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The 5th of November marks ‘Bonfire Night’ also known as ‘Guy Fawkes night. On this night, people across the nation celebrate the foiled Gunpowder plot in 1605 where Guy Fawkes and his group of provincial English Catholics attempted to assassinate King James I, by blowing up the Houses of Parliament using 36 barrels of gunpowder.

This event is celebrated by lighting bonfires, letting off fireworks, and burning the effigies of Guy Fawkes. It’s one of the most exciting times of the year when family and friends get together to enjoy the crackling bonfires and firework exhibitions whilst enjoying some traditional bonfire sweets such as caramel apples.  

Unfortunately, Bonfire night has been criticised on countless occasions due to its detrimental impact on the environment. Even the big UK supermarket, Sainsbury’s has stopped selling fireworks due to the negative effect on the environment.

One thing to keep in mind this bonfire night is how can you make it more environmentally friendly. In this blog, we’ve put together some tips for a more sustainable Bonfire Night.  

Photo by Peter Fazekas: https://www.pexels.com/photo/photo-of-bonfire-placed-on-high-ground-in-front-of-city-under-cloudy-sky-997127/

How to have a greener bonfire night  

1) Try eco-fireworks or eco-sparklers

Traditional fireworks are not eco-friendly as they are made up of charcoal and sulphur fuel, a perchlorate oxidiser to help with burning, with additions of binders, colourants and propellants. Fireworks, especially on bonfire night can cause extensive air pollution in a short amount of time, leaving metal particles, dangerous toxins, harmful chemicals and smoke in the air for hours and days. Some of the toxins never fully biodegrade or disintegrate.

Eco-friendly fireworks are readily available on the market and are perfect for bonfire night. Using nitrogen-based fuel they produce less pollution in the atmosphere, whilst ensuring your display goes off with a traditional bang! Although, please keep in mind that eco-friendly fireworks can be hard to find and can be expensive due to the lack of technology.

More sustainable alternatives include:

You could even opt for sparklers instead, so long as you handle and dispose of them safely. Dunk the finished sparklers in a bucket of cold water or sand, then pop them in general waste when completely cool.

Photo by Jonas Von Werne from Pexels: https://www.pexels.com/photo/people-watching-fireworks-display-during-nighttime-2893330/

2) Use only clean, dry and natural materials for your bonfire   

When lighting a Bonfire in your garden, it is easy to be unaware of what material you burn.

Many use Bonfire night as an opportunity for disposing of household waste, unaware of the toxic fumes it emits which can pollute our environment and can be hazardous to our health. For this reason, it is illegal in the UK to burn most types of waste, especially things like plastic, rubber, accelerants and aerosols. You could potentially face a fine of up to £50,000 for illegally managing waste.

If you do plan on burning a bonfire this year, be sure to select clean items, non-commercial waste, and only small amounts of untreated wood, paper, leaves, and cardboard. To reduce the amount of smoke the bonfire creates, try burning only clean, dry and natural materials. Likewise, you can use dry waste and garden waste you can also try to make small changes by using leaves instead of fire starters.

Furthermore, avoid buying any man-made wood as they generally contain plastics, oils or chemicals to keep them looking nice. Hence, burning these plastics and chemicals is not great for the environment. Don’t forget at the end of the night, to douse the fire with water or soil instead of leaving it to switch off on its own, as this allows smoke and chemicals to hang in the air.

3) Avoid lanterns, as their wireframes can harm wildlife and livestock 

It is generally believed that paper lanterns are a great green alternative to fireworks. In reality, paper lanterns use heat like a hot air balloon to stay in the sky consisting of a paper-covered wire or bamboo frame. Even though these do not produce a lot of toxic chemicals in our atmosphere, they do cause an abundance of litter. To be more specific, lanterns are rarely picked up when they hit the ground, they are usually just left to be admired in the staring skies. Therefore, the wires found in the lanterns can trap and harm animals.

The RSPCA states even ‘biodegradable’ paper lanterns are not safe to use because materials like bamboo are used instead of wire but can take decades to degrade, and there’s still a fire risk.

Photo by Lacey Day: https://www.pexels.com/photo/sky-lanterns-on-mid-air-625789/

4) Animal Awareness  

Bonfire Night may provide fun for millions across the nation, but the animal community tends to be less than thrilled. Each year, countless numbers of small mammals like hedgehogs and even pets take shelter in pyres (mistaking them for nests), only to be trapped when the flames rise. 

This can be avoided by thoroughly checking your bonfire location and fireworks before you light them up. Moreover, it is prudent to create a barrier around the site with harmless wire to make it harder for them to access the area.  

5) Attend a public firework display or bonfire

Speaking previously of animal welfare, fireworks on bonfire night UK can be particularly stressful for pets and livestock, who become frightened and upset by the unfamiliar disturbances. Attending organised displays will consolidate the disturbances to fewer areas.

Furthermore, to minimize the community's negative impact on the environment on bonfire night it is suggested to attend communal bonfires or public firework displays. Ask Alexa “Where is the nearest bonfire to me? “.

Photo by Rachel Claire from Pexels

Conclusion

So there you have it, Doodle Bag’s top tips for enjoying a more sustainable Bonfire Night. It may not be the most environmentally-friendly celebration on the calendar, but by paying a little closer attention and making some smarter choices, you can minimise your impact on the planet. Don’t forget to stay safe and have fun!

Need personalised goody bags for your Bonfire night celebrations? Then, look no further. Doodle Bag explore our large range of eco-friendly textile products including tote bags, drawstring bags, aprons and many more which can be personalised with your logo or design.

Introduction  

Birthday parties, anniversaries, family BBQs, baby showers...all can be great opportunities to create beautiful memories with your loved ones. However, parties can be very wasteful and can have a negative impact on the environment. Thus, hosting a sustainable party will ensure you reduce your carbon footprint. It’s also a great example to set for your children and guests, by showing them that you can still have a whole lot of fun whilst being environmentally friendly! Here are five tips that can help you create eco-friendly parties to enjoy summer without damaging the environment. Ranging from eco-friendly party bags to eco-friendly party decorations.  

garden party
Photo By Ksenia Chernaya
  1. Digital Invites  

Print invitations are so 2016! Now it’s time to move to the digital side.  Party plan with ease by creating an online invitation on online platforms like Canva ( add link) and share it with your guests via email or text.  However, if you are keen on printing invitations then opt for invites from recycled paper or seeded/plantable paper, which are more environmentally friendly options.  

  1. Shop Locally 

When shopping for all your party essentials, especially food and drinks, make sure you shop from small and local businesses. By shopping locally, you are reducing your carbon footprint on the earth. If you must ship materials or travel far, the release of CO2 emissions will increase from your vehicle. Shopping locally also allows you to support the local economy. For instance, you can make refreshing punch with local organic fruit.  Likewise, you can supply alcohol from a local brewery by purchasing a keg or growler. Empty growlers also serve as decorative vases filled with flowers for your centerpieces. Another helpful sustainable party planning tip is to make a shopping list to avoid overconsumption and waste.  

woman picking out vegetables from an outdoor market
Photo by Askar Abayev
  1. Reusable Decorations 

Decorations are one of the main polluting elements of a party since most people buy disposable and themed decorations that they cannot use again. Therefore, it is vital to be more conscious of how hosting a party impacts the earth through the decorations we are using.  The first step is to check what you already have, and see if you could DIY any decorations. The most sustainable party décor is the one you already have! Alternatively, you borrow them from friends or family. For example, you can create fabric bunting, flower garlands, or table clothes ( add links to DIY Pinterest). Another awesome DIY idea is to create your banner by painting on reclaimed wood. These are great examples of eco-party decorations.  

Balloons, confetti, and streamers are a big NO as they are very wasteful and non-biodegradable. Instead, focus on more eco-friendly party supplies. This includes candles, table centerpieces, string lights, lamps, candles, flowers from your garden, or even decorating the cold jar and colorful bottles. If you need to buy new decorations opt for general decorations, which you can use all year round. Party plan like a pro and shop for second-hand decorations from Facebook Marketplace or at charity shops. You can also check out The Party Kit Network, where you can rent party kits and find sustainable party decorations.

  1. Eco-party essentials  

Whatever the occasion, whether it is a sustainable bachelorette party or a sustainable Christmas party it is prudent to avoid plastic cutlery and associated products at all costs. This includes paper or plastic plates, napkins, straws, cutlery, or cups. Hence, opt for biodegradable or reusable cutlery or even ask your guests to bring their own. In addition to this, you could search for wooden platters, plates and cups made from silicone, bamboo, metal or even coconut fibres that are more sustainable party plates and alternatives.  

Another helpful tip for your eco-friendly party is to serve finger food, which doesn’t require any kind of utensils, napkins, and even plates. Furthermore, choose biodegradable tableware and instead of paper napkins, cut squares of fabric to use as serviettes and have a washing station nearby with a little tub of water and soap.   

a close up of people toasting drinks at a party
Photo by Alesia Kozik
  1. Eco-goody bag  

Keep the sustainable party theme going, even when the party is over! Give your guests lovely eco gifts to remember your sustainable party. Some great eco-party bag ideas include sustainable products such as reusable straws, utensils or zero waste and vegan skincare or other bathroom products. Moreover, you can add all these eco goodies to a reusable cotton tote bag, which can be personalised with the name and date of the party or any other text or design you like. The ultimate eco party bag! At Doodle Bag we offer a wide range of personalised eco-friendly products including zip purses, cotton tote bags in different shapes, cushion covers and even t-shirts. These are great for eco-party bag fillers.  

man holding tote bag with a personalised logo on it

Conclusion  

I hope these sustainable party ideas help you as you plan your next green or zero-waste party. Hosting parties can be very fun, but it would be an even more memorable event if you keep the party’s carbon footprint to a minimum. Leaving nothing, but good party vibes!  

It’s Yorkshire day today, a special day of the year to celebrate all things Yorkshire. Doodle Bag is a proud Yorkshire company based in Sheffield, UK. A wonderful region is known for its green scenery, picturesque villages and friendly locals. Yorkshire is also home to medieval castles and abbeys and beautiful natural parks and coasts. There’s a reason why it is also known as “God's Own Country”. In this month’s blog, we will be highlighting some of the most beautiful and  Instagrammable locations in the Yorkshire region.  

Robin Hood’s Bay 

Located on the coast of the North York Moors, Robin Hood’s Bay is a charming seaside village with breathtaking views. Robin Hood’s Bay history dates back to 3000 years ago. The village was built in between two cliffs and includes traditional cottages, which you can rent to stay overnight. This is the perfect location to relax and enjoy peaceful coast walks especially dog walks.   The village is known for its historical connection with the legend Robin Hood. To be more specific, it is believed that Robin Hood came to the village to fend off the pirates who came to steal the fisherman’s boats. Other highlights include the historic Church of St Stephen, Robin Hood Bay Museum, the Old Coastguard Station (managed by National Trust), and the Falling Foss Waterfall and Tea Garden.  Explore the seaside, shops and cafes on the beachfront and discover shipwrecks along the coast. 

Photo by National trails

Flamborough Head coast and cliffs 

Next on our list is the stunning coast of Flamborough Head which has 8-mile-long white cliffs. It is situated between the Filey and Bridlington bays of the North Sea, the ridges also provide nesting for thousands of seabirds and especially the famous puffins. The best place to see puffins on the UK's mainland coast is at the North Landing reserve. Flamborough's famous white chalk cliffs include a dramatic bay with a cave, rock pools and arches, and a beautiful lighthouse! It has two lighthouses - one active, and one dating to 1674, making it the oldest serving complete lighthouse in England. A great location for some amazing scenic photos and to spot some adorable puffins! 

Knaresborough  

Knaresborough can be found near Harrogate. This beautiful medieval market town. It’s mostly known for its very striking viaduct which towers over Nidd Gorge as well as being home to the historically famous prophetess, Mother Shipton. The local folk story entails that the well at Mother Shipton’s cave used to turn everyday objects into stone. A very spooky location with an uncanny history. Moreover, in Knaresborough visitors can stroll through the medieval streets of the village and enjoy the views from the bridge overlooking the River Nidd. Some of the best things to do in Knaresborough include visiting Knaresborough Castle, built-in 1100, and exploring the Bebra Gardens and Knaresborough Square. The historic town has also become increasingly popular because of the rowing boats, which is a very popular activity during the summer.

Fountains Abbey  

 One of Yorkshire’s most historic gems and a wonderful UNESCO World Heritage Site near Ripon in North Yorkshire. The ruins of Fountains Abbey are truly some of the oldest abbey ruins in the country and are defiantly a location worth visiting. Owned by the National Trust and located in a secluded valley, this is one of the largest and best-preserved ruined Cistercian monasteries in England.   It was founded in 1132,  as well as its historical importance as it was one of the wealthiest monasteries in England until it was dissolved by Henry VIII in 1539. In the area, one can also visit the wonderful Georgian formal water gardens and a medieval deer park. The ideal place to get the perfect picture!  

Image from Cultural map  

Staithes  

The seaside village of Staithes is a popular place to visit in North Yorkshire and was once one of the largest fishing ports in the Northeast of England.  The fishing village of Staithes is located on a hillside in the Scarborough borough of North Yorkshire. Furthermore, Staithes is filled with delightful 18th-century cottages and narrow cobbled streets. The port is indeed very picturesque in addition to this most local restaurants serve freshly caught fish meals. The village of Staithes is also the village where Captain Cook lived and worked. Thus, visitors can see a complete replica of the shop he worked in, and visit the museum about his life and voyages. Overall, Staithes is a great place for exploring Yorkshire’s cliff paths, pool-dipping, and fossil hunting too. A must-see location!  

North york photography  

Conclusion 

I hope this post has shown you the wonders that Yorkshire can offer and will encourage you to visit these beautiful locations. Yorkshire is the most historic county in England, and its deep-rooted English history makes Yorkshire unique. 

During your travels don’t forget to take your Doodle Bag cotton tote bag!  

Happy Yorkshire Day!  

5 Most Instagrammable places in Yorkshire, England 2022

Introduction  

 

Did you know that 17,000 plastic bottles are bought every minute and 500 billion plastic bags are used each year?  

That’s a lot of unnecessary plastic waste. 

 

Take part in Plastic Free July 2022 by hosting your own Plastic Free Picnic! From pre-prepared sandwiches and snacks that come packaged in plastic; to disposable plates, cups and cutlery – picnics have the potential to generate a lot of waste.  So here are some simple and easy tips to make your picnic as plastic-free as possible.  

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Plastic Free July® (@plasticfreejuly)

 

Use leftovers or make something fresh at home 

 

If you have leftovers at home already, a picnic is a perfect opportunity to use them up and share dishes with friends – simply take them along in a container. Likewise, instead of buying ready-prepared sandwiches, cakes and dips for your picnic, take the opportunity to whip up some recipes yourself. You could also encourage your friends to do the same. For instance, you can mix your leftover vegetables or meat with pasta to make a fresh delicious picnic meal. Moreover, you can head to a bakery for a freshly baked baguette and fill empty glass jars with homemade houmous; bake some cakes or cookies. In addition to this, you can visit your local zero waste shop and pick up some loose fruit and vegetables to nibble on during your picnic.  

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Plastic Free July® (@plasticfreejuly)

Plastic-Free Preparations.  

Reusable products and containers are an easy way to keep litter at home. For example, you can store absolutely anything in either Tupperware or glass containers. You can carry all your picnic essentials in a reusable cotton tote bag or basket. Doodle Bag offers a variety of tote bags that are picnic-friendly. This includes our beautiful natural jute bag.  You can use a blanket or bed sheet as a picnic mat. Additionally, you can cut up old clothes and use those as napkins instead of using disposable napkins.  

 

Use reusables  

Your motto for your next picnic should be reduce, reuse, recycle!  Hence, it would be a great idea to encourage all the picnic attendees to bring their reusables with them to the picnic. You can bring drinks in reusable bottles and flasks.  Another way to minimise plastic waste is to bring reusable cutlery including cups and plates as Plastic cutlery is difficult to recycle and is mostly only used once, making it extremely wasteful.  A good alternative for plastic cups is reusable mason jars. Not thirsty anymore? You can also put a lid on it! Similarly, avoid plastic straws. A recent study has shown that as many as 8.3 billion plastic straws pollute the world’s beaches, so it’s time to ditch them for good. Finally, Once, your picnic is over a great way to package all the leftovers (which hopefully there are not a lot of! ) in beeswax wraps is to keep them clean and fresh.  

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Doodle bag (@ilovedoodlebag)

 

 

Conclusion  

 

We hope you have found these plastic-free tips useful. It’s time to go outside with a blanket, and a basket full of delicious food, and have yourself an amazing plastic-free picnic.  

