Friday, September 28, 2007

Green for the Senses

There are a lot of options to tickle my television-watching-fancy. I think the channels on my direct-tv guide go to 800's. And of those hundreds of options I watch only 2 networks religiously; HBO and the Sundance Channel. Thanks to Tivo I can have a life and watch the shows I want. Ah, HBO, what's not too love. I've grown particularly fond of Entourage and enjoy watching familiar places blaze across the screen.

But Sundance I love for completely different reasons. I tune into Sundance for The Green. The brain-child of Robert Redford feeds the eco-conscious by creating a television and web community for them. There are a lot of large corporations who are involving elements of earth-aware activities into their business, but The Green is highlighting businesses that are sustainable through and through. And, more often than not, these are small businesses and individuals.

If you haven't tuned in yet, I highly recommend it. If you've vowed to never watch television again then may I suggest The Green website? I know I've posted my company on the Eco-mmunity map. If you are a Mac junkie like I, use Firefox when browsing this site to avoid any problems.

Eastside Lovin'

Even though I hail from L.A. County there is still plenty of love in my heart for Etoile Boutique in Orlando. No eastside/westside rivalry here. Word.

Katie brings such fresh and vivid energy to her store and her designs. So when she decided to move her store's location she did it with the enthusiasm of 100 school children on a fieldtrip to the circus.

Whether it's vintage re-creations, haute indie designs, or my cards, you'll love the great selections at Etoile Boutique, and you'll feel great knowing you've found one-of-a-kind style.

Etoile is now open at its new location:

2436 E. Robinson Street
*right behind COVERT & BETA*
Turn into the parking lot (between the K9 Lounge & Covert)and you will see them. The little house in the back with the red door and the patio!

Monday-Fri 12-8pm
Saturday 12-9pm

etoile boutique

Monday, September 24, 2007

Tote-ally Fabulous

If you haven't jumped on the bandwagon yet you'd better get going. Word on the street is if you aren't bringing your own canvas bags to the grocery store you're not ecologically cool! Some stores, like my local Trader Joes, give you a little form to fill out each time you bring your own bags and you are entered into a sweepstakes for free groceries. Think of all the things you won't have to do by bringing your own bags; you won't have to figure out how to store the 100 plus plastic bags under your kitchen sink, you won't have to figure out how to fold 80 brown paper bags the way they were before they were used, (much like re-folding a map for those of you who have tried that.) you won't have to sort through the bags searching for those without holes in the bottom.

There are so many indie designers coming out with very cute totes and what better excuse to buy them than for your groceries...and of course for Mother Earth.

I can usually get all my groceries into 1 large and 2 medium totes. I hit the grocery store about 2 times per week. I stuff all the empty totes into one another and it easy to carry into the store. The cashiers always seemed pleased that they won't have to use their talents in double-bagging with my heavy canvas straps in tow. Once home the bags are very easy to lug up my steep flight of stairs when slung over the shoulder instead of grasped tightly in each hand. And after loading up my fridge the bags get returned to my car for the next grocery store trip. I've found I don't remember them unless they are stored in my car.

A couple companies that are specializing in grocery store totes:

For something a little more vogue:

I admit, I do use and reuse plastic and brown bags. The plastic bags get loaded up with kitty litter. However I'm trying to come up with a more earth-firendly option for litter toting. If you have any ideas for me let me know. And my brown bags get cut into 8.5" x 11" sheets and fed into my printer. You've probably noticed them in the packaging of my notecards.

On an end note, don't forget to wash your totes. We don't want to be mistaken for anything but sqeaky-clean eco-defenders.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Are you filling big shoes?

The larger the city we live in, the more we are aware of our impact on the earth. We see the impact not only of ourselves indivually but also that of our friends and neighbors. I find my fellow city dwellers are much more active in choosing local products/produce, recycling and other earth-aware activities because the impact they are making, positive and negative, is all around them.

When I go back to Colorado, which is a very environmentally conscious state, I still find many people taking for granted their ecological footprint. I know I am speaking in broad generalities, and I know there are exceptions to every rule. However, when someone lives in a place where they are many miles from the closest freeway, they can't see the smog from their backyard and they don't see how many recyclable materials are tossed into the trash, then they may not be aware of their footprint on this earth.

Want a clear view of the ecological-shoes your household is filling? You must check out this site.

