Out of the youth hostel and onto the catwalk. If you haven’t already read Matt Allison’s recent article on men’s bags, do so now and you’ll soon discover that backpacks are making a welcome comeback this season. The backpack is the masculine alternative to the more cosmopolitan man bag, and this Herschel camouflage backpack scales the heights of machismo.
An advantage of the backpack over other bags is that it holds a surprisingly large amount, and this Herschel rucksack is no exception. The 18 litre backpack is constructed from durable cotton canvas and is ready for whatever the modern gentleman has to throw at it. Armed with sturdy metal zips and raw leather pulls, two side pockets, padded shoulder straps, an inside laptop sleeve and a large hidden front pocket, this will serve you well – whether it be trekking through the Amazon or navigating through the rat race in the heart of the urban jungle.
The Herschel backpack’s camouflage print earns this bag extra man points. Combining another AW12 trend, the rucksack’s design is a subtle nod to the military influence, which has survived last year’s autumn/winter season and is set to see us through into the summer months.
Like any other bold print, camouflage needs to be pulled off with confidence, especially if – in the case of the Herschel backpack – it can’t be subtly integrated into your outfit. The trick to wearing camouflage is to keep the rest of your outfit simple: that means using neutral colours and avoiding patterns. Wear the Herschel backpack with some neutral chinos, hiking boots and a chunky, cable-knit jumper to finish off a rugged look.
The number one rule to remember about the backpack is to embrace its practicality. Trying to make your rucksack ‘cool’ is trying too hard – and nothing is more unfashionable than a try-hard. Part of the backpack’s charm is that it is the usable, pragmatic cousin of more metrosexual bags and so it makes complete sense to play up to that. Take the two shoulder straps: like Dawson’s Creek and Timmy Mallet, wearing your backpack on one shoulder belongs in the 90s.
Retailing at £100, treat yourself to this Herschel Camouflage Varsity Backpack at Number Six.