Thank you to Everyone for Celebrating with us!

photoby Lisa, Operations and Outreach Associate. 

Last week, we celebrated our 5th birthday with a fundraiser for Miriam’s Kitchen.  It was great! The event had a great turnout, and everyone had fun bidding on the items in the auction.

What I loved the most was getting the chance to talk with everyone.  I met some of the people who donated items, and others who were just there to support Herban Lifestyle.  It was great to talk with people who shared my passion for handcrafted and handmade things.

We especially want to thank all of our generous donors – Catherinette, The Green Mop, Florence Novarro, Moonlight Bindery, Tranquil Space, Third + Grace, Holland Cox, Wildflower WrapUps, Catoctin Creek Distillery,  Divine Chocolate, Tigerflight, Alexander Castro Cycling Consulting, Tesla, Bouquets and More, Thankfully Yours, Andi Ipaktchi, Wunderaround, The Happy Tart, Jenn Crovato, Clare and Don’s Beach Shack, Arlington Automotive, Sunflower Bakery, and Miriam’s Kitchen.

Thank you to everyone for celebrating with five years with us!

Herban Lifestyle’s 5th Birthday Party/Fundraiser for Miriam’s Kitchen 10/16

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Hillyer Art Space, in DuPont Circle

Five years! Time definitely flies when you enjoy what you’re doing! As a heartfelt thanks to all those who have helped us reach this milestone, we invite you to join us in celebrating Herban Lifestyle’s Birthday! The evening will consist of food, drink, cake and great company. We will also be hosting a silent auction, with all proceeds benefitting Miriam’s Kitchen, and featuring great products and services from our generous business partners. The event will be held at the very cool Hillyer Art Space in DuPont Circle.

Our Silent Auction prizes  include a week-long stay at Localita Paradiso in Umbria, a  whisky tasting and tour by Catoctin Creek, a Three-Class Pass for Tranquil Space YogaTesla priority test drive and merchandise gift set, a terrarium and workshop gift certificate from Bouquets & More, original illustrations by Paris-based artist Andi Ipatkchi, eco-friendly house cleaning by The Green Mop, a basket of sweet treats from Divine Chocolate, and much more!

Here are photos of some of the items donated by DC artisans:

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Miriam the Owl, made from repurposed wool, by Tigerflight (voted Best Local Crafter 2013 by CityPaper readers!)

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Upcycled tea cup gift wrapped soap set by Wildflower WrapUps (available soon in the DC area)

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Lady wallet and passport case made from reclaimed leather by Catherinette Leather Works

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Handblown glass vase by Wunderaround

Miriam’s Kitchen (which is celebrating its 30th anniversary this month!) is committed to ending chronic homelessness in DC by creating meaningful connections with chronically homeless individuals, placing them in permanent supportive housing, and ensuring they have the necessary support to remain in housing.

For more information, or to claim a free ticket, visit our Eventbrite page https://herbanlifestylebirthdayfun.eventbrite.com

Redefining Crafting: Eco-Friendly Yarn

The following was originally posted at Redefining Eco and was cross posted here with their permission. 

Over the holidays I picked up knitting.  So far I’m a clumsy knitter, constantly dropping stitches and paying more attention to to the television than my knitting needles, but I’m working at it!  My local fabric store carries hundreds of different options for sustainable knitting, so I thought that I would share a few ideas below to turn your latest crochet project into a sustainable work of art.

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Photo courtesy of adiything’s flickr stream.

Why chose eco-friendly yarn?   Many synthetic yarns are plastic and chemical based — so not only do they not feel as soft as the real thing, they are derived from petroleum and tons of chemicals.  Some knitters might prefer vegan-friendly yarns and stay away from wool, and others might try to reincorporate gently used yarn from old sweaters into new outfits.  You can find yarn made from bamboo, corn, andorganic cotton.  You can also find yarn made from old plastic bottles, or old plastic bags.

Knit be Nimble even suggests to make your own knitting needles from chopsticks or wooden dowels.  If you are inspired to make your own knitting needles, let us know – we’ll post a picture of your knitting tools on our blog!

Are there any great eco-friendly yarns that you swear by?  Do you have any hot tips on great projects?  Let us know by posting a comment below!

Introducing Herban Crafts: Crafting a Better World!

Karen Lee of EcoKaren and I have partnered on a new social enterprise, Herban Crafts, that will offer a job and social skills training program to unemployed women in transitional housing in the DC and NY areas. To support our programming, Herban Crafts will sell DIY kits for various types of earth-friendly products. The kits will be manufactured, in part, by the trainees as part of their job skills training.

The first set of kits will teach people how to make their own organic bath and body products, and we will be adding additional types of kits in the future. We believe teaching people how to make their own products is empowering, and we also see it as an opportunity to teach people about the importance and joys of working with organic, fair trade, recycled and repurposed materials.

Our mission is multi-fold: to promote self-sufficiency while also supporting the health and wellbeing of people and the planet; and to help address the problem of unemployment, a contributing factor to homelessness, by offering a hands-on job and social skills training program for unemployed women living in transitional housing.
You can find more information about the company and our mission on our IndieGoGo campaign page where you can also pledge to help fund our initial production of kits. Suggested donations start at just $5.00, and there are lots of great rewards for our sponsors! And if this is something that you believe in as much as we do, please help spread the word to your friends on social media and via e-mail. And we hope you will follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest for updates!
For an idea of our overall mission and plan, you can view our presentation from the 2012 Global Health and Innovation Conference held at Yale University on April 22, 2012.

Join Us for Ballston Arts & Crafts Market Opening Day 5/12!

Please join us on Saturday, May 12th, from 10:00am to 4:00pm, for the first Ballston Arts & Crafts Market of the 2012 season! It’s a great opportunity to pick up some handmade goodies for Mother’s Day :) The market will be held at Welburn Square, 901 North Taylor Street, between North Stuart and North 9th Streets (across the street from the Ballston Metro).

The first month’s market will be filled with uniquely wonderful handcrafted pieces perfect for those last-minute Mother’s Day gifts! The selection will include elegant jewelry by Sarah Cecelia, funky photography by Kosmoceratops – Art Squared, adorable critter plushes by RedStar East, graphic leather belts and dog collars by Jon Wye, organic bath & body products by Herban Lifestyle (yay!) and much more.

For opening day, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training will be on hand with information and an artist raffle to benefit their charitable organization. There will also be music by singer/songwriter, René Moffat (noon – 2 PM)
and free cool tote bags from Luri & Wilma, DC’s eco-chic online magazine.

Herban Lifestyle display from the 2011 Ballston Arts & Crafts Market

Held on the second Saturdays of every month from May through October, the 2012 Market dates are: May 12, June 9, July 14, August 11, September 8 & October 13. For more information, a complete vendor list, updates and a glimpse of the Market’s art, check out the Ballston Arts & Crafts Market blog.