: I got into the world of concealed carry handbags in 2012 after I got out of a violent relationship. I was concealing in a bag that was not made for concealment, and I had to pull my firearm while traveling in a rural area in the Northwest. I worked in the fashion industry and refused to carry an ugly handbag, and at the time, that was all that was available. I also was not able to carry comfortably on my body because of my wardrobe and profession. So, I started by cutting up an old bag that I had and sewing the pocket that houses the firearm into it. I carried that bag for a couple of weeks to trial it, and I tested it in real time and found it to be exactly what I was looking for as a consumer. And the rest is history.

Q: How did the company name come to be?

A: I named my business Urban Moxy in two steps. First, I knew I wanted the word “moxie” to be in the name because I assume the woman carrying my bags has to have a little bit of moxie, right? Also, my personal style is drawn to the ‘40s, which was when that word was most popular, so it has always been in my vocabulary. Second, I took to the internet to find words that might go with moxie, and the first page that came up was on Urban Dictionary. It hit me like a ton of bricks right then. It had to be “Urban Moxy!”

Q: What are the best and worst lessons you have learned about this industry?

A: Best lessons I have learned is that this industry and the people in it are amazing, and people will go out of their way to help you, even if there isn’t really anything in it for them. I have met the most amazing people in this business and am proud to be a part of such a wonderful community — especially the camaraderie between the women in this industry. As the minority, we really rely on each other and have made an amazing support system. Worst lessons: Some people are just full of it. I’ve had to learn to not get my hopes up when I am promised the moon. I’ve had to learn to keep my head out of the clouds, eyes on the prize and keep working hard. That’s what it takes.