Archive for August, 2006

Mosaic Recycled Backsplash

August 31st, 2006


I love my new kitchen backsplash.

When I was in Orlando, Florida a few weeks ago taping remote shows for my weekly radio show Simply Green with Danny Seo on Sirius Satellite Radio, I had the President of Oceanside Glass Tile on the show to talk how they source old glass and recycle it into new tile.  One surprising fact: the darker the tile, the more recycled content it had.  (I secretly wanted the white tile, but that had the lowest amount, so I went for the pale blue color instead).

I love the blue color and the clean lines of the hexagon tiles. I was surprised how QUICKLY it was installed; one minute I’m watching the installers prep the grout.   I check my email, make a phone call and sign for a few packages and suddenly it’s up!

Oh one more thing: see the little metal squirrel tucked away on the shelf?  That’s actually a bottle opener made from 100% recycled aluminum from Azcast designs out in California.     You use the tail top pop open bottles of pop!

Stylish Recycling Bins

August 30th, 2006


On photo shoots, even if we’re stuck in a remote area trying to capture a festive outdoor dinner party under the stars, I need everyone to recycle their cans and bottles. Given my insistence on this, I usually end up not only producing the photo shoots, but also hauling cans and bottles back home with me at the end of each day.   

It’s hard to find a stylish recycling basket and I spied this one in a very modern shop in Lambertville, NJ.   This store sold ultra-modern furniture, lighting and accessories (not my taste), but here in the corner—in the clearance section—was this metal basket with handle for a mere $10.    This $10 find has been the perfect recycling basket!

The basket is durable, light-weight and perfect for toting around reyclables.    If it becomes sticky from all those spilled sodas or Vitamin Waters, it can just be hosed down.  And it looks so nice just sitting on the porch or whatever location we’re at shooting.   Why isn’t anyone selling durable, good-looking recycling bins for the home?   

How have you figured out how to stylishly and neatly store your recyclables until Recycling Day?

Agate Coasters & Trivet

August 29th, 2006


At my local flea market, there are always gemstone dealers selling these agate geode slices.   Not being a gemstone or rock collector, I always walked on by and never gave them much thought.

This past weekend, I did stop by and marveled how intricate, beautiful and colorful these pieces are.  This large agate piece above, for example, is now resting comfortably on my kitchen countertop as a trivet.   I asked the dealer how much heat it can handle and he said 1200 degrees.   I think it’s safe to say even the hottest Le Crueset skillet won’t harm it.


The smaller agate slices (at a whopping $1.75 a piece!  Bargain!) I thought would work well as coasters.   They are so organic and whisper thin and for a buck seventy five, how can you beat that.  In the holiday season, I’ve been thinking of running a piece of string and hanging them in the windows or on the tree.  How would you use them?

Photo Shoot!

August 28th, 2006

Why, Hello there!


I spent the last 3 days producing a photo shoot for Country Home magazine’s April 2007 issue.  ( Isn’t it crazy how far ahead we shoot magazines?)

From dawn to sunset, we shot images at a sprawling organic lavender farm in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.    From the perfectly manicured mounds of organic lavender—which are harvested and made into soaps, hydrosol sprays, candles and much more—to the lovely farm animals that roamed the farm including horses, llamas, donkeys, chickens and even a new pair of sibling kittens slowly adjusting to their new home.    In a nutshell, it was an idyllic piece of heaven.

This little guy up top was rather curious to me.   As we ran around the farm shooting, he would stand at the edge of the fence and just watch.    Watching……long.

Check out the entire entry of our day in the lavender countryside on  I’ll post photos of the shoot—including tons of funny behind the scenes stuff—on  I’ll let you all know when it’s up!

Quick! Simple! Green! Cheap!

August 27th, 2006


In the September 5th issue of Quick and Simple magazine (strangely enough, it’s out NOW on newsstands, but not on newsstands on September 5th…), I did a feature story about shopping at an outlet mall in upstate New York.

Can you be green and cheap at the same time?  Well, I would never admit this to the editors of Q&S, but I honestly didn’t think I’d find a thing at Woodbury Commons in upstate NY.    But to my surprise, some of the best eco finds were up there and DIRT CHEAP.

Clean burning beeswax candles were on clearance at the Crate and Barrel outlet shop.   A Le Crueset cast iron skillet was 25% off retail.   Even a recycled glass tea light lantern could be had for $5.99 at Villeroy and Boch.

Much more tips in the issue…so either pick it up or, er, read the whole article while waiting in line at the supermarket check-out line!