If you could only buy one bag, how many ways would you use it? Here at Haven Label, we’re big fans of sustainability, and for us that means offering quality items made to last — our answer to the impacts of fast fashion. So how can we all make more sustainable choices? 

Rather than buying a separate bag for every occasion, choose one bag that suits many tasks. This gets the sustainability tick because less resources are used in manufacturing, and it’s also less wasteful than having a lot of bags that you hardly ever use (Marie Kondo would approve).

Resist the temptation to choose a large bag to fit absolutely everything, but choose one just a little smaller than you might think. Opt for a bag that you can carry comfortably while full, to keep your body happy, and make your day easier. The Shelly is our favourite all-rounder to carry everything from your gym clothes to your groceries.

Go for a bag with durable construction — if you make sure the handles are suited to your most heavy-duty task, like grocery shopping, you know it’ll be more than capable of handling a light task like your beach towel. A natural cotton bag is easier to care for than something made from a delicate or fragile material, so if you treat it well, it will last you well. 

Neutral shades give you more versatility than bold, unusual colours, so that you can pair your bag with any outfit, and feel confident that it looks appropriate for any occasion. A classic shape never goes out of style, and looks as good at the park as it does buying groceries (and makes everyone in the supermarket envious of your good taste). 

Make your bag adaptable by choosing one with different strap options like a market shopper. Wide straps are ideal when shopping to stop a heavy bag from digging in to your shoulder, and changing up the strap type and length depending on what you’re carrying will make your bag even more comfortable. 

There are a couple of other useful features to look out for. A bag with an internal pocket will help you keep track of your essentials, and a top zip means nothing valuable can escape — and also limits the amount of sand you bring home after a day at the beach. 

The best thing to keep in mind in your search for sustainability is that the most sustainable bag you buy is the bag that you actually use. By choosing a bag that’s durably made in a timeless design, you’re ensuring that your bag will stay strong (and look good doing it) for a long time to come.