 

Celebrate Plastic Free July, by ditching your plastic bags and investing in eco-friendly 100% natural cotton tote bags, which can be personalised with your logo or design. View our full range here 

 

 

Can you believe it? We are approaching the end of the academic year. A whole year of classes is nearly complete. It seems like just yesterday when we sent our children to school, with an uneasiness about what this year would entail. We’ve made it through, and it is nearly over!  

If you are looking for end of year teacher gifts that are fun, inspirational, and ethical then look no further. We have compiled a glorious list of the best teacher gifts and product ideas that your teacher will just love. Now is the time to show them how much you appreciate them. 

The Perfect Summer Accessory  

We can safely say that a teacher’s best friend is their bag… something durable yet fashionable to carry all their teaching essentials. For this reason, it must be spacious enough to store books, stationery, and emergency coffee supplies all in one place.  

If you buy a bag, go for an eco-friendly, ethically sourced bag. As this guarantees the bag will be used and used again. Here at Doodle Bag, we offer a myriad of textile products, which can be personalised with the teacher’s name or your child’s personal message for the teacher. No matter how big or small when something is personalised it can make a huge impact. So why not make that leap with a customised gift.  

Let’s take a deeper dive into how you can personalise our tote bags, cushions, and pencil cases.  

Personalised tote bag  

Add a personal touch with an eco-friendly cotton tote bag. This is both a practical and thoughtful gift, not only will this be great for the classroom but for the teacher's travels too. You could add a joke, name, image, quote or anything you desire to show your appreciation for your teacher. When we personalise gifts we add an extra touch, of gratitude which shows that you care.  You can even try personalising our large premium jute bag, which safely fits in a laptop as well.  

woman holding bag with the word "worlds best teacher"

Personalised cushion  

Add your design or print on a cushion. Perfect as a display piece or back support for your teacher. Not only is this 100% sustainable cushion practical but it looks great too. It can be a decoration piece in the home or an added piece to the sofa. Doodle Bag offers Fairtrade & GOTS organic cushion covers, both rectangle and square shape which are perfect for all the eco-conscious teachers out there.   

Fairtrade-and-Organic-Rectangle-Cushion-Cover with the words "your design here"

Personalised pencil case

Create a teacher survival kit, with a personised design on one of our pencil cases. Add a few craft/stationery supplies which will complement the pencil case. If you are not feeling stationary add something sweet or savoury, it can be a surprise. Our canvas cotton pencil cases are the ideal size for carrying stationary, makeup, cards and money.

Design your own eco-friendly 100% natural pencil case today.

pencil case

Conclusion  

Whether it's the end of a term or the end of the school year it's always nice to show your appreciation for your teacher and our range of thank you gifts for teachers let you do exactly that. 

Have you found this blog useful in deciding what end of year thank you teacher gift you would like to give? We hope you make sustainable decisions, where personalisation is not compromised.  

 

Start designing here 

 

To check out any products mentioned in the blog and more follow the link here.

 

This article will go through Biodegradable products, innovations and you can minimise your waste.

What does biodegradability mean?

Biodegradable means: Decomposition by bacteria, living organisms and microbes thereby avoiding pollution. No ecological harm was caused during the process.

Plastic Trail

Plastic first starts as crude oil,(fossil fuel), Which is then processed and heated into what we use every day, plastic. Plastics have been an integrated part of human consumption. Which in turn impacts the environment – including marine life, animals, the ocean and the land.

When we say biodegradable we want an eco-friendly solution to unsustainable products. We want to know that we are not leaving a plastic trail behind us.

What role do you play as a consumer?

Consumers and the products we buy

As a consumer when purchasing products we don’t think about the packaging or bag but rather the product itself, leaving a wasteful outlook. Once we have the product the packaging, bag is disregarded until the next time when the plastic bag has been bought again.

Have you thought about what you are buying? Are the packaging and products biodegradable?

Once single-use plastics start to decompose they leave microplastics in their trail. Which then enters the oceans, lands, food chain and water supply. Which in the end affects us as we are eating and drinking plastic contaminated products.

Have you thought about your plastic consumption?

It takes 1,000 years for a plastic bag to degrade in a landfill. Plastic bags do not break down completely but they instead become microplastic that absorb toxins and continue to pollute the environment. Most of us count it lucky to live to 100 but yet we are leaving a carbon footprint behind that will be here for future generations, 10x longer than we will live for.

If you look in your kitchen, could you count more than 10 items that have biodegradable packaging on them? This is pure proof that plastic has become an integrated part of human consumption.scrabble block spelling out "consume less image"

Products and innovations you can use that are biodegradable

From household items to Sanitary products, these products are ‘biodegradable’.

Source

To conclude, as you can see, the article states new and innovative products that are biodegradable. You can live in a more eco-friendly way without the cost to the earth. Now, what product are you going to swap? Toothbrush? Toilet roll? For me, it has to be a plastic bag for a cotton tote bag.

There’s a general misconception that recycling is complicated and very time-consuming. This False! Recycling is an easy practice that can be incorporated into your daily routine. It’s the least we could do to protect the environment. This practice can become even easier when you familiarize yourself with the official recycling symbols that can be found on products. Therefore, we created this guide that explains all the major recycling symbols, including the plastic recycling symbols so you can become a recycling superhero!  

The on-pack recycling label (or OPRL) 

These labels will tell you whether the packaging is likely to be collected for recycling or if you can take it to your local recycling centre. You can find these labels on all sorts of packaging - from soft drink cans to bread bags, fruit packages and plastic toiletry bottles. If you are not sure about an item, then enter your postcode into the Recycling Locator to find out what you can put in your recycling bin at home, where your nearest recycling locations are and how to recycle specific items such as mobile phones and textiles. It is vital to note that not all packaging will have a recycling label, but this doesn't mean you can't recycle it.  

Recycle 

This label indicates that the packaging is collected by 75% or more of local authorities across the UK. The most common item with this label is plastic bottles. 

Recycle | Rinse 

Rinsing packaging, for example, food trays, ensure that any food doesn’t contaminate other materials, particularly if they are collected together with paper.  

Recycle | Rinse | Lid/Cap on 

Caps and lids under 40mm in diameter are too small to be captured for recycling. If you see this label, replacing the lid on the bottle ensures that it is recycled with the main packaging component. 

Don't Recycle | Remove Sleeve/Film  

You may see this label on packaging where film or liners can be easily removed via a strip without the usage of tools such as knives, pair of scissors etc. Most commonly, there are clear instructions on how to do so, e.g. “Peel here”. 

Plastic Resin Recycled Codes 

There are several types of plastic, and some facilities in the UK require the plastic to be separated before collection since each type of plastic needs to be disposed of in a slightly different way. 

A shaded Mobius loop, with a number inside ranging from 1 to 7 and a letter code, indicates the type of plastic the packaging is made from. The kind of plastic available are; 

  1. PET or PETE (Polyethylene Terephthalate): Tubs and drink bottles are made from this plastic. It is the most widely used form of plastic. In fact, around 70% of all plastic bottles and containers in the United Kingdom are made from PETE and are recycled.
  2. HDPE (High-density polyethene): Shampoo, Detergents, milk/juice bottles, cable insulation and toys. They are widely recycled. 
  3. PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride): Commonly found in clear food wraps (Clingfilm), toys, lining. Its logo usually has a V below the symbol. PVC is not recyclable in normal collections.
  4. LDPE (Low-Density Polyethylene): It is used in carrier/bin bags, toys and general packaging. it is evident in plastic wrap and bags, and six-pack rings. These can now be recycled at local supermarkets or recycling facilities. 

  5. PP (Polypropylene): It is found in toys, automobile products, and lab equipment. PP plastics are often used to create packagings, such as plastic tubs and containers, or drinks cartons. It can also be used to create furniture. This type of plastic can be recycled. 

  1. PS (Polystyrene), is used to create plastic utensils, CD jewel cases, and foam. Polystyrene is sometimes referred to as Styrofoam and is used for packaging, to protect fragile items from getting damaged. Due to the mixture of compounds, these plastic types are not generally recycled in the UK.

  1. Other (O) means everything else, like nylon, acrylic, or fibreglass. This category includes items such as fibreglass and acrylic plastic. Similar to number 6, these plastics are also difficult to recycle. 

Other symbols 

The following symbols can be found on a variety of packaging and explain whether or not an item can be recycled, how to dispose of the item, or if it's made of recycled material. 

The Green Dot 

The green dot is a symbol that indicates that the producer has contributed to the recycling and recovery of the packaging material. It does not necessarily mean the material has been recycled or is recyclable. 

Tidyman 

The Tidyman symbol was introduced as part of a UK initiative ‘Keep Britain Tidy’ which aimed to remove waste from the streets. It doesn't relate to recycling but is a reminder to be a good citizen, disposing of the item most appropriately.  

Compostable 

The products or packaging with this symbol indicate that they can be composted. This could include food or garden waste as well as certain types of packaging – which you can dispose of via composting. On some occasions, a slight variation of this logo will inform you whether this can be composted at home or a specialist facility 

Paper, card and wood 

This symbol signifies that the product has been approved by the Forest Stewardship Council (FCS), meaning that it is produced in a way that is deemed environmentally friendly. It typically features products made from paper, cardboard and wood. 

Waste Electricals 

Waste electrical items, such as household appliances, mobile phones and IT equipment, bearing this symbol indicate that they can be recycled. 

 

Did you know that at Doodle Bag we also offer lovely Recycled Tote Bags - have a look at them here 

Recycling is essential for a clean, healthy environment; that's why it is vital to have a good understanding of the recycling symbols and what each one represents. We hope this blog helps you master your recycling skills!  

Don’t forget that your local council site has information on what can and can’t be recycled locally. They may also have other materials, like calendars, that contains this information, so make sure to check it out.

The Cambridge dictionary defines sustainability as the quality of causing little or no damage to the environment and therefore able to continue for a long time. Likewise, throughout the years, we have all been taught the three main Rs sustainability; reduce, reuse and recycle. However, in the most recent years, environmentalists have campaigned for the addition of a few other significant Rs including refuse, repair and rot.  

So, while the 3 Rs have been a valuable motto for consuming in a more environmentally conscious way, the 6 Rs go a step further towards living zero-waste to limit our impact on planet earth and its resources.  Now, let’s go through each R one by one to understand why it is important to RE-think sustainability.  

 

6 R's of sustainability  upside down pyramid graph

  1. Refuse

The first step is to refrain from purchasing things you do not need or single-use products. Say no to single-use bags, packaging, cups, straws and so on, and get into the habit of bringing along your own reusable replacements. In addition, refusing products such as straws or single-use plastic bags sends a message to shops, restaurants and businesses that fewer of these items need to manufacture altogether. By refusing items, the demand for certain material goods will decrease. Moreover, it is vital to establish some key considerations before purchasing a product such as the quality, the packing, the company’s ethics, environmental and social effects etc. 
 

Another big issue is impulse buying. Putting an end to impulse buying is very difficult and requires a lot of self-discipline and self-control. Nevertheless, a good tactic is to ask yourself “Do I really need this?”. This tactic usually helps consumers to stop buying things they don’t need. Basically, refuse to pay money for something that would end up generating more waste. 

 

  1. Reduce

The next step is to reduce your consumption! From fashion to food, slowing down our pace of consumption, and buying and using only what we need to reduce our carbon footprint. Plastic is a material that is difficult to recycle and for that reason, consumers are switching to a low waste lifestyle. Your carbon footprint is measured by your lifestyle and regular activities that result in greenhouse gas emissions. Some of the most common examples of these lifestyle factors and activities include: 

The idea is simple: consume less, waste less. 

scrabble blocks spelling out "consume less image"

  1. Reuse

The third step of the 6Rs is about reusing what you’ve already got rather than buying new items straightaway. This R is coined with another sustainability term defined as upcycling.  

Upcycling essentially means recycling (something) in such a way that the resulting product is of a higher value than the original item. Thus, any product you purchase should be reused as much as possible, even after its intended life. Ask yourself if the item can be reused in a new way. Instead of buying a replacement, reinvent it and find an alternative use.  For example, you can Use washed-out glass jars for a pen pot or to store dry food in your kitchen cupboards or wash old clothes and sheets, then cut them up and use them as cleaning rags or dusters. 

Here’s a comprehensive list of upcycling ideas to get you started.  

upcycled pots hanging on a wall

  1. Repair

 The next step requires putting on your handyman hat and repairing any broken items. Repairing what you already own is also likely to save you money in the long term, as well as doing your bit for the environment. Things like clothes are easily mended and repaired as well as everyday items around the house so you can help extend their lifespan.  

Here are five easy mending tips to help you kickstart your mending journey!  

 

  1. Recycle

Recycling means an item can be reused or reconstructed into something else. When an item can no longer be used and needs to be disposed of, always consider if the item can be recycled first. But before throwing anything away to the landfill, check this handy list to see if an item can be recycled, and where.  

Furthermore, If the item can only be recycled at the tip or a recycling bank, put it to one side and then when you have a few items ready to be recycled, take them all at once. Since recycling is a process that consumes energy, it’s further down the list of the 6Rs but is still preferable to sending items directly to landfills.   

  recycle bins for compost, recycling, and general waste

  1. Rot 

The final stage of the 6Rs to prevent is composting. You may have heard of the term ‘biodegradable’ which means being able to decay naturally and in a way that is not harmful to the environment. The easiest thing that can be composed is food and to some extent food waste. However, nowadays more and more packaging and some products are becoming biodegradable in order to minimise the negative impact on the environment. Interestingly, composting food scraps turns them into nutrient-rich soil which you can use in your garden to make your plants thrive. 

If you have a garden, setting up a compost heap is easy enough – follow this guide to find out how.  

If you don’t have a garden, check here to see if your local council collects food waste from your area. 

 man holding compost

And that’s a wRap! The 6 Rs of sustainability! Which R's are you going to incorporate into your lifestyle this year? We would love to hear your thoughts below.  

Even reusing your cotton tote bag from Doodle Bag is a great way to start your sustainability journey!

Now that the festive season is fast approaching, it’s time to start thinking about Christmas shopping for friends and family. Why not make gift-giving more personal, thoughtful, and less stressful! Here you will find a carefully curated selection of the best-personalised gifts and packaging for everyone on your holiday shopping list.  

Christmas Email Banner

Drawstring packaging 

A drawstring bag is the perfect eco-friendly gift packaging alternative. Our drawstring bags are available in three different sizes; small, medium and large either printed or unprinted. With our cotton drawstring bags, you can have a handful of custom-designed and printed drawstring bags to fill in with the most exquisite Christmas gifts for friends and family. For instance, you can use the smaller sized drawstring bag for jewellery and the larger bag for clothes, perfumes, homeware etc.  So say goodbye to wasteful wrapping this Christmas.  

 

drawstring bag christmaschristmas personalised drawstring bag

Zip purses 

Zip purses can be great gifts for storing anything really from pet toys to beauty and travel toiletries. Our zip purses can make beautiful Christmas gifts and can become extra personalised by embellishing them with the recipient's name.  Moreover, this zip purse functions as the perfect makeup bag, pencil case, favour bag, sewing kit, the list is endless. This versatile zip purse is made from heavyweight cotton canvas material that gives a premium feel and the nickel-free YKK zip is guaranteed to never fail.  Just a quick reminder, at Doodle Bag there are no minimum order quantities and you can get your bags the next day if you’re in a rush. All our bags are made from 100% natural cotton. 

 

Fairtrade-and-Organic-Toiletry-Bag_OliveJute Bags  

 

The most festive way to embellish and personalise this year’s gift is to buy a high-quality jute bag, which is our most popular bag for the Christmas period. There are two options available here. You can either give the personalised and eco-friendly jute bag as a gift itself or you can use it to put other gifts. Moreover, it is available in small, medium, or large, and in various colourways such as Christmas Green and Red. Likewise, our jute bags make the perfect Christmas hamper, where you can add large heavyweight products like wines. To be specific, our medium jute bag can carry 6 bottles of wine. All our jute bags can be personalised with a happy holiday wish, a cute message, a logo even, an image, to make the perfect Christmas gift.  

jute bag hamper

 

Christmas Stockings or Sacks  

Christmas stockings or sacks make one of the best, heartwarming, and jolly Christmas traditions. This year, you can gift your loved ones an eco-friendly and reusable stocking or sack which has plenty of space to fit any gift. Additionally, our Christmas stockings and sacks can be fully personalised with your loved one's names, nicknames or photos. Get them a lovely festive gift that they can use forever.   

personalised Christmas Christmas sack personalised

 

 

Kitchen gift set 

At Doodle Bag you can create the perfect Christmas kitchen gift set by personalising a tea towel and an apron. Both of our tea towels and aprons are available in natural and white and are made with 100% ethically sourced cotton. Regarding our high-quality aprons, they come with an adjustable neck strap and tie waistband, making them very comfortable to wear. Make the most festive gift with shiny designs, text, maybe even a recipe or your dad’s nickname. A thoughtful personalised gift that any culinary enthusiast would be happy to see under the Christmas tree. 

christmas apron

Browse our large product range of sustainable and reusable gifts and hamper bags here 

 

Happy Holidays!  

