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The Green Audacity of Lifestyle Minimalism

Minimalist

Photo by Internet Power Lunch.

I’ve been thinking a lot about minimalism lately for some reason.  We all have an idea of what "minimalism" is, but I wanted to dig a little deeper.  According to Wikipedia, minimalism describes a movement where "work is stripped down to its most fundamental features … it is rooted in the reductive aspects of Modernism, and is often interpreted as a reaction against abstract impressionism and a bridge to Postmodern art practices."  Strip it down to the fundamentals. 

I like the concept of stripping stuff down to the fundamentals.  You can strip down anything and literally find that "less is more."  Try it.  I honestly believe that with the right amount of less, less can be more.  Why is that?  Well, quite simply because less equals the fundamentals and enjoying the fundamentals — with no excess — feels good.  Let me explain my thoughts on the lifestyle of minimalism. 

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Emeco, a Classic in Eco Furniture Design

Emeco Emeco Emeco

Emeco* designs are simple, elegant, timeless, and award-winning, but did you know that their furniture is also super green?  Emeco furniture is hand-made from 80% recycled aluminum — half of which is post-consumer (soft drink cans) and the other half is post-industrial (manufacturing scrap).  Because of this, their furniture can contribute to LEED points in your green project (MR 4.2/5.1). 

The second thing that makes Emeco’s furniture so green is that their pieces are made to last for at least 150 years!  In this day of disposable furniture that lasts for maybe a decade, 150 years is an impressive lifespan.  Emeco’s designs come in two standard finishes, brushed and polished. 

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Bear Creek – Recycled Glass, Sinks and Lighting

Sinkclassictest Sink Splash

There are not a lot of choices out there for eco-lighting or eco-sinks, but Bear Creek Glass is one nice option.  Bear Creek Glass is an artisan company that creates beautiful, artful glass sinks and lighting.  Half of their products are made from 100% recycled glass and the others are made partially of recycled glass.  Styles range from traditional and antique to simple and modern. 

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Mod Green Pod Offers Burst of Hip Eco-Fabrics

Bfly Collection_2

Mod Green Pod offers a burst of modern fun to the eco-fabric market.  The company also produces wonderful wallpaper patterns.  Their fabrics are 100% organic fabric and the wallpaper is vinyl-free.  The fabric is hand silk-screened, which is an incredibly tedious and artful process.  You can view photos of the printing process at their site.  They currently offer 8 pattern choices in about 30 colors.  The signature prints are bold, colorful, and totally modern.

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ecoX recycled concrete surfaces

Ecox bathroom

Looking for a another green countertop material?  Here's ecoX, an extreme concrete product offered by Meld USA.  EcoX is made of a blend of 70% post-consumer and post-industrial recycled materials and cement.  The product has the beautiful look of terrazzo and the cool smoothness of concrete, according to Meld.  

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100 Percent, Another Great Product from 3form

100 Percent by 3form

100 Percent is a contertop product from 3form, which is made entirely of old milk and detergent bottles.  Pretty neat.  This means the product is made with 100% post-consumer waste, an impressive feat, even within the green product world.  100 Percent is 1" thick and available in 4 colors:   black with white specks, and white with orange, green, or gray specks (see below). 

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