Posts Tagged ‘eco’
Friday, August 16th, 2013
While organizing a kid’s bedroom or toy area may sound like child’s play, many parents become overwhelmed when trying to create a well-planned playroom that goes beyond fun to include buckets of functionality. But carving out a space that works hard while your little ones play needn’t be complicated — all it takes is a smart container system, a good game plan, and a splash of imagination. Here, I’ll share my foolproof “Five Cs” strategy for decorating any children’s room.
1. Color: Children’s interests change so quickly that dedicating an entire space to a single theme may have you soon redecorating. So rather than a theme (i.e., dinosaurs or princesses) dictating bedroom or playroom plans, allow a bright color scheme to guide your décor and then include hints of hobbies and heroes throughout. To keep your romper room from becoming a rainbow room, let your kids pick their favorite hue for 60 percent of the décor (such as slipcovers, wall paint, and rugs), utilize a neutral for 30 percent (on painted furniture items, for instance), and choose a bold accent color for the remaining 10 (try a spray painted light fixture or playful curtains).
2. Comfort: Include lots of soft surfaces for kids to land on (literally). Don’t be afraid to layer rugs, and tuck several pieces of kid-friendly furniture such as beanbag chairs and slip-covered armchairs into cozy nooks. Just be careful not to crowd the space with too much furniture — you want there to be plenty of room for free play.
3. Cubbies: To help corral the chaos of toys and trinkets, offer loads of cubbies and containers in which goods can be piled and put away. Maximize closet storage space by installing a wire shelving system and wall space by anchoring low bookcases to the wall, then outfit the shelves with canvas or plastic bins. Modular shelving systems also do double-duty as room dividers if your playroom serves a second purpose such as an office.
4. Categories: Make the most of all those cubbies by grouping items into categories like art supplies, music makers, puzzles, books, stuffed animals, and dress-up clothes. Be sure to label your containers with easy-to-understand words or pictures. Finally, organize your containers according to common denominators — perhaps there’s a “playhouse” corner that includes food, dolls, and a toy kitchen and another corner dedicated to quiet activities such as reading, snuggling with stuffed animals, and puzzles.
5. Creative Outlets: Give your kids a place to exercise their imaginations, such as a chalkboard wall or easel and a drawing table to which they can pull up stools for coloring and crafting. And find a place to display your petite Picassos’ creations. I like to make a gallery wall using glass-free frames topped with clothespins or a cable system outfitted with clips to showcase artwork on a rotating basis.
What big ideas do you have for your little ones’ spaces?
Chris Long has been a Home Depot store associate in the Chicago area since 2000. Chris also contributes on furniture topics to Home Depot’s Home Decorators.com website. His home-décor interests include providing home decor closet tips to adding decorative touches to home offices.
Saturday, August 10th, 2013
Human beings don’t typically live in the branches of trees along with birds and squirrels, but there are still ways to make your home earth- friendly. Organizing, decorating and cleaning a house while regarding the natural environment will keep the process more focused, will teach your family how to treat the earth well, and will improve the health of everyone who lives in your home.
Of course, if you are just now building a home or moving into one, it will be easier to incorporate some green ideas into the household. But, if you’ve lived in one place for years, don’t fret – it’s still simple to begin some green habits. Approach your decor with love for the planet in mind and everyone wins.
With furnishings for your home, you can either do one of two things: furnish with second-hand pieces or earth-friendly options.
- If you’re interested in second-hand furniture, hit up the local thrift stores or consignment shops and find whatever vintage pieces strike your fancy.
- New furniture is typically made out of what is called sustainable material. This means that the materials will not deplete any natural resources. These days, you can buy practically any piece of furniture in sustainable materials – sofas, tables, even mattresses for the bed. Large retailers such as Pottery Barn or Crate & Barrel have sustainable options.
Don’t buy a sustainable sofa unless you’re going to dress it with green pillows. Pillows stuffed with natural fibers, such as cotton and goose down, are preferable for the environment and ensure better air quality.
A great place to obtain earth-friendly decor is at flea markets, farmer’s markets and other places where local artisans display their craftsmanship. Try an original painting, or something made by a member of the community from wood or other natural materials. These are great opportunities to keep synthetic items out of the home environment.
