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#319188 - 12/25/09 04:29 AM EXCEPTIONAL ECO PRODUCTS (No vendor posts, please)
Darlene Bitner Offline
Darlene B
Veteran Member

Registered: 03/10/05
Posts: 1208
Loc: Texas Gulf Coast
New eco products are coming out all the time now for new homes and home remodeling. Let's post them in this thread. Here are just a few.


http://www.vetrazzo.com/products_intro.html
for the story of this countertop product.

http://www.vetrazzo.com/products_palette.html
for the page on the web site with the closeup of the patterns. WOW.

Beautiful countertops made from 85% recycled glass...some very unusual patterns in a very durable product. Go to their site for specs and LEED info.

The following is from their web site:

"Vetrazzo wins the first annual Green Log Home & Lifestyle AwardsTM in the countertop division. Judged most eco-friendly from a crowded field of surfacing options."

Get this...each of their patterns has a story behind it. For instance, Alehouse Amber has this story:

"Alehouse Amber...Drinking a cold one on a hot day….it puts you in the right state of mind. Drop your bottle in the recycling bin, kick back, and think how you just made the world a little better. The bottle is on its way to its new life. It’s in your countertop. Refreshingly re-purposed... into Alehouse Amber."

That's just one of the clever stories behind the patterns made from recycled champagne, beer, water, soda and wine bottles, as well as condiment jars like oliver jars and pickle jars...and more. The site does encourage recycling and after seeing their patterns, I don't think I can toss another pickle jar away...and I eat a lot of sweet pickles. I could have recycled enough to do an entire kitchen just this year. Shame on me...Pasadena just revamped their recycle center. I'll check to see if they take glass. If they don't take glass, I will make a phone call to the Mayor's Hotline. I drop a lot of paper there but actually never noticed if they had a glass bin. We are all slowly coming around to the obvious, I guess.







Edited by Darlene B (07/25/10 03:47 AM)

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#319189 - 12/25/09 05:15 AM Re: SUSTAINABLE LIVING - GREAT PRODUCTS TO CHECK OUT [Re: Darlene Bitner]
Darlene Bitner Offline
Darlene B
Veteran Member

Registered: 03/10/05
Posts: 1208
Loc: Texas Gulf Coast
http://www.fuez.com/
Similar product with different approach to the patterns. Similar good credentials.

http://www.fuez.com/collection.php
Here is web page with their patterns. They use concrete, stone, and earth, so that may be why they appear to have a wider variety. Didn't find what the other 15% of Vetrazzo was.

Today's home remodeler and home builder have a lot to think about. The choices available are no longer just functional, they are absolutely beautiful.

The old reliables, Formica and Wilsonart, are not being left in the dust either. Wilsonart now has the Greenguard certification for some of it's products. Here's the info on that, something I care very much about...since outgassing is one of the things that sends me outside a building quicker than a mouse or a cockroach.

"Wilsonart International proudly announces that the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute™ has awarded its GREENGUARD Indoor Air Quality Certification to the company for its high-pressure decorative laminate, solid surface and flooring products. These Wilsonart products were tested under the stringent GREENGUARD Standards for low-emitting products. Choosing low-emitting products can significantly reduce the level of potentially irritating contaminants in the indoor environment. All GREENGUARD Indoor Air Quality Certified® products ensure minimal impact on the indoor environment."

Another reason I prefer the laminates is that they are more forgiving if you drop something. Many folks don't have the grip they used to have, and granite is not a friend of good crystal or milk glass or other collectibles. As far as patterns, laminates win hands down for me...so many different colors and shades. Maybe it isn't a 2010 status symbol, but it is affordable and easy to care for with only a few drawbacks.

All these products are beautiful, give us a wide variety of choices, and last a long time. What is great now is that they are one less thing to make our families sick.

http://www.vetrazzo.com/products_care.html#surface
This is a link to Vetrazzo's comparison chart to other countertop products. Some competitors may have different opinions, of course.

As far as building products are concerned, I believe it would be insane for any of the major players to not be thinking GREEN in a big way. I don't see this particular product line going back. Now if we can just get those builders to lower the high ceilings of those energy sponges they are building today. Most young couples are not anywhere near their earning ceilings and many can't handle the high house payments AND the high energy bills. With high ceilings, homeowners can't even find the time to paint the living room wall after their kids get a little older and stop writing on them. They have to hire it done by professionals who have the correct equipment. The parents buy a huge two-story house with giant energy bills and other expenses associated with it, then order a green building product like these countertops. Many need to see the big picture.

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#353301 - 10/04/10 04:02 PM Re: SUSTAINABLE LIVING - GREAT PRODUCTS TO CHECK OUT [Re: Darlene Bitner]
Kristi Leak Offline
Member

Registered: 08/26/10
Posts: 175
Loc: US
Hey these are great.

Here's one. In Boston there is a startup which is pushing green building design and products: http://www.terrenellc.com/
_________________________
Apartments for rent Boston

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#353578 - 10/06/10 12:17 AM Re: SUSTAINABLE LIVING - GREAT PRODUCTS TO CHECK OUT [Re: Kristi Leak]
Darlene Bitner Offline
Darlene B
Veteran Member

Registered: 03/10/05
Posts: 1208
Loc: Texas Gulf Coast
Thanks for the link to the Terrene site, Kristi. I saw a couple of items that really interested me...furniture from whey (very strange) and clay plaster (sounds like a gorgeous look). I'll spend some time in that site decorating the new home I am building in my head.

