Filed under: environmental issues
Mark and I have been flung into the vast world of baby products recently. We are completing the nursery and have attempted to start registering for all the stuff you supposidely need with a brand new baby.
I have been struggling with all the plastic products, cheap gear, and incompatible systems. I never realized that all strollers do not work with all carseats and jogging strollers are different than other strollers etc, etc.
A major concern I have is my nagging conscious about using disposable diapers. I know they are bad for the environment, decompose in a ridiculous amout of time, and are a major filler in landfills. Yet the time savings and convenience is an advantage for working moms.
Recently I came across a pretty neat product that appears to be a nice alternative to disposable diapers and an environmentally conscious product. They are called G diapers. The diapers have inserts that are compostable or that flush down your toilet. The product was also awarded a ‘cradle to cradle’ certification which is a certification based on William McDonough’s design priniciples and achieves certain critieria.
I am seriously thinking about giving this product a shot and they look adorable on too!
Filed under: design, fashion | Tags: Commonwealth, DC, denver, limited edition, maharam, shoes, the 400
Check out these fabulous shoes I just found! Popular brands Commonwealth and DC have joined forces and have created this wonderful footwear using Maharam’s “Eames Dot Pattern” fabric. Being a designer in Colorado, I can totally appreciate these.
I found these in my search for some fun and unique, yet comfortable shoes for spring. In the mountains it’s hard to get away with all of those fancy fashion trends involving high heels and pointy shoes, so I tend to stick to the “board sport” fashion”. And I have to say it was a pretty easy adjustment because everything is soooooo comfy!
If you’re looking for some unique sneakers to flash around town, take a look at the 400 http://www.the400.net/index.cfm. It’s kind of like an art gallery for shoes. They sell only Limited Editions of name brands such as New Balance, Vans, Puma, Gravis, etc. Not to mention it’s a fun place to go for First Fridays in Denver because they sell/ display local artist work each month. This place has a great environment because the employees are not just shoe salesmen, but they are artist themselves.
Some might be a little “out there”, but you can’t say they’re not unique 🙂
Kelsey – Vail, CO
Filed under: environmental issues | Tags: cradle to cradle, downcycling, green vocabulary, greenwash, LOHAS, slow design, slow food
I’ve been noticing a lot of new vocabulary lately that’s been popping up in relation to the “green” movement. Maybe you’re familiar with all of them, maybe you’re not, but I thought a little lesson might be helpful for some people.
Closed-loop recycling: The process of recycling in such a way that the components of the original product are reclaimed or utilized into similar products without the process of downcycling.
Cradle to cradle: A term used to describe materials or products that are recycled into a new or similar product at the end of their intended life.
Downcycling: The process of recycling in such a way that new products are of lesser economic value.
Greenwash: A combo of green & white wash. It’s a term that is used to describe the act of misleading consumers regarding the environmental practices of a company or the environmental benefits of a product or service. The marketing company Terrachoice listed the 6 sins of greenwashing as: 1. Sin of the Hidden Trade-Off: e.g. “Energy-efficient” electronics that contain hazardous materials. 2. Sin of No Proof: e.g. Shampoos claiming to be “certified organic,” but with no verifiable certification. 3. Sin of Vagueness: e.g. Products claiming to be 100% natural when many naturally-occurring substances are hazardous, like arsenic and formaldehyde. 4. Sin of Irrelevance: e.g. Products claiming to be CFC-free, even though CFCs were banned 20 years ago. This Sin was seen in 78 products and 4% of environmental claims. 5. Sin of Fibbing: e.g. Products falsely claiming to be certified by an internationally recognized environmental standard like Eco Logo, Energy Star or Greenseal. 6. Sin of Lesser of Two Evils: e.g. Organic cigarettes or “environmentally friendly” pesticides.
Greenhush: Coined by treehugger.com- It’s when companies choose to stay silent about their green initiatives for fear that they’ll be seen in the same light as those who are claiming to be green, but carrying on with business as usual. It seems admirable, but it does nothing to strengthen the movement and encourage other businesses to make real changes. It also makes it more difficult for consumers to support eco-friendly businesses.
LOHAS: Per Wikipedia: An acronym for Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability, a market segment focused on health and fitness, the environment, personal development, sustainable living, and social justice. These consumers are sometimes called Lohasians. The LOHAS market segment in year 2006 was estimated at $300 billion, approximately 30% of the USA consumer market. According to the New York Times, a study by the Natural Marketing Institute showed that in 2000, 68 million Americans were included within the LOHAS demographic.
Offsets: Greenhouse gas reduction activities undertaken to compensate for emissions elsewhere.
Renewable Resources: A resource that can be replenished at a rate equal to, or greater than its rate of depletion.
