My new Ethnotek backpack (left) arrived 2 days ago and I truly love the design! Though I haven’t actually used it yet since it came during the weekends, but already this backpack is truly top notch in terms of quality. It has a spacious laptop compartment that is generously padded, with internal pockets to put anything from portable mouse, hard disk drives to chargers. It also features an internal mesh compartment to put other small items that you would usually carry around in your bag, rather than just tossing it to the main compartment and stuck at the bottom of the bag.
The motif on the front, is traditionally designed and printed in Ghana. It’s absolutely beautiful! It’s a limited edition design, hand-printed by the artisans of Ananse Village of Ghana using Africa’s well known Kente Cloth. The dominantly blue design symbolises peacefulness, harmony and love.
I have placed the two different Ethnotek bags side by side. The left, with the fabric and design originating from Ghana, and the right, from Guatemala. The Ghana bag, is more of a traditional backpack as compared to the Guatemalan one. The Ghana bag does not have it’s own poncho and you will have to purchase one separately specifically made for that bag design. The Guatemala bag has less internal pockets than the Ghana bag. It’s more of a haversack with a drawstring, meant to chuck all your stuff you carry into one compartment, rather than organising your stuff into many little compartments. Both bags do feature a laptop compartment.
The fabric used for the design are of different origin. Guatemala bag has a coarser weave to its fabric incorporated to the bag. It’s made of cotton, but features a larger variety of colored threads, each colored thread painstakingly woven by hand to feature the rainbow design. The Ghana bag uses the well known Kente Cloth, which is essentially silk and cotton woven together and then the patterns and colors hand printed to the cloth. It’s a smoother finish compared to the Guatemala bag.
Personally, I feel that the Ghana bag is more suitable for your daily commute or work bag, while the Guatemala bag is more suitable as a weekender bag, due to it’s drawstrings, it’s more versatile in handling odd sized items.
So there you have it, my own little review of two of the best backpacks I have owned.