Is nude the new standard of beauty? First Alicia Silverstone went nude for PETA, and now a new line of skincare appropriately named Nude is nestled among the Crème de la Mer on the beauty counter. But what makes “Nude” less stuffy and more “G”? I did a little digging to find out.
First off, the driving force behind the Nude skincare concept is “If you wouldn’t consider eating it, why put it on your skin? To that end, their products are all formulated without parabens, sulphates and all those other things you can’t pronounce and shouldn’t have to.
And if you’re like a lot of women who worry about protecting our planet and combating wrinkles, Nude tackles both. According to their website, their age-defying products contain peptides, phytoactives, bioactives and various biocompatible elements. What exactly does this mean? It means they use high performance natural ingredients that work with your skin’s existing biology.
Every day I happily come across another designer who’s creating super cool clothes, shoes and accessories that are both highly desirable and kind to the environment. Yes, it seems just about every fashionable piece out there is either being made ethically or has an ethical equivalent from faux fur coats to sky high stilettos, from the perfect pair of denim to a funky printed tee.
So, with that formula in mind, if you’re scouting for a gorgeous floaty dress, or a sassy minidress, look no further than California-based designer and manufacturer, Egoganik. As their website states, Ecoganik “focuses on the contemporary customer who wants to look young, hip and together, yet still eco-conscious.”
So stand-alone stylish is their line that Ecoganik was one of just a handful of designers chosen to show (alongside so-called “regular” labels) at LA’s Fashion Week this year proving that green clothing doesn’t need a separate and that great designs are great designs no matter what their origin.
Here’s a prefab that caught my eye: a modern home made of one of the planet’s most sustainable materials – bamboo. Not surprisingly, it’s another innovative concept from Montreal-based Gau Designs.
It’s only a concept – but after looking at these photos, I’m ready to sign on the dotted line and move in. Sure they had me at “sustainable”, but the building’s design takes comfort and functionality to another level. Two levels, to be exact. From the green roof to the spacious rooms, which are lined with textured bamboo along the walls and floors and interrupted only by large picture windows (view sold separately, I imagine).
Pack your bags, Mei Sheng, you’re going to China. Mei Sheng, a four-year-old panda, born and raised at the San Diego Zoo, is moving to China to take part in China’s breeding program. Mei Sheng will be staying at the Wolong Nature Reserve for Giant Pandas. A loan agreement exists between the U.S. and China which states that all foreign born pandas return to China when they mature.
For Ron Swaisgood of the S.D.Z.’s Giant Panda Conservation, the departure of Mei Sheng was bittersweet. Swaisgood stated, “Mei Sheng will be missed…but his role in the conservation of his species involves a move to China.”
Swaisgood also elaborated to the San Diego Union-Tribune on how crucially endangered the pandas are: “As a critically endangered species, it is vital that Mei Sheng is in a place where he will be around other pandas, and the Wolong Reservation is a great home.”
Pandas are critically endangered. Only 1,600 are thought to survive in the wild and a mere 180 live in captivity. Mei Sheng is the second of two pandas born in the U.S. to be brought back to China. The first was Hua Mei, also born at the San Diego Zoo, who has since then given birth to three panda cubs at the Wolong Reservation.
There are now between 150 to 250 Iberian Lynx in the world.
Haven’t heard of the Iberian Lynx? That’s because it’s a rare cat native to Spain and Portugal. The population is down from about 400 in the year 2000, but they could be on the climb again. Even better news for conservationists trying to save the lynx is that a new population found in central Spain is genetically distinct from the others, meaning inbreeding can be limited to the surviving population.
Fortunately, The Iberian Lynx are no longer legally hunted and caution has been taken to protect their habitat. But like a lot of other animals, they had become endangered due to habitat degradation or by being hit by cars near their stomping grounds. Another large reason is because their main source of prey — the rabbit — has been decimated in Spain due to disease.
Months ago I found the charming fashionlabel ENAMORE from Great Britain. Delicate lingerie, nostalgic dresses and more….and green!
