As a nature loving illustrator and small business owner, I care about the environment and about wildlife. I am committed to constantly learning about how to reduce my impact on the environment, and to putting any changes into practice. 

FSC CERTIFIED AND RECYCLED CARDSTOCK

All my paper products are printed onto FSC certified stock, and the recycled paper used in my fleck kraft envelopes are made from 100% post-consumer waste. You may notice that these envelopes are a little inconsistent in colour and texture, but it is the greenest type of envelope available, and I am proud of my decision to use this product.

My business cards, thank you notes, and complimentary postcards that go in wholesale and shop orders are also made of 100% recycled cardstock. Thank you notes and complimentary postcards always include my pretty illustrations and customers can choose to use these as decorations, rather than binning them!

If my cards are not hung up or otherwise repurposed by the recipient, they are fully recyclable and same goes for the envelopes.

The grey backing boards that come with my prints and desk pads are 100% recycled and recyclable.

ECO CREDENTIALS OF OTHER PRODUCTS

My bags are made of 100% Fairtrade cotton and printed with water-based ink using eco-friendly manufacturing processes. The supplier carries a GOTS certification which means that the bags have been processed from crop to completion in a way that is completely organic.

My hanging decorations are made of sustainable birch plywood, which is FSC certified, and printed with eco UV inks using energy friendly machinery. The supplier I use is environmentally conscious and recycles their waste. My decorations are UV printed rather than digitally printed, meaning the printed area is durable, scratch and water resistant, thus creating reusable products that will last for a long time.

REDUCING SINGLE USE PLASTIC

I started phasing out plastic cellophane sleeves for a compostable version in 2020, and as of June 2021 I started offering the most eco option- peelable paper-based card clasps- to wholesale customers who preferred less packaging for their cards. I offer the option of compostable clear sleeves if customers want more protection for their cards.

When the plastic packaging stock eventually runs out, I plan to send cards with card clasps only, through my shop sales.

If you want your order to be completely plastic free, you are welcome to leave this request in the message box during the checkout process and I will be more than happy to ensure your order complies.

The rest of my products, apart from my desk pads and notebooks, are wrapped in compostable clear sleeves.

My desk pads and notebooks are currently wrapped with polyolefin shrink film which from my own experience is the best way to protect them from handling, shipping, and displaying in the stores.

While polyolefin film is a thermoplastic, it is made from 100% recyclable material, can be easily recycled, and does not emit harmful vapours during heat sealing and in manufacturing processes. I am still looking into a more eco packaging alternative that would offer the same level of protection for my desk pads and notebooks.

PLASTIC FREE, RECYCLED AND PAPER-BASED SHIPPING PACKAGING

I consistently save and repurpose the used shipping boxes, protective wrappers, and void fillers that I receive from my suppliers or from online orders.

To date, I have never purchased any void fillers, and over the last year I am very pleased to witness the growing number of suppliers that have started to use scrunched up paper and cardboard in place of bubble wrap.

On the rare occasions you find bubble wrap in your order I can assure you that it was saved from previous orders and reused. If you want your order to be completely plastic free, you are welcome to leave this request in the message box during the checkout process and I will be more than happy to ensure your order complies.

Sometimes I can’t find used boxes suitable to ship certain orders, so I must order boxes in specific sizes. When this happens, I proactively look for recycled shipping packaging first.

It is the same case for the rest of my materials, i.e., envelopes for greeting cards and shop orders, backing boards for prints, display boxes for products, and cardstock for promotional materials.

I have been using paper sticky tape instead of plastic for many years - in fact this is the very first sustainable thing I did for my business! Every little helps.

HIGH QUALITY PRODUCTS AND SECONDS SALE TO REDUCE WASTAGE

Every one of my products is of an extremely high standard and quality - cards, postcards, and art prints are printed on thicker-than-usual cardstock, so they are less likely to get damaged in transit. The printing inks used are light fast, so my prints will stick around for a long time. My decorations are UV printed which makes them durable, as well as scratch and water resistant. My mission is to make sure all my products are great quality, creating special and long-lasting gifts which you or your recipient will cherish.

Occasionally my products will be delivered to me with minor imperfections such as printing marks or bent corners. As I cannot sell them at their original price, or throw them away, once or twice a year I hold a seconds sale where these imperfect products are heavily discounted and ultimately, not wasted. If there are any unsellable badly printed products they are recycled appropriately, but this doesn’t happen too often. 

My business is certainly not perfectly sustainable. I am open to ideas, and I would love to hear from you if you think there is anything I should try out. Get in touch via my contact form or email me at hello@katrinasophia.com