Don’t forget the appliances when you go green. Low-flush toilets, kitchen appliances that consume less energy and CFL or LED lights are all good options. In general, appliances that have the Energy Star approval are efficient choices.
Stay tuned for part two of Garret’s post, when he tackles green cleaning and organization.
Garret Stembridge is a member of the Internet marketing team at Extra Space Storage, a leading provider of self storage facilities. Garret often writes about sustainable practices for the home and for businesses. The Self Storage Facility in Philadelphia has been retrofitted to reduce energy consumption.
Thursday, July 25th, 2013
We love our friends over at Movearoo and we got a real kick out of their latest post about 501 different unique ways to re-use a cardboard box. Here are our 10 favorites!
1) Create a cardboard lap desk for the car with a box, tape, some glue, and scissors. (Great for kids!)
2) Cut out alphabet shapes for spelling words around the house.
3) Create a fun Chinese parade dragon with a box, some paper, and other miscellaneous decorations.
4) Cut small squares from a box (decorate them if you’d like) to create cardboard drink coasters.
5) Use a large box (or multiple boxes cut open and taped together) to create a cardboard igloo for the backyard, for kids to sleep and play in.
6) Create a puppet theater complete with a stage and paper bags for puppets.
7) Small boxes can be filled with dry beans and taped closed, then decorated to make maracas
8) Decorate a single box to create a stuffed animal house for kids.
9) Even use a box or two as your own recycling bin for managing recyclables.
10) Use a propped-up box as a simple painting easel.
Check out the rest of the article here. What other uses do you like?
Monday, February 6th, 2012
It’s finally here! Due to popular demand, we have decided to release our amazing cubes in a new, super size! Now sporting an increase in all three dimensions, the SuperCube is here to store an even greater variety of items: extra-large stuffed animals, vinyl records, textbooks, purses, anything! As with all our products, they’re perfect for designers or lovers of elegance in simplicity. Mix and match them with our storage baskets and other accessories to make yourself a personalized and gorgeous shelving system. Take a look at some of these neat configurations, and send us some of your own creative flair!
Friday, January 20th, 2012
We know how difficult it is to keep a clean space with minimal effort. That’s why we’ve developed our newest product to fit that role and help you a bit in sweeping the proverbial mess under the rug! Because we all need that nice-looking box that we can throw all our stuff into and shut the lid. We are pleased to introduce to you our newest product: The Manhattan Storage Bench and Coffee Table!
This brand-new storage bench has a secure lid so a space remains clean no matter what mess you throw in! Use it as a footrest in front of your couch, or a footstool to reach high places. It’s also perfect to use for storage in your garage, entryway, kitchen, anywhere! And of course you can sit on it while whittling a wood sculpture or just tying your shoes.
Keeping things simple is one of our hallmarks! The assembly process is so simple, it doesn’t even require words. Just take a look at the photos below!
||Outside: Depth 15.0″ | Width 30.0″ | Height 15.6″
||Inside: Depth 10.8″ | Width 25.7″ | Height 14.8″
Tuesday, October 5th, 2010
Introducing the Charlotte Table Set! This table set has been one of the staples of Way Basics, so we’re very excited to offer the new design on this tried and true Way Basics gem. Each stool is a mini version of the table and features the cut-corner look, which helps to prevent some of those everyday bumps and bruises of the playroom. The slot design of the table and stools is very simple to assemble. Simply slide the base boards together and stick the top on. Each stool comfortably tucks under the table when not in use. Oh the beauty of modular designs!
Another staple of the Way Basics product line is our super simple assembly process. We’ve made our assembly process even easier by integrating dowels into the design. Simply peel back the protective covering on each adhesive strip, insert the dowels, and set the boards together.
Check out how we’ve used Wall Candy Decals on the White Charlotte Table Set! How fun is that!?
Playful, fun, creative, sturdy, and unique are just some of the words that have been used to describe the Charlotte Table Set. We love the Charlotte and know that you will too!
Tuesday, September 28th, 2010
We got a chance to sit down with the most popular item at waybasics.com for an interview. In this interview, the Cube talks all about how it came to be, what it’s made of and plans for the future.
WB: So Cube, what makes you so popular?
