by Ross Dulmaine @ 6:50 am post a comment »
Spring has sprung and many of our fine-feathered-friends are looking for quality housing. A great functional and visual solution for both your backyard and your avian buddies — the architecturally tasty birdhouses created by Ted Freeman and his Roundhouseworks’ Shop.
Ted creates his whimsical, architecturally detailed birdhouses from vintage wood, tin and metal roofing reclaimed from deconstructed old farms and homes in his local Midwestern area. The eclectic, odd pieces of wood and hardware are transformed into birdhouses of architectural beauty and distinction, featuring metalwork flourishes and styles that evoke Art Deco, Tudor and medieval times.
Each birdhouse is handmade and designed to serve the needs of small backyard cavity-nesting birds – chickadees, wrens, titmice, nuthatches, finches – and meets the ornithological recommendations of The Audubon Society and The U.S Fish and Wildlife Service in regard to interior dimensions, materials, ventilation, predator guards, and clean-out access.
Freeman prides himself on the fact that each birdhouse features a distinct architectural style and aesthetic appeal – exhibiting a balance of architectural sophistication, utilitarian value and a visual appeal created by the rustic materials and their weathered textures and patina.
How do you price a handmade piece of art? The birdhouses range in price from $120 to $250
Monday, April 8, 2013
by Ross Dulmaine @ 8:35 am 1 comment »
Green your home with a low-maintenance, micro-environment. These lovely handmade glass terrariums are created by Ashley Bram-Johnson in Philadelphia. The sculptural geometric designs of the pieces make them both visually unique and very functional. The planters are created in a variety of shapes to accommodate shapes, sizes and needs of different plants. A fun design project, and neat way to add fresh outdoor elements into your indoor space.
Terrariums with openings can be placed with the opening skywards for plants that do not need a sheltered environment, like herbs, flowers and hearty succulents. Or, the planter can be placed on its side as a terrarium, with enclosed sides and only one opening at the front to create a micro-environment suitable for cacti, succulents and air plants.
The solder used in construction is lead-free. Appropriate terrariums come with a kit that includes the supplies you need to get started: pebbles, activated charcoal and helpful tips on care and planting. Plants, soil and planting mediums are not included. Most of the terrariums sell for between $45 and $150 @ the ABJ Glassworks shop.
Monday, March 18, 2013
by Ross Dulmaine @ 9:43 am post a comment »
Ben and Kate Gatski create rustic furniture, sculpture and folk art from recovered old farm machinery, barnwood and other materials discovered in their rural Pennsylvania area. The couple’s work features welding, wood carving and other rustic fabrication techniques. Today we’ve chosen to feature some of their wall art made from deceased old farm equipment and reclaimed barnwood.
Another fine example of designers working with character-laden found and reclaimed materials, while keeping all that perfectly reusable material out of scrapyards and landfills. See other examples of the Gatski’s work at their TheSteelFork Etsy shop.
Related: more from The Steel Fork
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
by guest @ 8:39 am 1 comment »
Paul McCartney famously said, “If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be a vegetarian“. Marisa Miller Wolfson’s directorial debut Vegucated puts such a statement to the test.
Compared to all its many hard hitting counterparts, Vegucated is a somewhat gentle introduction to veganism and animal welfare. The film follows three meat and cheese loving New Yorkers who agree to adopt a vegan diet for six weeks. Unsurprisingly they each stepped up to the challenge for reasons of self-interest – to shed pounds and ultimately feel better about their health. However, these everyday people got a whole lot more then they bargained for.
This compelling piece of work shows what happens to normal people when they are given the truth about food that the government, corporations and media try so hard to hide. Admittedly going into the challenge claiming that they would never give up meat or dairy, all three participants can be seen having extreme emotional and physical reactions to the realities of animal suffering.
Vegucated is a powerful movie about seeing regular people make the connection between the meat wrapped in plastic that they buy in the supermarket and the reality of how it actually got there. Distraught Ellen Mausner, a single mum, declares “Why didn’t I know about this before? It’s not something that I really consciously thought about“, and 22 year old Tesla Lobo, a college student, says “How is this allowed? I’m never eating meat again“. Director Wolfson really does put up a good case that given the right information anyone can make big dietary changes and maybe even become vegan. This in turn demystifies negative stereo types that veganism is a fanatical religion embraced only by punks and eco hippie types.
Though the film does have its fair share of stomach churning moments I would say that it is definitely a great beginners movie for anyone who wants to dip their toe into the subject without having a full-on nervous breakdown. What’s surprising about this film is how humorous and lighthearted it is, a real first for a foody/ethical documentary dealing with such a controversial and upsetting subject. The film moves effortlessly between scenes and does a great job of weaving together all aspects of animal agriculture, including its environmental affects and the relationship between dairy and meat consumption and disease.
We follow the New Yorkers on their journey, abundant with ups and downs as they try their hardest to maintain their veganism in a culture where meat and dairy is omnipresent. By the end of the movie I was entirely emotionally invested in all three characters. I was rooting for them to stay convicted in their morals and sustain their new lifestyle changes in the face of overwhelming negative feedback from their family and friends.
Vegucated is by far one of the most ‘digestible’ food-related documentaries I’ve seen to date. There are regular screenings of the film around the world and it can also be easily bought or rented digitally online via Getvegucated.com
This guest post is contributed by Sarah Maguire, she is an artist, political activist and book fiend. Her special interests lie in non-violence towards all living beings and progressive art to bring about social and personal change.
photo credit, (above right): Jessica Mahady
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
by Ross Dulmaine @ 7:30 am 4 comments »
Clean lines and ancient salvaged wood are characteristic of much of designer Adrian Swinstead’s work. We decided to feature some of Swinstead’s modern-rustic tables and benches made from materials like hurricane-felled Mahogany (above), prehistoric Bog Oak – ancient trees preserved in peat bogs for thousands of years (below), as well as salvaged Bog Yew (bottom photos).
Many of the tables utilize minimal structure and bracing – juxtaposing weathered wood and pristine glass. He also creates stunning sculptures, benches, cabinets and a variety of unique objects by fusing earth-friendly glass with recovered materials. At it for over 30 years now, his work “is an homage to the tree“. (more…)
Thursday, February 28, 2013
by Ross Dulmaine @ 2:13 pm 1 comment »
Created entirely from reclaimed barn-wood, this wall art retains all the raw wood’s natural organic character — it remains chemical, stain and paint-free.
Each handmade sculpture is unique, made-to-order, and OOAK. Measures 48″ x 24″ $350 @ thezenartist
related: more eco art on The Alternative Consumer