We are a small, plastic-free, ethically run business always working towards sustainability, releasing small quantities of wraps which are carefully designed to last a lifetime.
Being environmentally conscious has been our ethos from day one. It isn’t just a quick gimmick or a way to make more sales. For us it is a way of life. Owner Larissa has spent her career as an ecologist before moving into textiles. She has carried this expert knowledge with her and woven it into every aspect of the Rowan Bay brand.
As a family focused business we are aware of the responsibility we have to ensure the next generation inherits a better world than we did. From the very beginning we have been conscious of the impact running a textile business will have on the environment. Therefore, it has always been important to us that we continue make all steps possible to ensure that we keep our environmental impact down and continue to strive to do better – we can always do better.
As part of this promise we are committed to only using natural fibres in our wraps – even the labels. We only use organic cotton and other low impact fibres such as linen – helping to improve soil health and avoid harmful pesticides and herbicides.
However, we avoid using cashmere or wool such as merino due to the unethical practices in many of the production lines of these fibres and difficulty in ensuring they meet our high welfare standards. We love wool, but we also love sheep! That’s why we’ve acquired our own flock and are working closely with local wool producers to create our own fully traceable and high welfare, super soft Shetland yarn so you know exactly what you are wearing and where it is from.
Read on below to find out other ways we are minimising our impact on the planet.
A wrap for life
We believe that the wraps we create are for life. The quality of the textiles are as such that if looked after properly, your wrap could be handed down to future generations. Alternatively, there are many small businesses around the globe which provide custom work for woven wrap fabric – either altering your wrap into a different size, fixing pulls or holes or converting into alternative slings such as buckled carriers or ring slings. You could also have your wrap turned into other items all together such as handbags, cushion covers or even items of clothing. The only limit is your imagination!
Because we also love supporting small businesses, we have put together a directory where you can find your local converter which is located in the ‘Sustainability’ tab on the menu. If you would like to add your business to this list, then please get in touch.
Creating habitat for pollinators
Planting trees is a common way many businesses offset the damage they do. However, planting trees isn’t always a good thing. Large single species plantations of trees offer very little in the way of biodiversity and they take time for carbon to be removed from the atmosphere and stored. For trees to truly be beneficial, they need to be planted in whole-ecosystem schemes – we need to plant forests not just trees, and not many planting schemes offer this.
So instead we have turned our focus to pollinators. Studies in the UK alone have shown that around a third of our important pollinators are in decline, and this is bad news as the bees, butterflies, beetles and flies all play a vital role in our environment as well as in food production.
We are fortunate enough to be able to manage the land around Rowan Bay HQ in a holistic way which is beneficial for wildlife, and one of the ways we do this is to use £5 from every wrap sale to purchase carefully selected wildflower and grass seeds to help turn our field into a
meadow using traditional management techniques – and assisted by the grazing of our sheep!
A sustainable office
We are always working to minimising our impact. Here are a few changes we have made to help us do this.
We use a green energy supplier for our electricity to our office and and food waste gets either composted or added to our wormery and then used in our veg patch.
We try and avoid printing where we can, but when we do, we always print on recycled paper, and any paper wastage is either recycled or shredded and composted.
We hate plastic waste, and look forward to the day this isn’t a problem any more. Meanwhile, all plastic we receive in packaging is either re-used, recycled or eco-bricked. We don’t send any plastic from Rowan Bay to landfill.
We’re also careful to use any fabric scraps – by either turning the larger pieces into bags or cushion covers, or offering scrap packs for sale. Any teeny pieces get composted which is a bonus of only weaving with natural fibres.