Friday, July 31, 2009

Fashion Friday: She-bible organic clothing

We're launching a new feature today--Fashion Fridays. The goal is the feature local Bay Area designers doing sustainable clothing, shoes, and jewelry. If you are designer who would like to be featured or have a favorite local talent you want to recommend, just email us: sfgreenlabs (at) gmail (dot) com.

I was going to write a post, but the she-ladies at She-bible said it pretty well themselves:
Deirdre O’Boyle and Stacy Rodgers are two gals who work hard and play hard so they design clothes for both. Best friends since their junior year of high school, She-bible emerged from years of laughing, loving, doodling and designing, not to mention a few fantastic mistakes and many lessons learned. It started in the kitchen with a hand-made screen printing press and has grown into a cut and sew label offering reliably sexy and comfy pieces perfect for kicking up dirt and kicking up your heels. All goods are sewn and printed in San Francisco, our beloved home.
The clothing is super cute and easy, with details that elevate the style well above your ordinary t-shirt. Much of the line is made of organic cotton, including all the items featured here. Available online from She-Bible and locally at several cool boutiques. They are also opening their own storefront soon. We'll keep you posted.

Sale alert: Prices are reasonable, but as of post time, the She-bible website is running a great sale on previous-season styles and colors.

Images from She-Bible.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Etsy etc.: Cat Bishop of Artsy

Cat Bishop runs Artsy, which is one of my favorite Etsy shops. She re-imagines toys and other vintage finds as charming sculptures. The sculptures are surprisingly affordable, and she also sells photographic prints of her work. I'm partial to the camera robots, but the whole shop is worth a look.
Images from Artsy

Monday, July 27, 2009

Dwight Way in Berkeley

Nothing much to say except that I LOVE this. It's on the corner of Dwight and MLK in Berkeley, and I used to live a few blocks from here. The entire building has all kinds of creative uses of found/scrounged materials, but this street sign fence is my favorite. If I ever find 300 street signs in a pile at the salvage yard, our dilapidated fence will be reborn as something like this. More photos and details in the Dwell article and slideshow. Don't miss the awnings made from car hatches.

Image from Dwell

Friday, July 24, 2009

One tall half-caf macchiato...t-shirt?

You heard that right. SINGTEX has created fabric from coffee, cleverly named S.Cafe. First there's organic cotton, hemp, then bamboo and recycled PET (from milk jugs). Then it gets strange: fabrics made of thistles, bark, paper made from elephant dung. I have an extensive list of oddball fabrics. Tricia and I are working on a concept that uses milk fibers (which are fantastically soft, by the way). Now this--fabric made of coffee. I have no idea what the resulting fabric is. It might be another cellulose material, like bamboo or rayon. The SINGTEX website says that coffee grounds are a substantial landfill problem. Around here, our coffee grounds end up in the compost or in the garden (they're great for roses), so I'm not sure how accurate the coffee = landfill claim is. I'm doing more research. I'll post a follow-up when I get more details.

I think the real genius application here is a line of clothing made of coffee AND milk fabrics. Latte-wear, anyone?

Images from flickr user EileenRose. Creative Commons license CC BY-ND 2.0

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Bitchin' Camaro

Joel Hester at the Weld Shop in Texas makes some nice welded steel furniture. That's not really notable, except he also makes these tables out of vintage car parts, and he'll scrounge the junkyards for just the right part for your custom ride. So if you want to relive your bitchin' Camaro days in your grown-up living room, Joel can hook you up.

That table used to be this!

Images from Joel Hester. Thanks to Re-Nest for the tip.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Propellor heads

Vancouver-based Propellor designs eco-friendly furniture and lighting. I went to their website to check out their dram chandelier (made of reclaimed vintage glass tumblers) and found that they are also making bold fixtures from Ecoresin, which is a subject of an upcoming post. Way too many cool things to post here. Go to their website for more.

Shown: Dram Chandelier (vintage tumblers), Sombrio and Pomegranate chandeliers (Ecoresin)

Images from Propellor. Thanks to Re-Nest for the tip.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

From rugs to riches: Union Eighteen

The designers at Union Eighteen piece together manufacturing scraps from the carpet industry to make works of art. Simple and modern, with a nod back to the rag rugs from my grandmother's era.

Image from Union Eighteen. Thanks to Re-Nest for the tip.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Sweet Carolina! Bike part chandeliers

Our own Process 376 rock star Oliver makes liberal use of salvaged bike parts in his modern lighting, but designer Carolina Fortouna takes the idea in a different direction, using the forms of Victorian crystal chandeliers as her inspiration. You can say it's a commentary on class and power, or you can just think it looks cool.

If you're lucky enough to be in Mexico City before August 1, you can see them in person at Upper Playground's Fifty24MX. If you're not going south of the border anytime soon, modart*NEWS has a very nice write-up and lots more photos, including this exploded view from the flyer.

Images from Upper Playground and modart*NEWS. Thanks to Haute Nature for the tip.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Inspiration: T.O.M.T. punch bowl ceiling fixture

It's as if Brooklyn design studio T.O.M.T. lifted one of Tricia's sketchbooks and started a company! Despite the seeming bi-coastal mind meld, all of T's sketchbooks are accounted for, and these are designer Rodney Allen Trice's own stunning creations. Trice re-imagines the things that accumulate in our basements and attics as lamps and tables and hats, all with a slightly surreal vibe and a sense of humor. My favorites are the lighting fixtures made from old fan parts.

Click over to the T.O.M.T. site to view the full portfolio.

Images from T.O.M.T.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Drawer shelves from Ubico Studio

design*sponge is on my must-read list for pretty things, and they just did a great summary of Ubico Studio's collection of furniture made from reclaimed wood. My favorites are the shelves made from old drawers. These are quirky pieces that look modern and fully designed despite the fact that are clearly pieced together from found drawers.

More details on design*sponge. or via the studio's website.

Images from Ubico Studio.

Don't put all your eggs in one footstool

The same way T loves felt, I'm a sucker for stuff made from old used-up other stuff. This egg-crate footstool has been around for a while, but it's still one of my favorites. Available in four colors from

Image from

Monday, July 6, 2009

Things to Do: The Crucible's Fire Arts Festival

The Crucible's Fire Arts Festival returns for its 9th year in a new, larger Oakland location. This is one of my favorite events. You won't see so much crazy fire-breathing art in one location until next year's festival. There are sculptures and flame-thowers, musicians and fire performers.

The festival runs next Wed-Sat (July 15-18), with tickets from $35. If you want access on the cheap, consider volunteering. It takes a lot of volunteers to make this event happen, and the staff at the Crucible are always happy to have help. I'll be working in the Firelight Gallery Wednesday and Thursday night, so stop by and say "hi!"

UPDATE: BART is offering discount tickets ($5 off). Go to for the details.

Image from the Crucible (Omega Recoil, photo by Jason Chinn)

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Etsy-licious: Pull up a chair

The seasoned pros (ha ha) at RecycleMoore have come up with a brilliant idea. They create salt & pepper shakers from damaged and dated chair parts. The results are lovely, modern, and affordable.

Images from RecycleMoore