Thursday, December 15, 2011

Best of Recycled Ornaments

I'm a sucker for Christmas ornaments, and every year I add to our collection with some vintage ones, some my kids have crafted, and handmade ones I'm lucky enough to find in Portland. The selection here of handmade and recycled options is amazing. But what's exciting to me is that this year, the range has expanded online and anyone can get their hands on beautiful, special and sustainable holiday decor. I hunted around online and put together a list of some of my favorites. If nothing else, let this be some DIY inspiration...

Pointy Paper Star made of recycled magazines, at Worleys Etsy shop, $13.20

This Pine Cone Garland from Worleys is not an ornament, but I love it so much I had to include it here! $7.80

Recycled glass bottle ornament by Dean Wolf, $32

Shotgun Santas at Etsy, $4 (thanks, Great Green Goods)

Finally, something to do with champagne corks! Chunky Snowman Ornament, on Etsy, $4.75

Recycled Tin Tree from Crate&Barrel, $3.16

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Having a Pendleton Moment

Harding Cardigan at Anthropologie

This Pendleton carry-along blanket is available at Shopbop

The crazy holiday shopping season has begun for me. (A little earlier than usual, which I'm proud to say as a proven procrastinator.) But so far I haven't seen much out there that I want for myself, except for this cozy piece of eye candy from Pendleton's Portland Collection. This I could live in all winter. My husband probably wouldn't be so into that, but that's no reason not to get it!  

Not to sound like a mouthpiece for Pendleton (it's so hard not to be a huge fan!), but I am also getting a bunch of the carry-along picnic blankets as gifts. Who wouldn't be happy with one of these? They're practical and chic, and at $88, very reasonable. A fell in love with them when I saw one on the floor of Leann's car in Philadelphia (thanks, Leann!)...which is just where they belong.   

Friday, November 25, 2011

Green Friday!!

If you've been eyeing some new bedding (or anything else) from Plover Organic, now is the time to buy—we've got a 40% off sale on *everything* until the 11-28-11. Just enter the code THANKS11 at checkout.

(Update: Some customers have had trouble placing orders online. In that case, feel free to either call us at 866-540-8377 or email us at with your order.)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


My apologies for going so long without posting! It's been a busy time for Plover...lots of travel (including a stop in Philly and a visit to the Anthropologie offices! Which, for the record, could not be cooler). Now that I'm back home, finally going through my mail, I have to post about the new Urban Outfitters catalog. Grunge is back, I realize, but I'd forgotten how tied to the Pacific Northwest the Grunge aesthetic is/was. People here never stopped wearing Dr. Martens, or plaid, or windbreakers, so it's nice to see that now Portlanders have found themselves back in style, again. Witness: my two favorite pages from the new UO Fall catalog. (For the record—I've never seen a North Face jacket paired with a bustier in PDX, but I'm down!)

Such an awesome look

Making me seriously considering finally buying a pair of Doc Martens....

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Must-Read: Triclosan

The only hand sanitizer you should be using

Sprout is one of our fabulous retail stores in San Francisco, and their blog post this week is an important one, all about the chemical Triclosan and why you should beware. Found in everything from dish soap to hand soap to hand sanitizers to cutting boards (!), Triclosan is just about everywhere, touting "antibacterial" powers. Like BPA, it's a controversial substance that has an overwhelming presence in the U.S. market, but is being slowly banned in the EU. (Countries like Norway, Great Britain and Denmark have taken steps in the past 10 years to remove Triclosan from their communities. Isn't is amazing how far the U.S. is always behind...?)

Read Sprout's full article and interview with CleanWell founder and chief scientist Dr. Larry Weiss here.  Not to sound like an ad, but just remember: CleanWell, made from natural thyme oil, is truly the only hand sanitizer anyone should be using.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Sustainable Rock

Pickathon's official dishware, by Bamboo Studio

The fact that Pickathon exists and is so successful is one of the many reasons Portland is such an amazing place to live... What is Pickathon, you ask? It's an "indie roots" outdoor music festival that just went down this past weekend on Pendarvis Farm, about 20 minutes from downtown Portland. If it's not the most eco-friendly festival happening, it's up there. This year it became the first large outdoor music festival to eliminate single-use dishes and utensils. Bamboo Studio provided the official, stylish Pickathon dishware, which I am proud to be able to say I used! (Would have been prouder if I'd remembered to pack my own dishes, but alas...)

