Our shoppers are very eco- conscious and it always astounds me how many of them bring their own bags to the store when they come shopping (lots of them have also purchased our lovely Enviro Saks that roll up so you can carry them conveniently and fold out to hold 2 bags of groceries). It really hit me over the holidays as we had several people in line and no one took a shopping bag from us! I thought I had to capture this phenomenon somehow and started our “Tree of Bags Not Taken” where I drew a tree (above) and got some green pens for us to add a little star/leaf whenever someone did not take a shopping bag from us. Of course our bags are recyclable and sometimes you need to take a bag– but in case you don’t, we are keeping track! I remember before I opened toying with the idea of fancy bags with our names printed on them, but thought that did not really work with our neighborhood vibe, and I am glad we scratched that expensive idea. Hopefully our tree will be filled by the end of the year and we will have many more in the years to come.
With Earth Day shortly upon us, and the whole world becoming more Eco-Conscious I wanted to point out some other Green measures we are taking at the store. First and Foremost we recycle tons of packing supplies. We send and receive lots of boxes each week and reuse boxes and packing materials to re-send out our online orders, as well as recycle whatever boxes we do not use (through the landfill or by giving away to needy neighbors). We buy as many Earth Friendly and Organic Products as possible- and added a GREEN section to our website (although there are many more items that can be included in this category, just decided to highlight some of our favorites). And when Jill was visiting last week she set up our Green table in the store- here’s a little peak-
Here are a few highlights of products that I love from the Green theme that are NOT available online- call us if you’d like any of these gems and click here to see what IS available online)–
Cardboard Birdhouse. Water Resistant. Folds together easily. Easy to send to a bird loving friend. $5.95.
Have you guys seen these? Looks like a big Mason Jar, but has a Solar Power cell inside that just need direct sunlight to work. Sooo, you can leave it by the window all day and when it gets dark it automatically lights up- and last for 5 hours on one charge. We sold a bunch of these during the Holidays- great gift for eco- friendly friend, your uncle with the cabin in the woods, niece who still likes a nightlight but is a super cool little kid. We have one out and it always glows as we are closing up for the day. $45.
Clothespin trash can. Clip in your recycled bags into the wood frame and your office, bathroom or wherever will be stylin’.$24.
Helping our younger generation get in a healthy mindset for renewing our resources is an important step- and this new book from the fun Charlie and Lola series, We are Extremely Good Recyclers will help your favorite little ones learn more about Recycling. $16.99.
Even though these great “Respect the Earth” flashcards are available online and I love them so much I had to plug them too! $12.
Little things that we always try to do that add up to making a difference- turn off all lights at night (you can’t see in our gates at night, and we even turn off outside light that frames our sign), took store off all FAX lists (so many company like to fax in 5 page ” specials”–ugh! what a waste. email us instead!), limit packaging waste as much as possible, recycle & re-use wherever/ whenever we can, use recycle materials such as toilet paper, paper towels, bags and printer paper. Rob once pointed out to that I opened the shop without a car– just a metro card, occasional car service/cab when needed for big items and my Big Brother’s car if needed to haul out tables, etc.
We are always working to improve this part of our business as well, and to that point I will be attending an event through the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce on 4.22 – Building Sustainable Businesses- Green Ways to Save. The Event is free and open to the Public. For more info- click here. Hope to see you there!!
We also will be having a special EARTH DAY celebration- with a new book as the highlight- My Life in Pink & Green by Lisa Greenwald (neighbor & customer) – on April 18th. It is a book written for tweeners ages 9-12 years old and will be the Kick Off to our Girls Club. More details to come (and if you are interested, join our mailing list for more info on this great event).
4/7 UPDATE– we also just switched to Green Power as our Energy supplier for the store– 35% New Wind Energy, 65% Small Hydro. BONUS: It’s cheaper too!!