Cube: Well, I come in 9 different colors, you can accessorize me with storage baskets and decorate me with the new decals from Wall Candy and Wee Gallery. Not to mention, I go great with all the other zBoard items.
WB: Very cool. But what makes you so different from all the other Cubes out there?
Cube: Glad you asked. For starters, I’m made of 99% recycled paper.
WB: Wow, really? How’d you manage that!? And what about the other 1%?
Cube: It’s true. I’m actually made in Taiwan, which is much more advanced than the rest of the world in their paper manufacturing technology. Necessity is the mother of all invention you know, and with resources in short supply in Taiwan, it’s important to make good use of the materials they have. So here I am! The other 1% is actually virgin paper.
WB: So why is that necessary?
Cube: Eco friendly ink is printed directly onto the virgin paper, and it’s made into the paper veneer that wraps my inner core.
WB: We’ve found that almost all household furniture contains MDF or particle board, which also contains VOCs and formaldehyde. Please don’t tell me that you have that harmful stuff.
Cube: I’ve heard about that too, and worry not! There’s no VOCs, formaldehyde, or ANY toxic materials in me. I’ve actually undergone third party testing, so you can lay your worries to rest. Many families are concerned with off gassing and other toxins being present, so I’m happy to say that you’ll get none of that nonsense with me.
WB: Wheeew.. That’s a relief. So there really isn’t any comparison is there?
Cube: You guessed it. Now the only trick is gonna be finding some sunglasses that’ll fit my stylish self.
WB: Well if that’s the only thing you have to worry about, life is good! Any plans for the future?
Cube: The possibilities are endless you know. My main goal is helping people to live simply. With everything getting more and more complicated, I feel like we should slow things down and bring it back to the basics.
WB: Very true. Well I’d say good luck, but I know you’re not gonna need it. You might need a little luck with the shades though lol. Thanks for taking time out of your busy day to talk to us. We really appreciate it.
Cube: Of course! You know, if you have any other questions, I’m happy to answer any questions you might have. Drop me a line at talktous[at]waybasics.com any time.
Monday, September 27th, 2010
Marysa is the first winner of many to come! This time we gave away an Orange Vapur Water Bottle, and we will soon be giving away other products on the Way Basics blog. It’s our way of giving back to the Way Basics community!
Let’s get to know a little bit about Marysa:
Your name and where you’re from – Marysa, New York (Capital Region)
How did you hear about Way Basics? I think I stumbled upon Way Basics from a “green” website. I am always looking up information on environmentally friendly lifestyles, and Way Basics is fantastic. I have a Master’s Degree in Resource Management and Way Basics is a great site to browse some cool modern items, and I like how it has everything from kids items to sophisticated home decor. I’m thrilled I won the Vapur and I am definitely going to have to buy a Thinksport stainless bottle!
What you like to do in your spare time – spend time with the kids (including getting outdoors as much as possible with them), hiking, traveling, reading, cooking
An interesting factoid about yourself -
I spent a summer and a semester in Arizona at the Biosphere2
, it was absolutely amazing.
Wednesday, June 9th, 2010
sustainablog Approved: Way Basics’ Recycled Paper Furnishings
Looking for reasonably-priced shelving and storage for your home? If you make your way to the local big box store, you’re going to find a lot of items made from particle board. Yes, it’s cheap, and relatively durable, but it’s also health hazard: all those wood chips are held together withformaldehyde, a known carcinogen that will be off-gassing into your house for 5-10 years. Furthermore, once that pressboard item passes its useful life, there’s little you can do with it other than send it to the landfill.
Since July 2003, sustainablog has been providing information on environmental and economic sustainability, green and sustainable business, and environmental politics. The blog regularly features environmental leaders, experts in alternative energy and green technology, and real people trying to lighten their environmental footprints.
Wednesday, March 10th, 2010
This year, Treehugger asked their readers to help nominate the most deserving people and things from the world of green. After pouring over the suggestions, the Best of Green 2010 nominees have been sleected. As one of five contestants in the Design and Architecture category, Way Basics is in a good position to win! Now is the time for friends, family and fans to vote for who they think deserves to be called the Best of Green! Go Way Basics! http://www.treehugger.com/best-of-green/design-architecture/index.php