Wearable Storytelling: Canvas Backpacks

Although a quintessential item for today’s students, the modern backpack originated in 1951 when avid outdoorsman Dick Kelty modified his supplies pack to carry weight on his hips rather than shoulders. Originally made from a wooden frame and a canvas hip-belt, backpacks received an upgrade in 1970 when Jansport founder Skip Youvell omitted the hip belt in favor of a chest strap and redesigned the pack in vinyl, leather, and nylon. Later that year, Youvell recommended the backpack as a means for carrying heavy books to a student, and by the late 1970s, Jansport backpacks had become a staple of the student’s toolkit.

Under the Herschel company, canvas backpacks with leather trimmings made a comeback as a fashion statement in the mid-2000s. Through its choice of material, the backpack recalls the rugged, outdoors aesthetic of Kelty’s original design: durable, reliable, high quality, and above all, adventurous.

Reblogged for tagging issue