i%27mnotaplasticbag.jpgWhen I first saw these cotton shopping bags swinging from the shoulders of Keira Knightley and the Lilies (Cole and Allen) I thought what a novel yet clever way to help the environment. Then of course, because they had been spotted on the likes of Knightley and co., they became popular... very popular and limited stocks sold out almost as quickly as you could say "eco-friendly". Then, as is now the case with highly-sought after fashion items, the £5 bags flooded eBay selling up to as much as £200, around the same price as a regular Hindmarch bag! I began to wonder, with such limited supplies what was the real point behind these supposedly eco-friendly bags? And if they are really meant to help the environment then why weren't they made readily available from Sainsburys at the beginning? Why wait until April 25th?

There could be two reasons for this. Firstly, that the company didn't expect such an overwhelming demand when they originally launched the bag during London Fashion Week last month or they knew that by limiting its availability to celebs and the fash-pack that it would create a huge stir, increase demand so when it did launch it would be an even greater success. If the latter reason is correct then talk about savvy marketing!

keirabag.jpgToday, the second batch of limited edition bags have been released in Harrods, Anya Hindmarch stores, Dover Street Market and at Harvey Nichols where they have 600 in stock. Bags were also available on the website We Are What We Do, although some Catwalk Queen readers have complained about this process. Customers who registered on the Anya Hindmarch website to ensure they were the first to hear about where to buy the bags experienced delays this morning as they waited for email confirmation on where they could pick one up.

lilybag.jpgTo those eagerly waiting, We Are What We Do have published the following apology for the problems experienced on their website this morning - "Due to such enormous and unprecedented demand for the Anya Hindmarch/We Are What We Do bag, we are currently experiencing problems with our website. We had taken every measure possible to avoid this and are working very hard to resolve the issue. We’re a small team, but aim to have the website working as soon as possible. Please bear with us." They wish to assure customers that, at this stage, stocks have not yet sold out. "For all those who have pre-registered for the Anya bag, we will notify you by email immediately as soon as our site is working. Please be aware that with over 11,000 names on our email list, the email may take time to get to you. Unfortunately we cannot take any telephone orders for the bags," said the site notice.

peopletreebag.jpgAlternatively, don't forget that supermarket chains such as Asda and Tesco also do their own eco-friendly shoppers. Asda do a "Bags For Life" reusable shopper for just 5p with 1p of that going to charity. They're available in all of the stores country-wide. Tesco's famous green carrier bag is also just 5p, with proceeds also going to charity. Or if you're looking for something a little more fashionable then People Tree sell an organic cotton shopper for just £5. After all, if you're serious about saving the environment then why not start your own trend with one of these?

While I love the idea of the Anya Hindmarch bag and get behind its concept 100 per cent I can't help but wonder why such a great product, that could potentially change the need for plastic shopping bags and the way we shop for good, would continue at such low availability. Let's not wait until tomorrow; we should be helping the environment today!

For more bag gossip visit The Bag Lady.

For more green fashion visit Hippy Shopper.