Friday Wrap-up – 1/29/10

For a myriad of reasons I won’t go into, this has been a crazy week.  I’m looking forward to getting back to a more regular posting schedule next week, with lots of very cool design to share with you.

Meanwhile, here are some of the items that caught my eye across the internet on those rare moments when I had a chance to look.

image via inhabitat

Inhabitat has a story about how Fashion4Home is taking votes on which pieces they should put into production from their new line of bamboo furniture.

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It’s a Small World…

We got a lovely email on Sunday from Jen Leheny in Australia letting us know that our blog had been written up in their local newspaper, The Canberra Times, as one “…of the most interesting and inspiring home and design blogs from around the world.”  Gee, we’re blushing!

Jen graciously allowed us to borrow her scan of the newspaper article.  She is an accomplished writer in her own right, and I highly encourage you to take a look at her blog www.jenleheny.com, as well as all the other great blogs listed.

Turning Over a New Leaf

Everybody knows that a more energy and water efficient home is a good thing, but how many of us really have the time to figure out how to make it all happen?  Wouldn’t it be nice if you could just pick up the phone and call someone, have them come out and evaluate your home, give you a customized list of recommendations, and then sell and install all of the items you need to accomplish your goals?

Well, if you are in the U.S., now you can*.  For $99, New Leaf America will come to your home and do an efficiency audit.  When they are done, they will give you a customized report, as well as a DVD full of  helpful home efficiency tips.  They also give you a customized list of recommended products, including things such a bulbs, smart power strips and low-flow faucet adapters.  Best of all?  They provide free** installation for anything you purchase through them.

They also have a free online lighting energy calculator that helps you determine how much you will save from switching from incandescent to high efficiency bulbs.  Even if you’re not looking to switch your bulbs out yet, it’s fun to play with just to see what a difference a little wattage can do!

If you are in a country outside of the United States, and know of a similar service, please let us know in the comments section.  We are always interested in finding out what is available world wide.

*Currently New Leaf America has service available in California, Arizona and Utah, but they will continue to train new auditors and expand into additional states soon.  Contact them for more information.

** Sorry!  That was my error.  There is a charge for installation, although it is quite reasonable.  Pricing varies by project.

Friday Wrap-up – 01/22/10

After a long, dark, wet week here in Southern California, it’s nice to look at light filled spaces like these…

Image by Rinne Allen via Interior Design "Cindy's Salon"

Seen on the Interior Design Magazine “Cindy’s Salon” blog, this lovely little cafe looks so cheery with its blue and white color scheme, and open spaces.  But what really stands out are the marvelously refurbished chairs…

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Scrap Lights

Ever since I was a child I have had a fascination with corrugated cardboard.  I loved the wiggly line running through the middle, and marveled at how strong three sheets of brown paper could become because of it.  Now that I am focused on sustainable design, my affection for it has only increased.

Images via Graypants

So please join me as I ooh and aah over these fantastic recycled cardboard Scrap Lights by Graypants. Read the rest of this entry »

Haiti and the Future

As we all know, last week was a tragic one for the people of Haiti, doubtless the most devastating they have ever faced.  And we have looked on from afar with a sense of true sadness, and a driving need to do something, ANYTHING, to help.  The outpouring of donations and aid has been enormous.  But Haiti was desperately poor before this happened, and once the camera images  no longer show up on the evening news to pull our heartstrings, they will likely be that way again.  Unless we hand them lifelines to a different future.  I’d like to tell you about two of those lifelines and how you can help. Read the rest of this entry »

Weaving Wright Into Light

All images from Fire Farm

When the First Unitarian Society of Madison, WI asked Fire Farm to create light fixtures for the new addition to their historic Frank Lloyd Wright Meeting House, they had an unusual request.  Would the designers at Fire Farm please find a way to recycle the old copper roofing from the original building into the new fixtures?

Over 50 years old, and weathered to a soft green, the original roof tiles had character to spare.  Turn them over though, and the beautiful warmth shown out like a new copper penny. Read the rest of this entry »

The Cooper-Hewitt Asks – “Why Design Now?”

Cabbage Chair, prototype. Oki Sato, Photo: Masayuki Hayash

If you’re going to be in New York between May 14th, 2010 and January 9th, 2011, you must go to see “National Design Triennial – Why Design Now?” , at the Cooper-Hewitt Museum.

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A Dim(mable) Bulb

Image via Pharox

The Holy Grail of LED technology is the replacement for the standard 60 watt incandescent bulb.  It must be affordable, efficient, screw into a standard socket, and have that warm pleasing light we all grew up with.  Oh, and dimmable would be nice too!

Well, Pharox, a LED lighting company, has managed to get closer than anyone has before. Read the rest of this entry »

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