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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

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Green Holiday Gift Guide for Guys 2014


Thanksgiving has passed, signifying the arrival of the holiday season and the mad rush to collect the perfect gifts for the loved ones in your life. If you were able to abstain from partaking in this year’s Black Friday sales, I would like to personally congratulate you! The amount of flat-screen TVs and energy-demanding products flying out the doors of stores around the country on this grossly and inappropriately named day is staggering. Sure, new versions of these tech products are more energy efficient than their predecessors, but the ever-growing volume of smart devices and plasma screens drown out this energy conservation. This year, instead, let us put our environmentalists’ hats on and give the gift of sustainability. Your brother, uncle, father, son, nephew, etcetera just may appreciate if you use this short list of gift ideas as a guide:

hybrid light

Hybrid Solar Lantern from Hybrid Light
(above) This is especially built for the outdoorsmen in your life, or it could be given to the campers in your life. The extremely durable Hybrid Solar Lantern sports a small solar panel on the top, and will provide up to 6 hours of light from its 200-lumen LED with a full charge. The lantern can charge itself via the solar panel with any light source, meaning that if you find yourself stuck in the beautiful outdoors, you could even charge the Hybrid Lantern with your car’s headlights. That is, if you forgot to bring the lantern’s included car-charger. Stash the Hybrid Lantern with your home-disaster kit for a trusted light source during rough weather and power outages as well, as the lantern can hold a charge for years. But perhaps more importantly, give your loved ones the gift of no more batteries this holiday season with the Hybrid Solar Lantern from Hybrid Light.

kanteen

The Renewable Growler from Klean Kanteen
(above) Do you have a beer drinker in your life? Give them this hipster-esque reusable growler to make them the envy of the local breweries. Microbreweries are springing up all over the place; just look at this list of the 159 small craft breweries within a stone’s throw of where I am sitting here in Colorado. With this Klean Kanteen stainless steel growler, you can in to your favorite brewery, clink the bottle down on the bar and walk away with 40-ounces of your favorite brew, without collecting all of that glass! The growler could of course otherwise be used to tote your water, tea, wine, juice or whatever else you would like… I guess.

d1

D.I.Y. Mason Jar Terrarium
(above) If you are short on cash or gift ideas for the eco-loving guy in your life, consider putting together his own small, home terrarium out of a mason jar, as seen here. You might want to start with a large jar, then add some rocks, petrified wood or sticks and mosses or other small, low-water plants, and presto – you have given the gift of life in a bottle. Tips on how to do it via about.com and photo credit/inspiration: treehugger.com and joshleo

NRDC green gifts

World-Changing Eco Gifts from NRDC Green Gifts
(above) Finally, this is for the minimalist, non-materialistic men in your life who would appreciate a new boost of altruism instead of a new electric shaver. Why not visit NRDC Green Gifts and make a donation towards the kind of environmental activism they most value? With a small donation, your loved one will receive a personalized card thanking them for their support of a variety of eco-friendly projects. Choose from 32 different projects, such as the protection of bees, polar bears, monarch butterflies and elephants, or the gift of clean water, a donation to clean energy, or even the option to sponsor an environmental lawsuit on behalf of the planet. Whatever direction you choose, you can be assured that your gift will go towards the welfare of the planet.

related: more green gift ideas

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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Eco-Friendly Wedding Favors and Gifts Tags – Contain Plantable Wild Flower Seeds


plantable tags trees

Here’s something a little different – party favors and gift tags made from recycled paper that contain plantable seeds. These tags and favors, when planted, are designed to grow into a sea of lovely wild flowers  – creating a flowering memory of your wedding, bridal shower or event.

plantabe wedding favor tags

Kendra Zvonik creates these nifty, rustic items from 100% recycled paper. The shapes are created with a traditional mould and deckle and then hand-cut. The plantable paper goods are visibly loaded with 100% pure, GMO- free, fresh wildflower seeds.

plantable tags

They available in wide array of beautiful colors and shapes that can be coordinated with any color scheme or season. The tags can make a great complement to holiday gifts. Each set is made to order to ensure freshness. The earth-friendly tags and favors come in packs of 60 or 120 and cost about $1 each – find them at Green Post.