Due to multiple lockdowns over the past few yearssmall businesses across the world have faced many struggles and challengesChristmas is the biggest spending holiday of the year and what better way to spend your money than to use it to support small businesses! Our guide will help you find beautiful gifts for your loved ones and give you some tips on how to help out small businesses this holiday season. 

Support Small UK

Shop Local  

Now that there are no lockdown restrictions, you can explore all the small businesses both new and old around your area. From buying fresh doughnuts from your local bakery to buying small gifts for Christmas stockings; check out if there are any local craft fairs in the area, they will be chock-full of independent business owners selling everything from jams and chutneys to jewellery and art. You’ll be surprised at the quality of the items on offer and how much money you can save too! 

Shop Online  

Nowadays most small businesses have an online store on Etsy, Facebook and Instagram or even their very own website, which you can browse and purchase products.  This year, it seems more small businesses than ever are either launching or gaining popularity which is so wonderful to see. Another helpful tip is to search on Instagram for the hashtags; handmade, small business or shop small on social media to discover some hidden gems for Christmas gifts this year! 

Buy gift cards  

Gift cards are a great way to support a small business. Buying one to give as a gift means you will be getting more of your friends and family to shop from small businesses. This is a great idea for your local boutiques, go-to restaurants, gift shops and pet shops etc. Likewise, many small businesses are now offering the option to purchase gift cards online, saving you the trip to the store. They’re also perfect for those last-minute gifts too! 

Leave a positive review online 

This one is completely free, takes only a couple of minutes, and can be done from anywhere you are. Small businesses rely heavily on positive reviews as they are one of the best ways customers gain trust with businesses before they decide to buy their products. Share a kind note about your experience with a local business and get that feel-good vibe. Various platforms are perfect for leaving reviews such as Yelp, Google, or Facebook etc. Don't forget to add a picture with your review, as you’ll be adding more value and trustworthiness! 

Show your support on social media and share away!  

Generally, small businesses don’t have marketing budgets to promote their shops, therefore by sharing their latest tweets, Facebook posts or Instagram photos, you’ll help them to get their business out there. Another way to help small businesses for free is by showing them some love on their latest social media posts, by liking and commenting as well. Correspondingly, virtual word of mouth on social media is very effective and can drive traffic to online stores, and business owners will appreciate the extra help. So start advocating for your favourite small business by being their number one fan on social media.  

Conclusion:  

We hope you consider implementing a few of these ideas to help support your community’s small businesses this holiday season. Choosing to support a small business really does make a difference — to the local community, the economy, and of course to the business owner. 

Happy Small-Business Shopping!  

Introduction  

It’s Halloween season and it’s time to start thinking about your costume. If you are not a big fan of dressing up and spending loads of money on an expensive and over-complicated costume, then Doodle Bag has the perfect ‘costume’ for you!  

Go Simple, this Halloween by personalising your own Halloween T-Shirt.  

Can’t think of a design? We've put together some ideas for customised t-shirts for Halloween that will bring out the green-eyed monster in everyone!  

Make a scary, horror-themed t-shirt

The first thing that comes to mind for most people about Halloween is the scary stuff. So we’ll start with that first.

If you want to keep people away from you at Halloween parties, this is the perfect ‘costume idea for you. You can personalise our bags with very freaky and spooky movie characters, monsters, zombies, chainsaws, clowns, skulls, splatters, you name it! Or you can even go with the more standard t-shirt of the Skeleton Body.

Halloween Custom Idea - Skeleton

 Child-friendly Halloween-themed Shirts

Not all Halloween shirts have to be scary. There are plenty of shirts out there that don’t involve zombies, axes, etc. For younger kids and others who just want to enjoy the fall and Halloween season besides the scary stuff, there are plenty of art choices here, too.

Go with a harvest theme with pumpkins, corn stalks, and apples. For more of a fun Halloween theme, there are plenty of friendly-looking ghosts, witches, bats, cats, along with some candy clip art.

Halloween Custom Idea - Kids

 T-shirts inspired by movies

Create a personalised Halloween t-shirt this season, and shock the masses with the authenticity and ease at which you can emulate your chosen character. First of all, to the nature of the season, it would be a great idea to personalise a t-shirt according to your favourite Halloween movie. There are lots to choose from ranging from Classical Halloween movies The Addams Family, Hocus pocus, Friday the 13th, Dracula, The Corpse Bride e.t.c or even more recent ones like Paranormal Activity, The Purge, IT and many others.

Movie quotes are a great idea to get printed on your custom Halloween t-shirt. You can even embody your favourite Superhero. But be prepared you might be asked to save the world while you are off-duty!

Halloween - T-shirt Flash - superhero

 Custom Shirts for Halloween Events

Halloween is a time with many events centred around the holiday. We’re talking haunted houses, office parties, mazes, trick-or-treat events, 5k runs, etc. Most of these events have t-shirts for participants or are available for people to buy at the event. These types of shirts usually have the event name and date which makes them a great souvenir to help attendees remember the event afterwards. T-shirts also help advertise the event, especially if it is an annual occurrence, year after year.

Halloween Marathon T-Shirt

Create one or all of these custom Halloween t-shirts with Doodle Bag. No minimum order or set up fee is required, with free delivery and next day delivery.

To complete the look you can also print personalised trick or treat bags for your little ones! You could go for the tote bag or shopper bag. 

Happy Halloween 😊

Doodle Bag is participating in this year's Organic September campaign

Organic September is the UK’s largest campaign dedicated to growing the organic market. The Soil Association Certification is partnering with the Organic Trade Board and industry partners across the sector for this year’s campaign, which promises to be bigger and better than ever. 

Doodle Bag sells a wide range of Fairtrade and GOTS accredited products and are a big supporter of anything Fairtrade or Organic, and participating in the Soil’s Association Organic September campaign to raise awareness about the importance of purchasing organic products is part of our commitment.  

Organic September campaign - Nature has the answer

 

What is the Soil Association?  

The Soil Association is a membership charity campaigning for healthy, humane and sustainable food, farming and land use. It provides solutions that help people to live, eat, farm and grow with the available resources. The Soil Association wants to make sure everyone has access to food that is healthy for them and good for the environment. 

The Soil Association was founded in 1946 and today it is the UK's leading organic organisation based in Bristol and Edinburgh. Moreover, the Soil Association organic symbol is the most recognised organic symbol in the UK, and Soil Association Certification certifies over 70% of food and drinks sold in the UK. When used on food packaging, it tells you that the product is certified to high organic standards and provides an assurance of organic authenticity. Additionally, the organic symbol is a trademark of the Soil Association and protected by copyright. Only licensees are entitled to use this symbol and only in association with the organic products that are included on their licence. The organic symbol is valued by farmers, growers, processors and retailers as an important mark of their professionalism and integrity. 

 

Soil Association Logo

Why Organic September is important  

For over 10 years, every September the Soil Association launches the Organic September campaign in collaboration with the Organic Trade. Organic September is a month dedicated to celebrating all things organic. It's an annual event that encourages people to make small changes to their purchasing habits and aims to raise buyer’s awareness of buying genuinely organic products.  

Overall, the more people buy organic food, the more organic farms there are. More organic farms mean fewer pesticides and more wildlife. As a result, buying organic can help combat significant environmental elements such as climate change, support biodiversity, and protect precious water. Thus, this year’s campaign’s key message is “Nature has the answer...and the answer is organic” to showcase the strong link between organic and nature. Organic September is a key moment for organic businesses to raise awareness of the benefits of organic and the incredible efforts organic brands, farms and businesses make to support nature and wildlife and protect the planet.  

 

Doodle Bag GOTs accredited products  

GOTS is the Global Organic Textile Standard. It is the worldwide leading textile processing standard for what is the minimum expected to truly call a textile product organic. This includes; using at least 70% organic fibres, ensuring that all chemicals used, like dyes, must meet their low toxicology criteria and water treatment plants must be put in place, amongst other social criteria that must also be met. Correspondingly, products with the GOTS certification verify that the cotton used in the product has been processed from crop to completion in a completely organic way. This accreditation shows our customer’s ethical standpoint and will act as proof that the products you sell have real sustainable and environmentally friendly provenance. 

Likewise, by purchasing GOTS certified organic cotton you can be sure that the entire supply chain has been independently verified. Factory conditions, both in the UK and abroad, need to meet strict standards and GOTS processors must meet the social criteria listed on the International Labour Organisations conventions which include minimum wages, working hours, condemnation of child labour and harsh or inhumane treatment. 

Join the Organic Movement this month and every month by making more informed purchasing choices and buying organic products. Check out our Fairtrade & GOTS organic range here

Organic September logo

#GoOrganic this September by joining our #OrganicSeptember campaign on Instagram and Facebook  

Introducing Laura Williams - The Edinburgh Based Nature-Focused illustrator

Tell us a bit about yourself and your business.

I’m a Scottish Freelance Illustrator living in Edinburgh with a fascination for the natural world. I grew up in North Berwick, a wee seaside town on the East Coast of Scotland with a love for collecting and drawing small natural curiosities. This interest in nature has always provided me with ample inspiration for my artwork and it’s from this that my business blossomed.

My focus is exploring through-line, dot and pattern, highlighting the complexity of organic forms and the beauty behind the simple, no matter how small, damaged or old. For me, everything has a role to play and a purpose in this world and it is important to recognise this. My work centres on highlighting the smaller things in life, those that are perhaps cast aside or forgotten.

Over the past number of years, my work has explored conservation through endangered species, in particular insects. I created a collection called ‘Insectarium’ which captured the plight of our local insects and how much their numbers have declined in the UK. This series of work sparked me to make my first line of prints to sell online and so I opened an Etsy Shop called LauraWilliamsArtwork. Since then, my business has grown steadily, and I’ve continued to expand my product range featuring everything from pinecones, pebbles, leaves and birds.

How did you keep going and stay motivated during the Covid 19 lockdowns?

Although I live in Edinburgh, I was incredibly fortunate to spend a few lockdowns back home by the sea. Having this beautiful landscape on my doorstep was a lifeline for keeping myself motivated. I started collecting shells, driftwood, feathers, bones and seaweed and once I had a nice selection of items, I dived into the drawing. It provided me with much-needed escapism and a sense of calm from the stress that this pandemic brought. I was very lucky.

What inspires you?

Growing up by the beach has always inspired me. I love the ever-changing landscapes, the beautiful wildlife, and the drama of the sea, it’s one of my happy places. Woodlands and grasslands are another big inspiration. They are treasure troves full of interesting curiosities waiting to be discovered with endless possibilities! In addition to this, my drawing style has been heavily inspired by scientific illustrations such as those found in natural history books and field guides. Everything from geology, entomology, and botanical resources.

What does your art mean to you?

My art offers me a way of connecting with the world around me. It gives me an outlet to express and explore my creativity and inner potential, much like a second language. It is an extension of my mind and how I interpret my environment. Overall, it provides me with a rich vein of joy and sense of purpose, I would not be me without it.

What materials and techniques do you predominantly use in making your designs?

I mainly work with fine liners as they are perfect for capturing details and intricacies. One of the main techniques I have adopted is the art of stippling which involves a lengthy process of mark-making using dots. This method helps me achieve great depth and tone, building up layers and contrast resulting in a very graphic style of drawing. On occasion, I do like to dabble in coloured pencil, promarkers, gouache and watercolours when I want to inject colour into my work.

What has been your favourite artistic experience over the last 12 months? Recently I attended my first ever market which was a wonderful experience. Up until now, I have operated online through my shop and promoting myself through social media. Being able to meet customers in person and have interesting conversations about my art and nature gave me a massive boost in confidence. It was a great success.

What is your favourite product you’ve had from Doodle Bag?

I love the contrast shopping bags! They have been a big hit with my customers and offer a more sophisticated look to your traditional tote bag. They are of great quality and work perfectly with my black and white designs.

What are your future plans?

I hope to continue to build my business through Etsy and other platforms and reach a wider audience over time. I have a number of markets lined up which will help add to this growth. As well as this, I’d love to hold more exhibitions and get my work in shops.

What advice would you give new artists starting out now?

Don’t give up! I always tell myself if it’s hard to do it’s probably worth doing and I have found this has rung true on many occasions. Choosing this path isn’t easy and brings many challenges with it but if it brings you joy and a sense of purpose then stick with it, life is too short not to chase your passions.

 

 Why did you choose Doodle Bag?

When I was researching suppliers for tote bags, I was delighted to see how ethical and eco-friendly Doodle Bag was in its production process. Reducing my impact on the plant is becoming incredibly important to me so finding good suppliers associated with good labour practices, fair trade and an ethos towards a greener future was perfect for my business.

If you are interested in Laura’s work you can find her here.

Instagram: @laurawilliams_illustration

Facebook:  Laura Williams Illustration

Etsy Shop: LauraWilliamsArtwork

Find the right bag for you or your business here

Our recent blog on why you should sell tote bags if you are an independent artist

Read more about our artists here 

With ongoing uncertainty around holidays abroad, 2021 is a great year for a staycation and now is the perfect time to plan a visit to the best UK holiday destinations. Both the environment and your wallet will thank you. It is the perfect opportunity to leave the city routine life and escape to nature, where you can go for hikes, explore rocky trails and caves and take a dip in the refreshing waterfalls and lakes. In this article, we’ve listed the best green staycation destinations in the UK for 2021 and thereafter.  

Inverness, Scotland 

As the capital of the Highlands, Inverness is a very convenient location for a staycation as it includes some of Scotland’s most sublime scenery. Loch Ness is perhaps the most famous Scottish lochs is located just a short drive away. Furthermore, the UK’s largest national park, the Cairngorms, is also close by, which contains a quarter of Scotland’s forests, five of the UK’s highest mountains, 55 fantastic munros (mountains over 3,000ft), heather moorlands, lochs, castles and waterfalls. In addition to this, you can take the Jacobite steam train, aka the Hogwarts Express. The Highlands truly have it all and are full of real natural treasures. There are many accommodation options when it comes to Inverness ranging from lovely hotels to peaceful remote eco cottages

Inverness Instagram

Keswick, Cumbria 

The medieval market town of Keswick is perfect for a blissful staycation spent exploring the Lake District. Keswick was founded in the 18th century. Hence, one of Kseswick’s most famous attractions, the Castlerigg Stone Circle is up to 5,000 years old and the town’s market has been trading since the 1200s. The region’s must-see location is Derwentwater lake. From here you can hire a rowboat or take a cruise on a steamer. In this gorgeous natural area, you can spend the day hiking the eight-mile perimeter path or climb up the slopes of the nearby Skiddaw. For rainy days, there is the Pencil Museum, home to the largest colouring pencil in the world, and the Puzzling Place, filled with interactive optical illusions.  Regarding accommodation, there is a handful of lovely environmental-friendly cottages in the area you can choose from! 

Keswick Instagram

Peak District  

The Peak District is England’s first National Parks, spreading out over five counties in the North of England. The Peaks offer some of the most varied landscapes in England and includes everything from rolling hills and caves to striking rock formations as well as the best areas to hike. Moreover,  Winnat’s Pass, Chrome Hill or Derwent Edge have the most breathtaking views. Over a third of the area is protected for nature conservation as it is home to rich biodiversity, social and cultural history. Interestingly, in the Peaks you can come across red deers in the autumn, white mountain hares in winter, and the rare and enigmatic ‘mountain blackbird’ (the ring ouzel). In the heart of Peak District is located the Chatsworth House, the country house used to represent Mr Darcy’s home in the 2005 film adaptation of Pride & Prejudice. Additionally, the Peaks include the most beautiful villages with traditional pubs where you can enjoy a pint of Yorkshires finest and some great food.  Around the area, there are plentiful eco options for accommodation. 

Peak District Instagram

North Wales  

North Wales is where you'll find some of the most attractive UK holiday destinations. The Snowdonia National Park is the most popular sight in the area and offers amazing views from Mount Snowdon. You can take a ride up on the Snowdon Mountain Railway, (1,085 metres) which provides you with a panoramic view, and was voted the best in Britain. Betws-y-coed is a magnificent area that showcases Britain’s natural beauty, as it includes the scenic Gwydyr Forest and Swallow Falls. One of the most captivating local treasures is Fairy Glen (Ffos Anoddun in Welsh) which is a serene forest area featuring hiking trails and a stream with picture-perfect cascades. North Wales is the perfect location to book an eco-friendly cottage to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of North Wales. Another great attraction is the Portmeirion, the Italian-style village with colourful buildings. However, there is a fee for entering this village. 

