Back to school backpacks for fall 2019

The best backpacks from across Canada (and beyond) for kids, university students and commuters alike


Pickaxe not included

Did you know those ubiquitous Herschel backpacks are actually Canadian? (The company’s based in Vancouver.) This fall, they’re offering a cool modern spin on the classic mountaineer-style bag with the Buckingham model, featuring a laptop pouch, dual water-bottle pockets, and magnetized front straps (no buckle-fiddling required).

$129.99, herschel.ca

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Parkland recreation

Vancouver-based Parkland Manufacturing makes backpacks for adults and kids in a ton of knockout patterns. More importantly, they’re made with recycled plastic – each one takes roughly 10 bottles out of landfills. (Even the “leather” details are made from apples!)

$54.99, parklandmfg.ca

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Bag like a hole

Patagonia poured 10 million plastic bottles into its Black Hole collection, which features tons of backpacker-friendly travel gear. This black-on-black drawstring version is ultra-light and water-resistant. Bonus: A warranty that partially covers wear and tear.

$99, patagonia.ca

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Green, without envy

Trendy backpacks cost a bomb – but this one, from perennial back-to-school fave Jansport, gives you that all-the-rage minimalist look, plus a 15-inch laptop pocket at 25 litres of carrying capacity, at just under 40 bucks.

$39.98, well.ca

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Buckle up

L.A. company Rewilder makes bags from industrial fabrics that can’t be easily recycled – which is how they ended up with this space-age white bag made entirely out of reused airbag fabric and seat belts. 

US$118, rewilder.com

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Reading rainbow

Backpack brand State has designs for adults and kids alike we’re willing to bet a few over-12s are going to want to snag this rainbow version for themselves. State boosts various social causes through its products this fall, they’re donating money and products to Save the Children’s humanitarian efforts at the U.S. border. 

$65, indigo.ca

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Wired and inspired

You can get pretty much any image from Society6’s massive art database printed on a backpack, but for a little bit of local flair, we like this watercolour of a scene at King and George streets by local artist Mariana Hernandez (dig those streetcar wires). 

US$69.99, society6.com/weforgotlilacs

nataliam@nowtoronto.com | @nataliamanzocco

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