The Fjällräven Kånken Mini backpack is, in a word, adorable. Described in two words, it is surprisingly spacious. Let’s take a look at this backpack to help you decide if it’s right for you.
As is customary for Tekuben, we made a video that you can watch below or on our YouTube channel Tekuben Prime:
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Check out all of our Fjällräven Kånken videos:
Like a Kånken, but mini
The Kånken Mini is just that – a miniaturized version of the Kånken Classic backpack. It has the look and feel of a Kånken in an adorably compact form. If the Kånken was a Medium sized shirt, the Mini is the same shirt in a size Small, or in this case, Mini. You get it.
It’s made out of the same water resistant, Vinylon F synthetic fabric that’s used to make the Kånken Classic and Laptop variants of the backpack. In keeping with the Kånken Classic’s good looks, the Kånken Mini has a boxy frame and offers organization with one main compartment, one zippered pocket on the front and two open side pockets. The Arctic Fox logo is carried over from the Kånken Classic as well, same style and size.
What makes the Fjällräven Kånken Mini different
Given all the similarities between the Kånken Mini and the Classic, the most interesting things to point out about the backpack are the things that make the Kånken Mini unique.
At 29 cm tall and 20 cm wide, the Kånken Mini is 9 cm shorter and 7 cm narrower than the Kånken Classic. To fit the pack on the back and keep the straps tidy, Fjällräven uses a convertible strap system that’s unique to the Kånken Mini. It may be confusing to use at first so we demonstrate how the straps work in this video:
The convertible strap system, while not the most elegant, works as intended. We were a bit uncomfortable pulling the strap through the loop the first time but have gotten used to it. It’s nice to have the straps buttoned down and not swinging around when we want to hand carry the pack as a tote bag.
While we’re on the subject, you’ll notice that the Kånken Mini has the same type of shoulder straps as the Kånken Classic. We like how the strap is mounted in a x-pattern to help evenly distribute weight, even if the max capacity of this backpack is 7 liters (9 liters less than the Kånken Classic). While we wish the straps were padded on the Kånken Classic, like they are on the Kånken Laptop backpacks, we find that the thin straps on the Kånken Mini seem to be appropriate and don’t have a problem with it mostly because we don’t carry as much weight in this backpack.
We made this video to help you visualize how long the straps are and how it may sit on your back:
What we like about the Fjällräven Kånken Mini:
- The size. Small and stylish with a surprising amount of room in the cavernous main compartment making it a great pack to store essentials for the day
- The convertible straps. While we were uncomfortable converting the straps at first, we’ve grown to appreciate the versatility of the design
- Fit and finish. Fjällräven’s reputation for durable products is reflected here. Solid YKK zippers, reinforced stitching at points of heavy wear such as the ends of the zipper track and base of the top handles.
What we don’t like about the Fjällräven Kånken Mini:
- The fabric. This is less about not liking Vinylon F, though we wish it wasn’t so easy for it to pick up dust, and more about how much we like Fjällräven’s G-1000 fabric used on the Kånken No.2 backpacks. At this point, the Kånken No.2 only comes in Classic and the Laptop 15 size. We wish Fjällräven would make a Kånken No.2 Mini (and today, it does!). The Mini is also available today in the Re-Kånken series, Fjällräven’s eco-friendly line that uses their Spindye fabric. Track all of Fjällräven Kånken models and colors in our guide.
- The side pockets. For us, the side pockets on the Mini are more functional than the side pockets on the Kånken Classic and Laptop 15 because it’s the perfect size to slip in a phone, like our Google Pixel. However, we still can’t get a bottle of water in there. We’re getting over it by treating them like the front pockets of our jeans.
Should you buy a Fjällräven Kånken Mini or a Fjällräven Kånken Classic?
At an MSRP of $65, the Kånken Mini is $15 less than the Kånken Classic. What you pay for in saving $15 is 9 liters of volume. Though we’d argue that if you expect to be packing the Classic to its maximum capacity often, you may be better off with one of the Kånken Laptop backpacks for the padded shoulder straps which does make a difference in wearing comfort. We prefer the Kånken Mini because it’s just big enough to carry most of the things we need when we head out: sunglasses, wallets, phones, small water bottle, snacks, camera. For us, the Fjällräven Kånken is all about simplistic functionality and we find that the Kånken Mini meets that description. But that’s just us. Let us know which way you’re leaning and why in the comments section below or on our YouTube video above.
If you’d like a look at the Kånken Mini, Kånken Classic and the Kånken Laptop 15″ side-by-side-by-side, check out the comparison video we made. Use our buyer’s guide to see all Kånken color-style combinations.
We also made a video comparing all 3 fabrics that the Kånken Mini is available in:
If you are interested in this backpack, shop for it on Amazon with this link. Any purchase made will go towards supporting our work here at Tekuben and making the site better. Thanks for your support!
|Tekuben Target Price:||$50.00 USD|
|Size (U.S)||11.4 in x 7.9 in x 5.1 in|
|Size (Metric)||29 cm x 20 cm x 13 cm|
|Weight (U.S.)||1.00 lbs.|
|Weight (Metric)||0.45 kg|