Every week we share our own little tid bits about what we think is cool in the “green” community. But what can you do locally? The Sundance Channel has a great ECO-Community map. All you have to do is enter your zip code and find people and businesses that are either green or on their way. We actually found a place that makes bikes by reusing parts from older models. It actually might be a great place to find a not-so-brand new bike for my husband and myself!
You don’t know what or who might find on this site, but I think it’s a great place to start.
-Alison KC, MO
We’re in the process of reworking everything at Savvy and that means not just the tools & accessories, but also all of our graphics. Our new look will be unveiled soon, but before we get to that, I wanted to share a bit of our past with you as well. We want to encourage women to be independant & give them the confidence to take on their own projects and we felt like we could express that by playing off the typical 50’s housewife stereotype. The look we created was very feminine and playful. We liked it, but we weren’t sure that it would reach our broader audience and send the message we wanted to. So, since then we’ve been developing a new, sleeker, more classic look to go along with our tools. Coming up with the right thing is always a process…
I just returned from a great trip to Orlando. I lived there before moving to SF and I was back in town visiting friends & family this past week. I feel like a lot of people roll their eyes at me when I say I’m excited about going back and that I really miss it. I guess it’s hard for people to see past Mickey Mouse and the massive tourist industry that has been built up there (myself included on many occasions). With that in mind, I wanted to share a brief guide to the lesser known sites that I personally find much more enticing than Denim World and yet another TGI Friday’s. You should check them out if you happen to be in the area for work or pleasure.
-Stick to the downtown area north of Disney and check out Lake Eola. It’s a beautiful area perfect for walks and weekend picnics. You can even take a swan paddle boat out around the lake. It can be fun, but I warn you that it was more work than I was expecting. They also have a couple of gondolas that you can reserve for a ride with champagne & strawberries or even a lobster dinner. The cheesy romantic in me has always thought that could be pretty fun.
-Be sure to check out Thornton Park right next to Lake Eola. It’s a quaint neighborhood with brick streets, lots of unique shops, restaurants, and bars. One of my favorites is Il gelatone- an amazing gelato place!
-There are many great restaurants in the area. Some of the moderately priced, very yummy places that I like are: Bravissimo- a tiny little Italian restaurant tucked into a quiet neighborhood downtown. I’m not sure how they worked out the zoning on that, but… The White Wolf Cafe is another unique cafe filled with antiques and a self proclaimed “bohemian” atmosphere. They have great food and nice seating on the sidewalk where you can get some good people watching in. My absolute favorite is Season’s 52. They’re menu changes completely with each season and slightly each week to include the freshest ingredients possible. They employ healthy preparation techniques- avoiding butter and nothing is fried. All of the entrees are within a healthy calorie count and that includes a small dessert to finish things off.
-The downtown has a pretty big nightlife scene. The Social is a great place to catch a concert. They usually have a steady stream of good bands coming and I found that I could almost always get tickets. It’s a small venue too so you can get right up close to the band and really enjoy the show.
-Of course the beach is only an hour away so you can always take advantage of that.
-Just outside the city limits, check out Blue Springs State Park. Manatees hang out there in the cooler months and you can swim and tube down the river in the summer.
-South of the city, I highly recommend Bok Tower. I had the opportunity to discover it on this last trip. It’s a tall bell tower positioned on the highest hill in Florida, in the midst of acres of beautiful gardens. It’s another perfect place for a picnic or a quiet place to read a book and the carillon concerts each day are really incredible.
I could go on and on. The important thing to remember is Orlando isn’t all about Disney. You might have to look a little harder for the more unique experiences, but they’re there if you care to search. I only lived there for a year and a half, but the city and of course the people that I met there will always stay dear to my heart.
Filed under: design | Tags: Contemporary Arts Museum, FlatPak house, Houston, modern prefab home, National Design Triennial
I swear I’m not obsessed with modern prefab homes, but I found another one that I think is really cool and had to share! I first heard about the FlatPak House from my friend Adam who is an engineer in Denver. His company just met with the guys at FlatPak and might become the new site engineers and he thought I should check it out.
To best describe FlatPak…”it’s a system of prefabricated components designed to yield unique solutions to your unique needs and site.” The best part about these homes is that there are endless design options and you can do all of the design yourself! The exterior is made up of as many panels as you like of any size choosing from concrete, wood, stone, and glass. Once the layout and exterior is designed, it’s time to customize the interiors and then off to the shop where they produce permit documents and start production. A truck then delivers all of the separate components and assembles your home on site.
To get a glimpse of FlatPak first hand, they are on tour with the National Design Triennial and are currently being shown at the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston. You should definitely check it out if you’re out that way!
Kelsey – Vail, CO