The weather is turning chillier and the clocks have gone back, which can only mean Autumn is here.
I find Autumn a time for walking quicker to stay warm, find beauty in the rustic colours of flora and fauna. Finding joy in sighting wild animals going about their business gathering food for the hash months ahead.
Last month I launched the new Fleece range of Perches just in time for Autumn and they certainly allow you to stay just a little longer to enjoy a beautiful view.
The new Grab Ya Boots Bag was also launched and it saves your car or home from wet muddy dirty boots and is so easy to just grab and go. It comes with two pockets for your Perches or a scrubbing brush to get that pesky mud off once dry. They are also easy to clean without any zips to gather mud and dirt.
On another note, with COP26 in full swing I found myself checking to the sustainability of the Jacwicks range.
The Perches are made to be used and loved for years and years. Reused again and again. They are handmade in the UK from UK sourced suppliers. Where possible I try to rescue fabric from landfill. I keep all off cuts of fabric and work on new ideas to make them into something useful. I hate waste and strive to keep it to the minimum.
All packaging is paper based where possible, only using plastic on larger parcels when I don’t have another option.
As a small brand whose products are about enjoying the environment and the countryside around us, I’m trying to work with a conscience, be more sustainable and eco-friendly. If we all do our bit, we will make a difference.
Until next time Happy Perching!
The COSIEST sit mat you can fit in your pocket just got even COSIER!
As we move into Autumn and Winter, I'm sooo excited to launch a new range of warm cosy Fleece Pocket and Poly Perches.
Available in 4 designs, all with 4 layers of protection, the Fleece Range brings you even more protection from cold damp benches, rocks and logs wherever you choose to sit outdoors.
Choose from cosy Camouflage, Green Leaves, Purple Polka Dot and bright Sunshine.
There's a Green Leaves Poly Perch for even more cosy coverage and Brown Paws Pet Perch for your fur baby.
June is the start of Summer. With the meteorological start of summer being 1 June and the longest day 21/22 (there’s always a debate in my house), the fab warm weather we are enjoying all leads to summer being here.
Get outside, enjoy the sun when it shines and take in the sights and smells of the countryside. It will make you feel sooo much better.
Another thing that makes you feel better is forest bathing. A walk in the woods is one of my favourite things to do. The Bluebells of last month are fading, new species are taking their place and the tree canopy is closing over to bring more shade. Find a quiet place to Perch and just take a moment to just be still, enjoy the bird song and the sound of the leaves moving in the breeze. Smell the forest and the flowers within it, anything that just makes you feel closer to nature, is good for the soul.
As a supporter of the Woodland Trust, it’s interesting to read their latest report on the state of the nation’s woodlands and trees. The headline fact is that there is concern about woodlands and trees. Coverage from woodland has more than doubled in the last 100 years. Unfortunately, the main species of the additional coverage is with non-native trees (such as managed forest), leaving existing native woodland isolated. This leads to a poor ecological condition which has a knock-on effect to a decline in woodland wildlife.
Ancient forests have a fascinating complex eco system, and are vital to the planet. If you are interested in trees and woodlands, I would recommend reading The Hidden Life of Trees, Peter Wohlleben. It makes a walk in the woods so much more interesting.
There are several active tree planting campaigns at the moment, with the aim to encourage as many people as possible across the country to join in. Here are some you can join in with:
I love trees in my garden and even though it's quite small I have several medium size trees and over 20 homed in pots. I just need a bigger garden to plant them in.
Enjoy the start of summer, plant a tree and you will enjoy the benefits for years to come.
Until next, time Happy Perching
May is Bluebell time!
One of my favourite spring walks has to be in a Bluebell wood. It takes me straight back to my childhood. I used to spend hours playing with friends in an ancient wood full of Bluebells, happy carefree days.
Now each May, we have to make time to visit our favourite Bluebell wood, just seeing the carpet of blue instantly relaxes the senses and childhood memories come flooding back. Find a fallen tree or bench to Perch and just spend a moment just breathing in their sweet fragrance and relax.
To find a Bluebell Wood near you check out the Woodland Trusts pages for their expert guide.
Also at its best in May is cherry blossom and we recently spent a magical day at The Alnwick Gardens, Northumberland. The Cherry Orchard has been planted with over 300 Tai haku (Great White Cherry) trees. Making it the largest cherry orchard of its kind anywhere in the world.
They have cleverly included swing seats under the trees and you lose track of time sitting and gentle swinging in the warm spring sun. Just magical. All part of the Duchess of Northumberland's vision for The Alnwick Gardens.
