Inikama is a blend of the Japanese words “nakama” (companion) and “ikikata” (way of life/direction). Our backpack is designed to be your travel companion – whether your journey is to a remote destination or just to the office and back. Either way, the Inikama backpack lets you tap into an easier, more sustainable way of life.
Each backpack comes with the promise of transparency, a human focus, sustainability, quality, and an ethical supply chain.
This is one of our leading principles. You should know where our products come from, how we designed them, why we choose our materials, and how our price is set.
We want you to walk away from our store assured that you are investing in a product of value – the best backpack for your needs and lifestyle. Let us know when you need more, and we will fix it.
Sustainability is more important today than ever. Which is why we promote slow fashion. We use only natural materials – cotton and leather – to create backpacks that develop their own character over time. The Vachetta leather will, for example, develop a patina, making the bag you might one day pass on to your grandchildren different from the one you’ll buy today. Our bags record the stories of your travels, making them just as functional but immeasurably more invaluable as they age.
We believe you have the right to know exactly what materials are being used in the product you purchase. Just saying we use “leather” is not enough – we owe it to you to tell you exactly what type of leather we are using.
We promise only top quality materials, and we will name the exact textiles used (look for more details in coming articles). Materials are all inspected and verified before production to make sure they do not contain any toxic substances and fulfill our other quality requirements.
Our products are produced under good working conditions.
Our current manufacturing partner is in located in the city of Dongguan in China. Before choosing them we visited many factories, from small to big, allowing us to be certain we were making the best and most ethical possible choice.
We searched high and low to find a manufacturing partner who understands our style and our quality requirements. But that is not enough for us. We believe that: “You get what you inspect, not what you expect.” So we meticulously scrutinize the quality of the raw materials and the workmanship of the finished products, improving and learning along with our manufacturing partner along the way.
We accept that mistakes can happen, and throwing away non-perfect products is harmful to our environment. So, while we have high-quality requirements, we still buy the products that have minor flaws, if they do not compromise our customers' health and safety, or the functionality of our products.
These slightly flawed backpacks are not currently for sale to our customers. We have not decided what we will do with these yet. Maybe you have an idea? We believe the best ideas often come from the people who use our products.
Our backpacks are full of hidden pockets and important functional extras, inside and out, to offer you easy organization and comfort. All these designer details along with the high-quality materials make our backpacks a more luxurious product, and are priced accordingly That being said, we strive to offer the fairest price possible, given the small-batch production and focus on fair labor practices. In the end, you are paying for a unique product that you can feel good about ethically, that will stand out from the crowd, and that will stand the test of time. At the moment, every cent we earn goes not only toward our monthly costs and (one day, we hope) salaries, but also into the development of new models and colors, and other improvements for the future.
We are 100% independently funded, ensuring we maintain full control over the quality, sustainability, and design of our bags.
We are Selma and Torben, the founders of Inikama.
Our Inikama adventure began when we quit our jobs to travel the world while building our own business.
Selma is a former fashion-school teacher from the Netherlands and an experienced designer of bags, prints, graphics, clothing, and stationary. Torben is a former project manager from Germany with a PhD in Chemistry. We had the modest ambition to fulfill all our dreams at once, exploring the world while channeling our passion and hard work into founding our own company.
So we traveled at a slower pace. Rather than just blindly visiting as many countries as possible, we decided to spend some quality time in the spots we liked best, lingering for a month at a time to get a real feel for the local culture and, most importantly, making friends along the way.
And even though we would like to continually keep seeing new things and going to new places (and surfing!), we are ready to share what we’ve learned from all our travels across the continents in the form of a tool, our backpack, to help you fuel your own journeys of discovery. After all the preparations (we are perfectionists) we are excited to share our creation with like-minded travelers (or travelers at heart). Not to mention that we’re bursting with new ideas for what’s to come...Check our first backpack here