Archive for the ‘General’ Category
As part of Green Tulip’s membership to 1% of the Planet we make an annual donation to three environmental charities of our choice. One of the charities we support is One World Wildlife and our donation this year is supporting a project researching Whale conservation in Chile. Read more at www.oneworldwildlife.org/what_we_do/projects/current/whales
We’re proud to be supporting the Rainforest Foundation’s 12 Days of Christmas Auction this year by donating a set of bambu bowls and an EarthLust bottle. The auction is on ebay and started on the 12th November (for 12 days!). Our products have already had a few bids and everything raised will go towards the protection of the world’s threatened rainforests. We’ll let you know how much they raise. www.ebay.co.uk/12days
We've had a Facebook page for a couple of years now but haven't really publicised it (or I have to admit added much either!). We've now put a link on the website so hopefully you'll take a look - we are at www.facebook.com/greentulipuk or just click here. A couple of the posts have links to interviews I have done recently - one for My Daily where we were chosen to be their Boutique of the Week. We'll also be posting details of what new products have arrived on the website and anything else we think you might be interested in!
We've also just set up a Facebook page for our shop The Inner Yard (near Devizes in Wiltshire). That will feature sneak previews of what is coming in and pictures of what we have been up to! You can find that here.
Now I just need to get my head around twitter...!
Once upon a time you’d have found it a challenge to track down ethical goods full stop. Not so long ago ethical goods were expensive, exclusive and hard to find. The province of the few. These days the ethical goods movement is going mainstream as more and more people take the plunge, shopping responsibly instead of ignoring the serious side of our addiction to retail therapy.
If you haven’t decided on your New Year resolutions yet, 2011 could be the year to go ethical and commit yourself to shopping with a conscience.
Conscious shopping is becoming increasingly popular too, as people begin to question the values behind our consumer society. Less waste, more care. Less automatic extravagance, more thoughtfulness. Less impulse buying, more carefully considered purchases.
Here’s a few handy tips for changing your shopping habits for the better in 2011:
- Buy ethical goods wherever humanly possible, goods whose manufacturers and creators are treated fairly and paid a reasonable wage.
- Decide whether you genuinely need a product before buying it, instead of indulging yourself in retail therapy for the sake of it. Yes, there’s a lovely glow when you first treat yourself. But it doesn’t last long!
- Encourage friends and family to buy ethically too.
- Put aside the money you’d otherwise have frittered away on things you don’t really want or need, and watch it grow. There’s nothing more inspiring than actually seeing first hand the benefits of changing your shopping habits for the better
shop online if you find the high street too tempting. As a general rule it’s also much easier to track down suppliers of ethical goods online than offline.
- Remember that as an individual consumer you have the power to change the way the world works in the long term. Keep at it and together we’ll make the world a better place!
Not long to go to Christmas. With any luck you’re almost ready. But there’s always room for a few unusual and unique ethical stocking fillers. Here’s our top five ethical gifts for a fiver or less. Happy shopping!
- Santa wind-up torch - £5 – A fun mini-torch for children. Just squeeze Santa’s arm to wind it up, no batteries needed. We also stock dog, cow, pig, penguin, panda and duck wind-up torches.
- ‘Birds’ cup sleeve – £5 – fed up with burning you fingers on your morning latte? Use this stylish little cup sleeve to prevent burns and drink your coffee in comfort.
- Queen of the Nile luxury wrapped soap – £3.50 – a wonderfully rich and moist soap that nourishes the skin. 100% natural, made with pure essential oils and natural glycerine. Carefully wrapped in tissue and ribbon, made in the UK.
- Tiny leather notebook – £5 – stylish hand-torn paper bound in soft, dark chocolate coloured leather. Small enough to slip in your pocket and a lot more sensible than scribbling notes on your hand!
- Detox herbal tea – £2.25 – the perfect stocking filler to help loved ones soothe away the results of seasonal over indulgence! Our beautifully packaged teas are certified as organic by the Soil Association. This special detox tea contains a blend of aniseed, fennel and liquorice to cleanse your system and make you feel much better. Caffeine free. 20 sachets.
While we’re at it, we’d like to wish all our customers, suppliers and website visitors an enjoyable, peaceful Christmas and a prosperous, positive New Year. Together we’ve made 2010 a bit better for the people who make and manufacture our ethical products, their environments and the world in general. Thank you. We’ll see you in 2011!
Not so long ago, ethical gifts were an unusual choice. But this year ethical retail looks like hitting the big time and sales are set to hit an all time high. Why? The world is changing as more and more of us realise that if we want future generations to enjoy happy, productive, comfortable lives like ours, something has to change.
Global warming has made people more aware of the environment. Globalisation has helped make us more aware of the human cost of the goods we buy, not just the price. We’re more clued up about the source of the goods we buy, and the potential damage their manufacture causes to countries, environments, wildlife, people, resources and economies.
Just like any cultural change, it’s slow. But it’s happening. As a result shoppers are taking more time and care over what they buy. Quality is becoming more important than quantity. Price is becoming less important than source. Slowly but surely, the way we feel about shopping is changing for the better.
There are more indications of change. As the budget deficit bites, saving money has become vital rather than a ‘nice to have’. ‘Make do and mend’ is popular. Knitting, sewing, home baking and grow-your-own are at the top of many people’s list. We’re joining long queues for allotments and private firms are buying up land to rent to people who want to produce their own food.
Energy is getting more expensive and many of us are starting to think about insulation, alternative energy sources, green tariffs and adding clothing instead of turning the heating up. Austerity? Perhaps. But there’s a positive side to consuming less and, when you do consume, doing so responsibly.
We’re looking forward to the tipping point – the stage at which more of us are buying ethically than not. Economics sits at the root of this dramatic cultural change and once demand exceeds supply, ethical goods will be firmly on the map, mainstream.
