What’s in my Backpack?

Labor Day weekend is always a bittersweet time for me. Here in Wisconsin, as I’m sure it is many places, Labor Day has always marked the end of summer vacation. This year is no different, as I prepare for my last first day of school (still can’t get over that). My absolute favorite part about going back to school has always been getting new school supplies, so I thought I’d share what’s going to school with me everyday this fall.

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I bought a new backpack this year, as my sister kindly pointed out, “now that you’re almost done with school lol.” I selected this particular North Face backpack with both the upcoming school year and traveling in mind. I always use a backpack as my personal item when I fly, and this bag, while “boring”, as my mom put it, complements my Vera weekender without starting a full-on pattern/color battle.

I picked up this Contigo water bottle at Target and slapped a pretty pink monogram on it, courtesy of pearlsandcurlstx on Etsy! I follow Claire on Instagram, which is how I came across her shop, and I would highly recommend her decals. Anyway, back to the water bottle. I’ve had Camelbak and Nalgene water bottles, but decided to try something different. I’m glad I did! The mouth opening is smaller than a Nalgene to prevent spillage.

Even though summer technically lasts until September 21, I’m thinking ahead to the drier months and throwing an Organic eos Lip Balm in my bag to prevent cracking. I also love the travel size hand creams from Bath and Body Works!

Although I’ll have my iPad Mini along this year, I’m old-fashioned and will also be bringing notebooks along for taking notes. I know notebooks are pretty straight-forward, but make sure you grab the college-ruled variety. I’ve made the mistake of buying wide-ruled and not realizing until I open it to take notes for the first time. These Five Star notebooks are always sturdy and reliable (but I won’t count it against you if you opt for a cuter spiral)!

I thought longggggg and harddddd about which Lilly Pulitzer planner I’d purchase this August… and then I ended up with a Kate Spade agenda. But I love it! I think I might try Lilly next year, if I like the prints better. It’s also monogrammed (along with my car and my iPad…) and has the perfect amount of space to keep myself organized when it comes to blog posts, assignments, meetings, and internship happenings.

Headphones are a must for walking to and from class, heading to the gym during breaks, and long study sessions in the library. Personally, I can’t study while listening to music, so I opt for a quiet location, but headphones can be a lifesaver. These Beats by Dre buds can be found here, but I am just fine using the headphones that came with my iPhone.

Get creative when hunting for the prettiest pencil case! I found mine at H&M for under $5 a couple of years ago, and I still love it. Many cosmetic cases and makeup brush bags would work great to hold your writing utensils! I found the one pictured above on Etsy (that particular seller has some seriously cute patterns!).

Ahh, my Lilly tech case. I snagged it at the After Party Sale and I’m so in love with it! Although it’s technically supposed to be for the larger iPad, I slide my Mini in the side pocket and use the remaining space to store my charger, phone, credit & ID cards, sunglasses, and lip gloss. It’s perfect as a clutch.

I don’t know if I’ll ever own a pair of Ray-Bans (I’m more a $5 sunglasses kinda girl), but a girl can dream, right? This style is one of my favorite trends right now. As a commuter student, I always make sure I have my sunglasses with me, whether for driving or for walking from one class to another.

I’m kicking myself for not snagging one of the Lilly flash drives during the sale! This is one flash drive I wouldn’t mind toting around with my keys, which are always with me.

Like every college student, my cell phone is with me at all times, meaning it needs to be protected and charged. Kate Spade has some seriously cute iPhone cases (admittedly, though, I usually peruse TJ Maxx for my cases), and the printed Jonathan Adler portable chargers will give your phone the boost it needs after a long day of classes.

Last but not least, I try to always have my umbrella with me! I may look silly with it sticking out of my side pocket on sunny days, but when the weather changes in a moment’s notice, I’ll be the one who’s laughing as I pop up my Eddie Bauer umbrella. These are the greatest! They come in cute patterns and with a lifetime warranty. I’ve had 2 malfunction on me and they’ve replaced them in-store with no questions asked.

What are your back-to-school essentials? Happy first day of school, everyone!


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