Interview: Dana Gleason of Mystery Ranch

"When what you do actually matters for a large group of people you respect, it's so addictive."

Dana Gleason, the designer behind self-titled backpack label Dana Design—a brand that ruled the outdoor pack market during the ’90s—has always found solid ground in individuality. Mystery Ranch, founded in 2000, is his second label alongside long-time business partner Renee Sippel-Baker. Though the brand was founded nearly two decades ago, its more recently-acquired popularity in the mainstream market seemed to unfurl quite suddenly. Mystery Ranch began …

Wear the Two-Armed Robot Companion, Fusion, Like a Backpack

With a head and two arms, Fusion is a robot prototype by Syrian designer Yamen Saraiji that’s supposed to be worn like a backpack. The machine’s two eyes act as cameras, porting a shared perspective to a second person, who can then operate both arms remotely (through an Oculus Rift headset and Touch controllers). The goal here is to enable work between collaborators who aren’t …

Japan’s Shupatto Bags Easily Collapse for Simple Stowing

From totes to backpacks, foldable ripstop polyester products that roll up to save space

In many ways, the Shupatto bags, produced by Marna, act as an easy-to-decipher optical illusion. The Japanese company designs and manufactures a range of ripstop nylon products—totes of varying sizes, a backpack and more—that collapse and roll into surprisingly small bundles for stowing. This concept isn’t new, but the way Marna has engineered all of them is—thanks to an intuitive structure drawn from the world …