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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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Re-imagining Hokusai, bags inspired by Japanese print

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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

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Fear, anxiety + the will to push through

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So what does fear have to do with making bags?  Nothing and yet everything.  To me Grey Whale is not just about bags it is about a different way of living, thinking and seeing the world.  It’s about creativity and mindfulness in a bid to do my bit for humanity in some small way at least. Continue reading Fear, anxiety + the will to push through

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Thoughts on conscious consumerism and sustainability.

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There’s so much talk around now about conscious consumerism, sustainability, buy less and buy well.  I love it and it’s so inspiring but I’ll admit I’m no Lauren Singer.  To be honest I’ve had an on/off relationship with the whole concept for years and have often felt that waste is a thing that just can’t be beat from fashion to food its everywhere.  Though I was brought up in an ideal eco-friendly and sustainable living environment we are now surrounded with cheap disposable everything and it can be hard to know where to begin. Continue reading Thoughts on conscious consumerism and sustainability.