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Backpack Shapes & Functions

by , March 24, 2011

Backpack Shapes & Functions

You people watch right? Everyone does, and it’s an enjoyable activity. Sitting around watching the world pass by, seeing the difference between people, the different clothes, the different trends and for us, the different backpacks. Have you noticed how many different shapes and sizes that backpacks come in? It’s pretty awesome.

To help classify a few different shapes and hopefully provide some clarity on it all, we’ve gotten our lead designer (monkey on rollerblades) to lay up a real neat looking infographic about the different shapes and their functions they provide. Come take a peek…

Backpack Shapes & Functions

for a larger version of the above image, click here

Backpack shapes illustrate the same shape of its content. The more specific to an activity the more obvious the language is. Trends are making it even more difficult to separate between urban and daypacks, with brands creating bags that look like an active bag and great on the shoulder but are in actual fact difficult to use in their intended function. (not enough pocketing, too many straps hanging everywhere…)

Officebags that reflect their purpose well, that is to say they carry laptop and documents, fail to be attractive enough to be used in a more relaxed environment. Packs seem to struggle to cross over between circles of use. They are very specific and are of infinite variety of designs in their own category. A new category is still to come that merges and severs the functions needed between work and play.

With the poster above we classified 8 different shapes:
Hiking: Best suited to carry heavy loads for long period of time, very stable and comfortable. Check out the Osprey Aether Series

Snow/Ski/Surf: Best suited for action sports. The construction allow good body movement in carrying snow/ski gear. Lots of attachments on the outside of the bag makes it easy to recognize. Check out the Dakine Heli Pro

Bike: Most bike packs have a roll top to keep your clothes and precious stuff dry. They offer large pockets for tools and daisy chains for your light. Check out the Chrome Ivan

Office: A rectangle/square looking shape. it shows very clearly that it is made to carry laptop and documents. It often offers good internal organizational options. Check out the Arcteryx Blade 20

School: A very square shape, it shows very clearly that it is made to carry books and documents. Being down the scale in price doesn’t give users a great deal of extras. Check out Caribee

Urban: One of the most popular market. The shape is neither too square or round.. They still have a laptop sleeve and offer basic pocketing. Shape reflects a general use. Check out the Gravis Metro

Fashion/Heritage: Same aspect as outdoor product but without the efficiency focus. They look great and big enough to carry most items. However don’t expect to be climbing Everest with it… Check out Herschel.

Fashion: Backpacks in this category have the most variety of shapes. No particular function other than main compartment and a front pocket. Check out Gregory Kletter Day Pack


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