The weekender bag by Paravel made of 12 upcycled water bottles is the ultimate weekend bag for form. … [+]
As an avid traveler and a connoisseur of the equipment that comes with touring the world, I was hopelessly thrilled to discover Paravel’s Weekender. This bag defined the epitome of the perfect weekend bag for me in form and function. However, before discussing why the weekender is the leader of the package, it is important to start with what a good weekend bag should be.
A good weekend bag should be big enough to hold all of the essentials for a quick trip, but small enough to stow under the seat on an airplane. It should look chic but be strong, pliable, and easy to carry while keeping the contents securely in place. The perfect weekend bag is a team player. That said, if it’s so chic that you have to worry about it more than you, then this is the wrong bag. With a bit of luck, the perfect bag will do all of these things. With any luck, it should be better for the planet too if they do. Fortunately, the Paravel Weekender meets all of these criteria.
Indré Rockefeller and Andy Krantz are the co-founders of Paravel. These savvy businessmen combined their retail, fashion, and finance backgrounds with their love of travel and passion for the environment to create Paravel’s collection of travel essentials. They are working to bring the brand to a unique meeting point where timelessness is the cornerstone, materials are ultra-light and extremely durable, performance is uncompromising and combines all of this with sustainability in every piece.
The vegan straps of the weekender give the bag an elegant finish, but are also designed to slide over the bag … [+]
I fell in love with Paravel’s Weekender on multiple trips originating in California and ended up in Aspen, Miami, and neighboring cities like San Diego and Santa Barbara.
Like all Paravel offers, The Weekender will impress you for the first time with its good looks. It’s elegant and reserved, and at the same time unique and eye-catching. The base material is a sharp, cream colored Ecocraft canvas. Ecocraft is a sturdy yet pliable material made up of 12 upcycled plastic water bottles and natural cotton fibers. The weekender envelops the shell and is equipped with vegan leather straps, which are available in a caramel-like shade of brown or a smooth domino black. The straps add a design element, but also serve the double function and can be guided over the handle of a hand luggage to anchor the weekender in place and to enable quick and safe movement through busy airport terminals.
From the outside, the bag looks deceptively compact, but the inside of the weekender is cave-like. Inside there are two large inner pockets that are so healthy that I could keep my computer charger (and the extended cable), phone charger, and other loose tech pieces in just one of the pockets.
The Paravel Weekender in Domino Black
In the main compartment of the bag, I could carry pajamas, a workout look, two light sweaters, jeans, a dress, a toiletry bag, socks, underwear, and a pair of sneakers, all of which were meant for a local weekend away. I also managed to sneak into a full size hairbrush and iron. When I was traveling by air and had extra hand luggage with me, the Weekender became a collection point for practical items like a laptop, books, toiletries and a Kindle. Even when I stuffed it with water bottles and snacks I bought at the airport, the bag’s strong zipper closed everything with a satisfactory zipper and I knew the contents were safe.
My personal favorite aspect of the Paravel brand is that almost everything in the collection can be personalized with a monogram or a hand-painted emoji. Embroidered monograms can be added to softer pieces like this Foldable pocket and packing cubes, and also to the Ecocraft pieces, like the Weekender and its cousin the Main travel bag. The more structured parts from Ecocraft can be embossed with small foil lettering on the supports or with large letters (or emojis) hand-painted on the canvas. Needless to say, these bags made it onto my gift giving go-to list because of the quality of the product and the added possibility of personalization, because who wouldn’t love to get a great-looking, well-designed, personalized bag? Bag made from upcycled water bottles?
Parvel’s collection includes these packaging cubes that can be monogrammed and store things intelligently … [+]
Not only did Rockefeller and Krantz create a line that looks great and performs exceptionally, they also have a primary goal: to be the first 100% sustainable travel brand by the end of 2021.
“Sustainability is at the core of our brand and influences every decision we make,” says Rockefeller. “To us, being a 100% sustainable company means that every single aspect of our business – from the low impact materials we use in our product (to the recycled zippers) to the recycled and recyclable packaging, to our climate neutral shipping practices – are responsible Partnerships and a solid code of social responsibility are all viewed from the perspective of having the least possible negative impact on the planet and the highest possible positive impact on people. ”
They achieve all of this through an intricate supply chain that stretches from a 110 year old factory in Italy whose artisans are involved in making Paravel pieces, to a state of the art baggage factory in Taiwan whose in-house resources are developing new ones to support the founders and innovative sustainable materials.
All Paravel pieces are made from recycled or upcycled materials and the brand wants to be … [+]
To achieve their 2021 manifesto, Rockefeller and Krantz plan to implement or have already implemented the use of recycled and recyclable packaging, climate-neutral shipping and production, and partnerships with leading certification bodies to ensure traceability and accountability in the supply chain.
“We also plant trees to restore depleted ecosystems and create jobs in marginalized communities through Eden Reforestation Projects, and support environmental justice organizations like the NAACP environmental and climate justice program,” added Rockefeller.
In the 6 years since Paravel launched, they have upcycled 1.7 million plastic water bottles, offset 4.7 million pounds of CO2 and planted 17,293 trees.
“We’ll never stop looking for ways to improve our impact on the planet,” she says.
While the Weekender is the collection’s hero piece for an avid traveler like me, the full range of Paravel luggage and accessories are well designed, affordable, and incredibly functional. From packing cubes (who knew that monogrammed cubes would make traveling so much better?) To vanity cases and handbags, Paravel ensures that no one with their bags in tow will ever have a bad trip.