Since it is almost St. Patrick’s Day, and I just recently did a post on green (it is, after all, Pantone’s Color of the Year!), I thought I would share some eco-friendly products from companies that are committed to “going green”. All of these companies earn our High Five for Friday!!

Going Green Redwood Forest

We hear that phrase in marketing and advertising all the time- but what, exactly does it mean? This quote, from the website Save The World states it perfectly: “Living a green lifestyle – or going green – can begin in small, easy to manage ways. Recycling is a huge, obvious part of helping to save the world through green living. Reducing one’s reliance on oil-based energy sources is another popular method employed in trying to save the world. Purchasing only all organic, chemical free products is another way that many people begin going green, and is considered a very effective method at trying to save the world and all of its resources. Green living is infiltrating all parts of daily life, and the planet is sure to be better for it.”  So, I searched around for some readily available products that do just that- use only plant-based, chemical free and recycled products.

Method Cleaners (available at Target)- Developed by two young roommates- Adam Lowry and Eric Ryan, “their powers combined, they set out to save the world and create an entire line of home care products that were more powerful than a bottle of sodium hypochlorite. Gentler than a thousand puppy licks. Able to detox tall homes in a single afternoon”.

Going Green Method Cleaner Orla Kiely

Mrs. Myers Clean Day  “Inspired by Mrs. Thelma A. Meyer, an Iowa homemaker and mother of nine. It all started when one of her daughters was walking down a cleaning aisle, eyeing all the products with their harsh, stinky chemicals. Right then and there, she had an idea: “Let’s make cleaners that smell nice, like my mom’s garden, but still work like the dickens on daily dirt and grime.”

Green Mrs. Myers Soap

Karen Quinn Organics  “…we pride ourselves on our commitment to fair trade and the earth. We use only certified organic cotton, grown using sustainable farming practices that maintain and replenish soil fertility without the use of toxic and persistent pesticides and fertilizers. Our garments are made of ultra soft, all-natural, organically produced cotton certified by Control Union Certifications (formerly SKAL), a USDA Accredited Certifying Agent. Our garments are also made using Fair Trade practices under Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS). Every little garment supports our vision and hope of a cleaner, kinder earth.”

Going Green Kate Quinn Organic jumpsuit

Bambeco- Hot Style for a Cool Planet  “Bambeco was founded in 2009 by Susan Aplin and Carolyn Wapnick; it was inspired by a trip to Alaska where they saw extreme glacial recession and other impacts of climate change up close. That’s when Aplin set off on a personal quest to understand her impact on the planet, which led to several carbon reduction changes in her life. After making household, energy usage, and commuting changes, Aplin wanted to extend her environmental values to eco-conscious home décor & furnishing purchases and discovered that fashionable, environmentally responsible home products were not available in the marketplace.”

Going Green Bambeco Apron

Of course, you can shop organic at any of your local farm stands or grocers. Just make sure you bring along your eco-friendly bags! This company showcases a wide variety of attractive shopping bags for stylin’ while you’re shopping!

EcoBags.com Cleaning Up the Planet, One Bag At A Time     “EcoBags opened 1989 with a simple goal; to produce quality bags at great prices so that “Reusable becomes a way of life.” We started with the ECOBAGS® Brand Classic String Bag, a simple lightweight, expandable cotton net bag used in Europe for generations, long before paper and plastic bags.” LOVE this French Woven Basket

Going Green Organic Tote from EcoBags

And, of course, for the designers with a conscience, Benjamin Moore makes a NO-VOC paint called Natura– even the label is beautiful!!

Going Green Natura Benjamin Moore

“Natura Waterborne Interior Paint continues  Benjamin Moore’s commitment to providing the most environmentally friendly paint.  Natura Paint emits lower total VOCs than other national zero-VOC products on the market, all without compromise to performance or color selection. Natura is truly “Green Without Compromise®.”  Again, a marketing term we hear quite often, but what are VOC’s? Volatile Organic Compounds that are emitted as gases from certain solids or liquids. VOCs include a variety of chemicals, some of which may have short- and
long-term adverse health effects-yikes!

