Fashions rakuda

Published on May 13th, 2013 | by Greg


Make Your Companion A Rakuda

Happy Mother’s Day from everyone here at TrulyNet! Whether it’s flowers or an iPad or a good board game, we hope you treated you mom nicely. They call it the “toughest job” for a reason and, frankly, we can’t deny that it’s much easier to criticize interesting movies and products on a blog than do what a mom does. But even on the holidays, we try to do our job as well- which is why we’re looking at an interesting bag that is not only a decent option for the lucky lady in your life, but perfect if you just need something for class.

The Rakuda Companion Backpack is a fairly cute take on a classic, an open-top design with three external additional pockets and one large main compartment. No zippers here! Instead, you’ve got drawstrings and clasps and buttons, adding a fairly nostalgic twist with hardware that feels like you could hop onto an old transcontinental cruise boat and feel right at home.

We liked the initial look and feel- but it is fairly heavy, thanks to the old-school construction. Modern features have made bags more comfortable in a few ways as well, and we missed the better straps and cushioning and ventilation from more serious, technical backpacks. In fact, the Rakuda Companion is a bit like the recently-reviewed Herschel Little America, but not as comfortable, and lacking the dedicated padded laptop compartment. As we mentioned in that review, leather doesn’t always hold up as well over time as other materials though, and we noticed the same effect in play here. The canvas has served us well though so far, and we did like the side pockets (for a water bottle or umbrella), which were lacking on the Little America.

The straps aren’t as adjustable as most other backpacks, and we found ourselves fumbling with the unusual leather loops to try and securely close the main pocket. But the drawstring worked surprisingly well, cinching nicely and feeling sturdy. Available in ocean blue or desert tan, ours was the former color, and stood out nicely against many of the boring bags out there today. We liked the nautical look, and there’s plenty of room for just about anything you can imagine- a solid daypack. Available for around $120.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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