Throw & Grow Confetti

Niko Niko Throw and Grow ConfettiParties, especially surprise parties, aren’t complete without confetti as they make everything look really festive. They’re definitely cute addons, but they’re not exactly the most eco-friendly items–just imagine all that glitter and paper that you won’t be able to use again, unless you’re the sort who’s really careful about sweeping them up and getting them clean again!

For your next party, you might want to check out a different type of confetti. Niko Niko is offering the Throw and Grow Confetti. The confetti is flower-shaped, handmade, and biodegradable. Best of all, each piece is filled with flower seeds, so after using the confetti, you can toss them in your garden and grow wildflowers.

The confetti giftbox contains 50 confetti and costs €11,95, shipping included.

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Support Thoughtful Threadz

Thoughtful Threadz, the brainchild of Nicole Lynn Jones, is expanding its debut collection with the InnovaTees line, which will feature more categories and the works of more artists. The brand prides itself on offering “causal clothing”, which means that it

…would have a positive impact on society, encourage intelligent discourse, promote open-mindedness, allow for different perspectives and ideas to be expressed, celebrate the human spirit, and inspire greatness.

The shirts send out positive messages–literally–and are American-made. They’re also printed through an eco-friendly process, and the designs use water-based inks.

You have just over three weeks to help out, so get yourself over to Thoughtful Threadz’ Kickstarter page! You can donate a minimum of $1.

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Support verrrde, an eco-friendly affordable clothing boutique project.

Spotted on Indiegogo: a fundraising project for Michelline Fedele, the woman behind verrrde, is looking to establish a clothing story that carries eco-friendly, but affordable clothing, and she needs some extra help to ensure that every item is indeed eco-friendly and costs under $100. She says on verrrde’s Indiegogo campaign page:

With your generous contributions, we will have enough to buy our merchandise (with a focus on dresses, tops, and accessories) for the first quarter Spring 2014.

I have done a lot of research finding wholesalers who offer clothing using renewable resources, recycled materials, and who are also committed to making the planet a better place to live. All items sold will be under $100, making eco-friendly clothing more accessible to the everyday woman. I have been in the retail business for over 7 years and I am a master at being thrifty and fashionable.

This definitely sounds like a great idea. We could all do with stylish eco-friendly clothes that won’t break the bank, and we need more people and stores that carry them.

There are only six days left to go for this campaign, so go on and lend your support! As of this writing, she’s already raised $3,031, exceeding her $3,000 goal, but a little extra help wouldn’t hurt!

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Organic rice by Malasimbu Agricultural Cooperative

Malasimbu Agricultural Cooperative, organic unpolished riceI really like how some things are changing here in the Philippines. Last year, more cities have implemented a ban on plastic bags, charging P2 for every plastic bag, switching to paper bags, and encouraging people to bring reusable bags. It took some time to get used to, but more people are bringing reusable bags now, from what I’ve observed.

I’ve also noticed some people taking more interest in organic food, and that would definitely be great for the country’s agriculture industry. More local dairy farms are coming out with products like yogurt, cheese, and ice cream, all locally produced. Brown rice is also becoming more common, though I’d love to see more restaurants offering that option and making sure they get the rice from Philippine farmers.

I got a kilo of rice (P50 or $1.22) a while ago from a place near the yoga studio I go to. The rice was produced by the Dinalupihan, Bataan-based Malasimbu Agricultural Cooperative. I wish I could find more information about them, but all I’m getting is details from 2009. I hope the cooperative continues to thrive, because such success will encourage more farmers to go organic and hopefully increase the popularity of organic rice in the Philippines.

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Goats to mow the lawn at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport

A cute goatOkay, so the happy, smiling goat in this picture will not be among those who will be working at O’Hare. But I’ll take any excuse to post this picture.

Anyway, O’Hare Airport is taking on some unique employees: a herd of 25 goats and a goat herder who will keep the goats in line. The goats will take on landscaping duties, or tasks that are considered “sustainable vegetation management grazing services.” They were obtained from Butcher & the Burger, a Chicago restaurant, and will get to work on grazing in “hilly areas near creeks and streams and roadway right-of-ways.” They’ll stay in a trailer at night, and a fence will help keep them away from the airfield itself.