Ecological Footprint Quiz

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Attention Book Junkies

I have an addiction; it's books! There is something relaxing about curling up, and flipping through the paper pages. Though I have a compulsion for many things paper, (recycled of course!) paperbacks and the occasional hardback take the prize. I have stacks of books made to look like decoration, over-flowing shelves and in numerous boxes in the garage. My books can be put in two categories: will be read and re-read, and will be given away. For those books which fall into the latter grouping, I've recently discovered the wonderful online world of used books.

Imagine a world where you received credit for each book you were willing to swap, (I'd already be a millionaire in Book-Land!) and those credits could be used for books you haven't read yet! Well, imagine no more. I give you PaperBackSwap!

Not only do you appease the hungry reader within, but you help the environment by recycling your books! Check them out!

For those of you who prefer to support your local community, which definitely suggest, you need only do an online yellowpages search to find a nearby used bookstore. For those of you in the Southbay, CA, I frequent Daves Olde Book Shop in Manhattan Beach.

Go forth and read....and buy some cards too ;-)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Too Much Junk Mail

I realized after the fact, that my last post included a lot of information, so I thought I'd explain a few of the links I previously listed in the days to come.

If you have as little as one credit card, then you know the pangs of junk mail. I, on average, receive 2 or more pre-approved credit offers a day. I receive another 3-5 insurance offers a week. Not to mention catalogs, circulars and local coupons. Don't even get me started on the barrage of letters and postcards that flood my mailbox during election time.

For your catalogs I suggest calling each company individually and requesting to be removed from their catalog. Chances are you can find anything you need from that company's website. In fact, it is probably much more up to date than a paper catalog that had to be pritned and mailed.

A great solution for the credit and insurance offers is the opt-out process. Visit the website , fill out the form and mail it. I was recently married so filled out one in my maiden name and another in my married name, just to be sure.

You can read the website for all the nasty details, but bottom line; you send this form and the offers diminish tremendously. Bye-bye Junk mail!

Of course some companies are getting creative with their junk-mail. Some in the paper biz are simply turning it into recycled paper. You all know what I've been doing with my junk mail: Peez & Ques

As always, thank you fellow Earth-lovers!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Helping Mother Nature

Starting an earth-friendly business has been VERY educational. There are tid-bits of information which come as no suprise. But then, there are other readings you come across and you are shocked! I suppose just becoming aware of your actions; your own footprint is the best way to start. Your neighbors see the new retractable clothesline you've installed on your deck, and maybe it causes a positive reaction in them towards eco-awareness. The bottom line is, you must practice what you preach.

I've come across hundreds of websites for a greener world in my research process, and I thought I'd share some of them with you. Take what you will from them. If you've found some good sites I'd love to see them, pass them along. Oh...and thank you fellow greeniacs!

My site of course ;-)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

New Recycled, Hand-Made Card Designs

I have many new note-card designs.... I had a lot of fun with these. A little more popular culture than my others. The robot I think is my new "character" of choice. He's dressed in 3-d glasses ( I remember wearing a pair of these only once, but man they made an impact!), or as a devil... I'm sure he will be revistited over and over. He's reminiscent of our little Star Wars buddy....
I get so wrapped up in website designs and marketing, that when I get to design and make my cards it is reinvigorating.
My older designs are all still on my website
Always hand-made by moi.... always recycled.....always recyclable.....

See my new designs on myspace
OR Facebook search Leah Mirbaba

New Designs: guitars, turn-tables, octopus, mic, match, lightening bolt

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Etoile is Moving

Katie owns and operates Etoile Boutique in Orlando FL. She is moving to a bigger, better locale and we are all very excited for her. She is a designer herself (great stuff), and her shop hosts all kinds of great indie designs. (and my cards!)

If you live in Orlando or will be there visiting, be sure to check out her new shop.
New Address:
2436 E. Robinson St.
Orlando, FL 32803
*just turn into the Covert/Beta/Etoile Parking lot and you will see our little house!*

You can also find her on MySpace:

Or her website:

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

San Diego Craft Mafia

Okay all... so we are looking for ethical, edgy, crafty-types to become members of the San Diego Craft Mafia. We promote you, you promote us, we promote each other. You feelin' the love? The goal of the San Diego Craft Mafia is to help individual indie businesses be more successful by pooling resources and finding creative ways to market and co-market our products. At the root of this overwhelming desire to succeed, is our mutual respect and kindness for and towards one another.

To get a better idea of where the Craft Mafia started check out:
Craft Mafia

To contact us for membership:
San Diego Craft Mafia

To see what some of it's members are up to:
Peez & Ques: Recycled Cards
HiOctane Jewelry
Jumble Bugs