I remember in year 7 my backpack was almost the same size as me and I seemed to carry around everything I would need for the entire week. I could have probably survived in the wilderness for an entire month on the amount I deemed necessary to keep in my backpack. A giant armadillo and its family could have comfortably fitted into it and still had room for my packed lunch. I remember the “cool girls” in my class at secondary school would have these teeny tiny Warehouse bags accompanied by a plastic bag (only from acceptable shops of course) and it was really only the nerds who carried backpacks. Well the backpack has done a complete u turn on the coolness scale and now every brand from Doc Martins to Mulberry have an iconic backpack. I had recently found myself with shoulder and back pain from carrying heavy items in a shoulder bag and decided it was about time to invest in a backpack. I wanted something smart but a bit different, durable but chic , a backpack that didn’t make me look like I was going hiking for 6 months. One of my old backpacks was so big that once when I came into work my boss told me I looked like a little turtle. Wonderful. After some serious consideration I decided upon the Sandqvist Alva backpack and I have to say I love it! It was a bit more than I had wanted to spend and was definitely a treat, but I justified it by the fact that it is an investment for my back I ordered mine from John Lewis as you can avoid hefty delivery charges and collect from your local Waitrose. I went for the Khaki colour but it also comes in black.
The bags are carefully designed by three Swedish from sustainable materials. The bags are made in India by a family run factories that they know and trust. Sandqvist is a member of the Fair Trade Foundation which means workers have a right to fair wages, reasonable hours of work and child labour is completely banned.
Even when I overload the bag, it doesn’t feel heavy and I find the weight evenly distributed on comfortable straps which don’t dig in. It fits in a hell of a lot which is great as I often find myself packing a lot of “just in case” items. I have had the bag for a couple of months now and I have seen no sign of wear or tear at all. I also just found a handy side zip pocket which is great for items that you need to get quickly. The only thing I would change would be to have a popper on the buckle for extra ease of access but this is so minor. Practical and chic- this one is a keeper!