Millican – the sustainable backpack for the conscious traveller
I’ve been looking for a backpack with a more ‘grown-up’ feel to it for a while. I’ve had the inconvenience of shoulder and back discomfort for some years, and was looking for a backpack, with wide shoulder straps – for that even distribution.
Something big enough to hold an iPad, my diary, (yep, I still have an old fashioned diary – I like writing in ink, what can I say?) and for those day trips out with the kids, room for dried fruit snacks and easy to reach bottles of water…
I came across Millican bags through the ethical footwear brand Po-Zu.com. I spotted the DO X MILLICAN 18L ROLL PACK – BLUE featured on their blog and I was drawn to both the design, and the ethics of the brand.
Millican bags provide an ethical alternative for the backpacker. Focused on the conscious traveller (or indeed those prone to mindfulness) these bags set the benchmark in sustainable fashion. Inspired by the Lake District legend Millican Dalton, Millican (the brand) believe that using less, makes more, and this is reflected in their conscious selection of sustainable materials. Even better, the bags are both stylish and extremely functional.
The rucksack I’ve been using, is called the Matthew Day Pack and made from 100% weatherproofed organic cotton canvas, and vegetable tanned leather with a grab handle on the top.
Both the top and the front open for easy access, and I LOVE the zip which runs down the ‘spine’ of the bag, this makes it so easy to open right up – saves me rummaging down in from the top…
The backpack has three internal pockets, including that laptop sleeve.
The two external water bottle pockets are invaluable (again, it’s that easy access thing, particularly when travelling on the Tube with two thirsty children)
There’s a ‘secret’ zipped pocket for valuables underneath the lid, which was a delight to find, and best of all, so comfortable to wear, the adjustable wide shoulder straps mean that you really just don’t know you’re wearing it!
When 13yo tried on my bag, he literally gasped… He asked me to try on the hand-me-down battered backpack he has been using for school for the last year. His secondary school has a ‘no lockers’ policy, so the poor boy literally carries a library of books around with him on his back all day long. Now I feel bad… I’ve been reading about the problems school children can suffer however, with carrying heavy school bags (NHS report) and
“Surveys carried in the UK have found that nearly half of all teenagers have had occasional backache from poor posture, carrying overloaded bags and leading a sedentary, unhealthy lifestyle. Children should wear a well-designed backpack and be encouraged to exercise regularly, which will improve their muscle tone.”
and with both kids heading for secondary school in September, this has me planning early birthday presents for both of them!
I recently had a wonderful weekend away on the SISTERHOOD RETREAT, and the finale of that weekend was a spectacular walk along the West Welsh coastline to explore the secret caves and beaches of Penbryn close to the wonderful Manorafon Fforest, just outside Cardigan. So I can safely say that this (much admired) backpack travels well, from South West Train journeys (encountering curiously abandoned Space Hoppers) to the coast of Welsh Wales… (home!)
My experience has been totally positive. Curiously named, the “Matthew” (but not quite as curious as ‘Dave’ Matthew’s slightly larger friend), my backpack has accompanied me on a variety of both urban and rural adventures. Having stuffed it with a variety of day time essentials (lunch, camera, etc), the bag holds strong. Super comfortable, thanks to the padding both on the straps and the backing. It is simply a sustainable essential for any adventurer with an ethical mindset, and a heavy-ish load.
For a look at all of the Millican Bags click here
take a look at Po-Zu’s blog post for some more ethical fashion ideas. Click here.