Eco-Friendly Lifestyle News — sustainable bag RSS



We're Working to Save the Craft

      The traditional Khmu bag, known today as Nature Bag, Earth’s Greenest Bag™ is endangered.  The craft of making it rapidly is disappearing from large areas in Laos’ north. A traditional bag can take days to make.  But only a couple of hours, scissors, a needle and some thread are needed to make a bag from non-woven polypropylene.  Markets in Northern Laos offer thousands of large bags made of that earth-damaging material.  China, sometimes only an hour walk away, sends many products into Laos packed in these harmful bags.  It's easier for the Khmu to use that cheaply-acquired material rather than Jungle Vine® to make a carry bag, even if it lasts only a few weeks rather than...

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Nature Bag Sponsors Natural Dye Workshop

  The early morning Northern Laos sky was a brilliant blue as an European, an American and 10 Laotians gathered on a point of land at the base of the massive Kuang Si waterfall for a workshop on using nearby forest products to add color to Earth’s Greenest Bag™. After exchanging greetings and sharing fresh organic coffee grown 500 km south in the landlocked Southeast Asian nation, the group moved into the surrounding jungle to find the bark of a special tree that would be the source of the color for the first natural dye.  The temperature was comfortable thanks to a thunderstorm an hour earlier.  The smell was sweet from a multitude of Laotian jungle flowers. As the roar...

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Nature Bag Crafter's New Experiences with Natural Colors

  The Netherlands Senior Expert Ineke Poort-Van Eljk, Bag Crafter Pa Sa, Consultant/Volunteer Vandara, Bag Crafter Som confer before a workshop session.   For Nature Bag crafters Pa Sa and Som, the 5 day trip to learn about using natural colors in the stain-resistant JungleVine® fiber of their bags was a major life experience.  Although the journey from their rural villages to near UNESCO World Heritage Luang Prabang took only a day, neither had ever been so far away from home or away from home for so long. Pa Sa had traveled 80 km (64 mile) to a Khmu village near her provincial capital of Oudomxai 6 years ago to be a bag crafting trainer for a United Nations Industrial...

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Earth’s Greenest Bag™ Searches for Artisans

  Volunteer Sack is on a 6 week trip through 3 Laotian provinces to identify villages where the skill to make Earth’s Greenest Bag™ still exists. “I am trying to anticipate the need for increased bag production as global demand grows,” said Sack from Houay Xay, on the Lao/Thailand border.  “My journey will take me into remote areas ordinarily accessible only to Khmu people,” he said.                 Already there was enormous pay-off during the first week when Sack located people who had worked with Khmu villages on producing handicrafts nearly 15 years ago.  They were able to provide much information about distant villages so that he could plan his itinerary. “The timing of my trip is critical because many villages...

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Is your Cloth Bag REALLY Eco-friendly?

Be careful that your cloth bags actually are eco-friendly. Cotton bags (unless they are organic) have a much larger carbon footprint than "disposable" plastic because of the intensive agriculture and manufacturing they require. Even hemp bags, because they are made from cultivated hemp and usually in factories, have significant carbon footprints. The Nature Bag Khmu/Lao Poverty Reduction Project, sharing Earth's Greenest Bag globally, is truly eco-friendly because of its hand-harvested naturally-growing fiber, in-home crafting, long life cycle & minimal weight allowing delivery anywhere with almost no consumption of fossil-sourced energy. It's socially sustainable, too, being a tool for thousands of years for the ancient culture that makes it today to provide income without wasteful commuting & allowing traditional child nurturing. ...

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