North Wales Instagram

Cotswolds

The Cotswolds are famous for some of the most picturesque villages that you will find! Villages such as: Burford, Bourton-on-the-Water, Stow-on-the-Wold and Bibury, are one of the most photographed villages in the country. Covering 800 square miles of Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire, you can only imagine how much there is to explore - from 'England's prettiest village' Castle Combe to the gardens of Prince Charles' private residence Highgrove House. You could never run out of things to do in the Cotswolds! The Cotswold hills cover a vast area of natural beauty, historic sites, and family-friendly attractions, which makes it perfect for a memorable holiday. Some of the regions top attractions include: St James’ Church, Rollright Stones Monuments, Cotswold Water Park and Cotswold Wildlife Park. Additionally, when visiting the Cotswold you must pay a visit to the magnificent Blenheim Palace in Woodstock, a UNESCO World Heritage Site which is Sir Winton Churchill birthplace as well as visiting the ‘Venice of the Cotswolds’, Bourton-on-the-Water located next to the River Windrush. 

Cotswolds Instagram

We hope this article inspired you to book a lovely green staycation this summer. Don’t forget to take your Doodle Bag with you on holiday and take a picture & tags us on Instagram with the hashtag #DoodleYourWay  

  

You can also sign up for our newsletter to find out about all our new offers and blogs.  And if you need any help just contact us here. 

Best Vegan Restaurants in Sheffield July 2021  

As the number of people who have switched to a plant-based diet has grown massively over the past year, so has the number of restaurants which offer delicious vegan options. Here are the top venues that serve the best vegan food in Sheffield in summer 2021.  

  

Icarus and Apollo – Steel Yard 

Icarus and Apollo is an internationally inspired street food vendor of unique and sustainable plant-based meals sourced as locally to our hometown of Sheffield as possible. They usually prepare their handheld food in their unique and colourful van. Furthermore, their food menu is quite diverse offering delicious food options from across the globe from Asia to Australia and many more. They are committed to using ingredients that are fresh as well as locally and ethically sourced. Sustainability is truly at the heart of what they do. Hence, they grow most of their herbs and species on their own, harness energy through solar panels on their van and use recyclable and biodegradable packaging. Icarus and Apollo are based in the new and popular food court of Steel Yard in Kelham Island Sheffield.  

  

Icarus and Apollo Instagram

Aesthete Coffee + Kitchen, Walkey 

Aesthete Coffee + Kitchen is a breakfast and brunch hotspot based in Walkey, Sheffield. Even though they are best known for their gorgeous bespoke cakes, their brunch dishes are equally delicious. There’s plenty of choice for veggies, vegan and gluten-free. You can take your pick from house granola, berry pancakes, fusion inspired aubergine shakshuka, to bolognaise on waffles with sriracha and poached eggs. They’re dog friendly too. Aesthete is open seven days a week (9-5) for walk-ins only. The word Aesthete is defined as a person who is appreciative of and sensitive to art and beauty, and you can certainly do that at this beautiful venue

Aesthete Coffee Instagram

Pom Kitchen, Sharrow Vale 

This Australian-inspired vegetarian and vegan eatery on Sharrow Vale Road. ‘Wild Things Run Free’ is the motto of this Aussie inspired cafe, and it’s evident why. The menu is full of colourful, fresh dishes including salads, hot dogs, sandwiches and much more all served on colourful plates alongside edible flowers. They also serve a fantastic range of smoothies, coffees and milkshakes topped with a colourful sweet topping. With neon signs and pink everything, the interior and the food will provide all the inspiration you need for your next vegan meal. The perfect location to enjoy a tasty vegan meal and at a beautiful instagrammable pink venue. 

Pom Kitchen Instagram

Make No Bones, Kelham Island

Make No Bones has been serving up 100% vegan fast food since 2013, including ‘burgers’, fried ‘chicken wings’, ‘döner kebabs’, and loaded fries.  They are now based in the Old Workshop, a bar in Kelham Island and specialise in delicious vegan comfort food. This is one of the top 100% Vegan establishments in the city, as many visitors have revealed that the food is so good they can’t even tell that it’s plant-based. Regarding the venue itself, the Old Workshop is a dog-friendly bar that does craft beer and cocktails equally well. Make No Bones is a must-try for any junk food lover. 

Make No Bones Instagram

V or V Vegan and Vegetarian restaurant, Kelham Island 

Another amazing restaurant that specifically only serves vegan and vegetarian food is V or V, situated in vibrant Kelham Island. The venue functions as a coffee and brunch house by day and restaurant by night. V or V champions relaxed dining, go with a group and choose from their seasonal selection of plates. Everything is organic, top quality, and can be made plant-based. In addition to this, everything at this venue from the drinks to the furniture, to the staff uniforms, were produced in the most environmentally and sustainably possible way, making it an authentic eco-friendly venue.

V for Vegan Instagram

We hope you found our vegan Sheffield food guide useful.  Sign up for our newsletter to receive more insightful blogs like this one. 

Gift Ideas for Father's Day 2021

Father’s Day is just around the corner on the 20th of June! Treat your dad to a beautiful and personalised Father’s Day gift to show him how much you appreciate him.  We offer a range of t-shirts, aprons, tea towel, washbags and cushion covers to make practical gifts that can be customised into something beautiful and unique. Create your own design and add family photos or a special message, to make a thoughtful gift that your dad can keep forever. 

We’ve rounded up some unique Father’s Day Gift Ideas to help you choose something nice for your dad this year from Doodle Bag.  

1. For the BBQ King 

Remind your dad of how much you love him (and his cooking!) with a personalised apron, printed with special message or image. Our aprons are made of 100% cotton and include an adjustable neck strap and woven cotton waist ties, so they can be adjusted to the most comfortable fit for your dad. It’s a very useful gift that he most likely wouldn’t buy for himself and can wear it all year-round  

man wearing apron for father's day on a white background

2. Personalised T-Shirt  

One of the perfect quirky gifts for this Father’s Day to put a big smile on his face. Here’s where you can get very creative! You can personalise our t-shirts with funny memes, your dad’s favourite song lyrics or dad joke. Moreover, you can add images, map designs of your dad’s favourite locations and many more. The possibilities are endless. Design your own eco-friendly 100% natural cotton t-shirt on our website.  

3. Cushion Lover  

This is an ideal gift for a first-time dad or a pet dad. Get him a personalised cushion cover, which he can use on a cushion at work or home. Make great use of all the adorable photos you’ve got of him and his little one. Guaranteed to be a lovely cosy Father’s Day gift that any dad will remember! 

cushion for fathers day

4. Tea Towel for the Kitchen 

A unique asset to your dad’s kitchen would be a gorgeous personalised tea towel. Why not add a family photo, fun slogan, or drawing to this 100% natural cotton tea towel. Furthermore, you could add your dad’s favourite recipe or food. Our tea towels are extra absorbent and come with a hanging loop too, which is very handy around the kitchen. 

5. For the pamperer 

Put together a pamper package in a stylish wash bag. You could include some special grooming treats, such as fancy beard oil, a selection of travel aftershaves. If your dad likes to keep his bathroom products organised, a personalised travel wash bag would make the perfect practical gift.  Our wash bags can be customised with your own unique design or a special photograph.  

a wash bag with the words "Dad's shaving bag" on it

We hope these gift ideas for Father’s Day have inspired you to get him something special this year. All of our products are made from 100% natural cotton and made in factories registered with Fairtrade and SEDEX. Your product is printed from our eco-friendly print factory in Sheffield using methods which do not hard the environment. 

Introducing personalised T-shirts  

Doodle Bag now stocks t-shirts, ready to be customised with your design. Choose from 100% cotton or organic cotton, available to be printed with your images, text, and photographsAll our high-quality t-shirts are available on our website and are also eco-friendly and ethically sourced just like the rest of our products. Read on for more details about our new t-shirts.   

Doodle Bag T-shirts  promo image

How to personalise your new t-shirt?  

Design your own t-shirt using our design tool, upload photographs, patterns, logos, and add text. Great if you’re after a personalised t-shirt for an event, fundraiser or party, or if you just want something chic and unique that suits your individual style. Personalised t-shirts are perfect for group events where you want to stand out from the crowd and get everyone in the party mood, they also act as a reminder of a great day out. 

 

Choose from two types of t-shirt: 

Classic   (available printed and unprinted) 

Classic Printed  

Description 

This t-shirt is made from 100% cotton, making it soft and breathable. The woven cotton makes this t-shirt comfortable as well as a perfect canvas for printing your designs, photos or slogans. This t-shirt is great for customisation, the high-quality material makes designs look amazing, to make you stand out from the crowd. 

This t-shirt is great for 

Events, fundraisers, hen parties and stag dos, parties and corporate events. 

Product Specifications 

Buy Classic Blank T-shirts 

We offer the Classic Unprinted t-shirts, which are available in white or black cotton. An everyday high-quality t-shirt, tie-dying at home, arts and crafts activities. There are no minimum order quantities and if you’re in a rush you can get your custom t-shirts the next day. 

 

doodle bag promo image featuring t-shirt prints

Organic Cotton (available printed and unprinted) 

FTO Printed  

Description 

This t-shirt is made from 100% Fair Trade Organic cotton, making it soft, breathable and ethical. The woven cotton makes this t-shirt comfortable as well as a perfect canvas for printing your designs, photos or slogans. 

This t-shirt is great for 

Uniforms for businesses branded with your café or restaurants logo, sports competitions, Events, fundraisers, hen parties and stag dos, parties and corporate events. 

Product Specifications 

Buy Blank FTO Printed T-shirts 

We offer FTO Unprinted t-shirtswhich are available in white or black cotton. An everyday high-quality t-shirt, tie-dying at home, arts and crafts activities. There are no minimum order quantities and if you’re in a rush you can get your t-shirts the next day. 

 

Where are our t-shirts manufactured?  

All our products are made from 100% natural cotton. We work closely with our Fairtrade registered factories in India to ensure no harsh manufacturing processes are used. Giving you the peace of mind the individuals that made your bags are treated with care, and the environment is kept in mind from crop to completion 

 

 

For all our Doodle Bag products including our new personalized t-shirts we offer:  

 

Conclusion  

Check our Giveaway on Instagram for a chance to win your own custom t-shirt.  

Don’t forget to tag us in your posts with your new Doodle Bag t-shirt with the hashtag #DoodleYourWay 

Available now on our website 

10 reasons why you should shop at Doodle Bag  

At Doodle Bag our aim is to provide you with 100% ethically sourced and natural cotton bags personalised with your design. There are so many businesses out there, that offer personalised bags but no one does it like we do! We have rounded up the top reasons why you should choose Doodle Bag for your next customised bag purchase. Read on to find out what makes us stand out from our competitors.  

man Holding  Cotton Bag that has the words "your design here" on it

1) Eco-friendly  

As an ecologically focused printing company, we pride ourselves on implementing and constantly improving our environmental practices. Our production process consumes as little energy as possible and all the materials used in the process are recyclable. We actively recycle and re-use as much as possible within our Sheffield based facility. We consolidate all our imports and exports into as few shipments as we can, and choose carbon neutral shipping methods where possible. Sustainability is truly at the heart of what we do.  We also offer a wide range of Fairtrade & GOTS organic bags. 

2) Ethically sourced   

Our products are made from 100% natural materials. Responsibly sourced from an ethical supply chain. We aim to be as transparent as possible with how we function as an ethical business.  We ensure we get our products from a responsible supply chain by personally visiting each factory and requiring global standards for fair trade before we work with them, giving you the peace of mind our products are made by individuals working in a safe environment and paid a living wage. 

A dude names Steve screen printing a bag

3)Free Easy-to-use design tool  

Upload your own images, photographs, designs or logos or create your design using our easy-to-use online builder and image library. Our design tool lets you easily create your customised bag. Just upload your own artwork or photographs or you can let your creativity flow and design your own from scratch. You can personalise gift bags, jute, tote bags, as well as p e and school bags. Think it. Print it  You can even choose blank products. 

Here is a Guide to help you design your own bag 

4) Wide Variety  

Personalised gifts from Doodle Bag are great for any occasion. We print your full-colour images onto our high-quality cotton and canvas bags. Doodle Bag has everything from cotton tote bags, drawstring, canvas bags, zip purses, tea towels, and cushion covers. Whether it’s Christmas, a birthday, hens party, weddings, mother's day or an anniversary- create your custom gift all printed with your design. 

woman cradling a small Mesh Drawstring on a white background

5) Bulk order available  

Need more than one bag? We offer bulk discounts on our printed and unprinted bags, zip purses, and homewares. Perfect if you are an independent designer starting out or if you are looking for personalised corporate gifts.   

 

6) Top Quality  

We have made sure that our entire range of bags, from the lightest tote bags to the heavyweight shopper bags, are made using the best available cotton, and constructed in such a way that makes them durable and long-lasting. With an influx of low-quality construction bags currently on the market, we decided to maintain a strict standard of quality throughout. Our factories weave the cotton tighter than usual which means a higher thread count and a product that won’t fray or fall apart after sustained use.  

 

Other great reasons 

✅Free Delivery on all orders (Express Delivery option available) You can also track your order here 

No Minimum Order Quantity  

Quality you can afford: we have bags starting at just £5 

Plain Bags available (Including our Jute and Denim ranges) 

  

We hope we provided you with enough reasons to make Doodle Bag your go-to for personalised bags and accessories.  Our ordering process is very simple and if you have any questions check out our FAQ page. Don’t forget to tag us in your photos with our products, with the hashtag  #Doodleyourway, for a chance to be featured on our pages.  

 

You can also sign up to our newsletter to find out about all our new offers and blogs.  And if you need any help just contact us here. 

When looking to order bags or homewares with Doodle Bag you may have a lot of questions for us and you may not have a fixed plan about what you want. However, there are a few things you should have decided or have a rough idea about before you start designing so we can make sure you get the perfect bags for your business.

In this blog we are going to tell you some things you should know before ordering and some things you should have considered before getting stuck in.

Things you should know

Lead time

Lead time refers to the time it takes to get your bags ready for delivery from when payment is made. Doodle Bag’s lead time is between 2-5 working days from when you place your order. This includes printing and delivery time. If you have a tight deadline, we have next day delivery option available if you order before 12 noon, just select that shipping option at checkout.

Weight

The weight of a fabric is done by weighing a square metre (measured in grams written as gsm) or square yard (measured in ounces written as oz) of that fabric. Doodle Bag measures its cotton in oz per yard², however on our product pages we also show the weight in grams per m². This means if a bag is made from 8oz cotton it means that 1-yard² of that cotton would weigh 8oz.

If you want your bag to carry heavier items then a heavier weight cotton may be more suitable, whereas if you are doing an event giveaway bag for flyers then maybe a lightweight bag will be ideal. It is important to note that lightweight cotton tends to cost less than heavyweight cotton.

Things you should have considered

Purpose

You need to know what your bag is for! Is it an event giveaway, a corporate gift, to sell as a large revenue stream, or as additional merchandise to your main product lines? If you are a company that sells large products for retail, then you can narrow your search down to our larger tote bags. Whereas if you are looking for reusable packaging for a small item then maybe our smaller drawstring bags will fit your requirements. Our bags are great for gifting as well.

By nailing down the purpose of your product it will help you narrow down a lot more aspects of what you need.

Quantity

While this may seem obvious, you should be considering the quantity before you start looking. Ask your customers if they would be interested before you buy to gain an estimate of units needed. Or just order a few to gauge the reaction, before putting in a larger order.

Budget

Budget is definitely something to think about. While you may not have an exact number, it is important to have a rough idea of how much you want to be spending, or how much you are able to allocate to spend on bags. Doodle Bag offers a bulk discount from 2 units plus which allows for large discounts on larger orders, helping you stay on budget.

Design

Our print technique does not print white space on a design. Bearing this in mind, if you print a design with white, it will show the colour of the bag through. If the white is important to the design, then strongly consider ordering a white coloured bag over the natural colour as this will allow for the white to be seen on the design.

If your design is going to be the selling point of your product then print area is something that should be considered. A product with a large print area such as our large totes or our tea towel may be the perfect choice for you as they can really showcase your design.

 

 

Keep up to date with our latest product based news here

 

Read our How to guides here 

Read our website announcements here 

This year we have posted some great blogs at Doodle Bag. But encase you've missed out, we have done a quick round up of our top 10 favourites

  1. Facts about Fairtrade

    To celebrate Fairtrade fortnight 2020 we created a list of 10 fact about Fairtrade that you may not have known

  2. Throwaway culture

    With initiatives from the media, businesses, and government to reduce waste, why is it that we are producing more than ever? Our blog on throwaway culture sheds some light on why.

