Welcome to GG reviews!
In my quest for hip information, trendy looks and green methods, I bring to you my summary and suggestions based on what I find out there in the world.
First on my list, is current green/eco-friendly wedding and event books. I have picked up a few, but if you happen to be an author/publisher and want to send me one for kicks and feedback, please do.
I hope to continue to review everything from resource sites, local stores and online stores to green and sustainable products themselves
The list of books so far:
- Green Chic Saving the Earth in Style by Christie Matheson
- The Green Book by Elizabeth Rogers and Thomas Kostigen
- Simply Green Parties by Danny Seo
- The Everything Green Wedding Book by Wenona Napolitano
- The Green Bride Guide by Kate L. Harrison
I post the reviews on my blog page, but will also post them here:
Review of the site: www.greenyour.com
I’m always on the lookout for helpful eco-conscious sites that have good and easily accessible information about weddings and wedding planning. Well, I happened upon www.greenyour.com and was excited. First of all, being in green business, it’s hard to find people or places that offer up good and deliberately hearty information such as this. Looking under what they had to say about greening your wedding flowers, the facts were strong and depressing, and highly motivating.
I was really impressed that they talked about the flower industry so clearly and without remorse. 70% of all cut flowers in the US are from Latin America, where we have no control over how much pesticide they use on those flowers. Then they are shipped to us and we put them in our hair and on our dining tables. What do you think happens to all those chemicals, at some counts more than 120 that are used on flowers and greens in out of country flower production? Not only are they poisoning both adult and children who work as flower farm workers in Latin American countries (and probably Thailand, China and wherever else flowers are being grown these days), but you guessed it, it’s all ending up right in our homes, in our lives, in our water and in our dirt. So much for beauty.
Now, being a florist, I knew this, and I know most people out there buying flowers don’t. I know some of us do know this and choose to look the other way. But when facts are flown in your face, so clearly and without apology as on this website, you almost have to pay attention.
One downfall to the site, is the lack of pizazz. Now, I know knowledge and truth go far and empowering people to make a difference shouldn’t require marketing and flourishing design elements, but for many people on the web, pizazz makes people stop to watch. Overall, the site is clean. A nice medley of green and white with symbols everywhere so you know where to go. It’s easy and simple. The also have a whole section under lifestyle on events, from birthdays to weddings. Fantastic. But still, a little plain for being so fantastic. So my only comment would be, to add some design elements, especially if you’re talking about weddings and events and such. Not too much, just a nice flower pic here or cute dress there. I smell a letter to the editor.
This site also included information about other wedding decisions in their 15 ways to green your wedding, from finding a green event or buying a vintage dress to carbon offsets for your event and travel. I would definitely suggest this site to anyone looking to know why these decisions are important ones and a few steps in how to actually make those decisions happen. Thanks greenyour.com! Now, if I could only get you to list more local resources in the Bay Area, I would be a happy camper. Many engaged couples don’t have a ton of time, so sometimes the best thing to do is list where to go. But then again, I guess that’s why I’m in business, to make it easier for those of you interested in planning and/or decorating a green event or wedding. So look me up (email@example.com) , and definitely check out www.greenyour.com
In Green and Health,
Green Chic Saving the Earth in Style by Christie Matheson
Although this book is not a “wedding” or “event” book per se, it is filled with helpful hints and smart remarks, making it an easy and intelligent read, to say the least. It’s also filled with great ideas that can be used in the wedding and event arena, as well as every day of our lives. So why not?
Over all, I would say it’s worthy of being picked up if you are looking for some green motivation. It may also be helpful if you are fairly feminine. As the cover suggests, it’s probably written for women. However I think it’s readable for just about anyone. If a section dives into nail polish and you’re not digging it, skip it. There’s some good info in there about cleaning toilets and I think that is both a male and female issue, or at least it should be.
