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Colors of Nature

Oil paints, watercolor paints, crayons, pastels, and kids’ paints. “Our paints are made exclusively with plant-based ingredients and mineral-based pigments, creating an earth-friendly and safe paint that won’t compromise your health, our planet or your artwork. Colors of Nature’s oil paints will dry to a smooth, hard and durable finish in less time than conventional oil paints.” Pigments are also sold separately.

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This is basically a pillow website, but they also sell fabric by the yard, throws and bedcovers, pillow inserts, and floor cushions. “…made only from natural, non-toxic fabrics. Globally inspired throw pillows include ikats, suzanis, wax prints, organic cotton, vintage, batiks, indigo cloth and tie-dyes. The fabrics are woven only from natural, non-toxic fibers, using mostly ancient techniques and low impact dyes. A story, a person and a culture are behind every fiber. Most decorative pillow cover fabrics are woven on handlooms and the artisans are paid fair wages for their skills. Decorative pillow inserts are made with kapok fiber filling and organic cotton shells. Kapok fiber is natural, organic, pesticide free, non-allergenic, mold and mildew resistant, lightweight, odorless, silky, sustainable, washable and non-toxic. All inserts are made in the U.S.A.” And I have to mention colorful vintage sari parasols that are a must if you live in a sunny climate. This site is ALL about natural fiber fabrics and doing creative things with them.

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Moon Spoons

I first found MoonSpoons in a handmade crafts store and bought one of their wooden tongs because I love the nature-inspired designs: stars, the moon, leaves, flowers and more. Their new line features designs based in architectural elements. Their spoons and other utensils are made in Kempton PA of solid cherry wood native to Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey. They “finish” their utensils with a food grade mineral oil but spoons can also be purchased “unfinished”.

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Allegheny Treenware

A large selection of wooden kitchen utensils for everyday use. “All products are MADE IN THE USA, with quality West Virginia hardwoods that, if taken care of, will serve your cooking needs for years to come. Spoons, measuring cups and spoons, forks, knives ,strainers, flippers, serving utensils, spreaders, stirrers, salad utensils, tongs, and much more. Good, sturdy, simple, useful designs.

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Naked Botanicals Apothecary

Insect repellent made from organic ingredients, “field-tested to repel mosquitoes, ticks and biting insects for up to 4-8 hours YET FEELS LIKE YOU’RE WEARING NOTHING. We take a bold, citrus bouquet of lemongrass, citronella plus energizing peppermint then round it out with woody lavender and cedarwood notes to create a naturally-occurring insect repellent in a signature intoxicating scent. Yum.Not only does it create a Cloak of Invisibility against biting insects, but the witch hazel-based elixir also refreshes and purifies your skin in high heat and humidity. ”

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Ancient Organics

Ghee “unlike any other you will find on the market today. We take great care and consideration in the ingredient selection and preparation method.” Small batches cooked over an open flame, produced in a peaceful and mantra-infused kitchen, made under the influence of the bright and waxing moon to amplify the elemental healing qualities and taste of ghee. “We make our ghee from the unique dairy of Northern California. The native wildflowers and sweet grasses of the coastal prairie provide a terroir unlike any other part of America. We are committed to sourcing our dairy from the grass fed and pastured cows of this region. We produce each and every month to highlight the changes in pasture as reflected in the cows diet and celebrate the seasonal changes in the butter and ultimately our ghee.”

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Aloha Organic Fruit

Though the name sounds Hawaiian, this is actually an organic peach farm in Colorado, that brings the “aloha” tradition of putting their hearts into careful stewardship for good health of the land, life and water. They grow 14 varieties of organic peaches, which allows them to harvest continuously from late June through mid-September. They sell only Colorado-grown USDA certified organic fruit.

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How I Removed Mystery Odor from Apartment


Last week I wrote about how I helped a client furnish their new apartment with toxic free furniture.

This week I want to tell you how we removed a very strong odor from the apartment, even though we couldn’t determine exactly what it was.

It seemed to me that it was some kind of citrus oil-based product and I thought it had been used on the wood floors.

My client hired a cleaning lady to work with me. She brought a “steam mop” and we used a brand new set of clean pads to mop the floor so as to not bring any odors in from other places. This worked really well just by itself to reduce the odor, but it did not eliminate it completely.

Then we used EnviroKlenz Everyday Odor Eliminator according to the instructions on the bottle. We mixed it with water in a spray bottle and sprayed it all over the floors. We waited 15 minutes, and then used the steam mop again to remove it. This greatly lessened the odor.

Then we did the whole process again.

Each time the odor was less and less.

We also did this procedure in a closet that had a perfume smell and it worked there too.

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False Claim From Mattress Maker


What’s wrong with this picture?

There’s something known as “false and misleading advertising” and it’s all over this snip from the Tuft & Needle website.

First, it gives the impression that Tuft & Needle mattresses are nontoxic and even substantiates that claim by telling you that they meet the GREENGUARD GOLD and OEKO-TEX STANDARD 100 certifications.

But Tuft & Needle mattresses still contain toxic chemicals. I’ll tell you how I know in a minute.

But first, while they are certified, I couldn’t find one word on their website about their materials.

And while they meet the GREENGUARD GOLD and OEKO-TEX STANDARD 100, these standards do not test for all chemicals. The bigger problem, however, is their standards are not very stringent. So it’s very easy to pass the standard.

I’m often surprised at some of the products that pass the current GREENGUARD GOLD standard. Since GREENGUARD became part of Underwriters Lab, their standards have changed. Mattresses are now given GREENGUARD GOLD certifications that contain materials which I cannot approve, such as polyurethane foam, chemical flame barriers, and, in crib mattresses, PVC covers that emit phthalates.

Tuft & Needle is NOT the first mattress to be given the GREENGUARD GOLD certification. That occurred years ago. They were perhaps the first mattress to get the GREENGUARD GOLD certification in the mattress-in-a-box category, but that’s not what they say.

But here’s what really makes this claim false and misleading.

And here’s a video of chemical off gassing of Casper mattress.

And here’s another video measuring the TVOCs of a Nest mattress.

Now all three of these videos are measuring emissions from a brand new mattress that has been in a plastic bag. Those emissions are very concentrated. But they do show there are emissions. And anyone can get a TVOC meter and measure the emissions from these mattresses.

A couple of weeks ago I opened two Happsy mattress-in-a-box mattresses and there were no emissions. I had a TVOC meter in my hand and the TVOC reading in the room didn’t change when I opened the mattress packaging and laid the mattresses on the bed.

T&N hasn’t raised the standards, as they claim. That claim belongs to Happsy, the first certified organic mattress in the mattress-in-a-box category. And certified organic is less toxic than GREENGARD GOLD. That’s a fact.

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