Rec Room presents ethically produced dresses for summer

July 21, 2020 by  
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Comfort, style, equality, sustainability — these values encapsulate the essence of Rec Room and its products, including a new line of ethically crafted summer dresses you’ll want to wear every single day. The company’s newest release is a line of versatile and comfy dresses, constructed with Italian-made fabric that is antimicrobial and wrinkle-resistant, making it a performance fabric that is machine-washable and quick-drying. It’s also a forgiving fabric for any type of lifestyle. It packs well thanks to the wrinkle-resistance. It’s also stain-resistant. Related: These funky sandals upcycle fabric from the cutting room floor The dress line, called Summer of Comfort, offers a variety of style options such as tank, slip, strap, tie and open back, all made with the same silky, breathable fabric. Rec Room is a business partnership — and friendship — between two women, Dre and Val. Although the company has many goals around clothing quality and sustainability, it also recognizes the racial injustices of the world. In response, it contributes 1% of gross sales to organizations working to eradicate systems of racial injustice, including The Equal Justice Initiative and The Loveland Foundation. Rec Room chose a production facility in California , so all products are made in the U.S. by the same company that produces athleticwear for the U.S. Olympics teams. With that in mind, it makes sense that each dress is breathable and stretchy, and, as the company says, “puts the leisure back in athleisure.” Both the manufacturing plant in California and the fabric manufacturer in Italy have earned high marks for employee wages, hours and work environment, as well as water management and low environmental impact. However, every business has to measure its carbon footprint, so even though it has made an effort to create a brand that ethically and sustainably produced, Rec Room also gives back to reforestation initiatives via 1% For the Planet and One Tree Planted. Customers can purchase additional carbon offsets directly through the company website. Rec Room Review Rec Room generously offered to send me a sample dress, which I eagerly accepted. I chose the tie dress in burgundy. For reference, I stand around 5’6” tall and weigh around 140 pounds, carrying most of my weight around my waist. I received a large and could likely have been comfortable in a medium, but the tie feature really allows me to tighten and loosen the fit to where I feel comfortable. The fabric is divine — breathable, stretchy, very soft and very comfortable to move in. It offers a luxurious feel without any concern for damaging it while wearing it during activities. I love that it is machine-washable and releases wrinkles nicely, even right out of the package. The dress I selected allowed me to play around with how to use the tie, creating quite different looks that made me feel confident. My favorite was criss-crossing it in the front; I also tried it with different jewelry . It’s very adaptable to dressing up and dressing down with a change from tall boots to sandals to Keds. I’m no model, but I’ve included a few candid shots to show how it fit my body type. Honestly, I rarely even wear dresses, but this is the most comfortable and versatile item of clothing in my closet and will likely sub in for times I would typically wear shorts or jeans. + Rec Room Images via Rec Room and Dawn Hammon / Inhabitat

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Rec Room presents ethically produced dresses for summer

Macys and Bloomingdales to be fur-free by 2021

October 24, 2019 by  
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In partnership with the Humane Society of the United States, both Macy’s and its subsidiary, Bloomingdale’s, will cease sales of authentic fur. The fur ban aligns with the Fur Free Alliance’s guidelines against exotic skins (mink, fox, raccoon, rabbit, chinchilla) and will be fully enacted by the close of fiscal 2020, shifting the tide toward more environmental, socially responsible consumerism. Fur-free policies have been adopted across several luxury fashion brands and major retailers in recent years, thanks to the spread of both legislation and public education on the realities of animal cruelty. Related: LA City Council unanimously agrees to ban the sale of fur Interestingly, public pressure is also driving faux fur manufacturing away from synthetic fibers as well. That’s because polyester, nylon and other petroleum-based textile fibers are exacerbating the microplastic pollution crisis. In lieu of these textiles, eco-conscious alternatives like vegan leather and organic cotton are emerging and appealing to ethical shoppers. “Over the past two years, we have been closely following consumer and brand trends, listening to our customers and researching alternatives to fur . We’ve listened to our colleagues, including direct feedback from our Go Green Employee Resource Group, and we have met regularly on this topic with the Humane Society of the United States and other NGOs. Macy’s private brands are already fur-free, so expanding this practice across all Macy’s, Inc. is the natural next step,” explained Jeff Gennette, chairman and chief executive officer of Macy’s. “We are proud to partner with the Humane Society of the United States in our commitment to ending the sale of fur. We remain committed to providing great fashion and value to our customers, and we will continue to offer high-quality and fashionable faux fur alternatives.” Macy’s is not the first U.S. department store to enact a fur ban, for JCPenney and Sears did so already. But the impact of Macy’s business move will be far-reaching, becausee it operates 680 stores across 43 states. While Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s will no longer sell fur across their brands and off-price stores — even closing off a fleet of fur vaults and salons where storage and alterations of furs were offered — the ban does not mean Macy’s and its subsidiaries will stop selling all animal-based goods. Rather, they will still continue to retail calf hair, cowhide and sheepskin merchandise to shoppers. + Macy’s Image via Macy’s

