Back to Back

Back to school is just around the corner – most students will be hitting the hallways right after Labour Day (if not sooner). With that in mind, I’ve picked out a bunch of nifty gifts for back-to-school.


Fjallraven Kanken Backpack – $85 @ Little Burgundy
Every kid needs a backpack – this cool outdoorsy brand from Sweden is making waves with their decidedly minimalist Scandinavian approach to this schoolyard staple. Not only do they look cool, they offer some valuable benefits for mom and dad too. Waterproof fabric means no soggy homework, while the super durable fabric should last them well through the school year(s) – not something you can say if you opt for say, a licensed character bag from Walmart. Solid, sturdy and stylish – what’s not to love?

Mr. Sketch 6-Pack Crayons

Mr. Sketch Scented Crayons – $6.65 for a 6-Pack @ Walmart, Staples, and Loblaws
Whatever kid had Mr. Sketch markers growing up was the envy of the classroom – seriously. Now the brand has expanded their scented school supplies with this cool line of smooth-writing, gel formula crayons. Housed in a hard plastic body to help reduce breakage, the twist-up design also keeps the tip of the crayon sharp and ready for colouring! Coming with a bevy of fruit-scented crayons like cherry, orange, and blueberry, these awesome crayons are a great, elementary school-age pick that will actually have the kids excited for school.

Kate Spade Gold Dots 17-Month Agenda

Kate Spade Large Gold Dots 17-Month Agenda – $36
Yes this pretty foiled agenda book might say 2017 on the cover, but it’s actually a 17-month calendar that commences right here in August. With plenty of space to jot down homework and social plans, each month also commences with a cute message encouraging you to explore and experience the world. Honestly, using the school-provided agenda is so passe – pick this pretty alternative up for the teen or college student in your life.

L'il Critter Vitamins

L’il Critters Complete Multivitamins – $12.97 each @ Mass Retailers Across Canada
Good nutrition is the foundation to better brain power in the classroom. If you’re struggling to get the kids to chow down on super healthy foods, try supplementing their meals or after school snacks with these chewable multivitamins. Designed with friendly faces like Barbie and Despicable Me’s Minions, these fruity-flavoured vitamins come in fun shapes to make health easier and more accessible than ever.

Paper Mate InkJoy Pens

Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pens – $42 for a 14-Pack @ Walmart, Staples, and Loblaws
I was a total gel pen user in high school – I loved the vibrant hues that also helped me stay organized (a different colour for every class!) What’s great is how far the gel pen concept has come from its early days. Now the ink dries quicker than ever, in fact, three times faster than your average regular ol’ black / blue / red pen. And of course, it still offers that smooth, sleek feeling as you scribble notes (and doodles). The pens are also finished off with a comfort grip so they can write away without cramping their hand.

Monbento Bento Box

Monbento Bento Boxes – $32.99 each
Lunchboxes are one of the trendiest aspects of back-to-school shopping it seems – and these cool lunchboxes from Monbento offer plenty of flexibility and protection. Their original lunchbox shown here comes with two airtight containers, a separate food cup (perfect for snacks you want to grab or sauces you want to keep separate) and a tight elastic strap to keep things locked and loaded in your backpack. To be totally honest, it’s cool enough that grownups who aren’t heading back to school might want to nab one too.


Arm + Hammer Kid’s Spinbrush – $7.99 each @ Mass & Drug Retailers Across Canada
School picture day is coming up – which means it’s time to get those pearly whites in prime shape. One easy way to get them excited for better oral hygiene? A fun branded toothbrush featuring beloved characters like Spiderman, Paw Patrol, My Little Pony or Super Mario. Not only will a new toothbrush motivate them to brush with renewed vigour, it also means less painful trips to the dentist!

Sharpie Color Burst

Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers – $8.78 for 5 or $37.07 for 24 @ Walmart, Staples, Loblaws and
The coolest part of this back-to-school gift has to be the versatility. These fine-tipped markers can function just like pens (albeit seriously permanent), or they can be used for other creative projects and hobbies. From brightening up a homework project to doodling in a scrapbook, the vibrant hues of these pens truly offer a spectrum of colour – from soft peach to electric lime. Plus, the bold, vivid ink is super quick drying, water resistant, and permanent – so no matter what they’re decorating they can make their mark.

