Beautiful bags that build better lives

Decorator's Notebook jute bag black triangles - low res

Something I love most about having a shop is discovering all the amazing indigenous craft techniques around the world. I look at the gorgeous things we sell and just think ‘wow, there’s no way I could make that’. It really brings home to me how important it is for Decorator’s Notebook to be a showcase for the talents of the artisans we work with… by valuing and investing in their work we can send such a strong message of support, love and pride. This has never been so true as with our new range of jute bags from Bangladesh.

Decorator's Notebook yellow top jute bag

{Jute bag with yellow top, £39.95, Decorator’s Notebook}

These jute bags prove just how – with the right support – craft skills can be harnessed and become the catalyst for change among people experiencing social disadvantage.


{Jute bag with grey diamonds, £42.95, Decorator’s Notebook}

The women who make our jute bags are able to work from home, which is an important part of helping them run their businesses flexibly around their family commitments. Often, they will be earning their own wage for the first time too; one of the key principals of fair trade is that wages are paid directly to the employee, something we take for granted, but in many countries a woman’s wage would traditionally be paid to her husband or father. Each bag sold helps promote female empowerment and independence in a very real and direct way.


{Jute bag with emerald triangles, £42.95, Decorator’s Notebook}

Employment opportunities do so much more than provide financial independence. Fair trade raises the status of women and other disadvantaged groups. It gives them a voice to help them campaign for new goals, gives them the skills to take on new roles in their communities and the confidence to challenge discrimination. It has also been shown that when women are employed, their children are more likely to go to school, thereby changing the prospects of future generations and helping lift families out of poverty for good.

Decorator's Notebook Jute_shopping_bag_storage_baskets_blue_diamond_fairtrade

{Jute bag with blue diamonds, £42.95, Decorator’s Notebook}

If I can do one thing through Decorator’s Notebook, it’s to make people realise that the way they spend their money really does have an impact on the makers, for good and for bad. When you buy cheap goods, you’re placing the cost on someone else, back down the production line who doesn’t have the means to argue their worth. But when you invest in something that’s been made responsibly, by people who have been treated and paid fairly, your spending power can be a force for change. Every pound you spend is a vote for the kind of society you want.

Decorator's Notebook grey top jute bag

{Jute bag with grey top, £39.95, Decorator’s Notebook}

So, if you do decide to buy one of these beautiful bags, I want to you feel truly proud. Proud to carry it, proud to love it and proud to share its story. The lady who wove it will feel proud to know you love it too.

Jute bags, from £39.95 – £42.95, Decorator’s Notebook. Click here to shop the collection.

If you enjoyed this post please hit a button to share with a friend
Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on StumbleUponShare on RedditBuffer this pageEmail this to someone
FairMail cards

The Good List: FairMail Cards

+-*I’m sure we’ve all done it. Travelled to a country poorer than our own and taken photos of local people in a bid to capture the ‘real’ spirit of the place. But did you ever think to hand your camera over to your subject? Give them the opportunity to show their country through their own eyes?… 

Read More »

Vintage stool bedside table

The quest for the perfect bedside table

+-*Probably the most controversial post I’ve ever written on this blog centred around the humble bedside table. Innocent enough you might think, just a cool idea I saw on another blog. But boy, did one reader disagree… “I usually do not leave comments, especially a negative one, but I feel compelled about this. This is… 

Read More »

House of Rym Homeycomb Throw Decorator's Notebook

Take me to the beach, with House of Rym

+-*Isn’t it lovely when the place you live keeps offering up new surprises? Our most recent discovery was Ladye Bay, an idyllic rocky cove nestled between Clevedon and Portishead on the Bristol Channel. We call it our secret beach, because on a warm evening you can enjoy the sunset there with barely another soul around. When… 

Read More »

Rhubarb ice cream recipe

Rhubarb & Custard Ice-cream

+-*With the weather improving by the day, I was easily persuaded last week to impulse-buy my first ice-cream maker! With some fresh rhubarb in the fridge I decided to take it for a spin and make some rhubarb ice-cream. I wanted to achieve that classic confectionery combination of rhubarb and custard, so found a recipe for… 

Read More »

Good Life Experience win tickets Decorator's Notebook blo

WIN tickets to The Good Life Experience Festival

+-*UPDATE This giveaway is now closed and the winner is #45 – Amy Well done Amy! Your tickets will be posted out to you shortly and we hope you have a lovely time. I’m sure it hasn’t escaped your notice how much we love the great outdoors, so we’ve teamed up with the Good Life Experience… 

Read More »

Blognic Bristol Invitation Square Crop

Join me at Blognic Bristol 28th June 2015

+-*I’m organising Blognic Bristol on 28th June… I hope you can come! In the previous years Blognic London has been a lovely way to meet fellow bloggers, creatives and instagram friends in a welcoming and relaxed setting. And, since I’ve now moved to Bristol, I’m taking charge of bringing a sister event to our brilliant city with the… 

Read More »

Natural table setting Sisterhood Camp

On the Road: Sisterhood Camp 2015

+-*Writing my blog has drawn me to many lovely people over the years, but I have never felt such a warm feeling for the blogging community as I do today.  It all began when a beautiful invitation dropped through my letterbox, embossed in gold and with a delicate feather tucked inside. Sisterhood Camp is the brainchild of… 

Read More »

Decorator's Notebook on Design Sponge

Decorator’s Notebook is on Design*Sponge!

+-*If you’ve been following our journey for a while you’ll know that Decorator’s Notebook began life as this blog, several years before the idea for the shop was sparked. Back in 2010, Design*Sponge was the first interior design blog I ever read… Grace’s chatty posts and eye for creative bohemian style are what inspired me… 

Read More »