5 More uses for your re-usable shopping bag

Reusable shopping bags 6 ways to use them (Apart from shopping)

The trend away from one use plastic bags (about time according to a recent poll of the sea-life around the area) has seen a corresponding rise in the use of recyclable and reusable tote bags.
Many clients are now ordering these bags as part of their promotional marketing mix (You can see our selection here) but the question of what do do with them, apart from the weekly shopping has been posed.
Here are our top 6 ideas

Use them to hold your, beach, pool or bath toysreusable tote bag

With summer on its way you will probably be spending more time at the beach or around a pool. Take the kids toys in a reusable tote make a couple of drain holes in the bottom and voila you can easily rinse the toys of sand or dirt while they are in the bag.

Organize your chest freezer.

If you have a chest freezer you can easily section it off with these bags – Use them as separate compartments that can be pulled out when needed.

Car tidy

Keep a few bags in your car to keep your items stored neatly.

Turn them into a planter

reusable shopping bag planterA Bag filled with potting mix makes a great planter, fill them with your favourite flowers or even grow veggies in them. You can place them in the garden or even hang them by the handles like you would a hanging basket.


They make great wardrobe organisers:

The re-usable bags can make great wardrobe organisers. Keep your summer gear in them over winter and replace the summer stuff with winter gear when the summer finally arrives.


Quick room tidy:

You have 10 minutes before guests arrive. Grab a tote and quickly stuff all of your clutter into it. You can easily go back and sort through after your guests leave.

So there we have it 6 uses for a shopping tote besides using them for your shopping, Check out the full range of Bags that can be personalised with your logo now!

How are Polyester Garments Made

How are Polyester garments made.

Polyester garments are made from polyester yarn, or often from a mix of polyester and another fabric such as cotton (Polycotton fabric) or polyester and viscose (polyviscose).

Polyester was first developed in the early 1940’s by British chemists at Calico Printers Association Ltd. (this was a company formed by an amalgamation of British textile printing companies in 1899, that was formed to fight off the competition from overseas fabrics).
The new fibre was marketed in Great Britain under the name Terylene and the American company Dupont who, having bought the rights for America, began production of a fibre they called Dacron.

For the scientifically minded. Polyester is made up of purified terephthalic acid (PTS) or its dimethyl ester dimethyl terephthalate (DMT) and monotheluene glycol (MEG).

Polyester is made by a chemical reaction which takes place at high temperatures in a vacuum.
A petroleum by-product, alcohol, and carboxyl acid are mixed to form a compound polyester garmentsknown as monomer or “ester.” This reaction is known as polymerisation.
Hence the name polyester.

The fibre that is produced during polymerisation are then stretched forming an extremely strong material.

These fibres are then turned into threads using a spinning process, during which the fibres are combined together to form a yarn, it is during the spinning process that other fibres such as wool or viscose are added, or chemicals can be added to increase the fire resistance or dyeing capacity of the material.

The spun fibre is then stretched and drawn into into yarn that is wound onto large bobbins for use in the manufacture of finished clothing.

Polyester is often criticised for having a less natural feel than natural fabrics like wool. However, polyester does have some distinct advantages over natural fibres. It is crease resistant, more durable and has a higher color retention than wool or cotton.
Polyester can apolyester garments - jacketslso have superior water, wind and environmental resistance. (This is the reason most tents, umbrellas and many waterproof outer clothing garments are made from polyester).

For this reason, polyester is often used in tents, outdoor clothing such as windbreakers and parkas, and umbrellas.

Polyester fabrics have evolved to replicate a number of natural fabrics, and continued development has seen the introduction of sports wear that is both lightweight, moisture wicking breathable and strong.

You can see a selection of polo shirts made from various polyester materials here.

How is wool made

How is wool made?

Wool can be made from the coat of many animals, sheep, goats, rabbits, possum,oxen and alpacas, all can be used to make wool. However by far the largest market is wool from sheep.
We will use the sheep wool process to demonstrate the making of wool.

Wool is a global industry, the main suppliers of sheep wool are Australia, Argentina, United States, and New Zealand.

Scientifically, wool consists of a protein called keratin.

Shearinghow is wool made
1 Sheep are sheared once a year—usually in the springtime. A veteran shearer can shear up to two hundred sheep per day. The fleece recovered from a sheep can weigh between 6 and 18 pounds (2.7 and 8.1 kilograms); as much as possible, the fleece is kept in one piece. While most sheep are still sheared by hand, new technologies have been developed that use computers and sensitive, robot-controlled arms to do the clipping.

Grading and sorting
2 During the grading process the fleece is sorted into sections based on the overall quality of the fleece.
It is then sorted, where the sections of the fleece are broken up according to the different quality fibres that are found on each fleece.
The best quality will come from the shoulders and sides of the sheep.

Wool taken from a sheep is called “raw” or “grease wool.” It will contain dirt, grease, vegetable matter and dried sweat (called suint). This is removed in a process called scouring.wool scouring

3 Scouring – scouring the wool is basically cleaning it, the weight of contaminants accounts for about 30 to 70 percent of the weight of a fleece. Scouring removes these contaminates, and can be a simple matter of immersing the wool in warm water or can consist of industrial baths containing alkalis and other detergents.
One of the by products from the scouring process is Lanolin, a product that is widely used in the cosmetic industry.