If you have a favorite, eco-friendly company, drop me an email and I will be happy to share with everyone! The more we know, the more we can help our planet! Have a green Friday everyone! Susan

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It’s Wanderlust Wednesday, and this week we are returning to Wakefield, Mass to join the throngs of walkers circling the 3 mile path around the lake for their daily exercise. Like the swallows returning to Capistrano, with a hint of spring in the air, hundreds-no, thousands-of walkers/runners begin the migration back to the lake to shake off the winter layers (fleece and fat!) and start the annual pilgrimage to beach time fitness. While walking along, the scenery surrounding me constantly catches my eye, and each season brings a fresh new palette. In the fall, it was all about oranges and reds and yellows and golden sunsets.

Autumn on the lake

With the spring comes budding birch trees,

Benjamin Moore Birch Tree

dormant greenery springing back to life,

Benjamin Moore Hartshorne House Exterior

and melting ice floes with gray horizons.

Benjamin Moore Melting Lake

I have a new toy on my Iphone this season: Benjamin Moore Color Capture. You know when you see a house and you think “I wonder what color that is- I love it!” Would you ever put it past me to actually go knock on some perfect stranger’s door to ask what the color and paint brand their house was painted? Yup, done that!  Now it’s a little simpler- I just snap a shot with my Iphone and the Color Capture Analyzer instantly produces all of their paint colors in that particular shot! Then you just go to the Benjamin Moore website, type in the color in the search box and there you have it-brilliant! So the melting ice and the dark sky over the open waters produced this palette in shades of grays with a purplish hue like Faded Violet and creamy whites from the cloudy sky called Chantilly Lace.

Benjamin Moore Faded Violet

As you move the cursor around on the picture, it will pick up the subtle differences in the palettes- this one has more greens like Quarry Rock

Benjamin Moore Quarry Rock

The birch tree scene produced softer blues like Sweet Innocence, more whites and grays with hints of ambers and gold and a touch of coral from the ground cover that is still hidden under layers of mud and dirt.

Benjamin Moore Birch Tree

The Colonel James Hartshorne House , built in 1681, sits on the corner of the lake by the ball field. It is one that I have always admired, and recently they painted it this gorgeous blue-which color blue, you ask?  Well, according to the palette, the closest is Bachelor Blue. But the lighting and time of day changes the hue, so best make sure you take several shots to get the perfect match!

Benjamin Moore Wild Blue Yonder

Even on the grayest, cloudiest day it still stands bright. And what blue house isn’t complete without a cheery red door? The color of this one? I’m going with the sexy, spicy Caliente.

Benjamine Moore Caliente RedWhile I love that red door, which creates its own color palette, my eye was also drawn to the bright green shrubbery in the front that creates a stunning contrast to the rich blue. Dark Celery-the color in the budding shrub tips-is a great contrast to the blues and reds.

Benjamin Moore Dark Celery

As great as that color scheme is for the Hartshore House exterior, wouldn’t it be great for interior space as well? I created this room on the Benjamin Moore Personal Color Viewer. You know all those colors you just captured outside? Go to the website and you can use them in all types of rooms- using their galleries or your own pics! For this one I used the colors from the lake and house photos: Quarry Rock, Bachelor Blue, Caliente and Chantilly Lace– the possibilites are endless!

