Uncommon Goods is Looking for Uncommon Designs

Uncommon Goods is one of my favorite online shops – they sell everything from recycled tile mirrors to organic scarfs to beautifully crafted recycled wine bottle glasses.  Their tagline, “find anything but ordinary” is a perfect way to encompass the offerings.  I am on their weekly mailing – which is how I stumbled upon the You Goods contest.

You Goods is a contest that seeks new product designers with vision but without tools or money to fully pursue their goals.  Uncommon Goods wants to hear about these ideas and will select one lucky designer to have their product made and sold on the website.  The winner also gets $500 and an all expense paid trip to NYC to meet with the team to discuss their product idea (trip courtesy of Jet Blue)

For contest details & rules, check out the You Goods page on the website.

Posted by: Ashley / follow me on Twitter

Spotlight on Creativity: Saturday Etsy Series

My etsy pick this week is Shelley Schott’s Paisley Mill.  Shelley, a mom of 2 whose newest addition came just 3 weeks ago, makes beautiful bright funky jewelry, ornaments and WallFlowers – custom-made jewelry displays/organizers.  Shelley’s profile says “If I have a style, I guess you could say it’s earthy and organic. I tend to look to nature for inspiration. I love making my art outdoors, in my big ‘ol garden, under a huge pine tree.”

Shelley  started making jewelry for her friends and family when she was 10 and it soon turned into much more than a hobby, before she was 20 she was selling her pieces to local shops and exhibiting in local art shows.  She is currently doing this full time and creates her pieces in any spare time she can find when she is not taking care of her two little ones.   She hopes to one day own her own shop where she can sell her own creations as well as offering some other artists pieces.  For now, etsy is a great way to get a loyal customer base. Shelley says “I love Etsy because of the people I get to talk with. I have had so many wonderful people that have bought my stuff and I just love the thought of making something that is being used or worn in random places all over the world. I got so excited when I got my first international order!”

I just received two pairs of her earrings(couldn’t pass up the special pricing), the Peacock and the Mod Pods and LOOOOVE them.  They are painted wooden shapes (very light-weight)with great colorful paper designs layered on top and then protected with a glaze.  The craftsmanship is top notch and her customer service is superb.  Next on my “I want this” list is one of her WallFlowers – you can pick from the size of the frame, the color, the “screen” material, the color nails, hooks – and if that isn’t enough options – she is open to any and all suggestions on what would make it perfect for you!  I am thinking this light blue turquoise one in size LARGE would be just perfect – love the polka dotted nails.

Be sure to stop by her store on Mondays when she lists that week’s Mill Special – one of her items at a discounted rate. You can also follow her on her new blog.

Posted by: Becca / follow my etsy shop on Twitter

Shop Inhabitat.com

Inhabitat, one of my favorite green design blogs, has officially launched its online shop.   With a great collection of eco-friendly goods, the store has something for everyone.  Choose from categories like clothing, kids, home, furniture, gadgets and accessories to find green and safe products for your whole family.

As I browsed the shop, I found myself coveting one item in particular.  I am a huge fan of organic cotton, especially in sheets and bedding.  There is nothing better than soft, natural materials to rest your head on every night and I’ll be the first to admit that I have about three sets.  My duvet cover, however cute, is not organic which is why when I saw the “Cove Duvet Cover” in the Home/Bedroom section of Inhabitat.com, I started drooling. 


The beautiful cream, green and gray blue design is printed and sewn domestically and it is made from 320-thread count organic cotton.  It also comes in a darker print and in both Queen and King sizes.  Retail: $330

Check out that and more at Inhabitat.com’s new online store.

Posted by: Ashley / follow me on Twitter

Green Building Perspectives: ‘g’ Green Design Center

Continuing once again with our Green Building Perspective series, this week Nicole Goldman, owner and founder of the ‘g’ Green Design Center was kind enough to provide us with some answers on their role in the project and green design.

‘g’ Green Design Center is showroom and retail shop dedicated to providing accessible, affordable and stylish green building materials, house wares, fixtures and finishes to help customers make their homes and businesses more healthy, energy-efficient and eco-friendly. ‘g’ Green Design Center’s franchise company serves homeowners, designers, architects, and building professionals, as well as businesses, organizations, and institutions with a full array of green materials and services.

What do you think of the Green Life Smart Life Project to date?
Green Life Smart Life is a fascinating project helping to bring visibility to green building which is what our company, ‘g’ Green Design Center is all about, so we are very pleased to play a part.

What interested ‘g’ Green Design Center about participating the project?
The project gives ‘g’ another opportunity to showcase our products. Placing them in a home that is slated for LEED certification is the best possible way to show off their aesthetic and functional attributes. For example, having Marmoleum in the mudroom with our FSC-certified cabinetry enhances the natural beauty of both products, while demonstrating their durability and practicality.

Where does ‘g’ Green Design Center see green building and design going in the next 5 years?
Green building will become the standard in the next 5 years. It will no longer be the fringe interest of a select few, but rather the norm for how buildings should be constructed – with eco-friendly materials, in an energy-efficient manner, and with the healthiest materials in our homes and offices, to create a better environment indoors and out.

What challenges do you see ‘g’ facing in the evolution of green building and design?
Our challenges are keeping our niche market and growing that in the face of mass market growth. We believe ‘g’ will continue provide more in depth knowledge and customer service, as well as be able to stand behind our products as truly green – no green washing here. This will help us retain and grow our core customer base.

What type of resources does ‘g’ provide to someone building a new home?
‘g’ provides everything from insulation and ventilation of the building shell to all the interior finishes from counters to cabinets, lighting, paints, flooring and more. We also have a wonderful selection of housewares from bamboo bowls to kitchen accessories, sponges, cleaners and cookware. We are always expanding our product base which make this an exciting time to be part of the growth in green building

Anything else you would like to add about the green building and design market or the Green Life Smart Life project?
As I said, its an exciting time for the growth of the green building industry; one of the fews bright spots in the economy. At ‘g’ we are looking forward to being a key player in this growth through the development of our franchise organization. We are looking forward to opening centers and bringing accessibility of these materials and products to an audience across the country.