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Macys and Bloomingdales to be fur-free by 2021

Sculptural, solar-powered home generates more energy than it uses

October 24, 2019 by  
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In the Texan suburb of Addison just north of Dallas, 5G Studio Collaborative has completed the Winnwood Residence, a contemporary home that blurs the line between the indoors and out. Certified LEED Platinum , the single-family home offsets all its energy use with a 10 kW rooftop solar array and geothermal wells drilled beneath the driveway. Walls of glass, large skylights and outdoor living spaces immerse the residents in the landscape and help bring in natural light and ventilation to reduce the home’s energy demands. Completed in 2016, the Winnwood Residence is a sculptural, single-story home that spreads out across 4,600 square feet to embrace varied landscape views, one of which is a land and water conservation park funded by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department and the U.S. Department of the Interior; the front third of the client’s property has been designated as an extension to the conservation project across the street. To keep focus on the outdoors, the architects opted for a minimalist yet modern design of “a solid black plaster mass sitting within an enclosed garden.” The interiors are also simple and feature white walls of smooth reflective plaster and minimalist decor. Related: Solar-powered Austin home can save owners nearly $100K in energy costs “The exterior finish is black plaster, upon which climbing Boston Ivy is expected to overtake overtime; the shadowy blackness of the exterior surfaces allows one to truly enjoy light, not shadow, filtering through the trees,” the architects explained in a statement. “The architecture elegantly and quietly achieves its sustainability objectives; proposes a new vocabulary of architecture that is decidedly un-local yet celebrates Texas living and is very much about the landscape as it is about the interior.” The building will gradually blend into the lush landscape, which has been repopulated with native and adaptive species. To further reduce site impact, the architects installed a rainwater collection cistern beneath the driveway to minimize runoff and increase water permeability. Geothermal and solar energy power the energy-positive home. + 5G Studio Collaborative Photography by Adam Mørk via 5G Studio Collaborative

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Sculptural, solar-powered home generates more energy than it uses

Clothing made from recycled water bottles highlights the ongoing crisis in Flint

April 20, 2018 by  
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A new fashion exhibit in Queens underscores the ongoing water-contamination crisis in Flint, Michigan . “Flint Fit” comprises a series of garments inspired by the “power and necessity of water, manufacturing history of Flint, and resiliency” of the people of Flint, who have had to cope with the effects of lead poisoning since 2014. Visual artist Mel Chin  — with an assist from Michigan-born, New York City–based fashion designer Tracy Reese —  conceived of the clothing to highlight the water crisis. Flint has had to resort to bottled water for everything from drinking to bathing, which has also created a tragically bountiful waste stream. Chin enlisted Unifi , which makes recycled textiles, to clean, shred and transform more than 90,000 used water bottles into a performance fabric known as Repreve . To manifest Reese’s designs, Chin turned to the commercial sewing program at St Luke N.E.W. Life Center  in Flint, where at-risk women stitched the pieces. The items include a trench coat, a wide-leg jumpsuit and swimwear. Chin said, “By opening the door for new ideas, Flint Fit aims to stimulate creative production, economic opportunity and empowerment on a local scale.” Jay Hertwig, Unifi’s group vice president for global brand sales, said the brand was “proud to be a part of this exciting moment in art-fashion history.” He continued, “At Unifi, we’re able to transform plastic bottles into Repreve for products that people enjoy every day. And we’re thrilled that Repreve is playing a key role in such a positive movement that came from something so catastrophic.” Part of Chin’s All Over the Place exhibit at Queens Museum , “Flint Fit” will be on display through August 12, 2018. + Flint Fit + Queens Museum

