Archive for the ‘Green Business’ Category

Throw a Bouquet: Guerrilla Seed Bombs & Flower Grenades | Urbanist   Leave a comment


Throw a Bouquet: Guerrilla Seed Bombs & Flower Grenades | Urbanist.


Posted February 5, 2014 by bibbieandblue in Green Business

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Luxurious New Starbucks in New Orleans Inspired by 1900s’ Merchant Stores | Inhabitat   Leave a comment

starbucksNew Starbucks in New Orleans Puts “Reclaimation” to Good Use!!! Vintage schoolhouse chairs, tables made from wind-fallen trees….it is a re-purposer’s paradise.

The Reclamation Administration

Canal Street Starbucks New Orleans, David Borgerding, Jason Horton paintings, Tommy Taylor mural, NOLA Starbucks New Orleans, Mystic Blue Signs designs Starbucks sign, NOLA French Quarter Starbucks,

The back room of the store was designed to look like the merchant’s living space, offering a much more relaxed atmosphere. Vintage schoolhouse chairs around huge tables made from wind-fallen trees offer customers a comfortable place to work and socialize. It also features a large mural created by the artist Tommy Taylor, which references the New Orleans’ shipping heritage.

via Luxurious New Starbucks in New Orleans Inspired by 1900s’ Merchant Stores | Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building.

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Posted December 13, 2013 by bibbieandblue in Green Business, Re-imagined

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Bambu Earth: Soap with a Secret   1 comment

Eco Packaging

Bambu Earth knocks it out of the park!  Get this… This company uses post-consumer cereal boxes & such in their packaging design.  But wait!  There’s more!  Not only do they use recycled material … the handmade artisan paper hugging these snazzy soaps has a little secret.  It is seeded with stuff like wildflower and basil seeds!  Simply save the packaging, plant the paper, and grow!  Now that’s innovative design.

Posted April 28, 2013 by bibbieandblue in Green Business

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Architectural Salvage in Retail Design   2 comments

Today’s post celebrates the use of architectural salvage in retail design.  Online stores are nipping at the heels of the ‘ol brick and mortar store fronts.  Many retailers understand the inevitable need for an online presence, but the hands-on experience of a store front “showroom” is essential as well.  Retail design can be a true positioning opportunity. Also, as businesses realize that “green” concepts can align well with “lean” operations, we are seeing the use of salvaged materials in design a bit more.  Using reclaimed elements in an establishment’s design hits two targets of the triple bottom line in one fell swoop: planet and profit.  Featured below are a few store fronts and creative consultants that are embracing the cost-effectiveness and Eco-consciousness of  “Re-Imagining”.

Keen Footwear Keen Footwear

Keen Footwear is an american shoe manufacturer based in Portland, Oregon.  Recently they moved into a 50,000 square foot office building in their hometown.  As an Eco friendly company catering to the active, outdoor enthusiast it was a no-brainer to incorporate planet-friendly materials into the headquarter’s retail store design.

Johnny's Tavern

Planet Reuse assisted in the design of this Kansas City sports bar and restaurant, Johnny’s Tavern, located in the Power & Light district.  “Reclaimed wood from the Kansas City’s Union Station is used for the restaurant’s 38 tabletops.”  (Planet Reuse)  Patrons get to sip a nice Guinness at oak table tops with a past life. Creative consultants, like Planet Reuse, source salvaged materials before demolition and develop clever ideas for retailers, restaurants and other businesses. Aside from honoring the city’s history by “re-imagining” and conserving natural resources, Planet Reuse reduced the cost of tabletops for Johnny’s owners.  New materials would have been 66% more.  Nice cost-effectiveness (profit), and innovative re-use (planet).

architectural salvage8Nunu Chocolate Shop

Another salvage designer, Nightwood in New York  has been featured in my favorite design blog, Design*Sponge, more than once!  Their tagline is “Reincarnated Furniture, Textiles, and Interiors”.   These 2 amazing women not only help design fantastic store fronts from heaps of salvaged goodies they’ve collected (Nightwood’s headquarters & Nunu’s Chocolate Shop above), but they also work on smaller projects for individual clients like dreamy beds (below), quaint settees, and sturdy media consoles.

Design*Sponge: Nightwood

(Image from Design*Sponge)

If you are curious to learn more about designing and building with reclaimed materials, visit your library or local book store.   In the meantime take a gander at these:

architectural salvage1architectural salvage3

I have the first little treasure, Reclaiming Style, on my bookshelf right now!  The co-authors, Maria and Adam, met in architecture school in Scotland and started the architectural salvage warehouse, Retrouvius, in 1993.  From light fixtures to copper lightening rods to stain glass windows, you’ll find it here.  The book also shares the stumbling blocks they face while sourcing their next pre-demolition adventure.  See the co-founders interview at

Unbuilding is another great read on salvaging materials.  It focuses mainly on the process of deconstructing old homes, rather than historical buildings.  Authors Bob Falk and Brad Guy explain the “green” art of unbuilding and the methods used for determining the salvagability of materials.  Topics include safety concerns as well as the economic savings of re-using or re-imagining resources that would otherwise end up in landfills.

