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Five Things We're Loving Now IN: Sustainable Living

Five Things We're Loving Now IN: Sustainable Living

Five Things We're Loving Now // Sustainable Living 

  • Soma Water Filter: Not only is this filter beautifully designed with BPA plastic and eco-friendly bamboo, but its mission is to end the global water crisis, while reducing global impact! Yes, you heard right! A portion of every filter is donated to charity:water, a campaign that helps bring clean water to under developed countries worldwide. It also uses post consumer waste packaing and recycled materials plus has a fully transparent supply chain which maintains labor practices, animal welfare and anti-discrimination policies. Did we also mention they offset emissions with conversation based forestry. Yeah, we love them. And we think you will too. Shop the pitcher here and get to drinkin' clean water with a conscious! 
  • DIY / Vertical Garden Wall: With apartments getting smaller and smaller (hey, New Yorkers!), it’s no surprise we are all trying to bring a little green space indoors. Not only does it give your house an airy feeling with a pop of color, but it allows you to grow your own garden = win/win! There are several ways you can do this yourself, one example we love is here, created with tin buckets from Ikea, it's an affordable and easy way for us apartment dwellers to grow and love our own veggies! 
  • Fressko: Their philosophy is simple, "Be Kind To Mother Earth, To Others & To Yourself." That doesn't seem so hard, right?! Savor your tea, coffee or fruit water with their on the go with their reusable glass container, which is then outlined by a 100% BPA and chemical free plastic shell. Making it healthy for your body and good for the planet. 
  • Prey // 1 Hotel South Beach: This one's for our Miami peeps! 1 Hotel is known for it's sustainable design and decor, but now they have an amazing sustainable sushi pop-up which offers invasive fish on the menu (taking it out of our rivers and onto our plates for the sake of the environment)! Not to mention, it has a gorgeous menu of veg-only options for those of us who prefer not to eat something that had a Mama. Pop Up is open until June 25th. 
  • PearlBar Charcoal Toothbrush: Plastic toothbrushes are so last year! They cause major environmental damage, as we know, plastic is forever.  With this bamboo toothbrush you are reducing your environmental impact and the charcoal infused bristles will help keep bacteria at bay between brushes. Need we say more? 

Inspiring Your Chi: Why Your Jewelry Tells A Story

// MEET THE MAKER //
Founder of Inspiring Your Chi:
WHY your jewelry tells a STORY
By: Lia Terni

Have You Thought About It?

Years ago, I was struck by the thought of where everything we have surrounding us in our lives, actually comes from.

At the time, I was working as a fashion consultant for a company in Spain. In supporting other jewelry brands in development of their collections, I realized there was little to no regards on the process with all focus being on the end product. No one seemed concerned in the details of who or what may be affected along the way during production. 

What I began to notice was startling. Massive production goals, unhealthy work spaces, unsustainable material sources, and many stories of exploitation all for the sake of obtaining precious materials, known as THE NEW MODERN LUXURY.

Have you ever stopped and questioned what LUXURY is to you?

Cultured, traveled, educated, conscious, active, healthy people like most of us reading this article. People concerned with GMO food, pesticides, Global Warming. You know, the ones that read labels, and wear stylish yoga pants, made by hand by someone earning less than twenty cents an hour, using the most synthetic material, colored with toxic synthetic dyes. (The textile dyeing and finishing industry is one of the most chemically intensive industries on earth, and the number one polluter of clean water after agriculture). 

To some extent, we are all exposed to this.  

The purpose of this article is not to make us feel guilty, but to make us THINK more about everything that we produce and consume.

In my personal experience as a jewelry designer, I got to a point where creating “beauty” was not enough anymore, unless I had beautiful stories to tell about the creation as well. After all, the jewelry business can and should be protective of the environment and the people that it touches (both creator and end user).

I wanted to ensure small scale miners and their communities were paid fair wages, with fair labor practices (absolutely no child labor), and that they were trained in more sustainable extraction methods with no chemicals added to the water used. (Fun fact: In a multi million dollar industry, small scale miners are 30 million people living with less than 1 dollar a day and making 15% of the world gold extraction in terrible working conditions). I no longer wanted to be a part of this. 

It is our responsibility as jewelry makers, to protect and preserve the beautiful stories. 

