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Review – Kanken No. 2 Laptop

Brand new for 2016, Neil Summers shares his thoughts.

If you’re looking for something smart, stealthy and Swedish to safely store your supplies in then you need the Kanken No.2 Laptop bag in your life.  Comprised of Fjallraven’s signature heavy duty G-1000 fabric with leather detailing this super smart looking backpack opens up to reveal a separate padded compartment to place your laptop in as well as a handy business card holder. You’ll also find a handy seat pad in there that can be quickly pulled out to provide you with somewhere clean and comfy to sit down when all the seats on your train compartment, conference centre or park bench have all taken.  This is more than a backpack, it’s a mobile office!
If you’ve been bitten by the Kanken bug or just want to find out more about this various incarnations of this versatile Swedish icon then head over to our newly re-branded site (previously called I Love My Kanken) which is now called My Kanken Bag that’s totally dedicated to this dynamic backpack.

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Filson – Built to last

If you’re new to Filson, Mark Smith digs into the history.

Filson may have been around for several lifetimes, but it’s a new introduction for us here at the Sporting Lodge.

Clinton C. Filson spent the early part of his working life as a railroad conductor, before moving to Seattle, Washington in the 1890s. It was here where the real roots of Filson began, when Clinton set up a small loggers’ outfitting store. In a scene which was mirrored in many parts of the U.S in this era, Filson made its name meeting the needs of prospectors passing through Seattle on their way to the Klondike Gold Rush. The brand eventually got itself on a solid footing in 1897 and although the gold rush was relatively short-lived, it cemented the brand as a reliable supplier of clothing and accessories which would stand the test of time. After the gold rush ended around 1899, Filson shifted to providing gear for outdoor oriented activities and occupations including hunting, fishing and logging.

In the modern day, Filson continues to enjoy an unrivalled reputation in its field. In the early 90s, its heritage in canvas luggage was revived, while more recently in 2010 it fittingly partnered up with another brand born of the gold rush to create Levi’s Workwear by Filson.

With slogans such as ‘Unfailing Goods’ and ‘Built to Last’ running through their veins, Filson have a unique confidence in the gear they make. It’s perhaps their best known tagline which sums them up most accurately though – “Filson – Might as well have the best”.

We’ve handpicked products we think you’ll love. View the full range here.

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Fjallraven Kanken – evolving with the times

Founded in 1960, Fjällräven is a veteran at coping with the outdoors. The brand began like many of its counterparts, with problem-solving at its heart. That simple backpack created by Ake Nordin all those years ago has been joined by a full range of serious outdoor clothing and accessories, and while jackets like the Greenland have become iconic, it’s that original bag which lends its DNA to the brand in the current era.

When things are ubiquitous, it’s usually for a reason. The Kånken bag enjoys worldwide popularity, perhaps due to having nailed the middle ground between function and style. Like any good design, whether it be a car or an item of furniture, the Kånken has been gently evolved with the times, and there are now variations which include laptop compartments and other useful additions. The Kånken also comes in a number of subtle styles, from the well-known bright colours to a more understated, grown up version which utilises leather and more muted colours. There’s something for everyone. It’s a clear example of form following function and looking great as a by-product. Everything about the Kånken is clear, considered and concise. The same can be said for Fjällräven in general, in fact the only thing we can’t quite get our heads around is how to pronounce it correctly, which is fitting for a brand born in Örnsköldsvik. Try saying that with a mouthful of Kendal Mint cake!

We have a long lasting relationship with Fjallraven and have a fantastic range of products, tried and tested by The Sporting Lodge. Check out Fjallraven’s AW16 collection.

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Beretta Since 1526

by Neil Summers.

In 1526 Bartolomeo Beretta sold 185 of his cutting edge, high quality ‘arquebus’ barrels to the arsenal of Venice and in doing so started up what is now the oldest active firearms manufacturers in the world, Beretta. A world renowned brand whose incredible history even includes a Beretta gun finding its way across the Atlantic on board the Mayflower’s legendary journey alongside the founding fathers of modern America. Unsurprisingly this legendary ‘Mayflower Gun’ can now be found  sitting proudly on display at the NRA’s museum in Fairfax, Virginia.

‘Arquebus’ meaning ‘hook gun’ was Beretta’s first gun ever made.

Over the centuries to follow Beretta have successfully remained a family run business as well as keeping their reputation as a brand totally dedicated to quality and beautiful Italian design. Based in Brescia in the North of Italy, the Beretta Headquarters boasts it’s very own museum featuring more than 900 pieces on display including guns previously owned by John Adams and Napoleon. In addition to making some of the world’s finest firearms, accessories and clothing Beretta also produce a number of renowned Italian wines as well as running a non-profit organisation dedicated to cancer research. It’s hard to think of another brand (even one outside of the world of shooting or sport) that have consistently made  incredible products over such an impressive amount of time and who knows where the next 500 years will take this fantastic Italian company…

We can’t wait to see. View the full range of Beretta at The Sporting Lodge.