If you walk on the street in the resident area early in the morning, you would see groups of small children walking towards the elementary school. And you will see all of them carrying the same type of ‘backpack’.
That is called ‘Randoseru’ in Japanese. It is said that the origin of the term has come from ‘ransel’ which means ‘backpack’ in Dutch.
It was initially imported from the Netherlands in Edo era, for foot soldiers to carry their baggage.
Randoseru = Elementary school student
Now randoseru is a symbol for elementary school children. They carry textbooks in it. Typically, randoseru were made of leather. However, due to the increasing demand for light-weight, water-resistance and easy-care, they are mostly made of synthetic leather-like material in recent years.
You can choose the color
Furthermore, they are now offered in full-color palette, while they used to be definitely black for boys and red for girls until some decades ago.
Durability is highly required since they will be basically used for whole 6 years of the elementary school years. Most of the production process is done manually for the best quality result. To prove that, it usually has 6 years guarantee.
It has several compartments inside for easy tidy-up. The reverse side of the flap-over cover usually has a transparent document folder where a timetable can be inserted.
Randoseru have ....
Since it had carried sweet memories of their loving child’s 6 of school years, some parents like to order the unique service: making a miniature-randoseru out of the used randoseru is to keep the memories of those years unforgettable.
So, randoseru is not just a school backpack but it’s also a kind of ceremonial item for parents upon their child’s initiation of the school education. Therefore, randoseru is often an ideal gift for grandchild from the grandparents.