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Clothing made from recycled water bottles highlights the ongoing crisis in Flint

Timberland transforms recycled plastic bottles into shoes, bags

March 3, 2017 by  
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For its latest collection, Timberland is turning to the bottle—the plastic bottle, that is. The outdoor-wear maker has teamed up with Thread , a Pittsburgh, Penn.-based manufacturer of sustainable fabrics, to transform plastic bottles from the streets and canals of Haiti into a dapper collection of footwear, bags, and T-shirts. The Timberland x Thread collaboration goes “beyond environmental sustainability,” according to Timberland. Not only does the partnership turn an ecological blight into a resource but it also creates social value in the form of cleaner neighborhoods and job opportunities for one of the planet’s poorest nations. “The Timberland x Thread collection is incredible proof that style and sustainability can go hand-in-hand,” Colleen Vien, director of sustainability for Timberland, said in a statement. “This collection delivers good with every fiber, not just by recycling plastic bottles that would otherwise end up littering the streets, but also by creating job opportunities and cleaner neighborhoods in Haiti. Related: Take a first look at Timberland’s new boots and bags made out of recycled plastic “Consumers can feel good about pulling on their Timberland x Thread boots or backpack, and know they are making a positive impact in someone else’s life,” she added The Timberland x Thread capsule comprises five styles of men’s shoes and boots, a duffel bag and a backpack, and one T-shirt. All incorporate Thread’s “Ground to Good” fabric, which the certified B Corp. spins in the United States using 50 percent post-consumer recycled polyethylene terephthalate , better known as PET. Thread says that every yard of fabric can be traced throughout the supply chain, from bottle collection to textile creation and delivery to the manufacturer. The “bottle to boot” process employs more than 1,300 bottle collectors, entrepreneurs, and manufacturing employees in Haiti alone. “At Thread, we believe that dignified jobs cure poverty—and our fabric creates those jobs,” said Ian Rosenberger, founder and CEO of Thread. “Our partnership with Timberland marks a seismic shift in the fashion industry, combining Timberland’s large supply chain and loyal customer base with Thread’s responsible, transparent approach to creating premium fabrics and vital jobs in the developing world. The Timberland x Thread collection is a major step towards improving the way our clothes are made.” + Timberland + Thread

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Timberland transforms recycled plastic bottles into shoes, bags

Score this upcycled convertible Freitag backpack ($340) for free in our fall giveaway

October 13, 2016 by  
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Looking for the perfect all-in-one bag to carry around town? Freitag’s ultra-versatile “R123 Woolf” convertible carryall ($340) made out of upcycled vintage truck tarpaulin is just what you’ve been searching for, and you can score it for free in our fall giveaway. Follow this link to enter! ENTER HERE >

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Score this upcycled convertible Freitag backpack ($340) for free in our fall giveaway

Impossible Foods cruelty-free burger added to more West Coast restaurant menus

October 13, 2016 by  
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Critics of vegetarian meat substitutes often say they are ‘nothing like that real thing,’ but Impossible Foods’ new lab-grown burger patty seeks to silence the complaints for good. The California-based company  assembled a team of scientists to create a cruelty-free burger patty made entirely from plant-based ingredients, but unlike any veggie burger before it, the Impossible Foods burger smells, bleeds, and apparently tastes just like beef from a cow. After wildly satisfying diners in taste tests, this next-gen veggie burger is taking on the West Coast by making its way onto the menus of three upscale restaurants. Impossible Foods announced Wednesday that its new burger will grace the menus of Jardinière and Cockscomb in San Francisco and Crossroads Kitchen in Los Angeles, and the company expects it will appear in more restaurants by year’s end. Prices will range from $14-$19 and it’s safe to assume a side or two will be included. What’s important to note is that, unlike most companies producing vegetarian meat substitutes (or “meat analogs”), Impossible Foods isn’t actually targeting vegan and vegetarian diners. Rather, the company is focused on people who currently prefer beef, in an effort to reduce meat consumption. Related: Impossible Foods launches meatless burger that cooks, smells, and bleeds like beef The Impossible burger debuted earlier this summer in San Francisco at Jardinière and in New York at David Chang’s Momofuku Nishi . Until now, those were the only places you could get a taste of the cruelty-free burger patty, which is composed entirely of plant-based ingredients. This isn’t something you can whip up in your home kitchen, however. The Impossible Foods burger is a product of pure science. Coconut oil, potato compounds, and even honeydew melon molecules work together with other components to mimic a real beef patty in just about every way. Impossible Foods was founded by Patrick Brown, who also helped create Kite Hill, an artisanal vegan cheese company that produces a wide array of plant-based products that rival ‘he real thing. No stranger to cruelty-free comfort food substitutes, Brown has made it clear that his ultimate mission is to save animals, by making vegan food items so delicious that nobody has an excuse to continue eating meat and dairy products. Via CNET Images via Impossible Foods