It sounds unusual at first–until you realize that this is one of O’Hare’s ways to become greener. Having the goats around will save quite a lot on landscaping costs, make fuel and equipment unnecessary, and eliminate the need for grass cutting. This step is definitely in line with O’Hare’s goal of becoming the most sustainable airport in the U.S.

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Allure Wool: A better alternative to dryer sheets

Allure Wool Dryer BallsDryer sheets are handy, useful little things, but nobody can pretend that they’re eco-friendly. For one thing, you can only use them once, plus they’re packed with chemicals. And let’s face it, drying clothes isn’t the greenest household activity either, but there are ways to dry your clothes in a greener manner.

Allure Wool came up with a better option: dryer balls. These dryer balls are handmade and made of natural merino wool. Even their coloring’s chemical-free. Best of all, you can use them numerous times, and you’re going to want to do that, because they help dry clothes faster,  make clothes softer, and prevent static cling. They’re also good for people who have allergies; I’m pretty sensitive to the sharp scents of fabric softeners, so these dryer balls would be great to have.

You can check out their website for more information or visit Allure Wool’s Facebook page.

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The current state of eco-friendly travel in the US

The whole eco-friendly craze is over…because more and more people have adopted it as an actual way of life rather than as an alternative. Travel is definitely one aspect that should grow increasingly greener. So how is eco-friendly travel doing in the US these days? A Federal Times article entitled “Green of the road: Airlines, hotels, cars more eco-friendly” reports that everything is a lot greener these days, from aircrafts to hotels to rental cars.

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The 100-day shirt

Mac Bishop, 100 day challenge
In April, a project called “Wool&Prince: The Better Button-Down. Guaranteed.” kicked off on Kickstarter. The project, the brainchild of Mac Bishop, promised “A wool shirt worn for 100 days straight. No washing. No dry cleaning. No wrinkles. No odor.” The campaign is supposed to end on May 22, but the money it has earned has gone far and beyond its initial goal; right now, it sits at more than $300,000. Bishop launched the 100-day challenge in which he wore the shirt for, well, 100 days; the challenge ended in February and he reported that “The shirt stood up to everything I threw at it—whether it was a five mile run or 72 straight hours of wear during Hurricane Sandy.”

That certainly sounds intriguing–imagine how awesomely convenient it would be if none of us had to wash, say, our jeans, office clothes, and even workout clothes and bras as frequently as we do now. We would save a bunch on laundry, not to mention water.

Read more about the shirt and the project at Wool&Prince.

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The Deer Watch Inn

We just love B&Bs here at Green Unlimited, so every now and then, we’ll be posting about some eco-friendly B&Bs around the U.S. and around the world as well. If you know of a great B&B you think we should know about or you own an eco-friendly B&B, we would love it if you could write to us!

Rosemary Azalea room at Deer Watch InnIf you’re thinking about heading up to the Catskills in New York, consider staying at the Deer Watch Inn. The bed and breakfast is located in Greene County (appropriate) and the structure was a cottage in the 18th century, eventually becoming a boarding house and then a private residence.

The inn makes sure to provide guests with a comfortable, safe haven and keeps the environment in mind by using energy-efficient lights and appliances as well as solar panels. Rain barrels and clotheslines are also used to make its operations greener, and the inn has made the switch to non-toxic cleaning supplies. In addition, the rooms are all non-smoking and food includes organically grown produce and herbs from the organic garden within the property.

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Good green things

Vasari bag by Jil Sander

  • The Vasari bag by Jil Sander looks like a brown paper bag and is made from 100-percent coated paper. It could be an eco-friendly alternative to the usual brown bags but would you really be able to stash food in a $290 bag?
  • If you buy a FEED diaper bag, you’re helping to make sure that one mother and one child get a one-year supply of micronutrient powder through the United Nations World Food Programme.
  • Here are some good tips for cat owners who are looking for eco-friendly cat litter.
  • In Jajpur District in Orissa, India, people are clamoring for eco-friendly Ganesh figures.
  • Whole Foods is now offering eco-friendly gift cards.
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