Indigo Marble Notebooks

Hobbry Spiral Notebooks – From $14.95 @ Indigo
Swoon. Gone are the days of plain ol’ 5 Star notebooks that I’d decorate with random stickers – enter these gorgeous, marble-inspired books that make a statement while still being totally functional. While they’re certainly a little pricier, an investment in a nice notebook might be worthwhile for a subject they’re either super into – or super reticent about. Honestly there are dozens of cool / cute options for teens and tweens to inspire them to think about more than just their first day of school ensemble this September.


Back to Back Prize

Now I’ve got a super awesome prize package that will make a child or two (and their parents) supremely happy. You could win:

  • 2x L’il Critters Vitamins
  • 2x Arm & Hammer Kid’s Spinbrushes
  • Mr. Sketch Scented Twistable Gel Crayons (6-Pack)
  • InkJoy Gel Pens
  • Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers

Here’s how to enter for your shot at nabbing it all!

1) First & foremost: you must be a subscriber to the Canadian Gift Guide to enter this giveaway. It’s as simple as finding ‘The Gift of Gab’ box in the righthand column and dropping in your email or clicking follow. Then leave me a comment below by September 19, 2016, telling me your favourite back-to-school gift idea from this post.

2) Entries are limited to one per person / per email address / per household (or more if you score bonus entries). A random draw will be conducted on or around September 20, 2016 to select the winner, who will have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen in their place.

3) Entries are limited to Canadians that have reached the age of majority in their province. Quebec is not eligible for this promotion.

4) Bonus Entry: Follow Mr. Sketch on Twitter and Tweet about this giveaway,tagging them + me (@cdngiftguide), linking back to this post. Share your Tweet link in a separate comment below.

5) Bonus Entry #2: Follow Sharpie Canada on Twitter and Tweet about this giveaway,tagging them + me (@cdngiftguide), linking back to this post. Share your Tweet link in a separate comment below.

6) Bonus Entry #3: Follow Papermate on Twitter and Tweet about this giveaway,tagging them + me (@cdngiftguide), linking back to this post. Share your Tweet link in a separate comment below.

196 Responses to “Back to Back”
  1. Elena says:

    My daughter loves Mr. Sketch scented markers.

  2. Tom D. says:

    I like the PaperMate InkJoy pens. So colourful.

  3. aketch says:

    Oh, I love the Bento boxes!

  4. Karen says:

    Love the Spinbrushes. Anything to get kids to brush more!

  5. DebP says:

    The Fjallraven Kanken backpacks would be my choice

  6. SandyS says:

    A pack of 24 Sharpest will make fabulous art for my students in a new style of artistic medium that everyone will have success at.

  7. katydidit21 says:

    I really like the Fjallraven Kanken backpacks and the 24 pack of Sharpies.

  8. aclily19 says:

    I like the backpack (Fjallraven Kanken Backpack – $85 @ Little Burgundy) although which colour. That’s a hard choice.

  9. Leah says:

    Love the bento boxes! Great for a stylish litterless lunch!

  10. Christina D says:

    My most favourite idea is the bento box! Those are so ideal for students, my daughter would be thrilled, but knowing her all of hear things are great! Even the gummies! I also love the Kate spade Agenda (for myself Hahaha)

  11. yvonne says:

    i love the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers not only are they perfect for school but for crafting too!

  12. I like the Fjallraven backpacks — classic design and they look like they’re great quality!

  13. CLC says:

    I’d love the coloured Sharpies because they are such good markers.

  14. Heather Swanson says:

    I like the Papermate gel pens

  15. Jennifer L. says:

    I love those Sharpie markers.

  16. Amy M says:

    Mr Sketch scented CRAYONS??? Who knew? Love this idea! I had the markers growing up, and a kid in my class insisted on tasting every single colour. Even after the first few “tasted like marker”, he kept trying the rest. Not the brightest marker in the box that one.

  17. Amy M says:

    Sorry I fixed my Sharpie tweet (this one has the link to the contest)

  18. Amy M says:

    Sorry I fixed my Mr Sketch tweet (this one has the link to the contest)

  19. Malti Chaitan-Mohan says:

    I really love the gel pens!

  20. Anne Derkat says:

    I would choose a backpack.