So before you look for vintage inspired fixtures and decor for your new store front… do a little sleuthing and hunt down an architectural salvage warehouse near you.  Help preserve a bit of history while saving valuable resources and money!

Posted April 7, 2013 by bibbieandblue in Green Business

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Green Retail Merchandising Design   6 comments

One aspect I’ve always enjoyed whereever I’ve worked is visual merchandising and engaging clients through design layouts.  In this post I wanted to tip my merchandising hat to creative retailers that  incorporate up-cycling into their businesses.  From craft fair booths to brick and mortar businesses, let’s celebrate their innovation!

upcycled merch

upcycled merch2

The images above are posted at, a sassy little blog I stumbled upon.  Urban Heirloom, creators of “vintage and up-cycled bling” made fantastic use of salvaged materials to create a gorgeous booth.  I’m waiting anxiously for her Etsy shop to re-open! Pretty please?

upcycled merch4

The photos (above & below) of this unique little pop-up shop are from Retail Design Blog and feature MOMO’s tiny shop made entirely of up-cycled materials in Hong Kong.  The shop was centered in the mall atrium & uses once-loved windows to let in tons of light.  Check out the beautiful floors as well.  The designer, Tong, even incorporated bubble wrap!  The temptation to POP! might prove too great to some, but I think it is pretty darn fun.

upcycled merch5

Finally, below are images from a Camper shoe shop in Barcelona designed not only from salvaged materials, but also through coordinating and benefiting formerly homeless folks. featured this shop and the two masterminds,  Curro Claret &  Arrels Fundació in November of 2012.  

upcycled merch6

upcycled merch7

When Camper commissioned Claret for the store design, he chose to hire employees that had been homeless in the past.  I think it was a lovely endeavor to use forgotten materials and allow at-risk folks to benefit from the skills learned in the design process.  What lovely worthwhile work and community involvement!

If you would like to share information on other “re-imagined” merchandising or store designs, leave a comment!  I’d love to do a “Part II” post 🙂

Shipping Containers Re-Imagined (Part Two)   3 comments


The image above is courtesy of and is a drive-thru Starbucks in Washington state.  This structure consists of four shipping containers and was dubbed the “Reclamation Drive Thru”.  Do you think  they’ll serve folks on bicycles as well?  According to the article at, they’ve also integrated rainwater harvesting.  I tip my hat to any aspirations to implement sustainability… especially with GIANTS like Starbucks.


Here is another innovative re-use of shipping containers.  Adidas designed a pop-up retail store for the Boston marathon in April of 2012 .  The mobility was ideal for this temporary retail front.

In theory, companies can re-use shipping containers that initially transported raw materials and other resources for their products.  Instead of possibly rusting away in a shipping yard, they can be up-cycled by setting up promotional ( & pretty darn creative) mobile retail shops.  This reminds me of an article I read on Henry Ford.  He was green before it was cool and re-used the wooden shipping crates that transported raw materials to his factory by installing them as floor boards for his automobiles.  How amazing is that?  I’ve also seen them used at trade shows and design fairs too. (see below)



The images above are of Kohler’s booth for the “Dwell on Design” design fair.  Hard to think this shipping container traveled across oceans and railways.  I’ve also been reading about Stockbox Grocers, a start-up business in 2011, that is attempting to bring healthy produce to urban food deserts.   What is a food desert you ask?  It is an area, usually urban, where the community lacks easy access to affordable and nutritious food.  Check out their design concept & first storefront below.

stockbox concept

interior stockbox


The co-founders of Stockbox Grocers are Carrie Ferrence and Jacqueline Gjurgevich of Seattle, Washington.  These super-cool girls are graduates of Bainbridge Graduate Institute’s MBA program  where they studied sustainable business entrepreneurship.  Of course they needed seed money for their pipe-dream and were able to raise $20,000 through Kickstarter.  KickStarter  is a funding platform for creative projects.  It is a pretty phenomenal site that connects regular folks willing to invest with innovators, artists and entrepreneurs.  You should very much check it out!

Posted March 4, 2013 by bibbieandblue in Green Business, Re-imagined

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Hammer & Hand: Re-imagining Furniture   1 comment

Hammer & Hand: Re-imagining Furniture

This piece (GRAB) by Hammer & Hand is composed of salvaged metal grain bins attached to a plank of reclaimed barn wood.

Click the image to learn more about these building contractors in Portland & their mindful mission!

Posted February 4, 2013 by bibbieandblue in Green Business, Re-imagined

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Treasure Trove for Green Business Ideas   Leave a comment

Forget recycling.

Banner to BagReusing materials discarded in the manufacturing process is a growing force behind a fresh new industry.

Find out more about companies like LooptWorks.

Read more about reusing a manufacture’s waste at

Posted February 4, 2013 by bibbieandblue in Green Business

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