  3. The best printed bags to showcase your artwork

    This is a blog for those who are really wanting to use bags and printed products as a way to best showcase your artwork.

  4. How to get your printed tote bags ready for retail

    If you are prepping to sell your bags, here are some tips about how to get them perfect and ready for retail.

  5. Eco tourism

    Despite tourism taking a bit of a stand still this year. We created a blog to look forward at planning vacations and tourism in the most sustainable way.

  6. Small steps to a more sustainable life

    Living sustainably isn’t something that happens overnight. It takes small lifestyle changes that gradually build up. Here are some of those small easy steps you can take.

  7. 5 ways to personalise your wedding

    Your wedding is your big day. Here are some ways to make it even more personal to you.

  8. Why single-use plastic is bad

    By now we should all know that single-use plastic is bad. But here are 5 reasons that should really solidify why it is something we should be actively avoiding.

  9. Reasons to avoid fast fashion

    The fast fashion industry is growing. And it’s easy to see why. Everything you could ever want is at your fingertips. This blog explains the darker side of the fast fashion industry and may make you think twice before adding to your basket.

  10. How to clean your tote

    Your tote bag is starting to show its age, your pen leaked, you spilt some coffee on it, it hasn’t been treated very nicely…don’t worry, this blog will explain how to get your tote looking brand new again.

 

You can view more information about our bags here

Read this Blog which will help you choose the best bag for you

You have had your gorgeous new cotton tote bag for a few weeks, and it’s due for a bit of a wash. But how should you wash your tote bag to ensure it maintains its shape and most importantly in a way that keeps the print you love as bright and bold as possible?

Read on to find out how you can wash your cotton tote bag.

Spot Clean

If you have a stain on your tote bag, the easiest way to clean it is just with a spot clean, if you have a stain removing spray, just follow the directions on the bottle. If you don’t have a stain remover, great alternatives are baking soda mixed with a little warm water to create a paste which you can apply, leave for a little while and scrub off. Alternatively soak the affected area in solution of wine vinegar and warm water for a few hours and then rinse with fresh water.

Hand wash

If your whole bag needs a bit of a wash then we advise handwashing your bag, use your regular washing powder and lukewarm water to wash your tote bag. Gentle scrub your bag and try to avoid the print if possible as this can affect the colour and print if you scrub too hard!

Machine wash

Machine washing is not recommended because the wash and spin cycle can cause shrinkage and alter the colour and quality of your print. If you want to machine wash, we suggest putting your bag on a cool low spin cycle. By doing this you should maintain the size and print but do expect a slight distortion.

Wipe clean

If you’re cleaning a recent mark a simple wipe clean with hot water and soap will do the trick. For some of our bags like a Jute bag a wipe clean is the only suitable method of cleaning as with other methods they may lose their stiff structure and become floppy!

Steam

Steaming your cotton bag is a great alternative to washing. Steaming will remove any creases, will clean long term discolouration, and may help to remove stubborn stains from your tote bag. By adding some essential oil or scented antibacterial liquid to your steamer you can also remove any unwanted smells.

Doodle Bag is a cotton bag printing company, here we talk about bags and cotton all day every day. It occurred to us that sometimes we use lingo that might need an explanation. We’ve written a blog with some printing definitions for some of our most used terms below to give you some clarity.

MOQ

MOQ stands for Minimum order quantity, this is the smallest number of units you must order for a business to accept your order. Doodle Bag doesn’t have an MOQ meaning you can order as little as one bag.

Fabric Weight

The weight of a fabric is done by weighing a square metre (measured in grams, labelled GSM ) or square yard (measured in ounces labelled Oz) of that fabric. Doodle Bag measures its cotton in oz per yard². This means if a bag is made from 8oz cotton it means that 1-yard² of that cotton would weigh 8oz.

When cotton is described as lightweight it is typically 6oz or under. Midweight would be 7oz-9oz, and heavyweight would describe cotton 10oz and above.

Fairtrade

If a product is Fairtrade it means that it has been made with Fairtrade certified cotton and that all farmers and factories throughout the process operate in accordance to Fairtrade regulations. This includes, paying a Fair wage to workers, eliminating exploitation of workers and children, and giving premiums to farmers to better their communities. Visit the Fairtrade website for more information, https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/

Lead Time

Lead time refers to the time it takes to get your bags ready for delivery from when payment is made. Doodle Bag lead time is 1-3 working days from payment then you must account for delivery time on top of that. In exceptional circumstances where lead time may be longer such as the Christmas period. We will highlight the additional time on our website, or contact you via email.

Organic

If one of our bags says it is organic, it means it is certified GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard). This means that no pesticides or unnatural fertilisers were used while growing the cotton to make the bags. It also means that throughout the cotton processing, bag making process, and printing no harmful chemicals, or dyes were used. Also no toxic material is emitted in the water source. For more information about GOTS organic and what it means, visit their website https://www.global-standard.org/

Bulk pricing

Bulk pricing refers to the discount received after buying over a certain number of units of the same product. Here at Doodle Bag, bulk pricing is offered when buying 2 or more of the same product. So if you buy 2 shopper bags you would get a bulk discount, however if you were to buy one shopper bag and one apron you would not receive the bulk discount as they are different products.  The more products you order the large the discount, so if you have a big order to fulfil don’t worry. 

Online design tool

When we refer to the online design tool or online designer in our blog, articles, and on the website, we mean this:

Online Design tool picture

It is how you add your design, images, and text, to your bag ready for us to the print.

Blank Space

Blank space on a print is the space which is not printed on and the colour of the bag will show through. With Doodle Bag any design that has white on it will become blank space. So, if your design or picture has a white background, it will be omitted from the print and the bag will show through. If you really want the white on your design, opt for a white bag.

Canvas

Cotton canvas versus cotton is related to the weight of the cotton, as mentioned above cotton is measured by weight. So, cotton is referred to as a canvas it means it is a midweight cotton or 8oz and above.

Print area

The print area of a bag is the area of a bag that can be printed on. Outside of that area it is not possible to print a design. On Doodle Bag’s design tool we help you out by having a box where you can add your text or design which represents the print area so nothing will go outside that box and get cut off your finished bag.

100% natural cotton

It means just that! Cotton is a plant which means it is a natural product. However sometimes cotton can go through unnatural and harmful processes from being a crop to becoming the final product. The cotton in a natural bag or product is 100% natural, no unnatural processing such as bleaching or dyeing with harmful dyes.

 

More information on designing your own bag here

More information about our printed bags here 

 

 

 

With offices opening up again and as we begin to move towards getting back to normal and back to work, you may be on the hunt for a new work bag or a bag for work. To inject a new lease of life into your wardrobe or to make returning to work that bit easier, we have put together a list of our best bags for work.

man holding a messenger bag

  1. Messenger

    Our messenger is the classic work satchel. It is a large bag with plenty of room for laptops, folders, and your lunch! The messenger bag is the perfect bag for work, there are magnetic clasps to keep all your belongings safe and secure, as well as an internal zip pocket for valuables, print with initials, photos or leave blank for a sophisticated satchel for work or everyday use.

    a woman  wearing a Musette Bag

  2. Musette Bag

    The Musette Bag is a more modern twist on the classic satchel design. With more of a fashionable take on a satchel for an on-trend ladies work bag. There is no top flap but there is a magnetic popper closure to ensure all your belongings are safe and secure. The Musette is large enough for folders, stationery and bits and bobs for work. The adjustable shoulder strap also makes the Musette bag comfortable to carry. Personalise with your design to make it the perfect work bag for you.

    woman holding a large Tote bag on a white background

  3. Large Tote

    Need a large tote bag for work? Let us introduce the Large Shopper. This large work tote is perfect for fitting everything you need, a laptop, diary, lunch, office shoes, random bits you just happen to have in your work bag, everything! Personalise with a photo or design you love for a beautiful and practical work tote bag.

    man holding a backpack shopper on a white background

  4. Backpack shopper

    More of a work backpack fan? The Backpack Shopper is a great backpack for work, as with a few adjustments it becomes a shopper bag. The Backpack shopper is the same size as a regular shopper so there’s plenty of room for all your work essentials but it’s a backpack! A top popper will secure all your belongings in place keeping them safe.

    man Lux Cross Body Shopper on a white background

  5. Cross Body Shopper Bag

    Another take on the shoulder strap bag is our Cross Body Shopper. The same shape as our classic shopper bag with an adjustable shoulder strap and short carrying handles. It is big enough for folders, stationery, and work bits. It is a great work bag especially when you add your design and give it a new personalised touch.

    white fairtrade organic wash bag on a white background

  6. Zip purses

    Also worth mentioning are our zip purses! A stationery bag, a bag for bits and bobs you need for work, a cosmetics bag whatever you need a little separate bag for. We have a range of zip purses from a classic pencil case shape to make up bags and larger toiletry bags, but of course they can all be used for everything! They come in a range of colours so if you need a smaller zip purse for work, we’ve got you.

    woman holding a black contrast medium jute on a white background

  7. Contrast Shopper

    A fun take on a classic shopper our contrast shopper has the same large capacity and added gusset volume as our shopper, big enough for all your work supplies. But it has an added contrasting black bottom and handles, giving it a certain je ne sais quoi, that our classic shopper doesn’t have. Add your own design or text for a fashion-forward but functional grab-and-go work bag.

    a woman holding a Luxurious Super Shopper on a white background

  8. Luxury Shopper

    A Luxury shopper is one of the best tote bags for work. It is small enough to just tuck under your arm, but the all-around gusset just gives it so much volume for everything you need for work! Printed with your name, photo or a design from our premade design library, this bag is perfect as a work tote. Furthermore, you can add your initials to the bag to make it extra unique.

Doodle Bag has a large range of GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) certified organic bags, which is great.

Organic cotton, sounds fab doesn’t it?

But what does it really mean?

What does it mean to the cotton growing and bag producing process? Here is a blog explaining what organic means, and some benefits to buying organic cotton.

So, what is organic cotton? Organic cotton is cotton plant that has been grown using no pesticides, insecticides, or any chemical fertilisers. That’s it. That’s organic cotton. However, for the end product to be truly organic and meet the GOTS standard, the whole process must also be organic. So, the washing process, dying process, printing process, all of those steps are organic too.

So, no chemicals are used at all to produce one of Doodle Bag’s organic cotton bags. If any of those steps used man-made chemicals or non-organic processes, then the bag could not be called organic, even if the cotton itself was grown organically.

a woman holding a irrigation pipe smiling

  1. It’s better for water

    Yes, organic cotton, is better for water, in a few ways. One, because organic cotton consumes less water while it is growing, and is often just water through rainfall, meaning that water doesn’t have to be extracted for watering cotton crops. And two, the fertilisers used in cultivating non-organic cotton will become absorbed into the ground and into water systems, polluting water streams of countries where cotton is grown.

    various foods spelling out the word "vegan"

  2. It’s vegan

    Yes you read that right, organic cotton is vegan cotton. Because no pesticides or insecticides are used in growing the cotton, so no little creatures are harmed in the growing process, and the later effects of toxic residue in the soil and water systems does not harm animals. All fertilisers are plant based, and are solely designed to help cotton grow, not to damage anything else. So vegan cotton, and organic cotton, win win!

    a group of kids sitting around some pots smiling and laughing in what seams to be a poorer country

  3. It’s socially responsible

    Under the GOTS code of ethics, which are required for a company or supplier to gain the certification certain criteria must be complied with, such as: prohibition of child labour, forced labour, and abuse; proper wages; limited working hours; and health and safety guidelines. By having this level of protection for workers, GOTS organic cotton products are both socially and environmentally ethical.

    a red man holding two chain links together

  4. Beneficial to the whole supply chain

    Organic cotton is beneficial for the whole supply chain! Because truly organic cotton products have a completely organic supply chain. This means that there are no synthetic or harsh chemicals used from crop to completion of the organic cotton product. This benefits the environment, and also the people involved in manufacturing your cotton bag!

    woman with a handfull of soil

  5. It’s better for the soil

    By using too many chemicals, too frequently (growing non-organic cotton), soil can become permanently damaged. This is due to the high levels of salt in fertilisers not being properly absorbed into the ground, these high salt levels overtime alter the chemistry of the soil, and it becomes irreversible, so the soil cannot continue to be used for growing cotton, and species, bacteria and other microorganisms that once lived there will find the soil inhabitable. By leaving the soil, to just do its thing naturally all these long-term issues can be avoided.

    a smiling woman

  6. Better for people

    Organic cotton is better for the people involved in the process, both physically and financially. Physically, there are no toxic chemicals in the process, so, farmers, processors, and manufacturers will not be negatively impacted by the presence of harsh chemicals. Financially, because organic cultivation lends itself to crop rotation, allowing farmers to diversify their crop output year on year. By rotating crops, the soil has the opportunity to replenish its nutrients, meaning it is cheaper to maintain a good soil for growing organic cotton.

To summarise, Organic cotton and organic products in general are a better deal for the environment and the individuals involved in production but care must be taken that you are purchasing items with the best certifications. The number of organic certifications is vast, and it can be a minefield understanding what they all mean. We put together a guide on the most common organic certifications that are out there.

Fast fashion is bad, end of. That could be the whole blog, but I guess I ought to give you some explanation as to why it is such a negative industry, for both people and planet. So here are 5 reasons to avoid fast fashion.

a chimney blowing pollution during sunset

  1. Emissions and consumption.

    The fast fashion industry contributes 10% of all emissions produced by humans. To put that into perspective, that is more than the famously high emitting international flights and cargo shipping combined!
    Not only is it a large emitter but the fast fashion industry is the 2nd largest consumer of water. Using water throughout the growing, washing and dying process. The water that is emitted after being used in clothing production, if not properly filtered, is toxic and will contain bleaching chemicals or dyes.

     a young man picking cotton

  2. Exploits people

    In 2000 the majority of fashion retailers would produce two collections a year, Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter. Now we see large online and high street fast fashion retailers producing anywhere from 12 up to 24 collections a year, yet still offering rock bottom prices.
    How can they afford to sell a dress for £5? Because savings go all the way down the supply chain to the workers who produce the garments. Workers produce thousands of garments for terrible pay, just so retailers can sell a pair of jeans for £10.

    a drop of water resting on pure polyester

  3. Made from plastic!

    Another way to keep costs down in clothing production is to use cheaper fabrics. In steps Polyester. Polyester is a plastic fibre made from crude oil, a non-renewable fuel source. Being made from plastic a piece of polyester clothing would take thousands of years to decompose, unlike its natural fibre counterparts.
    Plymouth University ran a study to see the amount of clothing micro fibres were shed during different washing machine cycles. An average wash could see just under 500,000 polyester micro-fibres shed and into the water waste system. These polyester fibres add to the ever-growing micro plastic problem in our waters.

    old tatty cloths

  4. Quality

    The quality is rubbish, the combination of making thousands of garments at a rapid speed, mixed with tight budgets and cheap material results in a low-quality garment. Like the saying goes, if you buy cheap you buy twice. And if does break then it’s more plastic back into the waste system. Sometimes it’s worth saving up a little longer for a clothing item that will last you a little longer.

    a single yellow lego brick in a sea of grey lego bricks

  5. It’s more fun to not wear fast fashion.

    Where’s the fun in looking like everyone else? Fast fashion perpetuates that idea that you must be wearing what everyone is wearing right now, and then 3 months down the line, there will be a new thing that everyone has to wear. You’ll be out of pocket and it leaves older clothes redundant because they’re not ‘in’. It’s much more worth while filling your wardrobe with classics styles that will never get dated. The beauty of classic styles is you will be easily able to find them in second-hand, vintage or charity shops. Not only filling your shelves with timeless pieces but also giving a new lease of life to other products.

If you are on your journey to becoming more sustainable. Check out our blog: Small Steps to a more sustainable life.

Single use plastic, three words that should send a shiver down your spine and make you break out in a nervous sweat. But if they don’t, then here are 5 reasons why single use plastic is the worst.

a plastic bottle factory

  1. It uses precious non-renewable natural resources to produce.

    Plastic is produced from crude oil extracted from the earth, this crude oil is non-renewable meaning once it’s gone, it’s gone. By using this precious material that we also use for heating houses, producing non-single use plastics, and to power infrastructure we are taking it away from these other uses to be used only once.

    a chimney blowing pollution with long grass in the foreground

  2. Produces toxic fumes to produce.

    In order to become plastic the crude oil is extracted, heated multiple times, and processed to become the plastic pellets that businesses use to produce their single use plastic items. This process releases lots of Carbon Dioxide and other harmful gasses into the atmosphere. Again, just for one single use. We should be considering which products we are willing to use this process for and only use these when necessary. An item that will be used once surely is not a valid reason.

