Backpacks are for Adults Too!
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If you would have asked me 2 years ago if I’d be writing about a backpack, I would have told you, “no thank you, Dora the Explorer - you’re lying!” When the designer backpacks (and utility backpacks) came back “in style”, I thought I was going to vomit. Like why?! We spend a billion years in school and you’re telling me, I’m going to carry something around on my back as a grown adult and oh and my dress/skirt might get caught in it too?1 (lol) Yet, here I am…
Some trends I just take a little longer to grasp. It happened with bandanas and now I’m on that bandwagon as the driver!! In elementary school and high school, it wasn’t cool to wear a backpack. If you did have one, you better only use one strap, because that’s what was “cool”. If you were lucky, you had a backpack that was only one strap anyway. Unfortunately, this didn’t work well for me, because 1) I have scoliosis and 2) I had a crap ton of books. My senior year, I literally used a duffle bag, because I didn’t want to use a backpack that badly AND I couldn’t fit my stuff in the cute ones.
I did buy backpacks for college, but since 2012, I haven’t even thought about a backpack. Fast forward to last September at NYFW and I was finallllly ready to entertain the idea of a backpack. It just made sense! I carried around my Cuyana Carry All Tote, which I LOVE; however, when you are carrying around your laptop, dslr camera and a comfy pair of shoes, it begins to hurt your shoulder and if you’re like me, you get markings that look like you were sunburned pretty badly. No thanks!
So beginning this year, I asked y’all what YOUR favorite backpacks were and y’all got back to me with a lot of the same answers, so I’ll share them below. Ultimately I went with Dagne Dover, because it is chic, yet functional and had great quality, but less than that Tumi budget if you know what I mean!
Calpak. You’ve probably seen their beautiful marble luggage on your socials. They have really cute faux leather options, in addition to your traditional canvas. I was looking for more room and durability.
Cuyana. Y’all know I love this brand! I actually adore their backpacks and if I was going for a chic look instead of a purse, I wold totally get theirs . They are on the smaller side and don’t zip, which was a MUST for me.
Dakine. These backpacks look great! They are more for sporty adventures/ instances in my opinion and I wanted something a little more feminine.
Dagne Dover. The backpack I went with! I love how durable the fabric is, how many pockets and slots there are, in addition to the fact that all my stuff fits in it!! (It really is a miracle.) It’s a neoprene/scuba type material, so it is susceptible to pilling, but that’s really the only con unless you look at the budget. At $200 for the larger style, it' isn’t horrible, but it isn’t amazing. Overall, I think I got my moneys-worth. TBH I had seen this brand before it was recommended to me, but I tried to find something similar for less…and I couldn’t!
Delsey. I love me some Delsey! Nick and I use their luggage and they recently launched backpacks. hey actually have backpacks that match our chatelet luggage; however, I wanted something I could use when I’m not traveling too and this just reminded me of my suitcase.
Everlane. I actually purchased a backpack from here, thinking it was different than it was. There wasn’t anything wrong with it, but I didn’t really want cotton canvas, in addition to the fact that I wanted more storage space.
Fjallraven Kanken. These bags are great. Their flaw? They are usually low on stock in the cool colors. I am also not sure how I feel about how rectangular their shape is, buuuut remember one of the things I was looking for was aesthetically pleasing.
Fossil. A brand you probably know well! Their leather backpacks are GORGEOUS, but in the end, I decided against leather, because I didn’t want to worry about rain or weather ruining it.
Gregory Mountain Products. My dad actually recommended this one to me :) He got it for camping/backpacking. That being said, they were more sporty than I wanted to go.
Hershel’s. Another classic brand! I just wasn’t to keen on cotton canvas this go around.
Lo and Sons. They literally just make bags, so you know they’re good! It came down to fabrication yet again.
Osprey. Another more sporty/adventure functional recommendation from my dad!
Tumi. Everyone raaaves about their packs, but like I mentioned above, I’m not ready to commit that much $ to one yet ;) I do like their nylon bags that are durable and super easy to clean though!
At the end of the day, I could have gone cheaper - I mean Champion brand is back and super popular! (haha) BUT I wanted something that appeared timeless, gender neutral, and great for using on a hike or as a carry on. There are so many zippers and pockets on the DD large Dakota backpack, it could not be more perfect! I traveled with it for the first time to Seattle and not only was it flawless as a carry on, but I used it at Pike Place and at Rattlesnake Ridge without a hitch! This is how they describe their brand, which totally fits my lifestyle. Right?!
Today's fast-paced, mobile lifestyle requires products that go further, that can adapt and perform beyond expectations. By fusing fashion with athlete-caliber function, our products are designed to support you in living smart - even if it's as simple as packing for a commute that goes from home to the office to spin. No matter your journey, stay ready to see the potential in everything.
Do you have a favorite backpack? Let me know! Maybe I need to get another one, for Nick ;)
Side note - these pictures were taken in downtown Kirkland. Love that city!!