- What is your Shipping Policy?
- What is your Return Policy?
- How do I choose the right size?
- How do I clean my Nature Bag?
- What if I wash my Nature Bag or it becomes saturated by rain, perspiration or other liquid?
- Help! My Nature Bag got wet and is now half its original size and its JungleVine® is shriveled.
- Do Nature Bags break or fail?
- I feel sick. I just snagged my Nature Bag and a small rip or hole has resulted. What should I do?
- Will they wear out?
- A Nature Bag is not cheap. How do I protect my investment?
- How long can I expect my Nature Bags to last?
- It sounds like this problem might not come up for a long time, but how would you dispose of a Nature Bag that you no longer wanted?
1. Our Shipping Policy | Back to the top
We ship worldwide within 3 U.S. business days using the United States Postal Service. Expect delivery 2 to 5 days from shipping date to North America and Europe. Shipments to destinations outside North America/Europe take about 10 days.
Standard Shipping and Handling Fee (on orders up to 5 bags) is just $5 in the United States and $20 to any other postal address on the planet. (Prices are in USD.)
Most shipping containers are biodegradable and designed to be reused at least one time with second use sealing material already applied. Others are made entirely of recycled material, are themselves recyclable or are Cradle To Cradle Certified® for their ecologically-intelligent design.
2. Our Return Policy | Back to the top
We are passionate about our project and products made from JungleVine® organic fiber. Nature Bags are made in the homes of hundreds of artisans in remote jungle villages; no two are identical. We pride ourselves in our excellent customer service, and we hope you will love your Nature Bag products as much as we do. That said,
RETURNS ARE EASY
If you are not satisfied, we are happy to offer you a refund on merchandise that is returned in its original condition within 14 days of receipt.
If the item is damaged or defective, please email or call us immediately for instructions. Damage claims must be filed within 2 days of receipt of goods. Claims for defective items must be filed within 30 days of receipt of goods.
All returns are processed for a refund. Should you need an exchange, please order your items online. Email us at service@NatureBag.org and tell us what you are returning. Ship to: JungleVine® Foundation, ATTN: Returns, PO Box 1822, Des Moines IA 50305, USA. Please include your name and contact information inside the package.
Please note that returns have a processing time of up to 14 business days from receipt at our returns facility. Returns lost in return shipping will not be refunded.
3. How do I choose the right size? | Back to the top
Sizes -- Minimum Non-stretched dimensions
Smallest 5" long 4" high (12 cm long 10 cm high)
XSmall 8" long 6" high (20 cm long 15 cm high)
Small 10" long 6" high (25 cm long 15 cm high)
Medium 12" long 8" high (30 cm long 20 cm high)
Large 15" long 10" high (38 cm long 25 cm high)
XLarge 17" long 11" high (43 cm long 28 cm high)
Jumbo 21" long 12" high (53 cm long 30 cm high)
Because of the varying structural characteristics of the bags, physical dimensions do not sufficiently indicate the carrying capacity of the bag sizes. Each bag stretches, but to varying extents and in different ways. The best means of choosing a bag according to your carrying needs is to look at the photos demonstrating capabilities you can expect from each size. As a base line, the medium bag will hold 4 2-litre containers of beverages (as they are commonly sold in North America).
On a practical basis, a medium or large size bag is best for most people who use their bags to carry lots of different things. The bags will hold a number of large objects, and there almost always is room for additional medium or smaller size objects. “Filling” a medium, large, extra large or jumbo sized bag with heavy objects usually will result in an overall weight that is greater than the average person wants to carry.
The ratios of height to width can vary substantially. The Khmu prefer the bags they use to be wider rather than taller. This profile causes bags carried on shoulders or around the neck to tend to curve around the torso of the carrier rather than protruding forward or backward when loaded.
It also lessens the need to stack cargo items on top of each other. We like the rationality of this shape, but to conform to style expectations created by the conventional taller and narrower shapes of paper and plastic bags commonly used in most of the world, the Khmu also produce bags with greater height/width ratios.
Strap lengths vary. Most are between 26 and 37 inches (65 to 95 centimeters) long non-stretched. This works well for most people and in most applications. A bag that always will be hand- or arm-carried might be more convenient with a shorter strap, although it is easy enough to wrap a longer strap around the hand, wrist and arm to achieve an optimum carrying distance above the floor/ground. Enormously large people could find having an unusually long strap more convenient for carrying over the shoulder or around the neck.
4. How do I clean my Nature Bag? | Back to the top
The JungleVine® resists dirt and stains. Many users never clean their bags. Professional dry cleaning restores our reusable bag to its new condition. If you have a cotton strap, it likely will be the part of the bag needing the most cleaning care. Following the instructions for a good quality spot home dry cleaning product can be the most convenient means of dealing with a heavily soiled strap. Or use laundry or dish detergent and warm water with a brush for either spot cleaning or for the entire strap. Rinse well with cold water. Hang by the strap with some weight in the bag to dry.
