Archive for the ‘Batik’ Category

Reusable Shopping Bags: Tips to Help You Remember Them

November 24th, 2009 2 comments

reusable-shopping-bagsThe single use plastic shopping bag has become a popular target of the green movement, and with good reason. Plastic bags are littering our land and polluting our oceans. Reusable shopping bags are a great way to help the environment IF you remember to bring them to the supermarket. Here is a list of tips to help you get into the habit of using your reusable shopping bags…

  • Write ‘Bring bags’ on your shopping lists.
  • Put your completed list in your reusable shopping bag.
    Our shopping bags have a small inside pocket that is ideally suited to keeping your list handy, and it’s also big enough for a change purse.
  • Keep an extra bag or two in the glove compartment of your car.
  • Keep a spare bag in your coat pocket or handbag. We designed our Wrapsacks totes to fold and zip down to a convenient size.
  • Keep your shopping totes by the front door.
  • You could hang them right on the doorknob
  • Choose bags with colors and designs that suit your personal style. If your bags are accessories, you will be more likely to think of them.

You don’t have to do ALL of these things. If one or two of these strategies helps you change your habits, you are all set. When you use these bags every day, you prevent hundreds of plastic bags from entering the waste stream.

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Batik: Our Gift Bags Have Heritage

November 11th, 2009 No comments

batikOur reusable gift bags are hand dyed in Indonesia.  You may have already noticed a new page on our site that illustrates and explains the batik dyeing process used to create our beautiful 100% cotton gift bags.  It is a skill that has been handed down through many generations in Indonesia.  I was very pleased to find out that UNESCO has recognized batik as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.  Here is the eloquently written nomination:

The techniques, symbolism and culture surrounding hand-dyed cotton and silk garments known as Indonesian Batik permeate the lives of Indonesians from beginning to end: infants are carried in batik slings decorated with symbols designed to bring the child luck, and the dead are shrouded in funerary batik. Clothes with everyday designs are worn regularly in business and academic settings, while special varieties are incorporated into celebrations of marriage and pregnancy and into puppet theatre and other art forms. The garments even play the central role in certain rituals, such as the ceremonial casting of royal batik into a volcano. Batik is dyed by proud craftspeople who draw designs on fabric using dots and lines of hot wax, which resists vegetable and other dyes and therefore allows the artisan to colour selectively by soaking the cloth in one colour, removing the wax with boiling water and repeating if multiple colours are desired. The wide diversity of patterns reflects a variety of influences, ranging from Arabic calligraphy, European bouquets and Chinese phoenixes to Japanese cherry blossoms and Indian or Persian peacocks. Often handed down within families for generations, the craft of batik is intertwined with the cultural identity of the Indonesian people and, through the symbolic meanings of its colours and designs, expresses their creativity and spirituality.

This recognition is especially important as it comes with an expectation that nominees conform to UNESCO ideals such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The finest batik used for traditional ceremonies is amazingly detailed and requires months of skilled labor to create.   Wrapsacks are dyed using a more modern technique involving the use of a copper stamp to apply hot wax to the fabric.  Age old techniques such as using the sun to fix dyes are still employed in the making of our gift bags.

Categories: Batik, Gift Bags Tags: