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What backpack do the cool college girls use?--update re. kilim boots!


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Assume we're going a step up from North Face and are looking for the cool fashion factor for a young woman with not a ton of fashion sense.  It is a Christmas gift, so a little spendy is fine.  She's difficult to buy for, so this will be her big gift.  It also needs to actually hold books and her laptop, not just lipstick--no form over function.

 

So, what am I looking for here?  I keep coming up with Urban Outfitters backpacks in my Google searches.  Is that where I need to be looking?  She can lean a little Bohemian in her personal style, but I think she needs something more structured and sturdy than a hand-woven pack from Guatemala (she would love that--don't get me wrong, but it wouldn't protect her stuff very well).

 

Thanks!

 

ETA:  'Cause I know y'all are dying to know what my daughter is getting for Christmas, I have to update with a bonus that I found while searching for the Bohemian'ish purse that I was looking for as an alternative to a Bohemian packpack.  I went with the Everlane backpack suggested below, but it really did not cost enough to be her big gift.  But, in searching 0for a purse, I found something I am over-the-moon excited about:  kilim boots.  I ordered a pair from the UK but then found ebay sellers who have them in the US.  Oh, well--a little delivery suspense around Christmas never hurt anyone.  I think these are adorable!  So extra thanks to everyone who encouraged the Bohemian backpack, because that is what led to these boots.  If she is sassy to me before Christmas, or if they don't fit her, I'll wear them and be the envy of you all.

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Protect it from what? I view backpacks as transportation devices, not necessarily protective devices! Think "big purse." :lol:

 

So handmade Guatemalan would be way, way neato in my book--I mean, if your lapbook is in a protective sleeve already, I think you could go with a less-padded or whatever option. But again, YMMV.

 

Dd needs a backpack, too, for high school. She said she doesn't want one that people would take out on the trail for hiking...

I'm partial to leather, but will be asking her for input in this department.

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rolling ones!

 

I speak as a person who once wore a pack on my back AND a pack on my front to carry all of the stuff I had to carry around campus.  I fell and hurt my hand because I overbalanced and had too much weight coming down.  Give them ALL rolling packs!

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I have no idea. Back in my college days, everyone carried around Jansport backpacks. I'm sure things have evolved since then, tho. After all, that was back in the Dark Ages.

 

Both of my boys still use Jansport!  They're still fabulous.  I bought oldest DS a new one before he went off to college, but the one he used (and abused) for all four years of high school is still in good shape.

 

But I have no idea if there's a cool factor there for girls or not.  I'm pretty sure they're at least acceptable for males, or DS probably wouldn't use his.  'Cause he's very much into cool.

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My dd has one of these:

http://www.jansport.com/shop/en/jansport-us/backpacks/right-pack-world-T49Z

 

Eta: they have lots of designs, and a leather bottom to help protect everything. She carries several heavy books and her laptop daily (it has a special section to protect the laptop). They also carry a lifetime guarantee.

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Last year I bought my college age dd a really nice sachel.  She bikes in all kinds of weather (so the bag does have to protect her papers and electronics), but doesn't like to carry a backpack.  I went to a small outdoor hiking store and found the cutest sachel.  It was big enough to hold a laptop, a couple of books, water, and a snack.  I haven't been able to find the same bag for you on google, but here are some others that I found that I could see my dd using while riding her bike in denmark.

 

http://www.kavu.com/Product/9002-275-/Camp_Sherman-Hunter_Green.aspx

 

http://www.kavu.com/Product/944-275-/Rope_Sling-Hunter_Green.aspx

 

http://www.timbuk2.com/classic-messenger-bag/116-2-4131.html?kpid=116-2-4131&kpid=116-2-4131&gclid=Cj0KEQiAhvujBRDUpomG5cq_mI0BEiQA7TYq-p5SuO7iss8EEeulYwpLyySkiLhcO8_vUNBMZ_JBS2gaAgpX8P8HAQ#/dwvar_116-2-5886_size=5&dwvar_116-2-5886_color=4131

 

http://www.patagonia.com/us/product/critical-mass-messenger-pack?p=48220-0

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I have no idea. Back in my college days, everyone carried around Jansport backpacks. I'm sure things have evolved since then, tho. After all, that was back in the Dark Ages.

 

I was in college until '08 and Jansport was still really popular then.

 

A lot of designer purse manufacturers make backpacks as well, so if you wanted to get her a high-end backpack, you could go that route. Though if she's carrying, say, a Coach backpack, it will make her more of a target for theft.

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When you say "step up from North Face," what do you mean? Step up from quality? Fashion sense? Price? I'm not sure how you could get a better quality for a college backpack, which is why I am asking. We purchased a North Face backpack when my son started taking outside classes his tenth grade year and told him we expect it to last through college.  Now, almost three years later, it looks almost brand new. It has hauled heavy books, a laptop, a microscope and various lab supplies all around town. My son is very rough on his belongings, too. 

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When you say "step up from North Face," what do you mean? Step up from quality? Fashion sense? Price? I'm not sure how you could get a better quality for a college backpack, which is why I am asking. We purchased a North Face backpack when my son started taking outside classes his tenth grade year and told him we expect it to last through college.  Now, almost three years later, it looks almost brand new. It has hauled heavy books, a laptop, a microscope and various lab supplies all around town. My son is very rough on his belongings, too. 

 

Fashion, not quality.  That's the thing about North Face and Jansport--you'd better like it when you buy it, 'cause you're stuck with it forever.  She has a Pottery Barn backpack right now that she has carried for three years, and it cute and still looks brand new, but I thought she might appreciate something that looks more college'ish (she is actually a HS junior, technically, but doing DE full-time on a four-year campus and thinks of herself as a college student).