5. What if I wash my Nature Bag or it becomes saturated by rain, perspiration or other liquid? | Back to the top
Don’t be overly concerned, but be prepared for considerable shrinkage if the JungleVine® is not stretched during the drying process. Most shrinkage can be prevented by continuing to use your eco-friendly bag for cargo while it dries. If the elastic natural bag is loaded with something heavy and then hung by its strap to air dry, there will be very little shrinkage, and most shrinking that occurs will be reversed by subsequent ordinary use. Liquid-filled gallon or 2 liter beverage containers are excellent cargo for your bag during drying. Load your green bag as much as possible by both volume and weight and hang it over the knob or top of a door, making sure that the strap is open to its full width and not twisted or folded.
JungleVine® fabric can be machine washed and dried. Remove Earth's Greenest Bag from the dryer before it is completely dried and then finish the drying process as described above to minimize/reverse shrinkage. Bleach can be used in the wash if you follow the bleach manufacturer’s instructions regarding dilution Soaking a bag for an extended period in undiluted bleach will reduce the strength of the JungleVine® cord but is unlikely to make your eco-friendly tote unusable.
6. Help! My Nature Bag got wet and is now half its original size and its JungleVine® is shriveled. | Back to the top
Relax. You have two options: 1) Go ahead and continue using your deformed bag, filling it as aggressively as you can. The bag soon will look normal again and regain most of its original size. 2) Fill the bag as much as possible by both volume and weight and hang it by its strap overnight. Gallon or 2 liter liquid-filled beverage containers serve well as drying/reshaping cargo. Some users tell us that the re-stretching/shaping process works best if a dry shrunken bag is dampened first by water.
7. Do Nature Bags break or fail? | Back to the top
The only “failures” we have seen were due to a knot not being tied properly by a maker. None of these failures has been catastrophic. That is, if a large hole developed in the cargo compartment, it did not happen suddenly. If strap attachment cords or threads failed, there were sufficient remaining attachment points that the strap remained in place and fully functional with the capability of carrying heavy cargo uninterrupted. Such partial failures have been rare and appeared during the first dozen or so uses of the defective bag. We replace defective bags for free.
8. I feel sick. I just snagged my Nature Bag and a small rip or hole has resulted. What should I do? | Back to the top
The American sponsor feels your pain. Some Khmu producers made a special bag for him as a gift, and he was quite taken both by its unique beauty and the thoughts behind the expression of gratitude that it represented. But on its first use, he tried to cram the stuffed bag into the overhead storage bin on a small airliner. He knew that it would fit, so he kept pushing harder and harder, eventually discovering that a small aviation rivet that had not been properly set snagged the bag and his force resulted in a small rip. He felt like crying.
What did he do?
He continued using the bag. The rip did not seem to grow. Very small cargo to be carried was simply placed in another part of the bag. After months of daily frequently heavy use, other small holes developed, and eventually he began using it only for extremely harsh and dirty applications. This was not because the bag could not have continued functioning normally. It was because the bag was a big attraction to those who saw it. The holes did not present the desired image to a prospective purchaser.
9. Will they wear out? | Back to the top
Good question. We do not know the answer. Our experience has been that bags never actually wear out. What happens is that small holes eventually grow or, more likely, consolidate with other small holes. Snagging and resulting holes or rips are the most vulnerable aspects of the Nature Bag. Some owners claim that they have repaired such damage. We’ve simply continued using ours. Holes or rips grow very slowly, if at all, because of the design of the knotting used in the cargo compartment’s formation and the subtle “tackiness” of the JungleVine® surface which tends to keep pieces of JungleVine® cord attached to each other even without finished knots.
10. A Nature Bag is not cheap. How do I protect my investment? | Back to the top
Avoid snags. Smaller sized bags are less likely to snag external surfaces than larger ones. Do not place objects with sharp edges in a Nature Bag so that there is repeated forceful contact between the sharp edge and nearby JungleVine® cord. If you have cargo with square corners or other points, take a little time to fit the bag around the object so that its full weight or support is not pressed tightly into a single stitch opening. Don’t be self-conscious about holes that develop. Consider such holes an aspect of the bag’s special characteristics. Explain to others that they are consistent with the sustainable fashion statement you are making.
11. How long can I expect my Nature Bags to last? | Back to the top
In daily frequent heavy use with little consideration to the preceding tips for extending useful life, but with sensitivity towards putting forth the most favorable image to curious observers, most of the project’s volunteers are using a bag from 6 to 12 months before “retiring” it to other uses. The original Nature Bag received by the project’s sponsor was used for nearly 2 years before some of its holes were sufficiently large that they required lots of extra time while loading the bag so that small cargo did not slip through. Some of the coloring has faded, although the black bands and other parts of that bag appear pretty much as they always did. A slight grayness in JungleVine® tone can be discerned if you examine that bag next to an unused one. Nevertheless, that original bag remains for display in our Luang Prabang headquarters and could be used to carry large cargo today if we chose to have it do so.
12. It sounds like this problem might not come up for a long time, but how would you dispose of a Nature Bag that you no longer wanted? | Back to the top
If you want to be ultimately green, you would detach the strap for reuse on a new bag and bury the remainder. That’s what many Khmu do. Because it is organic, buried JungleVine® will decompose naturally turning its material components back into nutrients for the soil. Most people, however, likely would choose to add it to a garden compost heap or simply put it with the rest of their non-recyclable garbage. Burning is another option, but we really haven’t investigated the effects of the combustion gasses on the environment.