Jona I am guessing your really into lingerie, but what would you say your personal style reflects?
Jennifer: I wear a mixture of clothing I make for myself, pieces I have bought from other eco designers [like Amoosi and Goodone] and also a lot of pieces [mixture of vintage and second hand] that I buy in Charity shops, vintage markets and from ebay. During the week I am quite casual as I work from home, but when I go out or to events, I like to look like a lady, usually in some peep toe heels and a lovely vintage inspired dress.
When we think of modern green architecture, its normal for most of us urban monkies to dream up a very cleanly designed glass box. We think of the glass as a way to connect with the environment around us, while maintaining that safe distance, which city living grinds into us. The Chen House embraces the modern box, but flatly rejected the idea of barriers. The Firm Architects C-Laboratory, designed the Chen House to embrace the country side, building it on an old Japanese cherry-farm in North-Taiwan.
By Catherine Slessor The Architectural Review: Conceived as a meditation on the decline of Finnish rural life, the project – punningly entitled Land(e)scape – involved hoisting a trio of redundant timber barns on to spindly stilts to make them look as though they were walking out of the countryside and migreating to the city. In a final nihilistic flourish, the structures were set on fire and transformed into blazing memorials to the loss of a pastoral idyll.
Casagrande is now in partnership with Taiwanese architect Frank Chen, and together they recently completed a house in the north of Taiwan, near the Datun Mountains. Set on farmland next to a river and surrounded by tree-covered hills, the remote, rural site has echoes of the walking barns project. Yet for all its bucolic charm, the environment can be harsh, with intense heat in summer and frequent typhoon winds, componded by periodic flooding from the river and seismic activity.
What do you get when you combine the ever popular shipping containers with old airplane fuselages? A Mobile Dwelling Unit, of course. The brainchild of LOT-EK, this brilliant architectural design has been on the market since 2002, and is the model from which other module-based designs are now being based. Led by Ada Tolla and Guiseppe Lignano, LOT-EK’s mission is to blur any boundaries between art, architecture, information and entertainment. Their groundbreaking approach to design and architecture is redefining the way we as a populace interact with industry and technology.
But there is a glaring problem with this design. It’s just plain ugly. Which is too bad, because MDU is the same firm who designed the Puma City mobile store made from multiple containers and that one is pretty cool. Well, except for the use of the orange again. A colorist should really talk with these guys. They use orange in hazard area’s for a reason, its a bit disturbing.
It’s 4:30 in the morning and I just finished watching a version of the movie 1984 (The Love of Big Brother) by director Michael Radford, which I had never seen. The film, which is based on George Orwells novel 1984, came out ironically enough, in … 1984. I was only 16 at the time, and I somehow missed it. I guess the big brains here in Hollywood, thought this was a nice bit of marketing genius and a scary look backwards at what could have been, if the world had actually gone Red. We would all be living in a world which required us to chant things like “We love big brother” and “Drill Baby Drill”. The population would have also freely given up their personal rights to keep themselves safe from the Axis of Evil in East Asia. And of course we would trust completely in our leader the decider! Good thing that never happened.
I am only bringing this up because for years I have owned both the DVD of the film 1984 and a CD by the Eurythmics called 1984. The CD’s 9 songs are based on the book and have been hardwired in my mind as sort of a personal soundtrack, along with songs by the Clash of course. In all this time, I had no clue why the music was never part of the film. The music in the film is this dull grey sounding stuff which it turns out the director wanted and the financiers didn’t. The company funding the movie turned out to be the Virgin Group and I guess they got their way for the theater release and the director got his way for the DVD. So for all these years, I had no idea a Eurythmics version of the film even existed. Kind of strange, since in the book, the main theme is about not knowing what existed or what will be. The government had total control of all memories, by constantly altering the history of what was. I have always thought that was spooky and a little too close to reality, because who is to say we really know what happened at any given time. Our only knowledge is what we are told. For the most part, we have very little first hand knowledge of any major events in the world that happen during our lives.