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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

green little things – reclaimed shipping pallet coasters


reclaimed pallet wood coaster

Sometimes it’s the little things that make a difference — like these cute wooden coasters that resemble tiny shipping pallets. Nick Mast – who specializes in reclaimed wood creations – handcrafts these utilitarian miniatures from the remains of real shipping pallets.

pallet wood coaster set

These coasters are a great way to express your support for recycling, rustic style and all things green. The reclaimed wooden coasters come handsomely packaged in sets of 4 for $25.  Find them at the Six Finger Studios shop.

related: more eco-friendly home decor items on The Alternative Consumer

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Saturday, May 10, 2014

An Eco-friendly Mother’s Day


This weekend is Mother’s Day and if you’re at a loss for how to make it more environmentally friendly, I have a few suggestions for you. I hope everyone has a Happy Mother’s Day!

lily's chocolates

Keeping it sweet ... If you’re going for a chocolaty gift, make sure it is pesticide-free, organic, and fair trade. Check out your local Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods to find some of these goodies. A few brands that are sure to please are: Amano Chocolate (for artisan chocolates) and Dagoba Chocolate, as well as Lily , which is made with Stevia, an all-natural sweetener, rather than sugar. Their ingredients are vegan, non-GMO, including Fair Trade certified cocoa. Lily’s on our definite Yum list!

April showers bring May flowers … If you’re considering a bouquet of flowers, make sure it is organic and fair trade. However, an even better idea would be a potted plant for your mom. This is a nice gift because she can cherish it forever and make it an addition to her garden (or yours). Simply look online or ask your local flower vendors. You can also send an e-card instead of using paper – an e-card can be animated or just a simple one that your mom can save in her email that will cheer her up to look at every so often. You can send an e-card via the Sierra Club online or find your own website by doing a simple Google search.

snow leopard

On the wild side … A unique gift that you can give your mom is sponsoring a wildlife area or adopting an endangered animal. You can do this via the Sierra Club. A nice Lynx, Bald Eagle, Polar Bear, Harbor Seal, Alligator or Black Bear are just a few creatures that need our help.  Or visit Defender’s of Wildlife – they are featuring a promotion code for 20% off – and help the Snowy Owl, Tiger, Sea Turtle, Arctic Fox, Snow Leopard (above) or several other beautiful creatures.

klean kanteen

Say goodbye to plastic water bottles … another good gift would be a sleek, reusable canteen, a gift that mom can keep forever and feel good about using. Klean Kanteen has many different canteens of all different sizes, styles, and colors. My favorite right now are the Reflect Kanteens which are made using “sustainably harvested bamboo, food-grade silicone and stainless steel.” (photo above)

Enjoy your Mother’s Day celebration, and try to keep it green!

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Friday, May 9, 2014

Eco Fashion Friday Finds – Mother’s Day


organic cotton owl tshirt

Because women are wiser… Here’s a super-soft organic cotton t-shirt that features a very sweet owl family. The tee’s hand-drawn graphic features two sleeping owl youngsters and mom – who always sleeps with one-eye open. $30 from viva sweet love

eco handbag

Because mom always needs a great bag… Mom is always lugging stuff around and should be doing so in style. This lovely handmade crossbody handbag from Studio Waterstone is made with recycled navy leather (from a vintage jacket) and a colorful floral print cotton fabric. $79

organic cotton yoga tee

Because mom needs to relax… This comfy organic cotton “Flowing Spirit Tee” is great for doing a little yoga – or just hanging out. $44 @ gaiam.com

okab sandals

Because it all starts with the feet… Oka-B handcrafts (made in the USA) great looking sandals and footwear that contain 25% recycled material. The company practices a closed-loop manufacturing process that encourages folks to recycle their old Oka-B shoes. The Suzanna summer sandal (above) goes for $40 @ oka-b.com.

Happy Mother’s Day!! Remember to always pass along your gently used clothes so they don’t wind up in the landfill.

related: more eco-fashion finds featured on The Alternative Consumer

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