Eco Chic Solutions. Exquisitely-crafted fashionable items made from eco-responsible natural materials


Quotes + Thoughts | On redefining poverty

If we stop thinking of the poor as victims or as a burden and start recognizing them as resilient and creative entrepreneurs and value conscious consumers, a whole new world of opportunity will open up. ~ C.K. Prahalad

Inspiration: Exela Ventures, Ideas Inspiring Innovation


Quote of the Day | On infant mortality reduction

You can buy a Coca-Cola virtually anywhere in developing countries but in these same places 1 in 5 children die before their 5th birthday from simple, preventable causes like dehydration from diarrhoea.

~ Cola Life

Quote of the Day | On sustainability and poverty alleviation

Sustainable Development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

You cannot achieve environmental security and human development without addressing the basic issues of health and nutrition.

~ Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Prime Minister of Norway (1986 – 1989 and 1990 – 1996) and Director General of World Health Organization (1998 – 2003)

Quote of the Day | On sustainability

Treat the Earth well. It was not given to you by your parents. It was loaned to you by your children.

~ Kenyan Proverb

Inspiration: Spark People

Eco-hero | TOMS’ new sustainable business model

By Dian Hasan | September 29, 2010

I don’t have enough good things to say about Blake Mycoskie, TOMS shoes founder. He’s brought to life a whole new way of looking at business, one that seeks a balance between Profit, People, and Planet. This is the way I view his business model, attaining profit to empower people’s economy and give back to the communities, while lessening the burden on the planet.

TOMS shoes’ model of One-for-One, donating a pair of shoes for every pair purchased is not only commendable, but as he has demonstrated – is a profitable sustainable business model! And that makes it one heck of a COOL COMPANY! Blake’s title on his business card says it all: “Chief Shoe Giver”!

Here’s another story on Blake Mycoskie from The Huffington Post:

Quote of the Day | On the power of the written word

Words are like eggs, when they are hatched they have wings.

~ Traditional Malagasy (Madagascar) proverb

Inspiration: Harinjaka

Adopting a green lifestyle is easier than you think

By Dian Hasan | September 22, 2010

By now, most of us are aware of the importance of being green, but plenty of us (more than we’d like to admit!) often fester about WHAT & HOW EXACTLY do I become green and take better care of our planet.

Here are 10 easy tips on how to do it in a simple, intelligent and doable way… even a kid can do it (well they can always get adult supervision when changing light bulbs!):

1. Switch It Off!
About 35% of all electricity produced is used to run homes. Switch off the lights when you leave a room, and enjoy natural sunlight instead of overhead lights during the day.


2. Make A Change
If every household in America changed just one light bulb to an energy-efficient model, it would reduce global warming pollution by more than 90 billion pounds! Change all your bulbs to low energy models to enjoy lower bills and a better world.

3. Ride A Bike
One of the best investments, for your health, your wallet and the environment. Most people don’t get enough exercise and gas prices are through the roof. Every time you walk or bike instead of driving, you reduce your contribution to global warming by lowering the amount of car exhaust released into the atmosphere.

4. Share A Ride
If walking or biking isn’t possible, carpool or use public transportation. Personal transportation is responsible for up to 50 percent of greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution and more than 45 percent of toxic air emissions!

5. Check The Oil
Keeping oil filters clean and tires properly inflated can increase a vehicle’s fuel efficiency by more than 15%. Almost a third of all trucks and SUVs on the road have at least one under-inflated tire, and any vehicle that’s running inefficiently releases more harmful emissions than a properly maintained one.

6. Plant A Seed
Trees reduce the impact of greenhouse emissions and act as a filter for the atmosphere. Twenty trees can offset the pollution from a car driven 60 miles daily! More green spaces in cities also help to offset the heat island effect, where urban areas are up to 10% hotter than surrounding rural areas.

7. Be A Star
Switch to Energy Star appliances that use less electricity than your old appliances. Save money on your electric bill while you lower your impact on the earth.


8. Fix A Leak
A leaky faucet can waste 50 gallons of water daily and that’s just from a slow drip! Fix your drips and reduce the amount of electricity used to pump water into your home.


9. Teach A Child
Teach your kids the importance of living green and ensure that their world and their children’s world will be less polluted than ours, not more!


10. Be Heard
Contact your local and state government representatives and encourage a review of current environmental policies. Let your representatives know that you support green programs for city projects and green building codes. Be heard and make a difference!

Inspiration: Engage Green

Bottled Water vs. Tap Water ~ who’s the real victor? The answer may surprise you.

By Dian Hasan | September 22, 2010

Americans consume an average of half a billion water bottles a week! Think about it! That’s a LOT OF WATER BOTTLES!!!

In a short film by Annie Leonard (from her “Story of Stuff” project series), she looks at the fascinating (but scary) reality of the bottled water industry, in which she argues the industry is responsible not only for forcing (well ok, creating then…) demand for something that is readily available in most homes… via our water taps! But also for the mountains of waste that ends up in landfills across the globe. Even the plastic water bottle waste is exported to other countries, where parts of it is recycled, and the rest ends up in… you guessed it, landfills!

Watch the movie. It’s not only entertaining but offers plausible solutions, and encourages every one to return to tap water.

Inspiration: Timberland Earthkeepers Blog

Nature Needs Heroes, a cheeky campaign to promote recycling

By Dian Hasan | September 22, 2010

Timberland, the US brand synonymous with outdoor active lifestyle that celebrates ruggedness, is already closely associated with enjoying nature. Maybe not always in an eco-responsible way, so the New Hampshire-based company came up with an ad campaign that pokes fun at just how far an “eco-lover” would go to save the planet from one more trash item. In this case it’s a empty plastic water bottle. Watch it! It’s both inspiring and humorous. Let’s hope Timberland’s message gets across… and of course you’d want to do all the “water bottle chasing while maneuvering through the treacherous terrain” in Timberland boots and attire!!

Timberland’s new “Nature Needs Heroes” TVC campaign to promote their new Earthkeepers eco-friendly line of footwear.

Inspiration: Timberland’s Earthkeeper Blog

Etsy ~ an online global marketplace and community that connects craft makers and buyers

By Dian Hasan | September 19, 2010

Etsy: a thriving eBay-like aggregator of handmade crafts sold by their makers.

Etsy has a million members who buy from 185,000 artists, 96% of them women. Each day, 4,000 new customers and 400 new artists join (2008 data).

This is a lot more than a movement, it’s a necessary and fundamental shift in the way commerce works.
Rob Kalin, Etsy founder

  1. What inspired you to create Etsy? We want to create new ways to shop that are only possible using the Web as a medium. The industrial revolution and consolidation of corporations are making it hard for independent artisans to distribute their goods. We want to change this.
  2. How long did it take you, from start to finish, to get Etsy off the ground? When did you launch?Rob, Chris, and Haim built Etsy in two and a half months. We launched on June 18 th, 2005.
  3. How did you get funding for the project? We have been funded by a pair of angel investors here in Brooklyn.
  4. How do you sustain the usage costs of Esty? We charge a flat 10 cent listing fee and a 3.5% sales fee.
  5. (more…)