In the end, however, it's all about the music. And there was tons of amazing music at Pickathon, including my favorites, Fruit Bats. (You MUST see their new music video below!! You will laugh hard, I promise.) Eric's wife Annie Beedy took the best photos, as usual. Click the link for a real feel...

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

To Do: Unexpected Color Combinations

Plover Organic on the cover!
I was at the grocery store this morning when I spotted Plover Organic on the cover of Better Homes and Garden's Do It Yourself Fall 2011 edition. But what really blew me away was how the stylist had mixed patterns to amazing effect. (Even I have never considered mixing Pink Roses, Red Roses, Red Dots and Teal Squares!) It looks so gorgeous. I also LOVE the Thomas Paul blue zigzag pillow and Hable Construction's yellow throw pillow mixed in there. Genius!

A closer look inside...

And the Herringbone fabric on the dog's pillow, from Joel Dewberry

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Organic Conscious Mom





Thanks to Michelle Savin for yesterday's Tumbr post! If you have a few minutes, check out her recent Nate Berkus show appearance. Her recipe for a eco home cleaner is alone worth the watch...

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Pantone Postcards!

Like many people, I am mildly obsessed with Pantone. So when I saw these Pantone color postcards for sale at Urban Outfitters (via the awesome Portland Monthly At Home blog), I had to buy them immediately. Whether I'll use them as actual postcards or just for color inspiration remains to be seen.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Wild Goose Farm: Gourmet Sustainability

Eating at the table set in the barn, where all the cooking was also done

Yesterday was one of the more special dining experiences I've had in a long time, in Portland or elsewhere. (I apologize in advance that I didn't take better photos...too busy having fun!) To celebrate the upcoming wedding of our dear friends Annie & Eric, we all splurged on a dinner party at Wild Goose Farm out on Sauvie Island. Run by the lovely and talented interior designer Jessica Helgerson, and her equally talented husband, the architect Yianni Doulis, the farm sits on 5 acres and is just a 30-minute drive from the city. All the food served is grown on-site or sourced nearby—including meat and cheese. It's rustic and delicious, but of course the real star is the setting. How many times in your life will you have a gourmet meal on a farm? With baby turkeys? I can't recommend it highly enough. And I cannot wait to have my husband build a wood-burning oven in the backyard!

The scene of our pre-cheese course stroll

Yianni shows the kids the wood-burning oven. (Yes, Emm is wearing a tie!)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Don't You Want to Sleep Here?

Plover's Vine print on crib and Twin bed. So pretty!
Heather at Brookline Street Design is a great customer of ours, and when she started snatching up a bunch of stuff more than a year ago, we had no idea what she was up to. But this week we found out: designing an amazing, gorgeous, serene space for her two girls. The results are incredible.

My favorite Plover touch in the room: she turned our Aqua Dots Fabric By the Yard into room-darkening curtains. Wish I had thought of that! Enjoy the pics. Thanks, Heather!

Heather's answer for finishing touches? "Lots of Etsy purchases," she says.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

DIY Recycling

The Skittles Eco Kite is available on TerraCycle's web store

Like many of you (I hope!), we subscribe to the EcoFabulous weekly newsletter. Founder Zem Joaquin puts together a list of green products and initiatives that are always worth knowing about. This week she made a video suggesting a recycling bin in the bathroom. Seems obvious, but I'd never thought of it, and it would certainly make my life easier.

