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Made to take you anywhere

We make sustainable backpacks and accessories for everyday adventure – treading lightly as we go.
Lake District, UK.

The story of two adventurers
Jorrit & Nicky, Co-founders of Millican

It was the early 90s. We crossed paths one day on the border of Ecuador and Peru, in the small town of Vilcabamba. From this chance encounter, we ended up travelling together for the next two years. We passed through incredible places and met incredible people. Then, one day, the time came for us to reluctantly hang up our packs and return to the UK.

It wasn’t long before we slipped into regular life. Jobs, family, a house and a routine out in the suburbs. But there was always a flicker of light, an ember that never quite went out. Then one story changed our lives for good. The true story of Millican Dalton, a maverick from the 1900s who swapped his existence in London for an extraordinary life of adventure in the mountains of the Lake District.

From then on, we were hooked once again. He inspired us to follow our own path and to help others take the same leaps of faith. Taken in by Millican’s independent and maverick nature, we realised that our old lives were not the ones for us. So we packed our bags and followed in his footsteps to the solitude of the Lake District, to a small community we now call home.

In our search for a place in this world, we found something that we were good at. The one thing that captures the spirit of meaningful travel perhaps more than anything else. We started making sustainable bags. Bags that help others leave the clutter of life behind and strike out on their own.

In homage to Millican Dalton, who was known to make his own clothing and rucksacks, we decided to name our company after him. His teachings still influence our decisions today.

The Place We Call Home.

We followed the unworn path carved out by Millican Dalton. It led us here, to the mountains of the Lake District. Take the road out of Keswick and you’ll find us on a small farm, nestled at the foot of Skiddaw. This is the place we call home, where we watch the seasons change slowly, where we design sustainable bags for independent spirits and conscious travellers.

Here you’ll meet the creative team behind Millican. We’re a collective of curious travellers, nonconformists who have combined our talents to make simple products that inspire others to see the world differently. Through sharing our personal stories, we hope to create a source of inspiration that helps people connect with each other and the planet.

Our local community is important to us (too). As well as being a naturally supportive place to live, it’s also a reminder to travel in a more connected way. We meet other travellers and communities on these journeys – memories we bring back with us and share through the names and stories behind our bags.

Behind the seams

A deeper look at our ingredients

Woven into our fabrics are solutions that meet the needs of backpacks that are used everyday, in all environments, and that align with reducing our global impact – treading lightly as we go.

All Millican backpacks are made from 100% recycled plastic. Repurposed. Recycled. Remade.

Maverick Collection – Dalton Canvas

Hardwearing, lightweight and waterproof. 100% recycled polyester fabric made from post-consumer waste – made to take you anywhere. Developed and made exclusive for our bags.

The Smith 25L uses the equivalent of 44 single use plastic bottles per bag – Plastic with purpose.

Fabric Ingredients:

• 100% RPET polyester
• Weight: 480 gr/yd
• Yarn made from post consumer waste
• Foam PU coating on face + back
• C0 DWR on face – PFC-free
• Mechanical recycling process used in breakdown of plastic
• GRS certified
• Bluesign approved

Maverick Collection – Bionic Canvas

Bionic Canvas was the original fabric for the Maverick Collection and as we transition to the Dalton Canvas there’s products that will still use the last of the material.

Fabric Ingredients:

• 35% cotton
• 65% recycled polyester
• 100% paraffin wax impregnated
• 33% of the recycled plastic inside the yarn is recovered from shorelines, waterways and coastal communities.
• Developed by Return Textiles

Core Collection

Made from recycled plastic – discarded in landfills and oceans – the Core fabric is re-woven into a bag for life. Lightweight and waterproof – single use plastic re-purposed

Every 20L Core bag uses 26 recycled plastic bottles.

Fabric Ingredients:

• 100% Recycled Polyester (RPET) 900D
• Weight: 430 gr/yd
• PU1000 coating on back
• C0 DWR treatment – PFC-free
• Mechanical recycling process used in breakdown of plastic
• Bluesign Approved
• GRS certified
• PETA vegan certified
• Yarn made from post-consumer waste

Lining Fabric

What’s on the inside is just as important as what you see on the outside. All of our collections share the same internal lining fabric.

Fabric Ingredients:

• 100% RPET 150D
• Weight: 170 gr/yd
• Yarn made from Post consumer waste
• PU1000 coating on back
• C0 DWR on face – PFC-free
• Mechanical recycling process used in breakdown of plastic
• GRS certified
• Bluesign approved

Colouring Fabric

8 tons of water is used to dye 600yds of fabric (per colour). The factory is in an industrial complex of dye houses, where the waste water from all dye houses is collected before it is cleaned of contaminants. Using Bluesign approved dye-stuffs only.

Human Power

Millican grows with a network of human relationships, people who believe in great quality, practical and sustainable products made with pride. Our stance on ethics, fair trading and humanitarian practices is uncompromising. We work globally local, finding the right partners nationally and overseas.

Fabric Producer

Daehyun/Busung
Established 1973
Location: South Korea
Bluesign System Partner

Bag Producer

Factory: Outdoor Park Vina
Location: Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam)
Staff: 350
Working Hours: 48hrs/wk + max 12 hrs overtime
Signed Millican Code of Conduct: Yes
Last Audited: 2018
Factory Last visited: Dec 2019

Moving forward in a circle

Let’s be clear about any sustainability reference you’ll find on our site – 100% sustainability doesn’t really exist in our world today. We realise that. All our materials require natural resources to be produced, processed and shipped, as do everyone else’s.

It’s therefore all about degrees of sustainability and our efforts to make informed choices in favour of sustainability where we can. The more we learn about the impact of our own choices, the more we realise we don’t know enough yet. So we’ll continue to research, learn and adapt. By sharing this ongoing journey we hope to inspire you to learn more and to join the growing ranks of consumers out there who simply want to know. Transparency on our part means clarity on your part. That can only be a good thing.

Recycled Polyester

Recycled polyester is made from recycled PET material (which is a polyethylene terephthalate, raw petroleum-based material to those in the know). It’s widely used in plastic bottles and other food packaging all over the world.

Using recycled polyester, rather than virgin polyester, cuts energy by 50%, saves 20% on water and reduces air pollution by 60%.

Bottle Facts

PET is the most popular plastic in the world. Less than 5% of plastics produced are recycled. 1.5 Billion tonnes of PET are used for water bottles every year, which takes 18 million barrels of oil and 1,300 billion gallons of water to make.

Every 1kg of RPET fabric (made with 100% post-consumer waste) keeps 60 water bottles out of landfill. You can tell if a product contains PET because it will have the international triangle loop symbol with the number 1 inside.

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