Despite the title and the occasional inclusion of girlie info, the book is written very smartly, succinctly and it’s pretty compact. There are a good amount of suggestions as well as scary statistics to promote behavior change. This, of course, is the whole reason you might be reading this type of book anyway, to change your behavior.
There were some occasional steps I thought Christie could have taken to be slightly greener, but maybe that would have been pushing the envelope. She does give a whole-hearted try for some of the more “hippie” products out there like natural deodorants and she does mention the menstrual cup, but I think there could have been a little more pushing in some areas or at least mentioning of the many options available.
I know just reading the book has influenced me and I think of myself as pretty well educated about green living, health and sustainability. But, sometimes we forget the everyday actions we take that can have such a massive affect on our world and the people around us, not to mention our own health. So, getting a little reminder is good for even us greenies.
One piece of knowledge that I have heard before but was happy to hear again was about Bottled Water. I know you’ve probably heard, drinking from the tap is way better for the environment and possibly for you. It’s also cheaper. But did you know that we go through 70 million of those pesky bottles a day? Think of it. Families across America buying 24 and 48 packs of plastic water bottles at Cosco each week and how many of those bottles end up in the landfill, or better yet, in the ocean floating around as a giant island of plastic trash. Not to mention that 1/4 of those bottles don’t hold special water from fijian springs, but plain old tap water. So why are we spending so much on this special bottled tap water? Well for some more insight and suggestions, try the book. It might just change the way you behave around plastic. And paper. And cotton…
until next time,
Simply Green Parties
by Danny Seo
This book is set up in a way that really stimulates interest. There are a lot of colors and pictures and the layout is simple to follow. It includes directions and material lists to allow the reader to reproduce the ideas and projects that Danny creates with ease and comfort. Many of the ideas are very simple and easy to duplicate.
It’s a fun book to look at, however I felt that there was still something missing from the projects and ideas he presented. I think most readers probably won’t reuse as many ideas as are presented in the book, but use it rather as an example of some fun and exciting and “oh, isn’t that creative” projects that are available to the eco-conscious event planner and lay person. I would have liked to have seen more ideas that are more tangible for the reader. For example, how to reuse and decorate old paper grocery bags for wrapping presents or how to convert those toilet paper rolls into something fun like party favor holders. I know that some people do have access to tree stumps, forest moss, excess makeup compacts and oyster shells, but at my house those items are a little harder to come by. Adding a few more easy to find materials that we might actually have at home (rather than having to go out and buy craft supplies) would have touched more people’s lives.
Over all, I know it’s a good start, and I have not seen an eco-friendly event idea book as easy to pick up and get ideas from as this one. I just wish it offered a few more ideas that were in my range of possibilities and those of so many folks who live in big cities and urban environments, those with less financial access to craft supplies or possibly less time to create or gather up materials, and those who may be new at sustainable living.
Some highlights that enjoyed from the book include:
- The storybook birdhouse project, which would be a fun activity to do with kids who’ve grown out of a few of their children’s books.
- The naturally flavored water with cucumber or grapefruit, however I think it would be important to add that using plastic water bottles aren’t the greenest option. Using tap water or filtered tap water is not only a greener option than water in plastic bottles, but is often healthier as water in plastic bottles isn’t regulated like tap water and may result in contamination by Pthalates and other chemicals found in plastic.
- The idea of having socks at the door for folks to be welcomed to take their shoes off. Not only does taking your shoes off a great way to keep your floors and carpets clean, it also prevents a lot of toxins your shoes come into contact with out in the world from making their way into your house. I would have liked for that comment to have been made to suggest that this is something we might all want to start doing. But, I did learn from Danny that putting rolled up newspaper in the shoes you take off can absorb moisture and odor.
If you’re a crafty person or looking for some crafty ideas, this book might offer you some great examples and start you on your way to thinking green in many aspects of your life, including your events or dinner parties. If you already are crafty and green, start looking around your house for what you already have, and figure out how to put it to good use in a second or third life.
In Green and Health,