I checked out your Fenway Triangle Trilogy site, also. Wow, very nice place to live. The Function Room has a lot more going for it than just function...very impressive room in which to close some transactions.

Welcome to Agents Online and thanks for checking out the forum and especially for posting. Keep it up if you have time.

Darlene

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#356820 - 11/05/10 11:44 PM Eco products for building and maintaining a home [Re: Darlene Bitner]
Darlene Bitner Offline
Darlene B
Veteran Member

Registered: 03/10/05
Posts: 1208
Loc: Texas Gulf Coast
This little store caught my attention. I never thought I would see the day that a store like this would be able to survive and thrive. Any family with asthma, fragrance sensitivity, breathing problems and similar ailments will love to shop in a place like this. These folks saw a need and met it with their products...sustainable building supplies, non-toxic paint, mattresses, workshops and speakers to help parents take care of their kids by providing them with information on how to have a healthy home. They also network with other eco friendly services like cleaning services and recyclers...now that is a great way to market.

Stores like these all over America have tried to start up but failed over the years. Finally, America has a more eco friendly population ready to embrace a healthier world...and that starts with a healthier home. Check out www.newliving.net and other shops like them in your area to see what you might find for your next home improvement project. Just search green mattresses, green building supplies, green cleaners and the like. Most of these folks know the importance of building non-toxic homes and maintaining them with non-toxic products.

I toured a new home project a few years back and their big eco selling point was the blown-in insulation helping with the electric bills. No word was mentioned on the tour of healthy air, minimal outgassing and other issues that impact many homebuyers and even more tenants.

Try buying a mattress from "Mattress Joe" or even a fine home furnishing store. You may not find the personal attention there that small specialty shops will give you.

I am not breaking the "no vendor posts" rule by promoting this little store that I found on the web...just using it as an example of how we need to change the way we shop. Yep, W-M is cheaper but I doubt if they give a hoot that their paint may be making kids sick. I also doubt if many new home salespersons can talk for two minutes on the dangers of toxic building products.


Edited by Darlene Bitner (11/06/10 01:00 AM)

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#363687 - 01/16/11 09:36 AM Re: Eco products for building and maintaining a home [Re: Darlene Bitner]
Alishia Offline
Member

Registered: 01/03/11
Posts: 10
Loc: Canada
When I saw the word Eco product does this means those materials made from no chemical components. I saw it on discovery channel before that home builders do now use wheat straw as substitute to woods.

_________

www.apartmentvideo.ca

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#364242 - 01/20/11 04:31 PM Re: Eco products for building and maintaining a home [Re: Alishia]
Darlene Bitner Offline
Darlene B
Veteran Member

Registered: 03/10/05
Posts: 1208
Loc: Texas Gulf Coast
Alishia, I thought I posted my response the day you typed this post. Just found it in the draft folder. Sorry, but I am heading out door and will have to post it tonight. I found some good sites to address the issue. It's been a long time since I have had a week as busy as this one...plus weather has been nice and I was trying to get some chores done before it cools off again. Guess I took a break and forgot to come back.

Wheat straw - going to be very visible in building materials, it looks like. Check back in the AM and I will update this tonight with the standards info I found.

Thanks & excuse any typos.

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#364281 - 01/21/11 02:29 AM Re: Eco products for building and maintaining a home [Re: Darlene Bitner]
Darlene Bitner Offline
Darlene B
Veteran Member

Registered: 03/10/05
Posts: 1208
Loc: Texas Gulf Coast
Business seems much better at self-regulating than the personal products and food industries, although the food industry is making a stronger effort now. Labeling is not my area of expertise except for the items I purchase but it should be important to all of us.

According to Wikipedia, my favorite web site, here is their link to what an Eco Product has come to mean:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmentally_friendly

To answer your question, I would have to say that Eco Products and Green Products and Sustainable Products are what some manufacturers can get us to believe they are. The building and building materials trades have come a long way and most brand products will tell you what you are getting if you can get the specs. For some time now, employees have been able to get MSDA sheets (Material Safety Data Sheets) from their employers telling them what chemicals they come in contract with on the job. I guess OSHA had something to do with that.

You have brought up a good point about use of the word ECO. I used ECO in the Subject to mean products sold as safer for us and for the environment. Are there any eco products out there whose marketing is not truthful? Definitely in the grooming products...makeup, shampoo and such. However, building materials may be more responsible and are easier to research if you have a brand name, so you may be safer there.

Wood is beautiful, lasts a long time, demands only reasonable care. However, it comes from trees that have to be replanted, termites love it, and it is expensive. Whatever Eco and other benefits that wheat straw brings, I would definitely consider them. Cost may not be less, though.

Research and development can be proud of some of the concepts they are coming up with now.

Thanks for posting.

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#371797 - 04/06/11 06:42 AM Re: Eco products for building and maintaining a home [Re: Darlene Bitner]
Lime Light Power Offline
Member

Registered: 03/26/11
Posts: 36
Loc: NY, NY
Nice definition for "eco" - I think that many people have problems identifying exactly what it means... every "big business" these days is trying to jump on the bandwagon and loosely tossing around the term it's hard to know what is actually "green" and "eco-friendly"...

Ken

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