Why not treat yourself to a fresh set of bowls for your kitchen or dining room this autumn? They’ll deliver a wonderful splash of colour and you’ll enjoy all the practical uses of these amazingly sturdy, natural bowls.
First there’s our coconut bowls by Bambu, innovative and beautifully chunky, created by carefully lacquering coconut shells. Every coconut is unique… and so is every bowl. Made from half a cleaned, polished coconut shell, the inside is coated with durable, food-safe PU lacquer, perfect for hot and cold foods. As you can imagine they’re not safe for dishwashers but they’re nice and easy to clean with warm, soapy water. And the colours are mouthwatering! Choose from bright, warm yellow and stylish leafy green, rich orange and turquoise. Mix ‘n’ match or buy a matching set. Either way they make a marvellous and thoughtful ethical gift.
Alternatively take a look at our deliciously simple, colourful and sturdy bamboo bowls, created from coiled strips of bamboo, shaped by hand and finished with a natural food safe lacquer that comes from the cashew nut tree. Lovely to look at as well as highly practical, they’re a really attractive addition to any kitchen. They’re safe for hot and cold foods and, like our coconut shell bowls, they’re easy to clean with warm, soapy water.
Use our bamboo bowls in the bathroom if you like, to store soaps or cosmetics. Fill them with pot pourri for a fragrant bedroom treat. Or store your jewellery in them. Whatever you use these bowls for, the natural cashew lacquer gives a tough waterproof finish. Choose from red, purple, lime green, leaf green, deep blue, fresh turquoise and cool black… plus a restful natural bamboo finish. Beauty, ethics and practicality rolled into one… how can you resist?!
Some people are brilliant at choosing gifts, others find it a challenge. It’s our job to lend a helping hand, making choosing the ideal ethical gift easy. That’s why we created our popular Gift Finder. As well as classifying gifts by brand, ethics and product, we also help you choose gifts depending on who you’re buying for, whether it’s your grandmother, sister, girlfriend, husband, or boss.
We’ve even taken things a step further, targeting suitable gifts for foodie friends, gardening friends, house proud friends and more, as well as picking out special gifts perfect for teachers, couples, babies and the family pet! So what’s on offer right now? Here’s a small selection – hop over to our special Gift Finder section for plenty more unique, ethical gift ideas:
- Why not treat your beloved granny to something really lovely? Our gorgeous, lush Queen of the Nile soap is creamy and nourishing, a symphony in smooth goat’s milk and soft cocoa butter. It’s made in Surrey by Heyland & Whittle and it’s perfect for very dry skin
- Give your beloved dog a real treat with our range of tasty organic dog treats. They’re hand made from a selection of delicious organic ingredients, designed as a special treat as part of a sensible, balanced diet. Try our cinnamon honey jumbo bone biscuits, perfect for big energetic dogs and a superb source of vitamins, with no added salt or sugar
- Our fabulous Pocket Garden herb range makes a thoughtful, long lasting gift for all sorts of people and occasions, from teachers to employees, children and budding chefs! It’s extremely simple, good looking and… mmm, nothing tastes quite as good as your own home-grown herbs! Choose from Basil and Coriander and watch your DIY herbs grow in no time
With our children (and many of our friends’ children) now at school it’s a while since we’ve been to a Christening but I still remember the stressful challenge of buying a Christening present. You want something that will last, that they will appreciate as they get older, but that will appeal to them as a child too (and also of course that the parents will like). You also want something that won’t spend its life in a drawer!
I’m not sure we ever got it right – until I was asked to be god-mother to my sister’s little boy, Jack. The pressure was on!
At the same time I was working with my friend (and artist) Liney Kean on a range of children’s party invitations and thank you cards. One of the designs she was doing was based on bunnies, and it suddenly struck me that my sister is obsessed with rabbits (she still keeps a pet rabbit – Jasper!). So I asked Liney if she could draw me a picture to mark Jack’s christening, with pictures of rabbits on. And she did!
We’ve been selling them in our shop for a year now and have had a great reaction – you can see a few of the pictures she has done on the listing of themes available. So we felt it was time to add them to the website – and here they are…!
One of the things I think sets them apart from other personalised pictures available is that Liney genuinely creates each one from scratch – they are not done from a template. She works the animals and characters around the letters in the name and will add cute touches that will definitely appeal to the children such as a little bunny asleep on the bottom of an E and fairies making a daisy chain!
To make sure the pictures are as ‘eco friendly’ as possible Liney makes the frames herself out of reclaimed pine floorboards – and of course they are the sort of gift that will last a lifetime – how much more eco-friendly than that can you get!
We know that student budgets don’t stretch much beyond a cheap lined pad of paper and a biro, which does little to inspire or motivate during lengthy rambling lectures following a rather late night, or early morning! These leather journals make beautiful notebooks which will provide that little extra motivation, and look, feel and even smell great.
Alternatively you may find that they’re rather handy for keeping notes in to help keep track of those entertaining times that seem to evaporate into the ether the morning after.
Our small Timu leather journal makes a beautiful gift, and is delivered boxed. It’s actually a fair trade product, and the paper inside is made from recycled cotton – waste cotton picked up from clothing factories in India. As with the other Timu journals it is then bound in beautifully soft chocolate coloured leather. Alternatively, if slightly more notes are required then our A5 Timu leather journal combines quality, size and convenience, being small enough to drop into a bag or pocket, but big enough to contain notes, reminders and book lists. It also comes gift boxed so makes a great gift too.
Of course, you may find that rather than being used as a notebook for college or university the journals are actually used in the traditional way, as a diary. How lovely to have all those university or college memories wrapped up in such a beautiful little package (as long as they don’t get into the wrong hands that is!).