The Fash-Pack embrace the Backpack

Ashley Olsen (Splash News Image)

Yep, we resisted them for years but they’ve finally become cool again. A slight variation on the pink dinosaur design with inbuilt pen and bottle holder you last carried; this season’s luxury leather backpacks have taken last summer’s high street, ‘hip-homeless’ statement one opulent step further. Backpacks in 2012 aren’t a revelation, you may be thinking. Well observed. The backpack trend was bucked by many a store this year with Urban Outfitters and Topshop both putting out grungy leather and multi-coloured Aztec designs. The difference in this trend is extravagance.

backpackThink Philip Lim, think Stella McCartney, think Diane Von Furstenberg lavish leather. I’m not talking pleather, leatherette, or any other kind of imitation leather, 2013 is the real deal. In my world, leather never goes out of fashion. Forever a staple in my wardrobe ever since my mother signed over the rights to the lucrative clothes budget at age 15, I always find a way to wear leather. Leather on leather, denim on leather, bikini on leather – you name it, I’ve done it. Leather backpacks don’t scare me at all. So long as they are genuine and don’t reek of those budget shoe shops out of the nineties, you know the ones I’m talking about.

As wishful as one may be this festive season, The Row’s elegant leather backpack, as designed and seen on Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen, will dent your already dwindling pre-Christmas bank balance by a tidy £2,635. So this is where British fashion’s timeless class and simple sophistication rears its Cambridge Satchelelegant head. Two home-grown leather companies were way ahead of the approaching indulgent backpack fad; The Cambridge Satchel Company and Grafea. Both are suppliers of bespoke leather bags and both are brilliantly British.

The founder of The Cambridge Satchel Company, a Cambridge graduate and mother-of-two, declared this week that her inspiration behind the brand was hard-wearing, practical and ageless bags like she used to have as a school girl. The satchel being the iconic leader of the pack, and championed by Brit fash-pack veterans such as Alexa Chung, takes a back seat this season to allow its younger sibling, The Cambridge Satchel Backpack, the limelight. Yours for £118.

backpackEsteemed leather gurus Grafea use only the best calfskin in their collections. High end quality is fused with contemporary designs which strive to reflect the current demand for a ‘vintage look’, without the accompanying knackered looking façade. The Bianca white leather rucksack provides you with the deluxe dimension of this season’s catwalks at sidewalk prices (£160 to be exact).Whatever the leather, make sure it’s on your back in 2013.


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