Benjamin Moore Personal Color Viewer

 Just make sure that when you are choosing your exerior colors, like the ones on the Hartshore House, you factor in the landscape and background- whether its the sky or water or the surrounding greenery, they all play a part in your palette!  Hope you capture a Wanderful Wednesday everyone!  Susan

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Update: Since many of you were confused about the operations hours at the WinSmith Mill Market (me too!), I contacted the owner of Diggin’ Daisys for clarification. Her response: “With the exception of Vintage Thymes which is a Monthly Market,  all of the other shops are opened EVERY weekend.  Most are opened Friday-Sunday, others just Saturday and  Sunday.  Let me know if you or anyone else has any questions.  Thanks, Deb” So there you have it! If you venture down on Friday, you may find a few of the shops closed, but Saturday and Sunday are a sure bet! Happy shopping! Susan

 

Since it was such a beautiful day yesterday, I decided to take a ride down to the south shore to visit a shop that I had been following for awhile on Facebook. When internet browsing recently, I had discovered Vintage Thymes– a Monthly Vintage and Antiques Market

Vintage Thymes

that has its home in an old, refurbished tannery at 61 Endicott Street in Norwood, Mass. What I did not realize, until I actually arrived there, was that Vintage Thymes is a huge co-operative market that shares space inside the WinSmith Mill Market-which has many, many more shops housed in this old mill building! WinSmith Mill Market

Pulling into the parking lot, I immediately spotted a sign for Gallery 2, so I stopped there first. You know it’s gonna be fun when this is the entryway that greets you!

Mill Gallery 2 Entry

Floor after floor of any kind of vintage you can want or imagine! As far as the eye could see, there were sections for lighting, dining, sofas (could have picked up this orange chenille beauty with silver threads for $50!)

Mill Gallery 2 Sofa

clothing, tools and essentially anything else under the sun.

Mill Gallery 2 showroom

Exiting that first building, I made my way over to the WinSmith Mill Market, vintage nirvana. First stop was The Old Bean Antiques, chock full of amazing one-of-a-kind pieces,

 Old Bean Wagon

including this horse-drawn carriage! As I was standing there chatting with the owner, I was contemplating how I was going to get that home, and how nice it would look in front of the barn…do you think Coach would notice?

Mill Old Bean Carriage

From there, I walked through the double doors into Vintage Thymes, which is a giant showroom with little booths set up side by side.

Vintage Thymes

Kind of like Brimfield but without the tents and hot sunshine and muddy shoes.  I met one of the owners, Nancy Murphy, who gave me a tour and chatted about the concept. Being open one weekend per month gives the dealers time to refresh and redesign their spaces. Vintage Thymes changes up the theme as well-this month is Vintage Kitchen-so each visit will be like your first, with all new offerings and merchandise. You’d better get there early, though-apparently the local designers and dealers hit the ground running on the Friday mornings for first pickins’!  Each vignette had its own unique character, but all with a common theme: reclaimed, recycled, refurbished vintage furniture and accessories.

Vintage Thymes  Hanging Frame

Most had a small sign or business cards available to ID their spaces, but they all blend seamlessly together into a beautiful showroom with one centralized cashier area.

Vintage Thymes

A couple of my favorites (although by no means a complete listing- there are so many great booths!!) Modern Vintage Design Studio– the gorgeous pastel hand-painted distressed signs caught my eye.

Modern Vintage Design Studios

Sadie Wyatt is an adorable space filled with a soft, natural look of old time charm.

Vintage Thymes Sadie Wyatt

Exited through another doorway into a long hallway where I discovered room after room filled with more beautiful finds! Some of these shops, unlike Vintage Thymes, are individually owned, with proprieters having previously been part of the co-operative, then being so successful they branched out on their own. The Queen of Olde’s welcoming space was so sweet and country pretty, all decked out in pinks and blues.

Mill Queen of Olde

Down the hall was the Vintage Peacock-loving that painted mustard dresser!

Mill Vintage Peacock

From there, I met Deb, the owner of Diggin’ Daisies, another shop I had discovered online. As I was browsing, I overheard her chatting with some fellow shop owners about “the girl from Wakefield who is coming all the way down here!”- they were amazed that people were travelling from the North Shore and Cape Cod to check out this newly opened marketplace (since November 2012). I can assure you, if you are a lover of vintage and antique collectibles, it is well worth the trip.