Even better, she introduced us to a program called TerraCycle, which allows you to set up a recycling program for the previously "un-recyclable" in your own neighborhood. You simply sign up on their website, pick the waste you want to collect (plastic bottle caps, perhaps?) and put out a collection box in your area. When your bin is full, you can download a FREE shipping label on their website, and ship the waste off to be recycled. This is an amazing program for areas that don't have exhaustive recycling programs curbside. I encourage everyone to at least check out TerraCycle's website—you can also buy recycled products on their site—and pass it on to all your friends.

Happy Earth Day!

Earth Day Sale!!

To celebrate Earth Day tomorrow, Plover Organic is offering 35% off all items online! Enter the code EARTH11 at checkout to receive the discount. Sale ends Monday, May 2, so shop soon!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Plover time on Today

Thanks to Sheila's mom for letting us know that the Plover Organic charm pack sachets were on the Today show this Tuesday. Wow! Martha Stewart featured them as a craft idea using herbs. (You can watch the condensed clip above; the full clip is below.) And actually, the charm packs have been so popular for us, we're considering manufacturing the sachets ourself in the near future. Keep you posted!!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Spectral Fields @ The Pony Club

One of the collaborations by Jennifer Parks and Marty Crandall, up now at the Ponyclub

If you're in Portland, go see the "Spectral Fields" art show at the Ponyclub while you can...only one more week left! It's an eerie, evocative collaboration between artist Jennifer Parks and Marty Crandall. He took some amazing photos with his iPhone (!), she did some amazing illustrations, and then they combined efforts by illustrating select photos. Snatch them up while they're still available!

P.S. Check out this footage of Marty's new band Sad Baby Wolf, playing at the art show's opening in March. I was there and can confirm it was very, very pretty stuff. Can't wait to hear more...!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Plover Flagship Store!

Our shelves are made of wood we "reclaimed" from our backyard

Big, big news from the land of Plover Organic: we've opened our very first retail store, in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle!

Exact address: 5306 Ballard Ave. NW, Seattle WA 98107. (We share a space with the fabulous Cugini Cafe, so don't be confused!)

If you're in Seattle, come by and see us. We've got loads of sample sale goodies, misprints and other deals that aren't available on the website. Fun!

Our "soft opening" was last week, but we'll have an official grand opening party later this summer when we bring in a slew of brand-new merchandise. (Can't say just yet what it will be, but suffice it to say there will be something for everyone.)

It was truly a family affair in getting the story ready and open, and it's hard to believe we did it. Special thanks to Alison, the new addition to our team, for her merchandising expertise and these awesome pics she snapped of the store.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Thank you, Martha Stewart!

There's Plover, top right side!

Very many thanks to Martha Stewart Living magazine and Crafts Editor Blake Ramsey for featuring Plover's new Charm Packs in their April 2011 issue. They sewed the 5" squares together and made scented sachets from them! I'd never have thought to do that, but now I'll have to make them and fill with lavender buds. Lovely. Our Charm Packs are for sale here if you want to follow suite.

April 2011

Friday, March 4, 2011

America, 1939-1943

The cuteness—kids sleeping at a square dance in OK. Photo by Russell Lee

School children in New Mexico singing, 1940. Photo by Russell Lee

This was not at all what I'd planned to blog about, but I was browsing the Hermitage site (you must check out Hermitage if you're ever in the market for amazing, artful wallpaper) and saw a link to gorgeously restored photos taken during the American Depression. I know, I know—they're from last summer, not new—but people are still commenting on them, and I swear, the comments are just as great as the photos. Read them! And I must agree with the folks at Hermitage that the colorful prints and patterns the folks in the photos are wearing are alone worth a look. It was the Depression, and yet there's something about those prints that feels more joyful than what we all wear today.

Chopping cotton in Georgia. Photo by Jack Delano

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Quilting with Plover Organic!

Plover's organic cotton Fat Quarters!

Very exciting news: Plover Organic has launched a quilting line! We've got 100% organic cotton Charm Packs and Fat Quarters available now for sale on our website. Quilting fans alerted us years ago to the dearth of organic fabrics available for crafting and quilting, so we've been wanting to do this for some time. Now, in true eco fashion, we've finally repackaged our remnants into craft-ready bundles. (Looking for scraps of different sizes? Email us and we'll try to help!) Happy quilting!