4 Carding – After most of the contaminants are removed from the wool, the fibres are passed through a carding machine that consists of a number of metal teeth that align the fibres parellel to each other to form a sliver, a loose, soft, untwisted rope like strand which has a roughly uniform thickness. The carding process also removes the remaining contaminant.

5 Spinning – During the spinning process these fibres are twisted into a long, continuous thread, or yarn. Whilst this conjures up pictures of ladies sitting at a spinning wheel, spinning today is carried out on a variety of machines, depending on what use the yarn is destined for.

You can see the finished results of this yarn here

8 Reasons to use promotional products in your marketing mix

8 Reasons to use promotional products in your marketing mix.USB Flash Drive - Manca

1. Three-dimensional advertising.

In today’s digital world, so many giveaways come in the form of an impersonal discount code or an email link.
However, despite technological advancements, humans are still very much the same, and people like to receive something that they can touch and feel.
Considering this point, it makes perfect sense to use promotional products as part of your marketing mix.

2. Promotional Products create lasting awareness of your brand.

The Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) in the USA have conducted research that demonstrates over 60% of people remember the name and details of a company that gave them a promotional product.Don’t forget to put your contact details on your promotional products.

3. Advertising, Advertising, Advertising.

Most people work for 8 hours a day, and many stay in the one place, whether it be at their desk or in their car.If your promotional product is on their desk or in their car (think drink bottle, key rings, pens or coffee mugs) You are advertising to them the whole time.during that time period.
Then when they are in need of the product or service you provide – there you are top of mind.

4. Cost effective advertising

The average person will not have any idea how much a promotional item will cost. (They are surprisingly low cost). Research has shown that most people over-estimate the cost of the item they are receiving, as they base the pricing on the perceived purchase cost of just one item, not many.
As a marketer, you can take advantage of this perception by bulk-purchasing your promotional products for far less cost than their individual retail value, but the perceived value to the recipient will be far higher. This is particularly useful when providing premium promotional products, as the person who receives your promotional gift will assume that they have been given quite a good present and will want to hold onto it and use it.
For instance, a $5 product can represent a value of $15 to the receiver.

5. Get involved with your local sporting community.

Providing the shirts for local kids sporting teams is a great way to promote your business. Most teams would welcome the offer and the cost is not that high as once again you are buying in bulk and the recipients are saved the cost. Your branding will be seen by the team, their parents, their supporters, other club members the opposition teams and their parents and supporters. Compare that exposure to the cost of advertising in your local newspaper, which will be fish and chip paper tomorrow!!

6. Incentives for your employees.

Don’t forget your employees, Promotional products can be given not only to customers but also to employees to thank them for good performance, they will be advertising your business in a proactive way when they are using them outside of the work environment.

7. Forget Discountingpromotional products in your marketing mix

Instead of discounting your products or services try adding a free gift item.
Make sure you brand the free gift. Then instead of discounting your prices by $5 an item you give away your free gift which has a perceived value of $5.00 but probably costs you no more than $2.00. Your advertising is then seen wherever the recipient uses the gift.

8. Make your customers your advertisers.

Think how often you see someone wearing an item of clothing such as a t-shirt or baseball cap with a logo on it That person has become a walking billboard for a brand. Some brands do this exceptionally well (think Nike swoosh, Coca Cola, Adidas etc). It follows that if you give the same items to your contacts, they will become your walking billboard.

See a selection of Promotional Products here



What is a soft shell jacket

What is a soft shell jacket.

Throughout history people have tried to keep themselves both warm and dry in soft shell jacketsinclement or outdoor weather.

Traditionally this would be achieved by layering, the wearing of a number of
garments, i.e. a wool pullover and a hard shell waterproof jacket.

Most hard shell jackets are made from a Nylon or polyurethene material. These
offer excellent waterproof qualities, but a drawback of this is that if you are
working or hiking and wearing too many layers, your sweat may be trapped on the

inside, somtimes making you as wet as if you were not wearing the jacket!!
Conversley if you are not wearing enough layers the sweat will pool on your skin
and work to chill you rather than keep you warm.

A soft shell jacket attempts to overcome these problems, it is made from a woven
material in contrast to the stiffer hard shell jackets, and has an inner
fabric bonded to it. This combination enables the jacket to be impervious to the
rain but allows the perspiration to be taken to the surface of the jacket where it
will evaporate or get washed off, a process known as breathability of the fabric.

It is important to note that most softshell jackets are not waterproof rather they
are water resistant.(Water resistance is measured by the amount of water, in mm,
soft shell jacketwhich can be suspended above the fabric before water seeps through it. The higher
the figure the more water resistant the jackets).
Most often there is a trade off between the breathability of the jacket and the
water resistance. Typically the higher the water resistance the lower the
Soft shell jackets are generally more stretchy than hard shells making them ideal
for working or pastimes such as skiiing or or snowboarding.

Caring for your soft shell jacket

Most softshell jackets can easily be hand washed.
Having said that throwing them in the washing machine won’t do any damage if you
follow the instructions on the label .
It is best to wash the jackets with a soap powder designed for the task rather than a detergent. Detergent will reduce the water resistance and breathability of your jacket.
A Product called Nikwax Tech Wash is ideal for this process.

See a selection of soft shell jacket styles here


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