You do need to have your Perch with you though, the birds make their presence known in no uncertain terms. Good job Perches are washable.
With the slow easing of restrictions and being able to sit outdoors for pubs and cafes, Perches are a great way to save yourself from damp, chilly seats. As spring showers and frosty nights continue, just pop one in your pocket, unfurl and you can sit in comfort and enjoy our new freedoms.
I am also looking towards the full easing of restrictions and I hope to bring you exciting news next month, if all goes to plan.
I like to show you our products in use by our lovely customers and this month, we have this handsome fella, looks like he’s having a great time on his Pet Perch. Thanks Tim (and owner Jackie) for this fab image.
Until next time, Happy Perching!
To celebrate Made in UK Day, Jacwicks Designs is launching its new Union Jack Pocket Perch.
As the appetite to shop locally and support local businesses grows, Make it British, a community of UK-made brands and manufacturers, is calling on everyone to celebrate UK makers.
Make it British was founded on 9 March 2011 as a blog to champion all the wonderful products that are made in the UK. To celebrate their 10 year anniversary 9 March this year, is Made in UK Day where you are encouraged to pledge to buy British.
Since its launch MIB has seen an increase in interest for UK made goods. This year alone has seen a 68% increase in enquiries since the UK left the EU’s single market and customs union.
There has never been more important to buy products that are made in the UK and support local manufacturing.
As you may know all Perches are handmade in Co Durham. They are not mass produced, they are of a high quality and well made. Some designs have quite short runs which make them even more unique. When possible additional help is sourced from a local social enterprise, Just for Women, which supports women and families in the region.
Fabric and sundries are sourced from UK businesses and every effort is made to ‘keep it local’ wherever possible. When you buy from my UK business you are also supporting a whole chain of UK based businesses. You are also lowering your carbon footprint, saving essential skills, helping local economies and creating job opportunities.
Our New Union Jack Pocket Perch enables you to fly the flag for UK business, find yours on the Pocket Perch page of the website.
If you saw last months Insights post you will have seen a photo of one of our lovely customers Kris sharing her favourite place to Perch. I'm so thrilled to be able to bring you the taker of that photo Maggie, enjoying a well earned rest on her Pocket Perch. Thank you so much for the lovely photos ladies, I absolutely love seeing customers favourite places to Perch.
If you would like to share your favourite place to Perch, please take a photo and email me at firstname.lastname@example.org I look forward to seeing you.
Until next time, stay safe and Happy Perching!
So here we are in 2021 and back into lockdown. Lets hope it won't be too long before we are out again and all make it through safe and sound.
The good news is we can still exercise outside. Walking is a great way of getting some gentle exercise, fresh air and if your lucky a beautiful view. Recently, on an icy walk, we found a park in our local area we never knew was there, just a stones throw from our front door. Happy days. As you can see from the photo above it also has a lovely view of a local landmark, Penshaw Monument which can be seen from miles around. It has an interesting history and is a great place to walk when we are allowed to go out and about again.
After a very strange 2020, we are looking forward to a better 2021 and planning some fabulous new designs for the Perch ranges, after selling out of some lines and continuing with some old favourites.
Check out our social pages on Instagram and Facebook for the latest news, feel free to show us your favourite places to Perch we love hearing from you.
So what ever 2021 brings stay safe, keep walking and Happy Perching!
A recent article in the Guardian highlighted the increasing interest in a more sustainable way of gift wrapping.
There is a growing trend towards a more sustainable way of living and a move away from the mountains paper gift wrap that is sent to landfill each year.
Our Fabwrap range is sourced from rescued from landfill fabric that proves eco friendly does not have to be dull. Our vibrant glamorous double layered fabric can produce fabulously wrapped gifts in just two knots and can be used time and time again. Pass on to another for them to reuse or pass back to the gift giver for them to gift you again.
Based on the Japanese art of Furoshiki, gift wrapping with fabric has been around for centuries. With the rising interest in finding a more eco friendly way of living it has seen a resurgence of interest, as we look to reduce the amount of rubbish we send to landfill. In just two knots fabric can be moulded to fit any shape and is ideal for those awkward gifts that you just can’t wrap neatly with paper.
Once you’ve learnt the basic way to tie a gift you can move on to more elaborate wrapping and by adding baubles and satin ribbons (both reusable) more glamour. There’s no end to what you can do.