 Diggin' Daisys

She was so gracious (as was everyone I encountered!!) and she took me on a tour, explaining all of the booths and introducing me to many of the vendors. It was difficult to keep it all straight! Upstairs I discovered the Salvage Angel, Salvage Angel

Winsmith Mill

Furnichicks, and Renewed, Reloved, who was celebrating her grand opening, offering beautifully painted furniture. Best of luck, Krista!!

Mill Renewed Reloved

And finally, POSH Vintage Upscale Boutique, comfortably decorated rooms with everything from vintage clothing to refurbished furniture.  POSH Mantel

Obsessed with this aqua painted cupboard…if only I had another wall in my house.

POSH

So that’s my virtual tour of WinSmith Mill Market. It took me a few hours to make my way around to all of the shops, but everyone was incredibly friendly and eager to share their story and offering refreshments too. There are so many more that I just didn’t have room to mention in this blog post. From the looks of the throngs of people streaming into the buildings and heading out with their treasures, it is a huge success! Today is the last day for this month’s Vintage Thymes Market, so head on over to see for yourself, and tell Nancy that Sue from Country Design Home sent you : ) Just remember to Spring Forward, everyone!! Susan

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Yesterday I wrote a very well-received blog about the WinSmith Mill Market in Norwood, Mass. I had a great time meeting many of the owners and vendors, and enjoyed browsing through all of the amazing vintage finds!

Modern Vintage Design Studios

The part of the story I ommitted was this: As everyone knows, we had a pretty major snowstorm Thursday into Friday, leaving our yards and cars covered with over a foot of snow!

snow pile

As the sun started shining and things started to melt, I managed to remove most of the snow from my car, with the exception of the pile that was sitting in between the roof racks- just couldn’t reach it! So, I set off on my journey on Saturday, confident that the snow would harmlessly slide off the car roof onto the side of the road as I was driving along.
Since it was a warm, sunny day, I decided to open my sun roof for a bit of fresh air. As I was pulling into the Dunkin Donuts parking lot to grab a cup o’ joe prior to my shopping expedition, I heard a faint “swoosh”, and then the entire contents of the snow pile that I thought had blown off the car was now sitting on my head and lap!!  snow in lap Yup, those are my legs…

Are you freakin’ kidding me?!? Instead of sliding off the back end of the car, that big pile of wet, slushy snow slid forward and into my sun roof, soaking me and my seats, dashboard and Iphone.

Snow in car interior

Luckily, it didn’t hit the GPS I just got for Christmas, but not so luckily, there was a guy sitting inside DD watching the entire thing! So I grabbed whatever I had handy to wipe up the mess- tissues, napkins, blankets. Of course, now my jeans were soaked and my hair was matted to my head, so I had to sit for awhile with the heat on high until I dried out enough to start shopping!

snow on head

The reason I am sharing this with you? Well, first of all, it’s pretty funny stuff, and who can’t use a good laugh?! (even if it is at my expense). Secondly, I just wanted to make the point that things don’t always go according to plan-a botched paint job or a busted lamp, no-show contractors or crashing computers can make you crazy-if you let them. What I try to do is just shrug and think “I cannot be the only person this has happened to-or the “So It’s Not Just Me” theory. There is safety in numbers, and sometimes imagining that others have dealt with the same issues and gotten over it helps to lighten the load. So the good news? I made it to the Mill Marketplace and had a great time. A bonus? My car interior is nice and clean : ) If you have had a “So…It’s Not Just Me Moment” and would like to share, please send me an email and I will be happy to post it- pictures included if you have them! Today is “Have a Nap Day” due to Daylight Savings Time- so grab a quick siesta everyone! Susan

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Welcome To Country Design Home!

Inspired. Rustic. New Country Style...in the suburbs. Because you don't have to live on a farm to create a warm and inviting country-styled home. Follow my DIY junkin' journey as I give tips of the trades and inspired fresh country design ideas to create your own Country Design Home.
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