Category Archives: Planet kind

Info on keeping our planet happy and ways to help.

Folksy Eco-Friendly Gifts and Home Accessories

Hello there friends,  I’ve just popped in to say Folksy added my Beetroot Press ‘Blackberry Jam’ tea-towel to their email newsletter, which is always a joy and nice surprise to see.

Folksy eco friendly gifts_Beetroot Press

It’s worth checking out the link to see all the beautiful hand-made eco-friendly items there are, made by British crafters.    Folksy eco-friendly nice stuff.

vintage napkin_tea towel_ hand printed by Beetroot Press jams preserves tea towel print_by Beetroot Press

And here’s a few close ups of the Tea towel/napkin Folksy selected.  It’s printed on a vintage white napkin which has a subtle weave pattern, and has little initials sewn in the corner, (which I love).  It has a loop on the back so you can use it as a napkin or a tea-towel.

alloment blackberry jam t towel_hand printed by Beetroot Press
Hand-printed by me (as per), with lots of joy!  Here’s the link to the vintage napkin.  This design also is printed in ultramarine blue on an organic cotton tea-towel.

Happy days 🙂

Mother’s Day hand-made gift ideas.

With Mother’s Day fast approaching I’ve had a little look at some gift ideas – eco-friendly by either material, process or handmade here in the UK.   All of these items are hand-made by Folksy sellers.  I love the fact that the palette has turned out very spring like and filled with items of gorgeousness!

Mothers day gift ideas eco friendly Sarah Papworth

See the list below for the links to all these shops.

1. Print for Love of Wood.  A funky typography shop selling cards and prints which are printed in a traditional way on a range of printing presses.  It’s a small design and letterpress studio based in the Pennines, Lancashire.  The paper, maker and graphic designer, Jacqui Sharples, uses is recycled and even the ink is recycled from printers who have closed down due to the impact of digital on traditional methods.

2. Isla Clay.  Gorgeous geometric statement necklaces, so nice I think I’d buy to just hang on my wall!  Handmade by Martina Zalig.

3. BoodleBoutique.  This was a good find, Bethan Buss creates fun illustrations and uses organic material for her baby-grow prints (which are so cute by the way).  Other items include T-shirts, cards, mugs and prints.

4. Linen Prints.  Jacqui Watkins uses block printing to create her textiles and images.  I love the style of mark-making that block printing brings and the soft colours Jacqui uses.  She sells a small range of items such as cushions, mugs, coasters and greeting cards.

5. The Way to Blue.  Shop owner, Sarah Middleton is an artist based in North Wales.  Sarah mainly uses the old photographic process of cyanotype, where a light sensitive solution is applied to watercolour paper.  Objects or negatives are then layered on then exposed to sunlight.   Her prints are beautiful and I’m so glad I stumbled across her shop.  I love that she lives in a house nestled on a hillside (sigh).

6. Claudia Made This.  Claudia Thomas keeps herself busy making cute and fruity jewellery.  I love her colourful earrings which have a bit of a 1950’s feel to them.

7. Andrew Berwick Illustration.  Hand-printed and handmade products, which all have a country feel using illustrations of stags, hedgehogs, foxes and hummingbirds.  Printed onto cushions and lampshades.

8. Peris and Corr.  I love this shop!  It’s a boutique screen printing and design studio, located in the Snowdonia national park in North Wales.  They hand print everything with water based eco-friendly inks, the paper used is from recycled stock and the lampshades and cushions are made from 100% organic cotton.   Lots of Welsh inspired homewares to drool over – mostly cushions and lampshades – gorgeous!

9. Maybe Mabel Handmade.  Lauren Holloway loves to sew and has created a vast range of bags, make up bags and iPad cases.  She is passionate about recycling and uses bright and fun fabrics for her hand-made accessories.

10. Jessica Catherine.  All the ceramic items are handmade by Jessica in her home studio.  There are a few versions of the trinket dish (which I love), earrings, and ceramic hearts among other items.

11. Gill’s Handmade Jewels.   The maker, Gillian, uses artisan made components from all over the world.  All of her work has a bohemian style which is colourful and beautiful.

12 + 16. Louise Brainwood Textiles.   I love the textiles on Louise’s shop, all with simple form and shape within the fabric designs, and with lovely colour palettes.  The fabrics she uses are her own designs.

13. CasSam Jewellery.  Maker, Nicola Bretherton makes her stamped jewellery with 100% recycled fine silver.  Her designs are simple and cute and would make a lovely gift.

14. Elizabeth S Murray.  I really like the simplicity of Elizabeth’s birds, and they have a very elegant feel to them.  I particularly like the robin and sparrow (love little birdies).  Each item is made to order so make sure you get your order in on time!

15. Dyfal Donc.  I really like this shop, another one situated in North Wales!  The shop owners and designers, Morgan and Rebecca used recycled photos and scavenged bits and bobs to up-cycle, giving their designs a collage feel.  The shop mostly sells cards, pocket mirrors and mugs, in English and Welsh language.

And so ends the list!  I hope you and your Mummies have a lovely day.

