green home decor
Fair Trade is a term you are beginning to see much more as the eco-friendly movement grows. Fair Trade Designs embodies this ideal with their great sustainable items, each with their own background story of the artisans who create them.
Vetiver Root Place Mats – Hand woven from cotton and vetiver root and tied together with vetiver tassels. Vetiver is a fragrant easily renewable and naturally aromatic root indigenous to India and Indonesia. The soothing, herbal scent covers kitchen smells and also makes great drawer liners. Because of its deep growing & tightly meshed root system, vetiver is also used by conservation and community development projects to stop erosion in deforested areas. The mats are hand made in a fair trade village cooperative in Java, Indonesia.
This product comes from Zen-Zen, a Fair Trade Federation member. That means everyone they employ, including their subcontractors, gets a fair living wage and has good working conditions › Continue reading
Here are some of the stories running around the green web this week.
Glass2 is produced with 99% recycled glass with no resin and can be worked on by stone and glass fabricators.
Staybull Flooring salvages waste wood from lumber mills around the world in more than 20 wood species. The discarded strips are binded using solvent-free and VOC-free adhesives, then milled and finished with a VOC-free ceramic finish for a strong detailed mosaic looking flooring. Pricing can start at $4.50 sqft and can do double duty by also reducing labor costs and construction waste.
Just outside Los Angeles, a 3-GW wind farm project is on track to be operational by next year. Able to power 600,000 Southern California homes, the Alta Vista Wind Energy Center located in the foothills of the Mojave Desert just north of Los Angeles will have the first phase up and running by next year with full completion in about 10 years.
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A topic covered often here on The Chic Ecologist are brands and stores which carry eco friendly clothing. Based in Chicago, Verdessence is an on-line retailer opened by Lauren McGinty and Michael McCarthy out of a desire to promote positive change in the world. They were kind enough to send me an item from one of the many eco-friendly brands they carry, a sustainable hoodie by Edun (and no, that is not me in the picture).
Edun is probably best know by its celebrity co-founder, Bono from the band U2. Edun is a socially conscious clothing company launched in spring 2005 by Ali Hewson and Bono with a mission is to create beautiful clothing while fostering sustainable employment in developing areas of the world, particularly Africa.
The hoodie I received was made in Africa (Madagascar to be exact) by sustainable and recycled elements like wool, polyamide, cashmere, and PBT. It has a very modern fitted look and is top notch quality, as I would expect with all the brands Verdessence carries.
I actually initially ordered the Sameunderneath hooded coat (which was brilliant by the way), but I indicated the wrong size. The return/exchange process was very quick and easy making it painless to get a really great item. › Continue reading
I hope many of you had a chance to visit the Eco-Chic Expo yesterday at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center that Rachel posted about last week. Featuring many different local sustainable living companies, the expo was definitely a great and interactive way to spend a few hours. The expo featured a lot of companies all excited to share their products and websites with the public at this free event. Here are some businesses and events that really caught my eye!
Full Circle Farm is an organic farm that grows and sources organic fruits and vegetables and deliver right to your door! Located just outside of Carnation, the 400 acre farm grows over 200 varieties of produce and 50 crops in order to provide a large variety for their customers. They also partner with other local farms in order to provide more options for delivery baskets. The baskets of food are fully customizable, with flexible order size and frequency and as an added bonus, you know exactly where your food is coming from. To sign up for a delivery subscription or learn more about Full Circle Farm visit their website or call 866-EAT-WELL.
Now for a local, small business and community centric alternative to the Seattle 2010 Go Green Conference. Seattle’s Eco-Chic Expo is being held on Saturday, May 1st, at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center located in Northeast Seattle. A self described “interactive green lifestyle event”, the event is put together to provide the general public with an interactive day of tips, tricks and products to help people live greener, yet fashionable, lives. The Expo is free to the public and features a number of local companies dedicated to sustainable lifestyles. › Continue reading
I’ve been reading a lot lately about air filtering house plants and which ones are the best for the job. Turns out, most are specialized to remove specific toxins, so lets first look at the list of indoor toxins so we can find out which plants you need to remove those toxins. Pretty much all plants are going to improve air quality, these have just been researched more than others and/or are better performing at removing certain things. Also keep in mind that many of these are also invasive weeds, so please keep them in pots in your home and take care when disposing of them.
Trichloroethylene (TCE) in the home is introduced from dry cleaning, printing inks, paints, lacquers, varnishes, and adhesives. This chemical is considered by the National Cancer Institute as a potent liver carcinogen.
Benzene is present in many common items including gasoline, inks, oils, paints, plastics, and rubber. It is an eye and skin irritant as well as being a contributing factor to leukemia in humans. Repeated skin contact with benzene will cause drying, inflammation, blistering and dermatitis.
Formaldehyde is a extraordinarily common in almost every indoor environment. Found in everything from particle board or pressed wood products used in many furniture pieces, to grocery bags, facial tissues and paper towels. Even common household cleaning agents and air fragrances contain formaldehyde. With carpet backings, fire proof coatings, permanent-press clothes and natural gas all containing the toxin, it is nearly impossible to avoid.
I love bamboo. Its beautiful, its durable, and its a great sustainable and renewable resource, so I am pretty excited about Plyboo by Smith and Fong. Certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and available for LEED credit by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), these surfaces and flooring are all about sustainability. Made from FSC certified bamboo and palm, these flooring and paneling alternatives have a beautiful and unique modern but warm look.
Smith & Fong’s Plyboo flooring, plywood and veneer are derived from Moso bamboo harvested from a forest that requires no irrigation, fertilizers or pesticides. Each year, only 20 percent of the plantation’s bamboo (or only the five-year growth) is cut, ensuring the forest canopy remains intact and the ecosystem is not disturbed.
Both the Durapalm and Plyboo flooring, veneer and plywood use a urea formaldehyde-free adhesive called PlybooPure™ and pass the California Air Resources Board (CARB)’s formaldehyde regulations for composite panels. It also earned the world’s first non-wood FSC certification for its bamboo resource in China, providing third-party validation of a truly sustainable industry. Additionally, Smith & Fong retain a relationship with the actual bamboo farmers, to ensure the quality and sustainability of the operation.
I got a great email the other day from Beth of diffractionFIBER, a pillow artist on Etsy. Each of her pillows are hand-made to order and are not only unique and beautiful, but they are also green. The designs are created with a recycled plastic bottle felt, helping to reduce plastic waste.
With several quirky designs, some geek pillows with your control-alt-delete keyboard buttons would look great on any techie couch. At $35.00 for many of her pillows, they won’t break the bank, and you will end up with a one-of-a-kind, unique handmade piece.
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