  3. Despite being single use for us, it lasts for 1000s of years.

    Despite single use plastic being functional for one use it is reported that it may take up to 1000 years to decompose. To put that into perspective no piece of single use plastic made from crude oil that has been made has decomposed naturally.

    a turtle eating a plastic bag :(

  4. It has a negative impact on wildlife and the sea.

    Over 1 million marine animals are killed each year due to plastic debris in the ocean.” It’s no secret that plastic has a massive negative impact on the sea and the creatures that call it home. Huge sea creatures such as sharks, whales, turtles, and more are dying because of plastic that injures them, is consumed by them, and blocks their airways. Why is this? It is because discarded single use plastic that is not recycled (and some that is) will end up in landfill. Weather such as wind, rain and flooding will cause these plastic items to end up in waterways and making their way to the ocean.

    a macro shot of a micro plastics resting on someone's finger or thumb

  5. Micro Plastics are bad for your body.

    Micro plastics are fragments of plastic that are 5mm or smaller, produced either through deliberate shredding by companies or recycling plants or through natural degradation through weathering. As these tiny pieces of plastic make their way through the water system they are eaten by fish and shellfish which we eat, also it comes out of our taps in tiny fibres. This means that we are consuming plastic without even knowing it. A study carried out by the University of Newcastle in Australia showed that we consume about a credit card’s worth of plastic each week! By throwing out single use plastic, we are not only having a negative impact on the planet and its creatures but also ourselves.

If you are on your journey to becoming more sustainable. Check out our blog: Small Steps to a more sustainable life.

Most people are doing their best to try and be more sustainable in one way or another, and there are lots of apps you can download onto your phone which can help you be more sustainable in your everyday life.

Here’s our list of the 5 best apps to guide you on your way to sustainable living.

  1. Too Good To Go

    Too Good To Go, is an amazing cause that is helping in the fight against food waste. According to their website globally we waste 3.5 million tonnes of food which is about 1/3 of all food produced. It is a waste of food, but it is also a waste of resources used to grow and manufacture/produce that food. Too Good To Go aims to stop food waste from restaurants, delis, cafes, and other food outlets by allowing these businesses a platform to giveaway leftover food at the end of the day to avoid it going to waste. You cannot choose what you get but you will receive a free meal and businesses do not have to waste food that they have worked hard to produce to landfill. Win, win.

  1. Forest

    When we think about sustainability, we often forget that something should be sustainable for ourselves, we need to do things to make ourselves happier and healthier. Forest is an app that actually keeps you off your phone! If you need an incentive to stay off your phone. Maybe you are at work, trying to study, or are out with friends and need to resist temptation, Forest is a great app. When you want to start your break from your phone, a tree will start to grow and will not finish growing until the time is up. If you look at your phone and close the app the tree will die. You can grow your own little forest with all the trees you have grown!
    On top of this Forest partners with Trees for the Future to help plant real trees which is an amazing cause for reforestation.

  2. City Mapper

    City Mapper is a public travel app, showing live public transport updates, best routes, and helpful tips for getting around in some of the world’s biggest cities. Whilst not being a sustainably focused app necessarily, it does have some fun features that will encourage you to live a more sustainable life. Not only is City Mapper a public transport app but you can also add your walking route within your city as you would with any other map app. But what you might not get with other maps is a screen showing you how many trees you have saved, how many calories burnt (and their equivalent in food) and how much money you have saved by walking. By showing the difference you have made, and then adding them all up to show your total savings it is a great motivator to get your walking shoes on!

  3. Good On You

    Good On You is a great app to check the sustainability of the fashion brands you use. They have a unique rating system where they rate the sustainability of companies’ effect on people, the planet, and animals. They use the brands’ own reporting, independent assessments, certifications, and accreditations to find out this information. The app is great you search the brand you love, and you will find a rating system and information about brands you buy from. They also have access to special offers on high rated brands which is a nice little bonus too!

  4. Bike sharing apps

    I’m not going to recommend a specific bike sharing app because most cities have their own bike sharing system, government run or privately owned. But regardless they are all great! Bike sharing apps are ideal when you are in the city because it means if you need to get somewhere slightly out of walking distance or in a hurry you can just grab a bike and leave it at a station close to where your destination, no need for a taxi or getting stuck in traffic. They mean you do not have to plan ahead, if you need to get somewhere you can, no pollution, no parking, just find a bike, and get some exercise in. Sustainable and healthy.

Doodle Bag works with lots of people far and wide. We work with individuals who want a bag for a gift or want a fashionable accessory, we work with businesses who want branded merchandise for events or corporate gifts.

We also work with a lot of people who are planning weddings!

From wedding planners to maid of honour to the brides, we have printed lots of bags for weddings and receptions. In this blog I am going to give you some examples of what Doodle Bag has done for weddings and maybe give you some inspiration about how you can use cotton bags in a wedding you are planning!

  1. Hen Do party bags

    Even before the wedding happens there are celebrations all around. Including the highly anticipated hen do! A great way to get your bridal party in the hen do spirit is with a bag full of goodies for the night or even few nights ahead. Mini bottles of wine, party poppers, fun hats, sashes, t-shirts, the lot.

    A nice way to present your gift bags to your ‘hens’ is with a personalised gift bag, a cotton bag is ideal for this as it won’t rip so it’s a great place to store, phones, purses and whatever everyone brings with them. Personalise with the date, name of the bride and a funny picture of the bride.

  1. Tea Towel Invites

    A growing trend we have seen recently is wedding invites you can keep. One of the ways you can give someone a special keepsake invite is printing your invitation on a tea towel.

    A tea towel save the date is a great invitation because the large print area means there is more than enough space for all the important information (and maybe some room left for a nice picture), and it is something that people will keep on using, meaning they definitely won’t forget the date!

  1. Wedding Favour Bags

    Wedding favours are probably the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about cotton bags are weddings. A cotton drawstring bag is perfect for storing the little presents for guests.

    Whether it be sweets, candles or a small token, we have drawstring bags of all sizes which are perfect for personalised wedding favours, with the names of the happy couple and the date and you’ve got yourself a gorgeous keepsake for your guests.

  1. Bridesmaid Gift Bag

    Bridesmaids really do gods work, dealing with pre-wedding emotions, fittings and organisation as well as on the day helping out the bride to no end and ensuring that the happy couple are blissfully unaware of anything issues that may be going on during their special day. So, you may want to say thank you with a little bridesmaid gift on or after the wedding day.

    Using a cotton tote as a bridesmaid goodie bag is a great way to add a special touch to the gift, a photo of you and the bridesmaid, or their name and a little message, something that they can use in the future is a fab way to present your gift.

  1. Activity bags for Children

    If you are inviting children to you wedding it could be a worry to you or their parents about keeping them occupied during proceedings. One way to resolve this issue is with a goodie bag for kids specifically for the little ones.

    A small tote with crayons and colouring book or some bubbles, some fun activity to keep them busy so everyone can chill a little bit. Order some personalised small tote bags with their names on so they have something just for them to do during the wedding.

It is great to read articles explaining all the ways to become a sustainable environmentally friendly warrior who produces no waste and contributes negative Co2 emissions. However, for most people it is unrealistic and makes being sustainable an unattainable goal. So, for that exact reason we have made a list of a few small changes you can make in life to live more sustainably.

Transport

Where possible it is beneficial to use modes of transport that do not burn fuel, so walking, cycling, skateboarding etc. Whether it is popping to the corner shop or going to a friend’s house. If it is possible to get there without using motor transport where you normally would, it will be a benefit to the environment. And also, your health.

Maybe it is not possible to reach your destination by foot or bicycle. But if you need to go to a city or town centre it is more environmentally friendly to use public transport, if it’s a bus or train, by you sharing that service rather than driving, you are reducing Co2 emissions that could have polluted the air. Often times it is easier to use public transport if you are heading to a city centre as there is no need to find or pay for parking.

Sometimes it is just not feasible to use public transport, it might be too expensive, or it may not be available for your destination. So, another way to lower emissions could be to car share. If someone from work lives nearby it could be worth sharing a ride with them. If you split costs it could be cheaper for both of you and it will half the emissions of both people travelling separately.

Food

By planning meals, you will only buy what you need for your food for the week. By doing this you will not over buy food meaning you are less likely to need to throwaway produce that has gone bad, because you will have already used it. Not only a great way to reduce your food waste, but if you are only buying what you will use, but you will save money by only buying necessities.

It is well known that certain foods are not as great for the environment as others. Completely cutting food groups out of your diet may not be doable however it may be beneficial to try and lower your intake of certain foods such as meat and palm oil just by one meal a week will lower your carbon footprint.

Clothing

The fast fashion industry revolves around always buying new. Clothes are made from low quality materials at cheap prices to create a system where things are thrown away and bought new. By avoiding low quality materials such as Polyester or other synthetic materials your clothes are likely to last longer. These plastic based materials will not allow for breathability and will cause sweat staining giving your clothes a shorter life.

Buying and donating clothes from and to second-hand shops and charity shops will give old items a new life. Something may no longer fit you or may not be to your tastes anymore, but someone else might love it. You may also be able to find high quality clothing for a much cheaper price. Whatever your motives, it keeps the clothing’s lifecycle going and keeps them out of the bin.

Learning to sew is a great way to reduce waste. Being able to fix holes in items of clothing, take things in if they are too big or learning to take them out if they become too small. Sewing is a great way to avoid throwing clothing away. You can also customise clothing, being able to always keep it on trend.

Buying habits

Minus consumables you should consider everything you buy as an investment. Meaning that everything you buy should be bought to be kept for an indefinite amount of time. In order to make sustainable changes in your life your buying habits need to switch from disposable to reusable. Things like carrier bags, straws and water bottles need to start being looked at as long-term purchases.

As they say, buy cheap, buy twice. And this really is true. If you are on the lookout for new furniture sometimes it is worth just saving for a little longer for something of a higher quality because it will last you so much longer. If the purse strings are a little tight, then there are plenty of good finds at second-hand and charity shops. Perfectly sound pieces of furniture that people have no more need for.  By buying items that will last you longer, you will be able to avoid throwing things away so often.

Want to know about sustainable tourism? Read our blog all about it here

Summer may have been and gone although some of us are already planning our next voyage. But do we think about the environmental consequences of our weeks in the sun? And are there ways to lower our impact when we decide to go on our jollies? In this blog we will talk about these effects and how you can become pro at eco tourism.

What are negative effects of tourism?

  1. The geographical concentration of tourists.

    Tourists naturally will venture to more desirable locations; normally somewhere hot and beachy or with famous landmarks. However, this has a negative impact on the resources of the town or city being visited. It causes more concentrated pollution from planes, taxis and other modes of transport for the tourists . But it also means there will be more pollution from the vans and lorries that have been used to transport goods to the area for tourists to eat, buy and use while on their holiday.

  2. Waste and contamination.

    Going and staying in a massive luxurious hotel or all-inclusive resort is fabulous. But when it comes to their environmental impact it’s less than ideal. All you can eat buffets for breakfast and dinner means huge amounts of food waste twice a day every day. Chlorine filled pools, and industrial chemicals used for cleaning thousands of rooms all add up. They all result in massive amounts of waste and contamination of water and natural resources.

  3. Degradation of natural infrastructures.

    Businesses expand where there is demand, it’s just how supply and demand works. In holiday resorts however this can lead to scenic and beautiful parts of natural and architectural infrastructure to be destroyed to make way for new hotel complexes or through the destruction through more people visiting and wearing it down. Countries where there is a shortage of water also struggle greatly where pools and water features are an integral part of the hotel experience.

  4. It’s seasonal.

    The seasonality of holidays means that holiday resorts will often become ghost towns when the season is over. This means that businesses will have to close seasonally, and people will have less work for the rest of the year. Making this kind of business bad for people who work in the tourism industry. Countries like Spain, The Maldives, The Bahamas and Malta all rely heavily on tourism for their GDP meaning that during the “off” season many people will have less work. In 2018 12% of Spanish employment was in tourism or tourism related sectors.

  5. Too expensive for residents.

    With local space being bought up by rich investors to build resorts and more urbanisation of resort towns will raise prices of normal commodities. On top of the precarity of jobs linked to the seasonality of the sector, the local population can find themselves in a position where they cannot afford to live there anymore.

How to avoid this and become pro at eco tourism.

    1. Go on holiday at non-peak time.

      In order to sustain tourism within a town it will be beneficial to visit in an off-peak time of year. With children at an age where they’re at school, this can be difficult. But in many countries, you will get the “summer” sun in winter months so going during Christmas holidays is always good option, rather than during summer. More often than not flights and hotels will be cheaper too due to lower demand.

    2. Avoid large resorts.

      As we’ve discussed large resorts prove to be a big problem for sustainability. So, why not spend more time planning your trip and venture somewhere off the beaten track (providing the area is safe for travel). You will encounter a truer to life culture of the country you are visiting. There is more chance of seeing unruined and non-commercialised natural wonders and sights.

    3. Go somewhere closer to home.

      If you want to reduce the pollution emitted through holidaying abroad then just go closer to home. Be a tourist in your own country, visit a landmark you’ve never bothered to visit. Go to the seaside. Visit a local festival. Gone will be the days of airports and in will be a train journey to somewhere new in your country.

    4. Eat local food.

      How to avoid eating food that has been transported miles and miles just to be on your plate? Eat locally. Traditional food will be made using local ingredients, because that is what will have been eaten before efficient transport links. So, eating traditional local food means you will be eating local produce and helping local businesses.

    5. Help local businesses by buying from them rather than larger chains.

      Following on from eating locally, buying locally is also something that should be encouraged. Supporting local business is very important especially in a sector that is so seasonal. In order for these businesses to be sustainable long term they will need the sales during the high season so do your bit and support them.

Happy Holiday-ing!!

New Products Alert!

You may have already seen our new Fairtrade and Organic products on the Doodle Bag website, and you may have even bought one!

But we still have not formally introduced you (how rude!).

So here is a rundown of our latest Fairtrade and Organic products, and all you need to know.

Our Fairtrade and Organic bags and homewares are certified by Fairtrade and accredited by GOTS (Global Organic Textiles Standard). This means our supply chain and production facilities are audited by these bodies to ensure we meet the rigorous Fairtrade and GOTS standards. These accreditations mean you need not worry about the ethical origins of our Fairtrade and Organic products.

The Fairtrade and Organic product range comes in the classic Doodle Bag styles we all know and love; cotton tote bag, as well as some new favourites which you can check out below. This injection of accessories and homewares in on trend colours is perfect for mixing up your ethical gift ideas, wardrobe, and home! All of our Fairtrade and Organic Products are available to be personalised in the Natural colour.

A contrast natural and black cotton wash bag on a white background

Fairtrade & Organic Wash Bag

Add some colour to your skincare routine. Our Fairtrade cotton wash bag has a zipped top and is a classic shape great for storing your essentials. Choose from 10 colours.

a medium drawstring pouch - Doodle Bag - Personalised Cotton Tote Bags on a white background

Fairtrade & Organic Drawstring Bags

Choose from 4 different sizes. Our Fairtrade and Organic drawstring bags are food safe, making them the perfect choice for everything from grocery shopping to ethical gift wrap.

a plain cotton tote bag on a white background

Fairtrade & Organic Canvas Tote Bag

Made from a luxurious heavyweight canvas, our canvas tote bag has a soft and smooth feel. Choose from 10 gorgeous colours of sustainable cotton canvas for the ideal tote bag to compliment any outfit.

a Makeup Bag on a white background

Fairtrade & Organic Make Up Bag

Big enough to fit your makeup and brushes, the stylish curved zip means this toiletry up bag is a must have for those eco conscious guys and gals.

a man wearing a plain cotton apron on a white background

Fairtrade & Organic Apron

Our Fairtrade and Organic apron was made with Enthusiastic chefs or bakers in mind. It is not only versatile but practical too. With a professional-looking finish, it is an ideal apron for a busy kitchen

a woman with an apron & teatowel on a white background

Fairtrade & Organic Tea Towel

Tea towels are great gifts. The large print area is great to cross stitch or embroider on as a personalised gift and will be a wonderful final touch to your kitchen.

Fairtrade-and-Organic-Rectangle-Cushion-Cover_Dusky-Blue on a white background

Fairtrade & Organic Rectangle Cushion Cover

Update your interior with a Fairtrade and Organic rectangle cushion covers. Available in 8 colours, mix and match until you have found your perfect interior décor combo.

Fairtrade-and-Organic-Square-Cushion-Cover_Dusky-Pink on a white background

Fairtrade & Organic Square Cushion Cover

Our Fairtrade cotton square cushion covers are perfect for changing your rooms decor. Printed with a message or photography, they also make wonderful keepsake gifts.

