Remember the vintage kitchen sink I built a few weeks back?
Well, I built the frame, but the beautiful vintage GE porcelain sink came from a company that Coach discovered on Craigslist: greenGoat.org.
Established in 2000 as a non-profit, greenGoat is an environmental conservation, recycling and waste management organization. Their goal? “The Goat saves otherwise discarded building materials and finds new projects that need those materials. In so doing, we save the energy, raw materials, and other natural resources wasted when useful materials are tossed away.”
For instance, a contractor is set to demolish an old home to build a new one. Once the homeowner has vacated and the furnishings have been removed, there are still tons-literally TONS-of materials left over that normally would be demolished along with the structure. greenGoat goes in prior to the demolition and salvages the leftovers, including antique trims and decorative moldings
vintage light fixtures,
piles of wooden shutters,
and old vent pipes, just for starters.
A couple of weeks ago, Coach and I had a chance to visit the Lawrence, Ma warehouse and speak to the director, Amy Bauman about the origins of her company. Amy started the non-profit when she was working on a kitchen project in her own home and recognized the cost and waste of removing and tossing materials in the dumpster and purchasing replacement materials. She believed there was a better way to redistribute the materials, keeping them out of landfills and into the hands of other homeowners who were upcycling and salvaging instead of dumping and trashing. (Kind of like when I grab a bench out of someone’s trash, pretty it up with a new coat of paint or varnish and then re-sell it to someone who appreciates the beauty and quality of old craftsmanship : ) So, why the greenGoat name and logo?
Well, goats eat pretty much everything, and going green pretty much sums up what greenGoat is all about: “saving more than money.” Where can you find greenGoat? The warehouse is in a beautiful turn-of-the-century mill building in Lawrence, MA. It is not a pretty retail outlet, it’s a down and dusty warehouse packed with amazing finds, every one with its own unique story. To visit this salvage nirvana, you need to reach out to Amy to make an appointment to visit for yourself.
They do post individual items for sale on Craigslist, in hopes that you will come to their demo site and remove the materials before they have to transport them back to the warehouse. That’s how I found my amazing sink!
What will you find in the Lawrence warehouse? Anything and everything you could imagine that could be salvaged and upcycled. I think Amy said that this was a old bellows, coupled with a cart and salvaged wheels that her partner, who is a photographer built.
a vintage cast iron and blue porcelain stove,
And this gorgeous pink capiz shell chandelier?
Well, that also made its way into my home, where it hangs in the pink “Be Your Own Kind of Beautiful” bedroom. Which is perfect for a reclaimed, salvaged find. So, if you are in the market for some old/new building materials (they occasionally do have furniture, but primarily their stock is reclaimed building stock) you can reach Amy at this email: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone: 617-504-2095 or their mailing address: PO Box 441991, Somerville, MA 02144. And make sure you tell her that Coach and Sue sent you! Hope you are salvaging what’s left of this week, everyone! Susan