  21. Susanne C says:

    My little grandson would love a spinbrush that features Paw Patrol.

  22. Diane p says:

    Love the Fjallraven Kanken Backpack.

  23. Aimee says:

    I like the bento lunch box. I am a subscriber.

  24. SarahJ says:

    I love the backpacks!

  25. SarahJ says:

    Bonus 1

  26. SarahJ says:

    Bonus 2

  27. SarahJ says:

    Bonus 3

  28. Audrey Skinner says:

    I love the backpacks.

  29. Kevin Snyder says:

    the pens and sharpies would be great to win

  30. Chanel O says:

    My favorite back-to-school gift idea would be the Sharpies. So easy to take notes with, and the fun variety of colors makes it a little more interesting to review when studying!

  31. Joan G. says:

    One can never have enough Sharpie Permanent Markers; some for me, some for the kids and some for the grandkids.

  32. Emmy Katsis says:

    Loving the Mr. Sketch Scented Twistable Gel Crayons – so cool!

  33. Stephanie Doucette says:

    My favourite is the kate spade agenda! Definitely needed to keep myself on track this school year

  34. sophie lapierre says:

    Oh my…! What a nice giveaway ! I’m picking the SharpieColourburst Permanent Markers, thank you very much 😉

  35. Sherry K says:

    The Monbento Bento Boxes are great.

  36. Dominic cloutier says:

    Sharpies!!! Ftw

  37. gloria konelsky says:

    Papermate Inkjoy Pens

  38. abluesgirl9 says:

    The scented crayons look fun!

  39. Lori W says:

    I love the coloured Sharpies and the scented crayons

  40. Cairine says:

    I like the Papermate pens.

  41. Jodie Jones says:

    My kids would definitely love the scented markers!!

  42. Julie P says:

    I like the Kate Spade monthly agenda

  43. louise says:

    I’m already a subscriber to the Canadian Gift Guide. Iv always like the scented crayons now my kids do

  44. Kathleen L says:

    I want those Sharpie colourburst markers!

  45. carrie l says:

    I would love Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pens – or all of it!!

  46. I love spiral notebooks even though I already have so many

  47. Lucretia Flemming says:

    Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers – so many beautiful colours!!!!

  48. Melinda says:

    I love the Mr. Sketch Scented Crayons.

  49. Cairine says:

    I never got a confirmation on my email for the newsletters so I used the ‘contact us’ section then the ‘trouble activating’ section and got this message: We were unable to fetch your activation record. Are you sure you specified the email address you signed up with? I always use the same email. Am I the only one having this problem? Am I signed up or not? You need a Contact Me section to help with problems experienced by the people who watch your site. Thanks for any help you can give me. Cairine

  50. israel y says:

    I love those Sharpie markers!

  51. aly3360 says:

    My favourite gift idea is the Hobbry Spiral Notebooks. I always love having a notebook with me.

  52. Kristina Ziegler says:

    The Mr.Sketch scented markers are awesome!

  53. linnett says:

    Love the Hobbry Spiral Notebooks are nice, thanks

  54. Florence Cochrane says:

    I really like the Monbento bento boxes. My grandchildren would be happy to use them.

  55. Florence Cochrane says:

  56. Florence Cochrane says:

  57. Florence Cochrane says:

  58. Gemma says:

    The bento boxes are on my wish list!

  59. Erin McSweeney says:

    my favourite is the Fjallraven Kanken Backpack – $85 @ Little Burgundy

  60. Lisa Morrison says:

    I love the Bento boxes.

  61. Jared heatherington says:

    Love the backpack!!

  62. Donna L. says:

    I like the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers best.

  63. Gigi says:

    The young girl in me loves the Paper Mate Ink Joy pens! What’s better than taking notes in multi colours!

  64. Susan says:

    I like the PaperMate Ink Joy gel pens.

  65. Lorna Braun says:

    The backpack looks different and cool

  66. Nicole says:

    Love the Mr. Sketch scented crayons.

  67. darlene boyle says:

    the backpack in pink

  68. cheryl mclellan says:

    I love the backpacks!

  69. doreen lamoureux says:

    I love the vitamins. What a fun way to take them.
    dorcontest at gmail dot com
    Yes, I subscribe.
    Have a great day everyone 🙂

  70. FrugalFowers says:

    I LOVE the Kate spade planner and the bento boxes oh and the sharpies!!