Here at Doodle Bag we pride ourselves on being an online retailer where anyone can order printed and unprinted cotton items for a wide range of occasions. We have produced bags for hen parties, as personalised gifts, and as personal fashion accessories. But what many people don’t know is we also work with lots of businesses, large and small. Read on to see how Doodle Bag can help you and your business.

Small Orders

Doodle Bag has cotton bags with no minimum order quantity! Unlike many large printing companies, Doodle Bag has no MOQ meaning if you just need a handful of bags for a corporate gift or if you plan to sell our products and you just want to dip your toe then, no problem! There is no pressure to order hundreds of items. You can just start with a run of 10 to test the waters and if they’re a hit, order more.

Bulk Pricing

Even though we have no MOQ we still offer bulk pricing, meaning as soon as you order more than one item you will receive a per item discount, which is ideal if you need a few items for a small event or to add a small product line to your range so you can buy your cotton bags wholesale.

Short lead times

Doodle Bag has short lead times. We operate on a quick turnaround, meaning once you have placed your order it will be processed within 1-3 days before it is shipped off to you. If you have a very urgent deadline, we also offer express delivery so you will get your products swiftly, find out more here.

Are you a fashion brand? Check out Our Fashion Selection which is specifically for fashion brands

Ethical Promise

If ethics and sustainability is important to you and your business, then we’ve got your back. Doodle Bag only sources materials and products from reliable ethical sources, so you can have eco-friendly promotional materials and products. We require all of our suppliers to be SEDEX, Fairtrade, GOTS and ISO accredited. All of our products are also made from 100% natural cotton, we take every measure possible to act in ways that are sustainable and not damaging to the environment, by taking extra steps to make our workplace and production facilities as efficient as possible, and using recycled packaging Doodle Bag is always aiming for green.

Product Range

Here at Doodle Bag we have a large product range with a wide variety of products, from a wide range of bags for many uses, we also have stationery and homewares meaning we are sure to have the product that you need. If you are looking to increase a product range, looking for printed merchandise or if you just want all you cotton items from one supplier Doodle bag is here to help.

Medium Contrast Jute

Landscape Pocket Jute

Denim Backpack Shopper

Denim Pencil Case

Fairtrade & Organic Cotton Tote Bag

As an independent artist you will always be looking for new ways to showcase your designs and give your customers a new way to buy your printed products. Often this is by expanding your product range.

This can be daunting as you might not know which direction to go in. This is where Doodle Bag can help.

We have written a list of the best product picks for Independent Artists looking to expand their range.

a man wearing a plain apron on a white background

Tea Towels/aprons

Printed tea towels and aprons are a great way to expand your range.

The large print area on both of these items means you can really showcase your work to its full potential. Package the tea towel and Apron together for a gift set, or simply sell individually. Both would make a great addition to a giftware range or to be sold in a gift shop.

a Makeup Bag with a sleeping mask and some essential oils on a white background

Makeup Bag

If your designs focus around slogans and motivational mottos then a printed makeup bag or personalised toiletry bag is a perfect way to expand your range.

Typography really stands out on a makeup bag; it gives the product some personality and it makes it a fun item to own. Fun slogans on useful products make excellent gifts.

a plain Drawstring Backpack on a white background

Drawstrings

If you are an independent artist, jeweller or fashion designer, our printed drawstring bags are great for you.

With the addition of your logo or design the drawstring bags are a perfect packaging solution. As reusable packaging not only will your products be protected but you will stay in the minds of your clients for years to come.

a FTO Square Cushion cover on a white background

Cushion Covers

Printed cushion covers are a great and easy way to add homewares to your collection.

The large print areas are the perfect canvas to gorgeous designs. With your designs or illustrations these make the perfect scatter cushions ready to compliment someone’s home.

a RPET SHOPPPER CLASSIC DENIM on a white background

Luxury Tote Bag

The Luxury Shopper Bag is made from a smooth and thick cotton giving the bag a premium feel.

The tote features all-round gussets, which add volume. Our luxe shopper can command a higher RRP compared to our standard tote. The size and quality ensure it will be a bag that people will use regularly - a great way to show off your designs.

Throwaway culture - whilst seeming like a new phenomenon - is something that has been ingrained into our culture for around a century. It is just now that it is starting to become common knowledge amongst the population. But where did it come from and is what we as a population, businesses, and governments doing now enough to rectify the issue?

a silhouette of a woman using an iPod while dropping another iPod on to a pile of iPods

Planned Obsolescence

Planned obsolescence is a term used to describe products that have a predetermined “end-date” that is to say that either they will become redundant due to moving trends described by Brooks Stevens as "Instilling in the buyer the desire to own something a little newer, a little better, a little sooner than is necessary."  or due to planned technical faults, that mean they will no longer function. Origins of Planned Obsolescence can be traced back to 1932 when Bernard London suggested imposing obsolescence on products to stimulate consumption during the great depression in the USA and regrow the economy.

Since globalisation has really boomed and cheaper, outsourced labour has become second nature for large manufacturers, prices have lowered, buying items new has become cheaper and domestic repair shops and parts are therefore more expensive by comparison. Hence, it has become more and more appealing to just discard the old and broken product and buying new in favour of repair as it is cheaper. This continues to perpetuate the throwaway problem.

The mobile phone industry is a massive culprit of this! For many mobile phones it is not possible to take apart the device to replace parts like batteries, requiring the manufacturer to do so. Because people cannot repair their own products it becomes a hassle to get it fixed so many people will resort to throwing away and buying new. The mobile phone industry is also guilty of psychological obsolescence, that is to say, rather than being broken the item is perceived to be old or not in fashion. By releasing gadgets in new colours or styles that have no functional advancements or benefits to older products, it encourages buying new to stay “on-trend”.

Further to this, upgrades further fuel this culture, people do not have phones for more than a year anyway before they will be upgraded to a brand-new shiny phone. The outcome of the “old” phone is not necessarily going to be in the bin however this attitude of getting new every year is not healthy for this culture.

various single use plastics on the floor, including straws, bags, cups, and other plastic items

Non-plastic single use

Single use plastic has been banned! Hurray! If you go to a bar, pub, or fast food restaurant there isn’t a plastic straw in sight. Victory, no? Well yes, the reduction in single use plastic is amazing. However, the reduction in single use plastics has led to these plastics being replaced with other single use products. But they are not plastic, so that’s good right? Single use paper straws are still single use and will still be thrown away after they have been used. It is just a firefighting technique, solving the glaring problem rather than look at how we can prevent it and stop it continuing to happen.

The solution would be people taking responsibility and owning reusable alternatives to these single use items such as their own reusable metal or glass straws that can be washed and reused indefinitely. This will require a change in people’s outlook on throwaway, having a reusable product is more “difficult” considering you have to remember to bring it with you and wash it after use and it’s less convenient. However, with a change in how people think about the importance of reducing waste and the impact it can have a switch to reusable could happen.

a large chimney blowing smoke and pollution during sunset

Greenwashing

Greenwashing is the term used to describe companies and products that claim to be green with no evidence to back them up, but the “greenness” alone creates the image of being sustainable. This point is not necessarily about greenwashing but the effect it has had on the buying habits of the population. A reusable plastic bottle is fine, if it is a good quality it should last a really long time. The point of having a reusable bottle is that you own one and reuse it. However, because they have the image of being sustainable people will continue to buy them like fashion accessories. Creating a situation where someone may have 10 reusable plastic bottles. And what happens then? Throw them away because you have too many, then you have gone full circle. Since they contain much thicker plastic than an ordinary plastic bottle throwing them away is so much more detrimental to the environment.

Large fashion companies are releasing eco-fashion lines, and I am not here to question the validity of their environmental claims. But it is not only the provenance of the garments that need changing, it is the fast fashion culture of buying to throwaway and replace that is what needs to change. Throwing away a recycled cotton top after 6 months is the same as throwing away a brand-new cotton top. So, it is the culture of buying and throwing away clothes that must change, not just how sustainably they are made.

plastic waste tangled in bushes on the bank of a river

Conclusion

Throwaway culture certainly is not a new phenomenon, created by combination of marketeers and manufacturers to make production cheaper and to drive unnecessary sales. Now in an era of social media - we have new trends, the hottest products, and “best-ever” advancements, everywhere we look. It is difficult not to succumb to the social pressures of owning the latest clothing and gadgets. Even now in a world where being environmentally friendly is on trend, it seems that large producers have jumped on the bandwagon, exploiting the reusable trend and causing it to be just as detrimental as its single use predecessor.

In order to move on to an eco-friendly world, a conscious effort must be made to really look into what we are buying, why we are buying it, and making sure that reusable is reusable.

We are very pleased to announce that Doodle Bag now offers a Recycled Cotton Tote!

We were excited to offer a product made from recycled materials as we are proud to be a business that values sustainability and the ethical origins of our products. We want that to reflect through our printing processes and also through our products. Currently we do offer a range of Fairtrade & Organic bags and homewares, but we wanted to take that a step further and create a product made of recycled cotton, and we did. But the question is, why is that so significant? And why is recycled cotton so important?

While the cotton we use is sourced sustainably, it does use natural resources to grow and harvest. So, a way to avoid using these resources to grow new raw cotton for textile production, why not use pre-existing cotton? This is where the recycled cotton process begins.

Recycled cotton is normally described as coming from two main sources.

1. pre-consumer; being cotton that has not been used by the end user, such as cotton cut offs or by-products from initial cotton production.

And 2. post-consumer; being cotton products that have already been used by the consumer for example used garments, soft furnishings or towels.

The simple version of how recycled cotton is made the recycled cotton will be;

● Sorted by colour (By sorting the cotton by its colour before it is shredded and re-spun you avoid dying and drying the cotton again.)

● Shredded into fibres

● Cleaned

● Re-spun into a yarn which can then be woven to make new material. As this recycled cotton is slightly weaker than raw cotton there will be some new fibres woven in the material the thicken it.

Something that could be seen as a negative with recycled cotton is inconsistency within the final woven material, because of the different origins of the cotton. However, this usually isn’t noticeable, and we think there’s something special about the uniqueness of recycled cotton products.

The importance of recycled cotton should not be overlooked. By using recycled cotton, you are continuing the loop and the lifecycle of an item. The material is given a new lease of life, rather than being discarded. It also avoids having to use resources to grow new crops in order to produce a product that could have been otherwise created using recycled cotton. A closed loop system lessens the need for using raw resources to grow crops and adverse environmental impacts, and in turn stops wasteful discarding of items which have not reached their full potential.

If you are interest in Doodle Bag's recycled cotton check out our Recycled Cotton Tote here.

Fairtrade has been around for 25 years, which means 25 years of Fairtrade products in the UK and 25 years of positive impact for farmers, workers, and communities around the world. As you may or may not be aware Doodle Bag now has a wide range of Fairtrade products on offer to buy printed or blank. We thought to get into the spirit of Fairtrade Fortnight we would give 10 facts about Fairtrade you may not know.

1. There are 1.66 million Fairtrade farmers and workers across 73 countries.

The Fairtrade movement is growing every day, the Fairtrade vision is a world in which all producers can enjoy a secure and sustainable life and are in charge of their future.

2. Fairtrade products range from ice cream, to gold, to flowers, to beauty products.

There are over 4,500 products certified by Fairtrade. See the full list here.

3. 93% of the UK public recognise the Fairtrade mark.

One in four shoppers now regularly buy several Fairtrade products, that is great news for farmers and coops that benefit directly from the consumers purchasing Fairtrade.

4. 1 in 4 cups of coffee in the UK is Fairtrade.

Fairtrade came about in response to the struggles of Mexican coffee farmers following the collapse of the international coffee agreement. Fairtrade coffee was the first label, so it stands to reason that Fairtrade Coffee is a very popular commodity.

5. Divine Chocolate is the only chocolate company in the world to be fully owned by farmers.

The chocolate company is co-owned by the 85,000-farmer member strong cooperative in Ghana. It was set up in 1997 as the cooperative wanted to access a share of the valuable chocolate market, and is leading the way with projects empowering women, and raising awareness in child labour issues.

6. The first ever UK Fairtrade banana was sold in the year 2000.

Since then sales of Fairtrade bananas has risen and now 1 in 3 bananas of all bananas that are sold in the UK are Fairtrade. Fairtrade bananas are a leading influence in Fairtrade’s fight for equality.

7. Shoppers have generated 1 billion Euros in Fairtrade Premium for farmers and workers, over the past 25 years.

It is estimated that since it’s inception, Fairtrade farmers and workers have received over 1 billion Euros in Fairtrade Premium. This is an additional fund that the cooperatives decide how to invest in their communities and businesses.

8. Fairtrade is the first organisation to require living wages be paid to garment workers.

Fairtrade’s Textile Standard aims to empower factory workers and enable them to tackle challenging working conditions. It requires living wages to be paid to garment workers.

9. The environmental footprint of Fairtrade cotton is 5 times lower than conventional cotton.

Cotton cultivation covers 3% of the planet’s agricultural land, but its production consumes 16% of all insecticides. The environmental and social footprint of Fairtrade cotton is five times lower than conventional cotton.

10. Choosing Fairtrade helps tackle the climate crisis.

The standards of Fairtrade include environmental criteria such as, protecting the natural environment, banning the use of harmful pesticides, minimising the use of energy and water, and growing in harmony with the local environment.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. But what is not so wonderful is the amount of waste produced during the festive season. Roughly 30% more waste is produced during the Christmas period than the rest of the year.

In this blog I’m going to discuss a few ways that we can easily reduce waste this Christmas.

Food

Food is undoubtedly a big player in waste during the Christmas season. But how can we reduce the amount of food wasted on Christmas?

On Christmas day you first need to think about how many people you are cooking for. Then think about the amount of food you will need. When it comes to meat BBC Good Food recommends for a party of 4-7 you will need a bird that weighs between 2-3kg. A medium whole turkey is almost double that which means that half of the bird will not be eaten on Christmas day. Maybe for a smaller party consider a large chicken or maybe just the turkey crown.

The same applies for side dishes, just sit and think, 1. What people would like to eat and 2. How much they will realistically eat? I know tradition is important. But really think about whether you are preparing food for tradition or if people at the meal actually want it. If no one likes sprouts, then leave them out.

various Christmas present in various wrappings in a plie on a white background

Presents

I know it’s difficult to control gift packaging if you order online or if the person you are buying for wants one specific item that happens to be the most packaged thing in the world. However, if you are just browsing and find yourself deciding between two options, consider the quantity of packaging as a deciding factor.

I’m sure you are all aware of wrapping paper and how much waste it produces. Plastic coated bows and non-recyclable wrapping all have to go straight into the bin. As an alternative, consider recyclable paper options, like brown packing paper, used newspapers or sheet music. Decorate with cloth ribbons that can be reused, pressed flowers or a different coloured paper. Another alternative could be following the Japanese tradition of Furoshiki. This is the art of wrapping gifts in material, that can then be reused. A tote bag would be a good solution for this.

Advent calendars are a big part of Christmas; they kick off the festive season and get you officially into the Christmas spirit. However, there has been an increase in advent calendars containing unique/non-traditional goodies behind each door, such as cosmetics, toiletries, candles, etc. Whilst this is a fun lead up to Christmas, just think about how many of those 24 beauty products you’re actually going to use. If it’s all 24 then wonderful, but if it’s more like 10 or 12 then maybe you should reconsider your choice of advent calendar to avoid waste.

a digital drawing of a man and his dog riding in a pick up truck with a pine tree in the back

Transport

This one I wouldn’t necessarily consider waste, but it is something that I think is forgotten. And that is driving home for Christmas *insert Chris Rea*. I know there are many people reading this who are hosting Christmas or don’t have to travel far. But for those who do a long journey, you are probably well aware is not great for the environment and Co2 emissions.

So, consider a more environmentally friendly mode of getting home than simply driving, like taking the train or a coach. Do you know someone who is taking the same journey as you? Carpool back to your hometown. There are plenty of ride-sharing websites where you can see if there is someone making the same journey as you. It will be cheaper and it’s halving the Co2 emissions.

Hopefully these tips will help you reflect upon what you can do to ensure your Christmas is as waste free as possible.

Merry Christmas

With Christmas just-ish around the corner it's time to start thinking about gifts. And what’s better than giving someone a heartfelt gift? Giving someone an eco-friendly heartfelt gift! We have listed below some present inspiration that will tie in with all of your sustainable ethics.

We have compiled a variety of sustainable gift ideas so you can not only give thoughtful presents, but also have a lighter impact on the planet. There are options for everyone – kids, women, men, friends, family, environmentalists, minimalists, vegans, zero-wasters, and a range of unique to practical, luxury to inexpensive gifts – so you’re sure to find something perfect!