Gifts for teachers

Gifts for teachers_FolksyHappy day today when I went onto Folksy and saw the Beetroot Press ‘Apple for the Teacher’ tea-towel on their front page!  It got me thinking about what other things teachers would love to get at the end of the school year….I have a lot of friends that are teachers, most of them are stationary freaks, and very organised indeed.

Organic cotton pencil case organic cotton pencil case_the little deer

These pencil cases are so cute, I would def get one for myself (even though for kids)!  I found them online, in a Belgium shop called The little Zebra who sell items for trendy kids.  They have some really cute stuff on there.

February Design stamp on etsy

I found this super cool stamp for teachers!  The Etsy shop, called February Designs has created a few fabulous stamps for teachers, plus more, and is based in Texas, USA.

ink and thread recycled notebooks

These recycled notebooks are beautiful and the perfect present for that stationary loving teacher.  They are designed and made in Britain available from Ink and Thread who sell products only made within the UK.

glasses cases sarah waterhouse

These hand-printed glasses cases, in a range of colours are sold on Etsy by Sarah Waterhouse within the UK.  Made from a cotton and hemp mix and lined with a matching gingham, they’re a perfect fun sustainable gift.  Could be used in school for reading glasses or on their summer hols for a cute sunglasses case!

tomato plant beetroot press

What about giving them something to look after in the holidays?  A tomato plant is a good idea as you can grow them in pots if they dont have much space, they just need watering and maybe a cane to support, then you have all these lovely tomatoes to eat throughout the summer.  Try Sutton’s seeds for a vegetable plant, or for a seed packet that you and your little ones can grow together as a gift for your teacher that loves to potter in the garden (and keep some yourselves).

gifts for teachers Beetroot Press wall art

Here’s ‘An Apple a day’ wall art print, soon to be in the Beetroot Press Etsy shop (sneek peek)!  They are ready to print, onto white archival paper, so if you wanted one as a gift for that special teacher, just send me a message and I’ll happily sort one out for you.

And not to forget Owl, he comes in a choice of colours from the Beetroot Press Etsy and Folksy shops.

If you have any other ideas about what would make good teachers gifts, (or if you are a teacher and have a preference), add your comments below.

Why is linen an eco-friendly and healthier choice?

nursery cushion

Linen cushion. Columbia road flower market print

I love linen!  It’s a gorgeous textured, luxury fabric which has been woven into cloth for nearly 10,000 years and it gets better with age.  The more you wash it, the softer, more beautiful it becomes and it’s antibacterial and anti fungal hypoallergenic qualities are great for people with allergies or skin issues.  Linen comes from the flax plant, which is a very versatile plant for farmers to grow.

The whole flax plant can be used, so it leaves no waste and only needs a little energy to process it.  The flax plant can be used for making products such as heat installation, paper, installation for the car industry, soap, linoleum floors, which is made from flax seed oil.   The oil is high in alpha omega−3 fatty acids and is very good for you, the oil is also used as a component in paints, cosmetics, and soil coverings.  The flax seeds can be used as the base for a fine flour used in medical compresses.

linen lavender pillows Beetroot Press

Linen lavender pillows from Beetroot Press

Flax also grows naturally and only needs a few chemical fertilisers than cotton, less water, requires no irrigation, it is gentler on the land and when rotated it helps prevent soil depletion.  If pesticides are being used, they use 5 times fewer than cotton to grow.  And as it’s a natural fibre, flax linen is 100% recyclable and biodegradeable. it’s also very strong, much more than cotton, which means products made from this fabric will last longer and hopefully not end up in landfill, and also means it reduces the need for starching during spinning and weaving.  So that means buying vintage linens is an excellent choice as they will be strong, well washed and used, so will have that fabulous textured softness.  I saw some old linen flour sacks the other day for £30 each, I’m sure you could get a good deal on e-bay or antiques market, if you are happy to search around for them.  The industrial process of spinning and weaving have little to no impact on the environment, artificial fibres such as viscose, bamboo or corn require energy and chemicals, whereas flax and linen do not.  The remaining residual flax is used in fibre boards, bank notes and other similar products.  The impact on the environment is minimal throughout the whole process.

linen tea towel by BEETROOT PRESS

Linen tea towel from Beetroot Press

Linen can be used for all textiles around the home, when used for curtains it has excelled insulating properties, while keeping cool in summer.  Cushions are fabulous in linen, upholstered sofas and chairs look great with linen, some people don’t like the creases, but I think it adds to the relaxed elegance.  I have been working with linen to make Beetroot Press’ lavender pillows and Columbia Road Flower market cushions, and I just love the breathability, feel and look of the fabric.  I can imagine linen pillowcases and sheets would be heavenly to lie under, tea towels are great, because they are washed and used so much, and are very absorbent.  Same with napkins and table cloths.  I think the only downside is the ironing (which I personally hate doing), but I find if you iron whilst the linen is still damp from the wash it takes no time at all.  Brills!

flax bread

I’m off wheat at the moment for my health and I found this Flax bread recipe to share with you from Manitoba Canola Growers website.  I haven’t tried it, but I will do as have recently bought all the ingredients.  Have a look at the link here for the recipe, I’ll try it out and update you on how it tastes!

Information sources:

world linen

Ada & Ina

Libeco

Calvin fabrics