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In Japan, there is a type of school bags series known as “randoseru”, that parents in Japan are willing to spend between the range of 30 000 Yen to 100 000 Yen (estimatedly equivalent to between S$400 to S$1200) for their children to carry them to school. But lets try to understand. There must be good reasons why people are willing to pay that much right?
As mentioned earlier, “randoseru” is a type of bag. Not to be confused, “randoseru” is NOT a brand, but a Japanese term used for a type of bag. In other words, you can have a “randoseru” that is made from brands like Nike, Puma, and so on. The word “randoseru” comes from the word “ransel” that originates from the Dutch. Even though it is meant for schoolkids, it has been trending for adults to use them as well especially in Japan. Randoseru comes in a range of different colours.
Unlike many other schoolbag series which have cartoon characters or all sorts of patterned designs, randoseru” usually comes in plain, no patterns. But its minimalistic and plain design is what makes it all the more appealing and attractive, especially in this modern age where minimalism and simplicity is the trend these days. And it does help that randoseru bags are made of leather. As such, randoseru bags are fit for you to carry, regardless of whether it’s a formal occasion or if it is a casual one.
In Japan, the randoseru has a special significance, for it marks the start of a new passage, or the beginning in elementary school, which indicates the start of school life which is an equivalent to the start of life. These randoseru bags are usually presented by the child’s grandparents to mark the beginning of their life in school, akin to a gift when you first entered school in Primary 1 in Singapore.
In Japan, schoolkids are not usually driven to school in their parents’ cars. Instead, from a young age of 6 or 7, Japanese parents start letting go and schoolkids begin training on getting to school and back on their own. The schoolkids have to start learning to get used to the Japan train lines and figure around public transport. If you were in their parent’s shoes, don’t you want to look for something light and easy for your child to be able to carry around the city on their own? That is one plus point for a randoseru bag.
Back in history, there was a time where Japan was closed to the world, and there was a time when Japan eventually opened up to the world. And that was when Western influence was welcome in Japan, and from there came the influence of the ransel from the Netherlands that was originally used by soldiers. Hence, through that, the Japanese came up with their own version and called it randoseru. This traces back to the late 1800s. The design was made from inspiration from bags used in the military.