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Impossible Foods cruelty-free burger added to more West Coast restaurant menus

National laboratory scales up quantum-dot solar windows that can power entire buildings

October 13, 2016 by  
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Imagine a future where a building’s energy comes from its windows . Many scientists have worked towards that future in the lab, but now five scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratory have demonstrated solar window technology can indeed be scaled up. Instead of palm-sized models, they created solar windows large enough to power entire buildings. “Luminescent solar concentrators (LSCs)” are a key component of the team’s solar windows,” according to a statement from the National Laboratory. LSCs can collect sunlight over large areas, and function as ” light-management devices .” They collect sunshine via colloidal quantum dots , which have beneficial properties such as the ability to withstand light hitting them over and over. Colloidal quantum dots have a “high photostability,” which means sunlight won’t break them down. Related: Revolutionary new solar windows could generate 50 times more power than conventional photovoltaics Fluorophores in the LSCs also help the windows do their job. After light is collected, the chemical compounds re-emit photons. Photovoltaic cells can then collect the photons after they are guided towards the cells via “total internal reflection.” The team used a “doctor-blade” technique to create the LSC windows. This technique is often used in printing to remove excess ink and leave behind a uniform film. The scientists drew on the printing technique to add a thin, uniform layer of a “dot/polymer composite” on large glass slabs that could be put into buildings. Lead scientist Victor Klimov said the solar windows could “turn presently passive building facades into power generation units.” As detailed in their research published online by Nature Energy this week, the scientists hope the use of LSCs could reduce solar power costs. Their solar windows likely wouldn’t need as many ” expensive photovoltaic materials ” as other solar modules. They also noted solar windows would be incredibly beneficial for urban spaces, where there may not be as much room for solar panels. + Los Alamos National Laboratory Images via Los Alamos National Laboratory and Wikimedia Commons

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National laboratory scales up quantum-dot solar windows that can power entire buildings

A beginner’s guide to ethical fashion

August 13, 2016 by  
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Fast fashion is devastating for the environment and for the people who are forced to labor to make those $5 shirts. It also has become so ubiquitous that it can be difficult to avoid. We’ve created this handy guide to ethical fashion, so you can shop ’til you drop and still feel good about your choices.

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A beginner’s guide to ethical fashion

Satva’s organic yoga-inspired clothing supports education for young girls in India

June 30, 2016 by  
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http://youtu.be/tzHkyvcL77c Designed in California, Satva’s line of organic women and children’s clothing stands the test of time. The brand encourages an active, healthy, and less wasteful lifestyle with outfits that double as both yoga and everyday wear. Their price point is competitive too — yoga brands like Lululemon that don’t advertise as using ethically-sourced or organic materials charge nearly twice as much as Satva. Made with GOTS certified organic cotton free of chemicals, heavy metals, or allergens, Satva is also an affordable clothing option for people with skin sensitivities. We tried a couple of items and the cotton is breathable and great for exercising, yet functional enough for day-to-day wear. The yoga-friendly Amber Strap Tank , for instance, also doubles as a warm undershirt in winter. Satva in Sanskrit is defined by purity and a steady, calm and peaceful mind. Puja says: “Satva is an organic lifestyle company that lives it mission to create a balance of people, planet and product. Every eco conscious & socially responsible step is considered on the way to production. We are very proud of the work we can do in the communities of India to bring educational opportunities to young girls and agricultural advancements to our organic cotton farmers- and it’s all possible because of our eco-conscious customers who choose to shop sustainably.” To learn more about Satva and the “Blossom for Change” program, visit them here . + Satva

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Satva’s organic yoga-inspired clothing supports education for young girls in India

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