I'd like to take advantage of your credit program - where can I find food sold in fabric packaging?
Good question. You may have noticed that fabric food packaging has largely been replaced by plastic or paper packaging. While it's unclear what type of packaging material is the most sustainable across all categories (energy, reusability, longevity, etc.), we believe that fabric packaging has a lot of redeeming qualities. So it seems worthwhile to note those locations where it can still be found. We have yet to uncover a list that compiles this information nation-wide, so we've started one ourselves. It's a fairly modest List at the moment, but we will continue to add to it as we come across additional sites. If you've discovered a store in that's not been included, please Contact Us and we'll happily add it.*
* The above-mentioned List is for informational purposes only and does not represent an endorsement by Basmati Bags of any store, supplier, or product.
If I send you my rice package burlap, will Basmati Bags make a custom bag for me?
We do not currently offer customized bags, but we do have a credit program where you can mail your burlap to us and earn credits towards any products available in our Etsy store. To participate in our credit program, please use this form.
How is upcycling different from recycling?
It sometimes depends on who you ask, but here's a generalized explanation of the difference: Recycling is making a bottle into a bottle. Recycled items are processed so that they are the same product for their second life that they were for their first. Upcycling is making a bottle into a car. Upcycled items are processed so that they become a different product in their second life than they were in their first. Upcycled items are also defined as those which give consumers increased value with each reincarnation. Shoe soles that are converted into asphalt, jeans that are converted into insulation, candy wrappers that are converted into shopping bags - these are all examples of upcycling. The two terms are still used fairly interchangeably. The potential advantage of upcycling over recycling is that upcycling can involve fewer outside resources (water for cleaning, chemicals for breaking down) because the product is automatically directed to its next most logical use.
Are all the components of your bags made from upcycled content?
Unfortunately not. Our goal is to use the highest combination of upcycled and recycled content possible, but there are still components of our bags that are neither. Most often these include the thread, handles, clasps, feet, and the stiffeners at the bottom of the bags. As the business grows we will continue to look for ways to decrease the amount of new content in our products.
Why do the fabrics have imperfections?
One of the realities of using upcycled content is that you have to work with what you get. This can be viewed as a disadvantage or as an opportunity. We see it as the latter. As far as we're concerned it's not about the flaws themselves, but what you do with them. The challenge we've set for ourselves is to not only provide the highest quality product we can, but also to find through the process as many unexpected expressions of beauty as possible.
Can I order a customized purse?
Not at this time. Because we are using discarded fabrics we literally have no idea what kind of styles and colors we're going to be working with until they arrive. This makes it much more difficult to guarantee a customer a particular kind of bag. However, the good news is that insofar as each bag is one-of-a-kind, essentially all our products are customized. So you can be confident that when you buy a Basmati Bag, you're the only person on the planet who has it!