NEW Catherine Tough Knitwear

catherine tough knitware

We are back once again to feature one of our amazingly new suppliers called Catherine Tough.  We like how wonderfully creative and colourful Catherine Tough’s knitwear is and we are proud to have their products in our store!

Catherine and her team’s origin story began 13 years ago where her passion for textiles started way back at school and passed down by he mum’s own knitting skills and Youtube (more specifically Clothes Show TV). She then developed her skills and her own unique style at the Royal College of Art. She has a very English sense of style and the surroundings of Hackney (where Catherine and her family live) inspire her work for her to produce a bold and beautiful designs.

Catherine does a whole cavalcade of neat knitwear including woollen hats, scarves, cushions and  throws, but what we have available are her very quirky Kids Yellow Elephant Lambswool Scarf,  and a selection of men’s and women’s socks named after other cute animals, such as these Women’s Lambswool Owl Socks and Men’s Red Fox Bamboo Socks..majestic!

These are some very colourful and amazing eco-gifts, we recommend you take good care of them by machine washing them on a gentle wool cycle no higher than 30C or hand washing.  For more organic knitwear from Catherine Tough, visit our online store by clicking the top right link on this page, and search ‘Catherine Tough’ by using our search bar.

For more infrequently pleasant updates on new eco news, eco gifts and DIY/Craft guides, please like and follow us on our Facebook & Twitter. We currently have 10% off your first purchase at Arte Ideas if you sign up to our mailing list, which you can find on our homepage. Thank you for reading and we’ll keep you posted on stuff!

Why Are Disposable Coffee Cups Still Failing To Recycle?

diagram of how many disposable cups are sold by the big coffee chains

The big chain coffee shops such as Starbucks and Costa Coffee are still failing to make it easy for customers to recycle or produce the means of reducing the use of disposable cups. The yearly amount of cups takeaway cups still stand at 2.5bn in the UK, and it is distinguishable from just glancing at a public rubbish bin that they are full of potential recyclable items, So why are we still not recycling them?

While disposing of these cups might seem to be the right way of going with big chain coffee shops constantly reducing the amount of material used with each cup, but are they really making it easier to recycle? Disposable cups are predominantly made of cardboard (around 95% of its weight, and we hope recycled) and 5% polyethylene in the form of a thin coating inside the cup. The reason they do this is that the coating provides insulation for the cup and stops the cardboard from going soggy. Most people don’t realise that this coating cannot be recycled, paper mills are unable to process this with mixed material.

So one of things we can do is make the general population of this and make them more aware of alternatives. We would prefer if the government and coffee businesses stepped in to do more to encourage people to bring their own reusable cups. We are seeing some organisations such as Starbucks offer discounts of up to 25p by bringing your own reusable cup, so why not start a campaign asking people to bring their own cup! (B.Y.O.C anyone!, you can have that one for free). We will do our best to keep nudging the big coffee chains to make more people aware of bringing their own reusable cups and upping their efforts in reducing waste.

All we can say is that we are trying to do out bit by offering affordable alternatives such as Keep Cups, which are the first ever Barista standard reusable coffee/tea cup, now that’s something to shout about. Joco also design a reusable cups, a glass variation. These cups both help out mother nature, and also help you ditch the disposable cup.

keep cups' alchemy collection

glass reusable cups by joco

For more infrequently pleasant updates on eco news & gifts, like and follow Arte Ideas on Facebook & Twitter. Looking for ideas on what to ecogift to buy loved ones? Visit our Pinterest page!

Matt & Nat Vegan Handbags & Accessories – Featured Eco Supplier

collection of mat and nat vegan handbags

We are proud to announce MATT & NAT handbags & accessories to Arte Ideas. MAT & NAT are a vegan brand that continues to innovate in way to remain sustainable, They do this by excluding leather and other animal based materials in their production and use 100% recycled plastic bottles inside the linings of their bags, they have also experimented with different recycled materials such as nylons, cardboard, rubber and cork.

The inspiration behind this brand is the exploration in MAT(T)erial and NATure and how these can synergise to inspire the texture and hues of nature. such as the Fabi Vintage Backpack. Another thing that is truly inspiring about MATT & NAT is that the team constantly aim to better themselves and the environment by volunteering as much as possible.

We are always happy to see suppliers pushing their own boundaries of Environmentally Friendly Gifts, and we hope you like what they have to offer! For more eco news and updates, follow Arte Ideas on Facebook & Twitter. Also check out our Pinterest page or visit our online store at

Manumit – Featured Fairtrade Accessories

Manumit New Fairtrade Accessories

We are delighted to share some of our new ethical, fairtrade products from Manumit. Manumit offer a exquisite range of fair trade bags and accessories, which are produced and designed in the UK, and handmade by producers in the developing world.

Manumit have original and unique designs that are not seen too often on the high streets, also they have an ethical foundation, which gives their products a very personal and authentic touch, such as their Winter Grey Cherry Blossom Washbag and  Lollipop Flower Coin Purse, the hand-made embroidery work encompasses so much detail, you can truly tell that this was made by a person who is passionate about what they make.

Manumit have an underling goal to help others and create alternative and fair living in Asia, they do this by helping to tackle poverty by trade, not aid. All Manumit asks is that you purchase ethical alternatives to make a positive difference to the lives of Artisans across the developing world. Here’s Dan’s Story, one of Manumit’s producers which we found her story very touching and it’s always good to see the people behind the products. We are very proud to introduce more of Manumit’s handmade accessories to our store, we hope all the best for them.

Click here for get your very own Manumit Fairtrade Accessories. Please follow Arte Ideas on Facebook & Twitter. Finding it hard to choose a Environmentally Friendly Gift for loved ones? We have Pinterest Page with a bunch of boards to get your ideas flowing.