Sometimes going green can put a dent in the bank — a buggy full of organic groceries can cost almost as much as the monthly payment on a Prius. You don’t have to take out a loan to make your home, clothes and life more eco-friendly. I’ve found some eco-chic deals in honor of the 40th anniversary of Earth Day.
An aggressively bookmarked copy of Eco-Chic Home currently resides on my desk. It’s full of some of the smartest and cheapest green home ideas I’ve ever seen. My favorite tip is to take homeless buttons and turn them into napkin rings (p117).
In March, Scripps Networks Interactive, our parent company, opened a new LEED-registered building at our headquarters in Knoxville, Tenn. I love our sunlight-bathed, eco-friendly, beautiful digs featuring wall-sized windows, an open floor plan, brightly-colored, ergonomic furniture, and natural materials like bamboo and cork. One of my favorite features is the plant-covered living wall in the lobby.
These leggy numbers come from Russian design studio Tsesler & Voichenko.
Sometimes you stumble upon a piece of great design and it blows your mind. The lines are so perfect, the idea is so fresh and although it may clash with your entire house — you’ve just got to have it. That’s how I feel about these gorgeous works of art:
To continue our Black History Month series, we spoke with Atlanta interior designer Jack Poles. His background in floral design and retail merchandising created a love of wallpaper that led him to start Wallpaper Your World, a boutique wallpaper store that offers traditional, trendy and eco-friendly options. Read on to see what Jack has to say about his love of wallpaper and Palm Beach.
Which African-American designers influenced you?
Starting out, I didn’t have an African-American designer to influence me. That void inspired me to pursue my dream, which was creating a name for myself so that I may inspire African-American and young designers.
What’s your favorite design style?
My favorite design style is traditional with a twist.
What’s the essential home accessory (or piece of furniture) you use in your designs?
I love to use wallpaper. I think it really enhances the feeling of the room, much better than plain paint. I also like to throw in a hint of leopard print to add a little bit of fun to the room.
More from Jack
You have until 12 noon ET on Monday, February 15, to comment on this post with a valid email address and you’ll be entered for a chance to win.
This week, we partnered with TraceDesigns to bring you a fun and easy way to perk up your walls. Up for grabs: any stencil on this page. We like TraceDesigns stencils because they’re made from recycled, non-toxic materials and they’re simple to use. Tape the stencil to your wall, trace the design and then paint it however you like. This Week’s Question
Another Friday, another freebie! You have until 12 noon ET on Monday, February 8, to comment on this post with a valid email address and you’ll be entered for a chance to win.
This week we’re bringing a little green to your weekend with some help from our friends at REDUCE. Their WaterWeek system brings an end to the wasteful and expensive habit of purchasing bottled water. According to REDUCE, “WaterWeek is the ONLY true solution for consumers to end the wasteful and costly purchasing of bottled water, saving them over $500 a year!“ Just fill the 16 oz. BPA-free bottles at the beginning of the week and stash them in your fridge in the convenient tray. With WaterWeek there’s no need to buy water on the way to work or when heading to the gym.
This Week’s Question
With all the chatter about Michael Jackson’s death, old and new tours of his Neverland Ranch have been all over TV, but MJ’s whimsical wonderland isn’t this country’s only take on Peter Pan’s classic fantasy island. Natural Home Magazine surfaced another “Neverland” that they found in Austin, Texas. This one — dubbed Casa Neverlandia — is much more compact than MJ’s sprawling pad (no train station or zoo here!), but its eco-elements, including solar panels, rainwater collection, salvaged material and more, and unusual style are definitely worth checking out.
This is not your grandparents’ mobile home. I know firsthand because my grandparents lived in a mobile home (which they customized themselves) atop a quiet, tree-covered hill in East Tennessee for decades. I loved romping around that house as a child. Clayton Homes’ i-house — arguably the most innovative manufactured home to hit the industry — is a home that I could see myself romping around in as an adult. The i-house is smart, custom built to the buyer’s specifications and about as green as you can get, especially at this price point, starting at $74,000. And then there’s the design: modern, clean and downright cool. A few highlights:
All images courtesy of Clayton Homes
More about Green Living in the i-house including more photos
Earlier this week, Design Happens blogger Kristine Brabson asked: “Where will green pre-fab go now?” She was responding to the news that architect Michelle Kaufmann, a leader and innovator in the green living movement, is “closing up shop.” Despite forging forward and having more than 100 clients anxious to build, the dream of making green design accessible to the masses proved to be too difficult in this economy for a small company.
Enter Clayton Homes, leading home builder, with more than 1.5 million homes built since the company was founded in 1934. It makes sense that Clayton would take the leap into pre-fab, sustainable design; the company produces manufactured and modular homes. How does $93,000+ for a two-bedroom, one-bath home sound for a sleek, eco-friendly home with plenty of amenities?
This is a 2-bedroom, 2-bath model with a starting price of $108,000. Image courtesy of Clayton Homes.
More about the i-house
I’ve written here before about eco-friendly design and products. If you liked that stuff, I wanted to give a little shout-out to my other pet project, Ecologue.com, a sister blog to Design Happens that’s covering all things green for your home and garden.
Yeah, I know you might be tired of hearing “go green” or “save the planet” or might wonder what you can really do. But even the little things count — and a few basic changes can benefit you and your family. The ideas we’re pulling together over at Ecologue are all about helping you find your right shade of green — the one that fits your life today and every day. This is simple, practical living.
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