VANGO, the UK camping and outdoor equipment specialist founded in 1966, has teamed up with award-winning Glasgow-based backpack manufacturer TRAKKE to create a bespoke range constructed from recycled heritage tent fabrics, including Vango’s iconic orange Force Ten tent.
The limited-edition collection, dubbed ‘Past Tents’, are a nod to both Vango’s camping legacy and Trakke’s commitment to sustainable bag design, offering a unique opportunity to own a piece of British outdoor industry history.
Five models range from a 21L roll-top rucksack made from original Icelandic tents used by the Scouts to a striking orange ‘Force Tote Bag.’ The range also features a design inspired by Trakke’s staple ‘Canna’ rucksack, a hip pack for day-to-day activities and a small accessory pouch made from tent bag lining.
The bags are designed to transition from urban and outdoor environments with ease and the nostalgic 1960-80s profiles have a functional, modern twist. All have been constructed using end of life tents, giving the kit another life and avoiding landfill, celebrating both businesses’ mission to find sustainable solutions for the future.
Trakke’s low waste design ethos and handmade manufacturing provides an excellent partnership with sustainably focussed Vango, which has operated a recycled tent platform for over a decade, a Spares and Repairs service and has an extensive Earth Collection made from recycled single-use plastics.
Vango also regularly donates fabrics and sleeping bag fillings to UK-based charity Sheltersuit, which creates sleeping bag jackets for those impacted by homelessness. Most recently, it donated thousands of camping meals and sleeping bags to Ukrainian refugees.
Trakke’s Alec Farmer said, “We designed this collection to capture the nostalgia of the camping trips we took in our youth. We created a range of sizes and styles to suit children and adults alike and added features like wide-mouth front pockets and padded laptop sleeves to make staying organised easier!
“The simple silhouettes mean that the bags work just as well at a campsite or a coffee shop. When making the bags, instead of cutting around the seams on the tents, we incorporated them into the bags to make each one unique, and to create a connection between the bag and their past life as tents.”
Trakke was started in 2010 by Farmer, who was hunting for a messenger bag to use while cycling around the city. A student at the time, he decided rather than using his small budget to purchase a new bag, he would create one using fabrics he found lying around.
After making several prototypes, Farmer decided to open a stall at the iconic Glasgow ‘Barra’ markets to sell his home-made rucksacks. After gaining some traction, he decided to expand and twelve years later Trakke bags is a well-established bag manufacturer which ships on a global scale.
Rob Birrell, Vango’s Marketing Director added, “Collaborating with another local business in Glasgow to create the Past Tents range has been wonderful for us to explore more ways to ‘upcycle’ end of life tents, as well as create a truly bespoke range that fuses heritage with modern day.
“The launch of our first brand TV advert in April showcased Vango’s heritage story from 1966 to present day, re-connecting us with iconic heritage tents like the Icelandic and Force Ten Classic, which we still manufacture. The collaboration with Trakke perfectly encapsulates our sustainable ethos and our Spirit of Adventure!”