  71. Eric Reardon says:

    Fjallraven Kanken Backpack would be my choice for a back to school gift. A good bag to carry stuff always nice to have.

  72. Julie H says:

    I am a subscriber to the Canadian Gift Guide. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE the Bento boxes!

  73. Julie H says:

    I’m not sure if my second link went thru, it told me I was posting too quickly so here it is again, just in case.

  74. darci paice says:

    love the inkmate pens, and the sharpies!!!

  75. Alison K says:

    I’m a subscriber to the Canadian Gift Guide. My favourite back-to-school gift idea from this post is the Arm + Hammer Kid’s Spinbrush.

  76. joyce s. says:

    I like the sharpie markers – they are great for school and in the summer I use them to label my kids clothes for camp!

  77. kim says:

    I love the bento box!

  78. Pam R. says:

    My favorite is the Bento box, although the gel pens are pretty cool too!

  79. Sunshine G says:

    Sharpie markers are always a hit – and those are great colours!

  80. mousecat says:

    My favourite thing on this list are the Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pens!

  81. janinevan09 says:

    my fave thing is the backpack, love it!!

  82. Kim K says:

    I like the Fjallraven Kanken Backpack

  83. krysta says:

    I love the backpack – definitely my favourite!

  84. Erin Lewis says:

    I love the Bento Boxes!

  85. I’ve got a bit of a Sharpie problem, so I’ll vote for those as my fave. Can never have too many…

  86. Lynn g says:

    papermate gel Pens!

  87. Julia H says:

    I’m already a subscriber. My favourite is the Monbento Bento Boxes….I would love one, and I’m way, way, waaaaay past the age of going back to school. I’d take it to work. I like the idea of being able to bring salad dressing or something in the little cup it comes with.

  88. Andrea Williams says:

    Already a subscriber. My favorite is the Kate Spade planner.

  89. AliKira says:

    The Sharpie markers sound amazing! I love school/office supplies!

  90. edmontonjb says:

    The Monbento bento boxes are my favorite!


  91. Edmond says:

    Good Golly Miss Molly My fave: Kate Spade planner. Thank you for the awesomeness, the contest, and generosity. 🙂

  92. Lillea says:

    Monbento bento box. Beautiful!

  93. wawi says:

    The backpacks look pretty awesome, but I LOVE those sharpie pens! I use them all the time!

  94. Debbie says:

    This would be an awesome school gift pack to win, it has a great collection of school supplies.

  95. vienna says:

    I love the Kate Spade Gold Dots 2017 Agenda

  96. Love, love, love the kate spade 2017 planner and the bento box lunch boxes! Great ideas for back to school and back to work!

  97. Caryn Coates says:

    I love the Kate Spade Gold Dots 2017 Agenda

  98. Victoria Ess says:

    I love the Kate Spade agenda!

  99. lyn212 says:

    My favorite item is the Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pens. I love writing and I love the colours.

  100. Margaret Huitema says:

    Can never have enough Sharpie Markers!!

  101. Love the papermate inkjoy pens!

  102. Linda says:

    I think the best back to school gift from this list are the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers.

  103. Juliee Fitze says:

    The best idea are the Barbie Vits to keep her healthy at school.

  104. intensev5 says:

    I really like the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers

  105. Elaine Buonsante says:

    I like the Papermate Inkjoy pens!

  106. Jessica Bleasdale says:

    Mr Sketch Scented Markers

  107. Jessica Bleasdale says:

    Shared & Followed on Twitter

  108. Jessica Bleasdale says:

    Shared and followed Sharpie on Twitter

  109. Jessica Bleasdale says:

    Followed and shared Papermate on Twitter

  110. Nicole B says:

    I love the Mr. Sketch scented crayons!

  111. Glogirl says:

    I like the Mr. Sketch Scented Crayons. What a neat product!

  112. cookie3 says:

    I love the PaperMate Ink Joy pens. They are the best

  113. Thanks iam a subscriber. LOVE the Hobbry Spiral Notebooks!!

  114. Thanks so much tweeted too!

  115. wai man says:

    i choose the PaperMate Ink Joy pens. entry pls

  116. Cathy C says:

    My grandson loves the PaperMate InkJoy gel pens.

