The perils of the rucksack are as follows. If you over-pack it, your back will ache. If you don’t pack enough, it will slither limply off your shoulders and you’ll have to keep thumbing it back on. If you travel on London public transport, at some point you’ll have to remove it and place it by your feet. Here it will get grub all over its suede accents. In a packed lift, you’ll get sneered at if you don’t take it off. In some business circles, a dude harnessed to a florescent nylon bubble doesn’t always get taken that seriously. People will definitely kick it. And bump it. And try and unzip it to steal your gold.
Other than that, they’re aces. And if you haven’t already amassed a small collection like me, you should probs buy one. Even if you’ve already got so many rucksacks that to store them you have to put rucksacks inside rucksacks, you should still drop on one of these rucksacks. Have I used the word rucksacks enough? Rucksacks. Rucksacks. Rucksacks.
This one, by Black Fleece for Brooks Brothers, is the shit. No question. It’s a Thom Browne joint, so as you’d expect there’s red, white and blue going on, primo bridle leather trim in the house, there’s pebble leather stripe detail all over the shop and some solid matte brushed-metal hardware. It’s a multipurpose item. It’d work equally well if you’re standing in the rain, squinting moodily out over the Thames, smoking two Marlboros at once, or when quibbling with the organic butcher over the amount of fat on a pair of overpriced porkchops. It’s badged up BF, but it’s actually made by Scottish coatmongers Mackintosh. So you know it’ll last.
Probs is… Brooks Brothers only ship certain pieces of Black Fleece to the UK. And this superb looking bag is not one of them. I’m not sure why Brooks put a limit on the Black Fleece swag a UK online buyer can choose from? And of course, if you did find something on their site and dropped, you’d have some cray postage to stomach on top. It proper sucks. Right now, there’s only a handful of UK stores that stock tiny edits of the range. If anyone knows why the whole Fleece range isn’t available over here, let me know.
I’m also double down with this Master-Piece beauty. Is a full camo sac, you know… a bit too much camo? I dunno, I don’t think so. Especially when you take in this piece’s astonishing leather detail.
The contrast between the camo-yness of the body and the camel-yness of the straps is bang on. Most rucksacks are let down by lethargic looking nylon straps, but this thing goes all out. I love the little brass plaque too. Babies be going crazy cray for a bro lashed into this bad boy. One assumes.
Unfort, the one pictured above, doesn’t seem to be available on the usual sites right now. The one below is over at Mr Porter, but it suffers from being a smaller model, and the price mark-up seems out of whack. They were doing the larger model cheaper over at End last season.
Finally in my bag-a-thon, one of my good brahs is thinking of dropping on this. It’s from Japanese brand Nanamica and in stock over at Present.
It’s a brand I’m yet to invest in, but what I’ve seen in the past over at Trunk (although they don’t seem to be carrying the brand this season) and various other places is brilliant. They do some of the best coats I’ve seen. I’m not so sold on this bag, which of course is not strictly a rucksack. Then again, technically it’s called a ‘briefcase’ and it doesn’t look much like one of those either. It’s got a roll-top. And I kind of think that trying to unfurl a long red roll of fabric on a packed train to retrieve a packet of Revels, could be a nightmare. Looks really cool though. And maybe that’s the point.