Plover's Charm Pack

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Erdem Inspiration

From Erdem's S/S 2011 collection

I am so in love with Erdem's Spring/Summer 2011 collection right now. Just got a sales email from Barneys, of course, to make me drool. These scarves! (I wanted to show them here, but you have to go to the Barney's site to see the detail and really appreciate the prints.) Is anyone doing color and print better than him right now? I don't think so. It was so hard just to go through the lookbook and pick which looks to show here!

These shorts!

Sweet dress

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Thanks, Daily Candy!

Our Pinwheel/Blue Dots collection

Thanks to Daily Candy for being #1 on today's 25 Reasons to Go Back to Bed! They featured our Blue Dots sheets, which, now that I think of it, are kind of a perfect gift to give for Valentine's Day, no? Organic, soft, encouraging lounging around in bed...? Just a thought.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Latest From Liberty

"Willow's Garden C," by Sally Haysom

Thanks to True Up for reminding us that Liberty of London's new collection is up online for sale here. The designs are a collaboration between the Liberty Design Studio and children's illustrators. Some of it is a bit twee (which should be expected, I suppose), but there's some very cool stuff here. Some of my favorites are already sold out!

The colors in this are amazing; "David Joe A," by Jane Ray

"Helena's Party D," by Lauren Child

Friday, January 21, 2011

Portlandia Premiere!

Put A Bird On It! A still from "Portlandia," premiering tonight on IFC

So exciting—tonight is the premiere of "Portlandia," the new sketch comedy series by the brilliant Carrie Brownstein and Fred Armisen. Although we don't have cable (it airs on IFC), we were lucky enough to see the advance screening last weekend in Portland, and can confirm that it's completely hilarious. It might hit a little too close to home for some Portlanders, but it's all done in good fun, and there's a lot to see the humor in. (I'll admit I do know the names of most of the big local farms around here—though not the names of the individual chickens!—and I actually own both pieces of luggage in the photo above, although mine don't have birds on them! See? Very close to home.) Will people start making fun of Portland now? Hmmm...I hope not. Portland is definitely radical in a lot of ways, but I feel like people here are really trying to live in a responsible, thoughtful, kind way, and it's an amazing city to live in because of that. It's its own quirky little city-state, for better or for worse. But mostly for the better!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Portland Recycling Challenge

Love the laminated color copies inside each lid—very helpful, especially for guests. (Photo from LivingEtc)

This weekend, as I was reading one of Portland's awesome community papers, the SE Examiner, I was inspired by the families who completed the "One-Can-a-Month Recycling Challenge" program. These families switched from weekly to monthly (!) garbage service. Only 15 households participated, but in 6 months, they managed to keep a total of 7,836 gallons of trash out of the landfill. The average waste reduction per family was 76%. Amazing!

A confession: since the economy crashed and our local Master Recycler programs disappeared (Master Recyclers allowed you to recycle almost anything, from plastic hangers to lawn chairs, for free, once every couple of months), I'd stopped collecting non-curbside-recyclable plastics in crazy, messy, overflowing bins on my porch. But now my commitment has been renewed! I've set up two new bins on my porch, one for plastic bags (and bubble wrap and clean shrink wrap) and another for clamshell containers, plastic lids and caps, CDs and jewel cases. Turns out you can drop the bags by any Far West Fibers location—and there are a bunch—and drop them off for free. For a complete list of what can be recycled in Portland and the surrounding areas, click here.

I also have to add that most of these plastics can also be recycled locally at New Seasons stores. (A list of what New Seasons accepts is here.) This is a pretty fantastic service (among others) that New Seasons provides. If you're like me and there 4 times a week anyway to shop, recycling really doesn't get any easier. (Full disclosure: Plover is a very proud table top vendor at New Seasons now!)

So there's my recycling pep talk for the new year. I'm in the process of trying to sign my own family up for the "One-Can-a-Month" program, and when I do, I'll keep you posted.