Saturday, 3 September 2011

Green Thumb? Green Shoes!

From top:
40's wedges from Messenger Vintage
"Forest Pump" by Jeffery Campbell at ModCloth
Suede wedges from asos
Sweet as cowboy boots from Charlottes Reign
Moroccan sandals on etsy
Emerald green 70s wedges from Secret Lake

The bottom pair of vegan-suede booties (by Kailia) are green not only in colour, but also in production:

Their shoes are eco-friendly (use lots of recycled products) and cruelty free (that's towards both animals and people). Plus they use water-based glues and polyurethane soles rather than vinyl and PVC,  veg dyed linings, and organic linen/cotton.  Their website is definetely worth a browse, lots of cute stuff and cool company philosphies.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Vertical Gardens

Green walls! Such a beautiful and functional idea!  Green walls or vertical gardens are walls (indoor or outdoor) completely covered with soil and vegetation.  They are created by this rad french dude named Patrick Blanc (who also died his hair green and is constantly wearing an outrageous flower/plant print shirt) who rapels down the side of buildings and adorns them with plants. 
Hong Kong



Green walls in urban areas reduce temperatures of buildings they grow on. The primary cause of heat build-up in cities is the absorption of solar radiation by roads and buildings in the city, the storage of this heat in building material, and its subsequent re-radiation. Plant surfaces do not rise more than 4–5 °C above the ambient and are sometimes cooler.
Green walls may also be a means for water reuse. The plants may purify slightly polluted water by absorbing the dissolved nutrients. Bacteria mineralize the organic components to make them available to the plants.

They look beautiful, cut down on warming, and recycle water.  Everone wins!

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Guerilla Gardening

Wow, just stumbled upon this little gem of a website called Guerilla Gardening. It's a community organization (founded in England) which draws attention to wasted urban space, or in the words of a Guerilla Gardener: it performs "sneak attacks on horticultural wastelands".  This amazing group of people lash out by secretly tucking veges into city flower beds, making better use of space and resources in crowded urban areas. 

Just amazing... it's almost poetic.   Apparently, it's also really fun!  People dress up as ninjas, ‘arm’ themselces with "seed bombs" to deploy on rooftops and concrete spaces, and sneak out in the pitch dark to plant blueberry bushes or sweet peas.

They also have instructions on their website to plan your own Guerilla Gardening attack!  So dust off your balaclava and get planting!

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Garden photo shoot

It's spring in Dunedin folks (knock on wood), or at least it was this afternoon.  The beautiful cloudless sky and warm sunny day motivated us to get out and do some gardening.  After digging up a bunch of stinky composted soil and making a new plant bed, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to dust off an old spring dress and have a garden photo shoot!
Pink toes, snakeskin sandles, cabbage, and spinach
Note: this dress is not appropriate for actual gardening
Garden party dress close up

I got this dress years ago at a store in Vancouver called Preloved.  It was one of my favorite shops, they made beautiful new garments out of recycled fabrics.  This dress is actually an old sheet with mesh sewn on top.  Anyways, Preloved closed many years ago and it was a pretty sad loss... except I just discovered that they are online! Check it out: Preloved
The jewellery is thrifted.  The cute lil snakeskin shoes are also thrifted, they were from a vintage shop that got demolished by the Christchurch earthquake.  It was a wonderful shop (and a wonderful city in general!), you can follow them on facebook while they try to rebuild.

Garden Party

Speaking of gardens... Sometimes it's painful how stunning 50s and 60s garden party dresses were:


Green thumb

On a beautiful spring sunday afternoon what better to do than work on the garden?!  We're trying to expand our vege garden this year from a sad little 1m by 1m plot growing mint, beets, and other plants that grow like weeds no matter how much you neglect them, to a lush impressive garden that will keep us stocked with fresh veges throughout the summer.
What my imaginary vege garden looks like
What my actual vege garden looks like...
The problem is, I have a serious love hate relationship with gardening.  I love the idea of secret gardens, growing my own food sustainably, fresh veges, having a green thumb, and trudging around in gum boots and floppy hats.  But then there's the flip side: plants have painful thorns, there's creepy crawlies, and ferlizer smells like... stinky fertilizer.  But, with a little persistance, the end product of a nice garden is well worth it.

The whole aesthetic around gardens is so magical and features widely in high fashion photo shoots:

And on the runway:
Jean-Paul Gaultier

Project runway
Christian Dior

 But come on... give these ladies a shovel and some topsoil and get back to me.