I moved to the U.S. a little over a year ago, and as a designer I’m a social observer. It’s impressive to me, this Whole Foods phenomenon. Inside the crisp stores of this organic grocer and health supplement purveyor, is one of the few places that I’ve witnessed people reading labels and asking where products come from, and how they are produced. 

It is perplexing to me that this same inquisitive and informed population usually does not expand that behavior when the subject is related to clothes, shoes, bags or jewelry.

The only way to change this reality is if WE, as consumers, ask for fully transparent and traceable supply chains for what we consume. It is fully in our hands. 

It is time we redefine the meaning of TRUE LUXURY and bring it back to it's purest form. It should always tell a beautiful story, from beginning to end. 

 

 

9 Mindfulness Rituals to Better Your Day

“Smile, breathe and go slowly.” – Thich Nhat Hanh, Zen Buddhist monk

So many of us get caught up in the day to day movement of distraction, stress and to-do lists, that it becomes incredibly easy to live a life of repetitious monotony versus mindful intention. When you take a moment to step outside all of the chatter and the noise, and become mindful to the present moment, life begins to change and unfold in ways you never thought possible. 

This is not easy by any means, but it is one, that with practice, becomes the focal point of your life from which you base decisions on, take action and direct your energy towards. It is mindful, intentional living, and like anything the more you practice it, the easier it is to cultivate. Below are some very easy but useful tips by Leo Babauta, of Zen Habits, on some very basic mindfulness rituals you can put into practice today & start enjoying the present now. 

Mindfulness Rituals

POST WRITTEN BY LEO BABAUTA

Ritual isn’t about doing a routine mindlessly. It’s a way of building something good into your life, so that you don’t forget what’s important. Done mindfully, a ritual can remind you to be conscious. Done mindlessly, a ritual is meaningless.

Here are a few of my favorites:

  1. Sit in the morning. When you wake up, in the quiet of the morning, perhaps as your coffee is brewing, get a small cushion and sit on the floor. I will often use this opportunity to stretch, as I am very inflexible. I feel every muscle in my body, and it is like I am slowly awakening to the day. I’ll also just sit, and focus on my breathing going in and out. I’m an absolute beginner when it comes to meditation, but this always starts my day right.
  2. Brush your teeth. I assume we all brush our teeth, but often we do it while thinking of other things. Try fully concentrating on the action of brushing, on each stroke of each tooth, going from one side of the mouth to the other. You end up doing a better job, and it helps you realize how much we do on autopilot.
  3. Eat mindfully. Turn off the TV, put away the computer and mobile devices, even put away the book or newspaper. If you eat with any of these things (most people do), eating without them will seem boring. And yet, unless you do this, you are not truly appreciating your food. I like eating mindfully, paying attention to each bite. It makes the food taste better, and I eat slowly and with gratefulness.
  4. Wash your bowl. When you’re done eating, wash your dish immediately. Do it while paying full attention to your washing, to the water and suds.
  5. Drink tea. There’s something ancient about the tea ceremony — and when you drink tea as a mindfulness ritual, you’re connecting with millions of others who have done so over the centuries. Make your own tea ceremony — prepare the tea carefully and mindfully, pour it slowly, sip it with thoughtfulness. See if you can set aside one time each day to do this, and it will transform your day.
  6. Walk slowly. I like to take breaks from work, and go outside for a little walk. Walk slowly, each step a practice in awareness. Pay attention to your breathing, to everything around you, to the sounds and light and texture of objects.
  7. Read in silence. Find a quiet time (mornings or evenings are great for me), and a quiet spot, and read a good novel. Have no television or computers on nearby, and just immerse yourself in the world of the novel. It might seem contradictory to let your mind move from the present into the time of the novel, but it’s a great practice in focus. Also, I love a good novel more than almost anything else.
  8. Look at someone gratefully. Each day, find someone you care about. Instead of just seeing what you always see, really look at the person. Try not to do it creepily. See this person for the miracle that she is, and be grateful for her existence. If you’re feeling generous, tell that person how thankful you are for her.
  9. Work with focus. Start your workday by choosing one task that will make a big difference in your work, and clearing everything else away. Just do that one task, and don’t switch to other tasks. Single-tasking is a great way to find focus. 

These rituals aren’t the only time you should be mindful, but they’re great reminders. Today, try a few of them to fully live and fully appreciate this wonderful day.

 

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