Retro Backpacks

This guide delves into retro backpacks, covering iconic Jansport styles, classy leather options, and sturdy canvas designs, while highlighting their appeal and where to shop online.

Collection: Retro Backpacks | Retro Leather and Canvas Backpacks

Today, I want to talk about something that's become a bit of an obsession for me lately: retro backpacks. There's just something about these vintage-inspired bags that brings back memories and adds a touch of nostalgia to my everyday adventures. Whether you're a fashion enthusiast, a history buff, or just someone looking for a reliable and stylish bag, retro backpacks have something unique to offer.

Retro Backpacks - Leather Canvas Backpacks - Sunny 16

What Makes a Backpack Retro?

When we say "retro backpack," we're talking about designs that harken back to a bygone era. Think of classic styles from the 70s, 80s, and even the early 90s. These backpacks often feature:

  • Timeless Designs: Simple, functional shapes that have stood the test of time.
  • Vintage Logos: Brands like Jansport are famous for their retro designs that evoke memories of school days and outdoor adventures.
  • Durable Materials: Sturdy canvas and leather that age beautifully over time.

Exploring Different Types of Retro Backpacks

1. Retro Jansport Backpacks

If you grew up in the 80s or 90s, chances are you had a Jansport backpack. These iconic bags are known for their durability and classic designs. From solid colors to funky patterns, Jansport backpacks are a staple in the retro backpack world. They're perfect for school, hiking, or just hanging out in the city.

2. Retro Leather Backpacks

For those who prefer a touch of sophistication, retro leather backpacks offer a blend of vintage charm and timeless elegance. These bags often feature:

  • Rich Leather: High-quality leather that gets better with age.
  • Classic Buckles: Antique-style closures that add a rustic flair.
  • Spacious Interiors: Roomy compartments for all your essentials.

Whether you're heading to a business meeting or exploring a new city, a retro leather backpack adds a touch of class to any outfit.

3. Retro Canvas Backpacks

Canvas backpacks have been around for decades, and for good reason. They're lightweight, durable, and perfect for everyday use. Retro canvas backpacks often come in earthy tones or vibrant colors, reminiscent of old-school styles. They're great for:

  • Casual Outings: Running errands, going to the gym, or hanging out with friends.
  • Travel Adventures: Exploring new places while keeping your belongings safe and secure.
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Why Choose a Retro Backpack?

  1. Style Statement: Stand out from the crowd with a unique, vintage-inspired backpack.
  2. Durability: Retro backpacks are built to last, with sturdy materials that can withstand daily wear and tear.
  3. Versatility: Whether you're a student, a professional, or an outdoor enthusiast, there's a retro backpack that fits your lifestyle.

Where to Buy Retro Backpacks

You can find retro backpacks in a variety of places:

  • Online Retailers: Websites like Amazon, Etsy, and specialized vintage shops offer a wide selection.
  • Thrift Stores: Score a unique find at your local thrift store or flea market.
  • Brand Websites: Many brands like Jansport have their own websites where you can find exclusive designs and limited editions.

Tips for Choosing the Right Retro Backpack

  • Size Matters: Consider how much stuff you typically carry and choose a size that fits your needs.
  • Comfort Counts: Look for padded straps and back panels for added comfort, especially if you'll be carrying heavy loads.
  • Quality Check: Inspect the stitching, zippers, and overall construction to ensure your backpack will last.

My Favorite Retro Backpack

I recently found a vintage canvas backpack at a local flea market, and it's become my go-to bag for weekend hikes and trips to the farmer's market. It's sturdy, stylish, and fits everything I need without being bulky. Plus, I love the faded colors and retro logo—it's like carrying a piece of history on my back!

Should You Buy Your Bag from Etsy?

When it comes to purchasing a retro backpack canvas or vintage backpacks online, the platform you choose matters. Etsy sellers stand out for their commitment to quality and customer satisfaction. Many of these shops have consistently earned 5-star reviews, reflecting the high standards they maintain in their products and service. They offer free shipping, ensuring that your canvas rucksack or vintage leather backpack arrives promptly and without additional cost surprises.

What sets Etsy sellers apart is their responsiveness; they ship orders on time and reply quickly to messages, providing a personalized shopping experience that larger retailers often struggle to match. Whether you're seeking a canvas rucksack with padded shoulder straps or exploring the charm of vintage backpacks, Etsy shops qualifying for included shipping and boasting numerous 5-star reviews represent the gold standard in online shopping for retro style.


Whether you're reliving your school days or simply appreciate the timeless appeal of vintage style, retro backpacks offer a blend of nostalgia and practicality. From retro Jansport designs to classy leather and dependable canvas options, there's a backpack out there for everyone. So, why not add a bit of retro flair to your wardrobe and discover the charm of these timeless bags?

I hope this guide has inspired you to explore the world of retro backpacks and find the perfect one for your adventures. Remember, it's not just a bag—it's a piece of history!

Frequently Asked Questions

How much space is inside this retro leather backpack?

This retro canvas backpack has enough space for your laptop, iPad, daily essentials and so much more!

How thick is the padding on the shoulders and backside?

We've make the padding as thick as possible to maximize the comfort to the backpack when carrying. It's made from a breathable mesh material which makes it extremely comfortable to carry during longer hikes. Learn about the mesh padding.

Is the retro leather backpack actually water-resistant?

Yep, the premium is water-resistant so it can handle a good amount of water, heavy wind, etc. Just don't dunk your backpack in a river and you should be good. The black tarpaulin version features 1000D tarpaulin which is the highest quality waterproof material that will keep your camera equipment safe.

Where does the power source come from?

These stylish backpacks comes with a built-in USB cable that you can directly plug your power bank into from the interior of the bag.

Is this an anti-theft backpack?

The retro backpack is anti-theft due to many details that prioritize security when you're carrying your gear. This includes lockable zippers, back-panel opening, hidden laptop and tablet pocket and so much more.

Is this retro canvas backpack carry-on compliant?

Yep! They fit perfectly under your seat (considered a personal. item) and in the overhead compartment (as a carry-on item).

Can it fit a 17" laptop?

It sure does! You can actually fit some 17" laptops — just double-check the dimensions first.

Are the chest straps included?

The sternum straps (aka chest straps) are included! You can easily adjust the positioning of the straps and cinch it in seconds. To learn about why chest straps are so important, watch the video.

What's the delivery time?

We ship our backpacks within 5-10 business days after you place an order and domestic shipments take between 3-5 days to arrive. If your order is placed before 1PM PT, we offer same-day dispatch. If you're international, this could take 7-12 business days.

Do you ship worldwide?

We sure do! We ship within 24-48 hours after an order has been placed. If your order isn't shipped within this time, we may be running on limited stock so it's best to get in touch with our team about it!

Do these stylish backpacks backpacks have a warranty?

Yes it does — our backpacks are covered by a limited lifetime warranty.

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