Our Mission: To Make a Better Backpack

April 23, 2016

A Better Backpack | Marin Independent Journal

A brief history of IVAR and making a better backpack.

Since the beginning, IVAR's mission has been to provide a truly unique backpack design, with a focus on carrying comfort and superior organization. Pictured here is the newspaper article that marked the launch date of IVAR, entitled:  "A better backpack". It is from July 2006 and covered most of the front of the Marin Independent Journal's business section. It was an incredible and complimentary article, and I'll always be grateful for the support.

IVAR's unique design as continued to be one-of-a-kind. Called the IVAR-LIFT System, IVAR has become known for its patented internal design. It has become a trademark of our backpack's design. Our difference is simple. Whereas every other backpack is essentially an "open sack", IVAR's design offers real comfort and organization through a physical and structural design feature.

In July 2006, IVAR launched into roughly 40 retailers, primarily in California. A few months prior, I had finalized my first backpack design. It was called the IVAR Urban and came in Black, Blue, and Red. I had also initiated my factory partner in Vietnam on my first manufacturing production. As such, I needed to pre-sell product! I purchased a one-way plane ticket to San Diego. I brought my backpack samples, rented a car, and met with as many retailers possible as I drove back home to San Francisco. It was an amazing trip. I stepped outside of my comfort zone, certainly, as I cold-called and met with retailer buyers. Somehow, I had about a 90% success rate.

Since then, IVAR has continued to sell into retail stores throughout the USA and internationally. We've grown our product line with new models, styles, and colors. We've weathered nine years of "roller coaster style" entrepreneurial business. But, IVAR's mission is still the same — delivering the ultimate urban travel backpack for comfort and organization as based on our original, patented design.

Thank you for your interest in IVAR and for visiting!

Help Me Decide

Which IVAR Backpack is Best for Me?

Differences in Size.

All the current 2017 IVAR backpacks are virtually the same size with the exception of the Urban 20 model. The Urban 20 is 17" tall by 11" wide whereas the other models are approximately 19" tall by 12" to 13" wide. We consider the larger bags "standard day-pack" sized backpacks. The Urban 20 is considered a slightly smaller — yet a great size — backpack.

Which Size is Best for Me? — Size Guide

Our backpacks fit everyone, generally speaking. However, we like to make the following recommendations:

If your height is 5' 7" or taller, we recommend any of the current 2017 IVAR backpack models. Your choice will come down to styling, design, and colors offered — and size. The Urban 20 model is slightly smaller (17" tall by 11" wide) where as the other IVAR models are approximately the same size (19" tall by 12" to 13" wide). If your height is 5' 6" or shorter, we recommend the Urban 20 model. It's our slightly smaller backpack at 17" tall by 11" wide and would fit a body that's 5' 6" or shorter best. For adult women, we recommend the Urban 20 because, generally, it is the most appropriate backpack size for a woman's body. That said, if you don't mind a larger backpack that's 19" tall by 13" wide, one of the other backpack models would also work! For adult men, all the current 2017 IVAR backpacks would fit. As mentioned above, your choice will come down to styling, design, and colors offered — and size.

For smaller children, we recommend the smaller Urban 20 for the reasons expressed above. The Urban 20 fits a smaller body much more appropriately.

Best Choice for Everyday Urban Commuting.

Any of our backpacks would work! Your choice comes down to colors, styles, and size. Please the "Size Guide" above for our recommendations.

Best Choice for Travel.

For travel, you may want more capacity to carry your cargo. As such, we would recommend any of our backpacks. Take in mind that the Urban 20 model is the slightly smaller backpack option, yet still has great capacity. If you are carrying a lot of stuff, we would recommend one of the other models, however.

Best Choice for School or University.

Any of our backpacks would work! Your choice comes down to colors, styles, and size. Please the "Size Guide" above for our recommendations.