  117. Cathy C says:

  118. tammy ta says:

    My pick for the best back to school gift from this list are the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers.

  119. Caity says:

    My favourite things are the notebook and the sharpies bc I can never afford to get these things as I waste all my money on the typical stuff

  120. bkick1 says:

    I am a fan of the backpacks. Simple yet stylish.

  121. AnnieP says:

    My fav is the Kate Spade agenda

  122. Burcu says:

    I like Kate Spade Large Gold Dots 17-Month Agenda

  123. Melody Egerton says:

    I LOVE the Monbento bento boxes… such a cute idea!!

  124. MyAn Pacholkow says:

    I love the kate Spade calendar ❤

  125. Love the marble notebooks from Indigo

  126. Lynn Clayton says:

    mr sketch my son would love this

  127. KELLY E says:

    I like the Monbento Bento boxes

  128. Sunshine G says:

    The Spinbrush would make for fewer nighttime battles!

  129. Heather Robertson says:

    The multivitamins are a great inclusion in the back to school items. I need to get back on schedule with giving these every day. Thank you!

  130. cosmicread says:

    I love the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers.

  131. Marla says:

    Subscriber 🙂

  132. Marla says:

    Subscriber 🙂 my favourite back to school gift is a cute lunch bag

  133. Marla says:

    Commented on lets boogie post

  134. Jay alnoor says:

    okay wow I really need these. Would be a lovely gift for the kids

  135. joyce s. says:

    I like the sharpie markers as they would get well used.

  136. josie says:

    I LOVE THE GEL PENS! I need more!!

  137. Lisa S says:

    I love anything Mr Sketch or Sharpie but I think I am all about the backpacks and bento boxes in this post. Great picks!

  138. Jennifer Ouellette says:

    Mr.Sketch scented markers seem so colorful!

  139. Laura F. says:

    My favourite back to school gift idea is the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers. I would have fun with those!

  140. kittypride says:

    I really like the imagination potential of the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers!

  141. Lee L says:

    I love the idea of the new, colorful Sharpies and the gel pens too! 🙂 Thanks for the giveaway!

  142. Rosanne Robinson says:

    In answer to your question on your favourite back-to-school gift idea from this post:
    My grandson would LOVE the Mr. Sketch Scented Twistable Gel Crayons (6-Pack), because they’re unique and he’d have fun making pictures & colouring with them.

  143. Maryanne says:

    I love the backpacks!

  144. Marla says:

    Commented on hot plate

  145. Kim K says:

    I love the Bento boxes, very nice!

  146. Allison Matz says:

    So many great ideas but I really like the Kate Spade agenda.

  147. I love the Fjallraven Kanken Backpack

  148. Dawn Gordon says:

    I love those lunch boxes
    Very cool and they look super durable

  149. Robyn Bellefleur says:

    My favorite is the Monbento Bento Boxes.

  150. Robyn Bellefleur says:

    I follow Mr. Sketch and tweeted:

  151. Robyn Bellefleur says:

    I follow Sharpie Canada and tweeted:

  152. Robyn Bellefleur says:

    I follow Papermate and tweeted:

  153. Nicky says:

    I love the Sharpie ColourBurst markers!

  154. krysta d says:

    My favourite back to school gift idea is the package of Sharpie ColourBurst markers!

  155. Angela Mitchell says:

    I like the Sharpie ColourBurst Permanent Markers. I’ve never seen those markers before but I love the colour selection.

  156. Caryn Coates says:

    I love the backpacks

  157. Betty Spry says:

    I think the Hobbry Spiral Notebooks are awesome, gives style to everyday boredom

  158. Betty Spry says:

  159. Wanda Bee says:

    My favourite is the Hobbry Spiral Notebooks.

  160. leah e says:

    I love the monbento bento boxes. So cool and stylish!

  161. Kimberley Hamilton says:

    I love the agenda – a perfect gift and so cute that I might buy one for myself as well!

  162. I love the colourful sharpies! They would come in handy around here.

  163. Christine D says:

    I love the Monbento Bento boxes. They look so cute!

  164. Brenda Lacourciere says:

    my favorite is the scented markers

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