Thank you for doing your gift shopping more responsibly 💚

plastic straws and metal straws on a white background

1. Straws

Yes, straws may seem like a bit of a rubbish gift. HOWEVER, reusable metal straws that come in a cute little cotton pouch is a bit more up the right path. With more and more awareness of the negative effects of plastics, like straws on marine animals and our oceans metal straws are readily available and make a great gift for that eco-conscious person in your life. In addition to this, it could be the perfect stock filling for Christmas. 

a macro shot of coffee beans

2. Coffee cup

Buying for a coffee addict? Then look no further. Reusable coffee cups come in a range of shapes, sizes and materials from glass to metal to recycled coffee beans! Available in a range of colours there will be something out there to suit the style of your coffee mad friend or relative. But why stop there? Why not create a gift set with some ethically sourced Fairtrade coffee to go with it? You will really make their day and have a positive impact on the coffee industry and its workers. A magnificent affordable gift for one of your loved ones.

a woman wearing makeup  smiling into camera

3. Sustainable and ethical makeup

Sustainable and ethical makeup is makeup that is vegan (meaning it contains no animal products and is not tested on animals), organic, and sources ingredients in an ethical way which normally includes recyclable packaging. Cosmetics are a great gift for any makeup fanatic out there and eco friendly options are available. The perfect eco-friendly gift for her or him.

a plain cotton makeup bag wit the words "it is what it is Makeup bag" on it

4. Makeup bag

If you’re thinking of buying ethical cosmetics as a gift, then you’ll be looking for somewhere to put them! Makeup bags made from ethical products such as organic or recycled cotton are a great gift to accompany some ethical makeup. With Doodle Bag you can personalise Make-Ups with photos or text. Hence, you can add a quote, song lyric or a precious photo from a special moment.  This would be a great eco-gift for all ages.

a number of dogs looking sad being a wire fence

5. Animal Adoption

Animal adoption as a gift is an animal lovers dream, from donkeys to tigers to pandas you can subscribe to supporting an animal in danger of extinction or in a position where their owners have to hand over care to a charity. No one can disagree with the fact that by adopting a pet at an animal shelter you give them another chance at life. Some have terrible pasts, and have been abused, abandoned or left to fend for themselves on the streets. You are giving them a happy and safe home. Overall, it is a great way to support animals and the charities that care for animals in need and makes a very good gift.

a necklace with a varnished wooden pendant hanging on an old tree

6. Planet saving jewellery

With a new wave of awareness around plastic waste in our oceans, some companies have started taking a proactive approach. By harvesting this plastic waste and using it to create jewellery. With proceeds going towards continuing the effort of clearing plastic waste from the oceans it is a circular system that is improving the environment. This is a simple gift that offers fashion and ethics . Nowadays, many sustainable jewellery brands are not only amazing for investment pieces with guaranteed longevity but are also focused on creating sustainable pieces. This can start with sourcing materials from fairtrade companies, creating jobs for communities and offering a fair wage to staff, to using recycled materials. Other jewellery brands are upcycling and giving pre-loved, vintage pieces a new lease of life, the ones going plastic-free and those relying on recycled and recyclable packaging. All of these elements can make a difference to a feel-good buy and a great eco-friendly gift.

RPET COTTON TOTE BLACK MARL on a white background

7. Personalised Tote or travel bag.

Are you buying gifts for someone jetting off on an adventure? Why not help prepare them with an environmentally friendly made travel or tote bag? There are plenty of options available big and small depending on their travel needs. They say ‘it’s the thought that counts’ and that is certainly true of personalised gifts. Having a gift personalised for the recipient, will show that you have put thought and care into your choice. Next time you are out shopping for the perfect gift, think about how you can make it personal and relevant to the recipient.

Give a memorable gift that they will treasure forever

A lot of the time they can also be personalised adding that extra special touch.

home made lavender soap on a wooden chopping board covered in lavender flowers

8. Soaps

A luxury bar of soap is a great and indulgent way to treat someone. Many of the personal care products we use include harmful, non-biodegradable ingredients that damage the environment. Note to self, always look at the label. You’ll see paraben, phthalates, triclosan, and other synthetic ingredients that hurt not only the environment but also your body. There are more eco-friendly soaps, and other personal care products available all the time. We looked into how companies treat the environment and their employees to identify the options that make your skin, hair, and body look great, feel healthy and reduce the negative environmental impact at the same time.  If you have a little search you will find that a lot of bar soaps are free from harmful chemicals and come in a plastic-free wrapper. This makes bar soap a great gift to give rather than chemical-filled shower gels encased in a plastic bottle

wicker-basket-in-the-shape-of-a-heart-filled-with-fresh-vegetables-and-herbs

9. Homemade food hamper

Receiving something that is homemade is always more special because someone has taken their time to create something for you. Food hampers are a wonderful gift idea because you can tailor it to the person you’re making it for, making and including things they like. There's so many products you can put in the hamper such as food both sweet and sour as well as drinks, candles e.t.c. By making the hamper by hand, you know exactly what is in it and you can avoid packing with plastic. Plus, you can get a personalised tote bag to buy all the products inside. The perfect personalised eco-friendly gift.

red, rose, and white wine in glasses lined up next to each other

10. Organic Wine or beer

Wine and beer are classic fun and easy gifts, but how can you translate these boozy beverages into an environmentally friendly gift? Well organic beer and wine are your best bets. Using organic wheat, barley and hops for the beer and grapes for the wine means that no harmful pesticides were used, and less water consumed in the making of the drink. There’s a bit of a boom with organic wine right now, and plenty of merchants are getting in on the act. It’s no news for Austin Beeman who pointed us in the right direction. All the way from vineyard to bottle, Organic Wine Company selects sustainable producers that are pesticide-free and made with certified organic grapes. A delicious sustainable gift – just recycle or reuse the glass bottle after. The Independent has created some helpful guides to the best organic wines and beers for your inspiration.

There are loads of different ways to use our reusable bags, not just what they’re designed for. We’re always thinking of new ways to use canvas bags. So, we thought we’d let you know about a few that don’t spring to mind immediately for some inspiration.

Small Premium Jute Shopper on a white background

Small Shopper.

Our small shopper bag is perfect as a small lunch bag. It has more than enough room for sandwiches, fruit, a drink, and a snack. And personalised with your name, everyone will know to keep their hands off your lunch! Our small shopper is the perfect personalised lunch bag.

medium drawstring pouch - Doodle Bag - Personalised Cotton Tote Bags on a white background

Drawstring bag.

Our small drawstring bag is an ideal food storage bag for storing dried foods like nuts, if you buy your nuts loose in the supermarket, avoid using the plastic bags provided by the shop and take your own reusable fruit and vegetable bag, and they’re great for storage at home too.

Contrast Jute Shopper Bag on a white background

Jute bag.

Jute bags are quite a fashion statement, with a natural, bohemian look to them! With this in mind we think our small jute bag makes a great day bag. A jute handbag will make your look pop as a statement piece without being garish. Style it with almost any outfit and still add an ethical edge to your OOTD.

Small Premium Jute Shopper on a white background

Super shopper.

Our Super shopper as well as being a great shopper bag as a reusable grocery bag, and it makes the ideal personalised beach bag. Large enough to fit towels, flip flops, swimming gear and a little extra room for a picnic! This spacious bag is perfect to fill up for a quick trip to the beach.

Makeup Bag on a white background

Makeup bag.

Ever been on a night out or at an event and your clutch bag is just too small for all your night out essentials? Our makeup bag is the perfect transition piece. It’s still small enough to be a portable under the arm clutch bag, yet with its gusset it is big enough for all your bits and bobs, ready for you to hit the town.

Small Cotton Tote on a white background

Small Tote bag.

If you’re planning a hen do it’s such a nifty idea to get your bride tribe matching personalised hen do bags for your embarrassing photo t-shirts, shot glasses, disposable cameras, and whatever else you want to put in them! We think that our small tote bag is the perfect little gift bag to store all your hen do goodies, and they make a great keepsake too.

a woman in blue jeans holding Mini drawstring bag on a white background

Mini Drawstring bag and Tote Bags.

Sticking with the wedding theme, we think our mini drawstring bags are the ideal personalised wedding favour bag for your guests. Just big enough to fill with sweets, trinkets and keepsakes, but small enough so it fits in nicely with all your other table decorations and settings. Our tote bags are great as a large wedding favour bag if you have a larger wedding favour in mind! With your design with the colour, theme, and date of your wedding it’s a great way to include a tote bag in your wedding.

large red jute on a white background

Jute bag (again)

A gift hamper is a wonderful gift, with treats savoury and sweet that are a bit too indulgent to buy for yourself. Putting these delicious items in a jute bag gives this gift an even more a luxury feel so will make the receiver feel even more special. Our large jute bag is large enough to use as a 6 bottle wine bag as well if you want to really treat someone!

At Doodle Bag we’re committed to making a difference. One way to make a massive impact is to reduce your waste. Here are 10 easy ways you can reduce your waste.

  1. Cook with Canned food

    - Using canned food like tomatoes, vegetables and beans is a good alternative to fresh produce if you’re not sure you’ll use all your produce before it goes off. Doing this means you can avoid food wastage. Also tin cans are recyclable, reducing your throw away waste.

  2. Using bar soap

    - What if I were to tell you that there is an eco-friendly alternative to shower gel that lasts at least 1 month, has little to no plastic waste and costs a fraction of the price? Interested? Well let me introduce the bar of soap. It is a great way to reduce waste, more often than not comes in paper or card packaging which is recyclable. A lot of the time is made from high quality natural ingredients and comes in at a much lower price point.

  3. Avoid unnecessary packaging

    – At this point we’re all aware of unnecessary packaging and how sometimes it can be impossible to avoid. That said, if you are planning to make a trip by the deli counter at your local supermarket, many supermarkets will let you bring your own Tupperware and containers. Also ditch the plastic bags for loose fruit and veg and opt for a cotton bag that you can reuse time and time again.
    a woman bagging Lemons in a no waste bag in an outdoor market

  4. What to do with leftovers?

    – Leftovers are an easy one, if you have a furry friend in the house (& the food is safe for them) it’s unlikely they’ll complain at having some of your leftovers. If not, it’s a quick lunch for the next day, easy, just don’t throw it away!

  5. Compost

    – Things like fruit and vegetable peels, tea bags, egg shells and flowers decompose in compost. You can use this in your garden. Alternatively if you don’t have your own garden, many people who do or have allotments would be grateful for additions to help theirs.

  6. Cutlery and crockery at buffets

    – Buffets are a haven for all things disposable; plates, cutlery, cups and the food. If you host a buffet, encourage guests to bring their own plates, glasses and knives and forks. You could also suggest that attendees bring their own containers for leftover food after the event finishes to reduce waste further.

  7. Buy cheap buy twice

    – If we’re being honest, some things just aren’t built to last. Fast fashion is designed around making things cheap and low quality that last a few months before breaking. Sometimes it is worth saving up a little more and waiting to buy something that will last much longer to avoid it breaking. Maybe a more classic design that will be more fashionable for longer. This also applies to things like furniture, if you buy well, these things can last a long time.

  8. Use the Freezer

    – If you are someone who lives alone or in a smaller family the freezer should be your best friend! When food comes in larger packs it can be difficult to eat everything before it goes off. Freezing things like chopped vegetables or bread, is a great way to not have to throw away and you can often cook them from frozen, making it a practical solution too.

    RPET SHOPPPER bag in  CLOUD CREAM on a white background

  9. Reusable bags

    – This is one we at Doodle Bag are passionate about (obviously) but getting a reusable bag is so easy. And with the 5p/10p bag tax in the UK it will save you money in the long run. Reusable bags come in all shapes and sizes for any use. Personalise with your photos, favourite quotes and designs, for a fashion forward yet waste free accessory.

  10. Charity Shop donations

    – When you have finished with a top or a book or a children’s toy, what would you do with it? If throwing it away entered your head, then I urge you to rethink. Charity shopping is a great way to re-purpose old items. It will give your old possessions a new lease of life and you will be helping to raise money for charity too.

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People love their pets, of course they do. They’re little, cute, loving members of the family who will stick by you through thick and thin.

Sometimes you want to treat your pets to little gifts to remind them how much you love them. This is where pet gifting comes in. Pet gifting is a new phenomenon of gifting specifically aimed at pets (and pet lovers) to give them a well-deserved present.

“But what should I get?” I hear you cry; well I’ve put together a short list of gift ideas for loving pets and their doting owners.

For your pet

a close up shot of dog food in a dog bowl

1. Treats

Like people, the way to a pet’s heart is through their stomach. This is the most obvious gift for a pet and there’s so many fun treats on the market. From bespoke personalised dog treats, birthday cakes for your cats and pizzas for pets there are so many yummy ways to treat your furry friends. There are some great recipes here.

various stuffed toys in a box

2. Toys

There’s no two ways about it, pets love toys. A toy that will get your little buddy running around is even better because exercise will make your pet a happy little bunny. Things like cat wheels, tennis ball launchers, or an exercise ball allowing smaller pets freedom to run around the house making great gifts for pets.

a dalmatian in a very fancy dog coat

3. Accessories

Give your pet some personality with a stylish accessory, maybe you want everyone to know that your dalmatian is a diva with a sparkly pink leash or you just want your pet to match you with colour coordinating collar. Either way an accessory can ensure your pet is the most stylish pet out there.

a dog lying on its bag looking up at the camera on a dog bed

4. Beds/new hutch

A new bed or hutch is basically like giving your little friend a bedroom makeover, for larger pets there are so many comfy and durable beds on offer where they can curl up all night. Or for smaller creatures a new hutch with different levels or a run can be an exciting new change for pet and will give them somewhere to burn off some steam.

For you

a renascence style portrait of a cat in military uniform

5. Pictures

A picture of you and your pets or just your furry friend is a great way to decorate your home! If it’s for a gift you could pay for a photo shoot or there are some incredible artists who will do realistic or stylised commission drawings from a photo adding a unique piece of art to a home.

a cotton jute bag with the words "your design here" on it

6. Personalised bag

Everyone loves a gift they can actually use. The pet-lover in your life would especially love a personalised bag to allow them to show off a picture of their pet even when they’re not around.

three dog bend on top of each other, each with there own distinct style and colour

7. Home décor

Who wouldn’t want to get all cosy in a bed with your dog's’s face all over it? Or a sofa with cushions with pictures of your guinea pig? It’s such a fun idea and a way to add a bit of fun to a plain bedroom or add even more personality to a fun room.

For a quick look into this years hottest trends, look no further, we've made a list of 5 key spring/summer trends for 2019.

a Ven diagram of three bright colours

  1. Bold bright colours

Bright bold colours are a summer staple and 2019 is no exception. S/S collections from top designers have presented us with tangerine oranges, highlighter greens and electric yellows, showing a drastic shift from the pastels of last season. Doodle bag now offers coloured cotton tote bags with colours like electric orange, peacock and daffodil to brighten up your style and can make you really stand out from the crowd.

a macro shot of sea shells of various sizes and colours

  1. “shell colours”

Pantone’s colour of the year 2019 is 16-1546- Living Coral and following that shells and shell colours are in! From interior design to the catwalk people are loving the delicate creams, light pinks, tans and of course coral! Not just shell colours but shells themselves, “under the sea” is a trend that is sweeping the high street, so why not decorate your own bag with a unique aquatic design.

a blue, purple, and yellow geodesic patten

  1. Geometric

Well, it looks like geometric prints are here to stay. Especially in the interior design world. Following the boom in Scandinavian influence, geometric design has risen to the top. Its simplistic design with maximum impact means it can add a bold statement without being fussy.

An easy way to add geometric prints to your home is with tea towels, and aprons. Their large print surface is the perfect way to add bold style to a room with minimum effort.

an engraved slogan on a concrete wall saying "everyone has potential, you just have to discover"

  1. Slogans

Slogans are big at the moment, and you see them everywhere, inspirational quotes, typography or simply funny words. Just go to your local high street and you will notice them on water bottles, clothing, bags and more. It’s simple yet impactful, just one or two words and you can really get a message across.

So why not embrace the trend and get something that motivates you or makes you giggle on a toiletry bag. It’s a great way to show off your personality.

a stone wall of various sizes and shades

  1. Natural Materials

We are becoming more and more conscious about our environmental impact. Therefore using more sustainable materials has developed into its own fashion trend. Using materials that are grown organically and made in a fair and sustainable supply-chain is in, and we hope it is here to stay.

Our Fairtrade & Organic bags are a great way to get behind this really positive trend. Bags made from Jute are a sustainable alternative if cotton isn’t for you and it offers a more rustic feel.

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