Fabwrap is available in three sizes:
Small: great for a Pocket or Pixy Perch, or paper back book
Medium: ideal for a Pet or Poly Perch, or a tub of your favourite sweets
Large: perfect for the Picnic Perch or those larger items i.e. beauty boxes or clothes
Choose your perfect glamour wrap on the Fabwrap page
Jacwicks founder Ruth Jacobs talks to Melanie Cant of Elm Marketing
When you are running a business its always important to connect with a network that's on your wave length and contains other members that help and support each other. Its never been so important as it is now and I'm proud to be a member of the Do Business Network (DBN or Derwentside Business Network).
The team there have worked tirelessly to provide help, support and training during lockdown. They continuously engage with their members and find new ways to promote their businesses to the network and beyond.
Part of this process involves members Podcasts and I was lucky enough to be asked to speak to Melanie Cant from Elm Marketing, about how and why I set up Jacwicks Designs. Hear how the name Jacwicks came about, how I work with a local charity Just for Women and the way that the 'Finding your Tribe' moment happened.
You can listen to my story by clicking on this link (There's also a bit about how I met the legend John Craven and how he reacted to his Perch).
It's been a great project to be part of, I've loved telling my story and receiving listeners feedback.
Pull up a Perch and a coffee and have a listen, I hope you enjoy it.
John Craven thrilled with his Pocket Perch!
August 15-18 saw Jacwicks Designs at BBC Countryfile Live at Castle Howard.
WOW what a show!
There was so much to see and do 4 days just didn't seem enough.
The highlight for me was to meet national treasure and stalwart of Countryfile, John Craven. I presented him with a Pocket Perch to take with him on filming assignments out in the cold wet countryside. John was so delighted with the Perch, he went on the main stage at the event to tell the Countryfile Live audience how he would now be able to keep his bottom dry when out and about!
Thank you to all the Jacwicks customers, and attendees who just stopped for a chat, it was lovely to speak to you.
Looking forward to next year, see you there!
Here at Jacwicks HQ we are delighted and thrilled to receive a glowing review from Country Walking Magazine which declares the Pocket perch a classy product!
Up against two competitors in the sit mat market the Pocket Perch came out on top. The Pocket Perch is loved by the tester for its versatility for being able to be used out and about and in the home. Use it out and about on a walk, or during the week at work or home to enjoy an alfresco lunch.
The Pocket Perch is larger than its competitors but also rolls up very quickly to pop back in a bag or pocket, or attach to a strap on belts or bags. The tester also points out the Pocket Perches unique feature of being able to roll either way so if the waterproof side gets damp you can roll it on the inside so your bag or pocket stays dry.
But dont just take my word for it read the full review below and shop the Pocket Perch range by clicking here
Delighted to announce the Pocket Perch has been included in the Spring Issue of Country Walking magazine!
It's a great fit with the product, as I use mine when out and about taking part in the Country Walking magazine's, Walk 1000 Mile Challenge.
I still have a long way to go with my mileage, completed 67 miles so far, I just have to work out how to sew and walk at the same time.
Welcome to my inaugural blog!
I’m passionate about the countryside and believe there’s nothing better for your well being than to pop on a pair of walking shoes and get outside. Here in the North East, I’m lucky enough to be surrounded by the beautiful Durham Dales and Northumberland countryside. There’s always somewhere to stroll and something to see, whatever the weather.
Walking is best done with friends there’s nothing like a good walk and a natter, the time flies by and it surprising how far you can go and not realise. Whenever I can, I walk with a friends or with groups. Strolls with Poles is the Nordic Walking group, which I attribute to starting this whole venture off. We were out walking on an early spring day and stopped for lunch. The only place to sit was a damp fallen tree, one thing was guaranteed, a damp bum! I really wished I had something to sit on to protect me from the damp, was lightweight, easy to carry and attractive.
Fast forward several months, prototypes, endless questioning friends and family and the Pocket Perch was launched! Followed quickly by the rest of the Perch range. The sizing of the Pocket Perch is based on the size of an average sofa cushion, therefore large enough to perch your bum on.
From this first design the rest of the range evolved with the Pixy Perch designed for children, the Poly Perch for two people or one person and their lunch, or bag, dog, child, laptop, you get the drift. Then the Picnic Perch is for those alfresco lunches, large enough to lay out a delicious spread and have lots of people to enjoy it.
Why not mix and match to suit your needs.
Use the handy Carabiner clip to attach your chosen Perch to a bag, rucksack, trouser belt loop, or whatever you like, for ease of carrying.
I hope you enjoy the range and have a great time outdoors where ever you may be.
Thank you for reading!
Happy walking, don’t forget to pack a Perch!
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.