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New PINATEX handbag collection!

pinatex vegan bag by grey whale

So happy to announce the release of my Pinatex handbags!  There are actually four separate designs here, one is an extra special 2 in 1 tote plus insert that turns into a light crossbody bag.  No more messy switching bags and forgetting your wallet!  These have been (as always) hand crafted with careful attention to every detail and made with earth kind pineapple leather alternative Pinatex. Continue reading New PINATEX handbag collection!

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Ethical wardrobe: Autumn look 2017 and beyond!

ethical fashion fall winter 2017 look

I thought I’d start sharing a few ethical fashion outfit ideas with you from time to time, I think part of the problem that people have with ‘ethical fashion’ or choosing more ‘sustainable’ clothing is that the terms conjure up ideas of having to sacrifice on style or good quality.  So first up as the weather turns chilly I’m pulling together an Autumn look I really like using staples you probably already have and if not maybe they will give you some ideas.  Today I have chosen a really simple casual outfit with warm autumnal tones: jeans and over-sized cardi which most of us have, pared with a tote handbag (by guess who?) plus metallic trainers in copper and a beautiful piece of simple jewelry to brighten everything up.  Here’s what I have chosen with links if you want to know more or where to get any of the pieces.  I don’t know about you but I have huge heart eyes for those shoes and that necklace.  Enjoy! Continue reading Ethical wardrobe: Autumn look 2017 and beyond!

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How to organise your handbag or purse – Marie Kondo style

Our handbags and purses often contain a jumble or receipts, tissues, loose change and a variety of other useful and not so useful items.  If this sounds like yours too you are really not alone.  You clear out the bits and pieces and before you know it you are back to square one.  But I have found a brilliant solution to keeping my handbag organised inspired by the queen of all things organised and tidy – Marie Kondo.  This way makes it so easy to switch between bags toom one day you might need that big tote to carry everything but the kitchen sink and the next maybe you only need a light crossbody with basic essentials.  The solution?  Zipper pouches.  Yes it’s that simple and I’m going to show you how to keep your bag organized and tidy forever!  Ok maybe not forever but this honestly works!  Here’s how in 3 easy steps. Continue reading How to organise your handbag or purse – Marie Kondo style

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What is vegan leather and is it eco-friendly?

Pinatex bag by Grey Whale bags, eco friendly vegan leather alternative

So what is vegan leather?  It’s a term spreading fast and as the trend towards vegan food grows so does the desire for vegan fashion.  I feel like we are led to believe that because of associations with the word ‘vegan’ it is somehow natural and kind to the environment.  However what does it really mean- it might not harm any animals but is it really eco-friendly and environmentally sustainable? Continue reading What is vegan leather and is it eco-friendly?

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Making the bag – a look behind the scenes!

This is a post I’ve wanted to share for a while now but have never quite managed to take enough pictures as I worked- it’s the ‘How its made’ post!  I love getting a little peek behind the workshop curtains of other designers, makers and artists so I hope you will find it interesting to discover how I go about making a bag from idea to finished piece.   Continue reading Making the bag – a look behind the scenes!

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Catch up, Makers 4 Refugees and exciting things to come

Well my good intentions of posting to my blog every week or two at the latest clearly haven’t been working out.  I see so many people saying they feel bad about not managing to do it all and I’m the same if I’m honest.  I think about how I’m not blogging probably once a day which is ridiculous as I should probably just sit for 10 minutes and share a few thoughts and pictures (I have oh so many).  Today is about a quick little catch up with my online pals so let me pour you a virtual cuppa 😉  Continue reading Catch up, Makers 4 Refugees and exciting things to come

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All natural plant dye fabric and other pink things!

Well Spring has arrived (mostly) and we’ve just had a relaxing and fun week here.  Brussels is full of the most beautiful pink blossom trees and the weather was unbelievably warm for a few days.  I managed to make a good start on my container garden which I have no experience in but am very excited about nonetheless!  As my own mission to live a more environmentally friendly and chemical-free life continues I constantly find new ideas for how I can do things better.  So the idea of growing a few salad goodies and some herbs has big appeal… below is my tip for instant garden gratification 😉 Continue reading All natural plant dye fabric and other pink things!

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Organics and the road to sustainability

Finally GOTS certified organic cotton bags and scarves are coming!  I am so excited about this and I hope many of you will be too so this new branch can thrive and grow.  I’d like to share some of the process I’ve gone through coming to find just the right fabric.  Continue reading Organics and the road to sustainability

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Re-imagining Hokusai, bags inspired by Japanese print

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Best 9 2016

It’s been a bit of a slow start to the year for me especially as I had been so busy up until the very end it’s actually quite an anticlimax.  I kind of expected to hit the ground running in 2017 but instead found myself floundering in a sea of ideas and papers.  There are so many more things I want for Grey Whale this year, not just for myself but for helping to create something positive in the world and it’s time to get more intentional about this.  It doesn’t have to be a huge monumental thing but I truly believe every small step in the direction of good counts.  So some exciting things are in the pipeline but more on that in my next post because for now I want to show you a fun little project I just completed!   Continue reading Re-imagining Hokusai, bags inspired by Japanese print