 

Lots of great idea, everyone.  I'm looking at all of them.  

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She can lean a little Bohemian in her personal style, but I think she needs something more structured and sturdy than a hand-woven pack from Guatemala (she would love that--don't get me wrong, but it wouldn't protect her stuff very well).

 

This, this is what a cool college girl would use.  I can't imagine a time when my dd has actually toted around a bunch of books.  Even when she has a couple of classes in a row, she isn't actually carrying all of the course books. She carries them in a large, oversized purse because it's easy to carry them along. She has no reason to "protect" them.

 

I would TOTALLY go for the hand-woven Guatemalan pack! What a lovely splurge, a perfect gift!!

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I'm on the college campus, backpacks run the gamut from basic Jansport to Nike to everything. Color is a big thing, do you want to stand out or blend in? The other issue is what she will be carrying for school. I've been through three backpacks this semester - I feel like Goldilocks. I also discovered I'm way more picky about bags than I thought. 

 

The first kind I got was a knapsack kind  with the cinch at the top. I discovered after a week, I hated reaching only into the top of the bag. I loved the look of the canvas, just not the style. 

 

The second was a clearance from Target, great zippers, great organization, but it wouldn't hold all my books and notebooks without being too full.  

 

The final one was better, it's FILA brand. I found it at Ross. It's got the right amount of organization, two water bottle pockets, and can hold the right amount of books and notebooks and will hold my 15.6" laptop if necessary (which I dont take to school). 

On our campus there isn't one type of backpack that stands out, it's really more about the function, quality,  and organization of the pack and how big you need it to be. I feel like a turtle on some days. 

I think I look at 40,000 videos on zappos to get an idea of what I wanted. 

 

ETA: I also discovered I wanted a bag with dual zippers on all the major openings. Depending on the class, I set my backpack on different sides of me, and it's easier to get into the bag with the dual zippers.

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I see a lot of undergrad girls toting around those bags that look like the misbegotten child of a purse and a tote bag--you know, the ones that can't decide if they're oversized purses or actual tote bags.

 

The Guatemalan bag sounds awesome, actually. If she has a day where hefty functionality is called for, there's always the old backpack, but that Guatemalan hand woven fabric is actually pretty sturdy stuff--I had a sling made of such fabric and it lasted through two children quite handily, and kids can be quite as heavy as textbooks.

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Longchamp nylon totes, although a tote style isn't the most comfy to carry IME with heavy books.   Nordstrom online will have them.

 

Cuyana tote, Madewell tote suggested by PP are also nice, but leather, and not all weather friendly.  And of course, a tote feels heavier than weight distributed like a backpack.  They are stylish though, but maybe more form over function.

 

Anything here she'd like?:

http://shop.nordstrom.com/sr?origin=keywordsearch&contextualcategoryid=60137281&keyword=backpack

 

Everlane:

https://www.everlane.com/products/womens-twill-backpack-grey-green

 

Not sure how functional they are, but everlane's business model is interesting and might appeal?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Vera Bradley backpacks are popular where I teach.  Or if there is a bag you like but are concerned about protecting the laptop, you could always get a padded sleeve for the laptop and use a bag with less structure. 

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I have no idea. Back in my college days, everyone carried around Jansport backpacks. I'm sure things have evolved since then, tho. After all, that was back in the Dark Ages.

My hubby had a Jansport in college 25 years ago which he handed down to my brother who is now OTR truck driver. That backpack is my brother's primary piece of luggage and it gets very hard wear and is still holding strong after all these years. I don't know about cool but definitely high milage.

 

Editted due to word salad.

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Our kids use SwissGear brand backpacks.  They find coupons for Staples and get them there.  Sometimes they're cheaper at Best Buy.  And we get coupons for Best Buy, too.

 

 

ETA:  I wouldn't call our kids "cool" though.  ;)

This is what all of the adults in the family use now well except for me, I carry a tote.

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Vera Bradley backpacks are popular where I teach.  Or if there is a bag you like but are concerned about protecting the laptop, you could always get a padded sleeve for the laptop and use a bag with less structure. 

I wouldn't recommend the Vera Bradley's because they are so colorful and with crazy designs. Three of my girls got VB purses that soon ended up in the bottom of the closet because the colors didn't always go with their outfits or they got tired of the colors. If she wanted something like that I would suggest an off brand or discount one that wasn't so crazy expensive. 

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Ds thought a backpack was dorky, but loves his Marmot Urban Hauler in black, large size. (I only see medium on the Marmot website, but they are available elsewhere.)

 

http://marmot.com/products/details/urban-hauler-new

 

As a parent, I would want kid to have a pack with waist straps. Not that I have any say, lol.

 

I know from hiking that it is much more comfortable to have weight on your waist than on your back.

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Ignoring my rant from earlier re. my lost credit card, I am happy to report that I went with the Everlane reverse denim with brown leather trim. As several of you suggested, I came around to while Guatemalan thing, but every one that I showed my husband, he nixed. Normally, I just ignore him, but I figure I will look for that in a purse, which she needs as well. I don't understand what is up with the Everlane site, though: if I go there directly, the color combination I ordered is nowhere to be found. If I google it, though, it shows up via a google result. Whatever the issue, it supposedly is on its way to me, and I will pursue a more Bohemian-ish purse. Thanks, everyone!

 

Well, I've made a selection but can't complete the purchase because I CANNOT FIND MY CREDIT CARD. (Rest of my original rant deleted.)

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