Latest Pure Design Posts

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Sans automobile - what' a girl avec bump et toddler to do in Weybridge?

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Morning Lovelies!

Here I sit, a slightly overcast Wednesday morning in Weybridge contemplating activities for the day ahead, albeit without my trusty automobile. My lovely husband wanted to get an early start so rather than train it to work, he has opted for my wheels instead.

He did at least remember to take the buggy out the boot bless him, so we have some wheels available to us. Being 7 months pregnant now, with a toddler in the 91st percentile for weight (she's gorgeous, just a solidly built half dutch girly), I am a little daunted by getting about without my car but always up for a challenge. So what is a girl to do in Weybridge sans wheels avec bump et la bebe?

First off is the journey into and back from town... Its a good 30 min walk into town from our abode, which I have done several times but mainly in my first trimester. I'm now feeling the bump, the breathlessness, and the Braxton Hicks, so a little apprehensive about how far I'll get. I am sure I have seen bus stops along the way, so I'm thinking I could always hop on a bus home (that's the uphill bit!). Although I shall have to raid the piggy bank for bus change. Last time I went on the bus I remember being shocked by the sack of silver change required to get me from A to B, surely a taxi is the same price???

So, on the basis, I make it into to town what awaits me there? Well i can always get a FREE Latte from Starbucks today with my name on it - courtesy of their 14th March 'we are personalising your coffee from now on' campaign. Quick, run, get yours now!

So far my googling has turned up a mums and bumps NCT group meeting this morning above Weybridge library (every weds morning 10-12) - which I'm thinking could be a very good place to meet some local mums.... Alas, most of my mummy friends from first baby have all gone back to work - sigh. None of this stay-at-home malarkey it seems. I thought there were supposed to be more of us modern homemakers - where art thou?

Mums and bumps could also tie in very well with my plan to get some enlightening books on how to introduce a new sibling to the family. Having cuddled some friends tiny babes recently in view of my own 15 month old - I realise she isn't best pleased with mummy's affections being lavished on another tiny human being. Hmmm. Any tips from second time mums on introducing a new baby to the family are most welcome.

We of course have the compulsory visit to Waitrose planned to pick up yet more milk and something yummy for dinner, and I will be swinging past the various charity shops to see what they have for my growing girl. It's only been a few months since the last clothes outlay and legs and arms are already protruding. I guess its the feeding that does it.

And you know what, I think I might just stop there, seems like plenty to be getting on with for the morning. Although Space NK might be worth a visit. They have such lovely stuff and I think the bump is telepathically telling me to buy myself something indulgent for Mother's Day this Sunday.

And most importantly, I need to get home for that afternoon nap I am soooooooooo going to be having!

Wish me luck!

Check out this link for more info on what's on for mums and babes in Weybridge... All About WeybridgeTweet the Post

Monday, 31 August 2009

August Bank Holiday Sale 20% OFF till 04/09/09!

Tweet this Post 20% OFF throughout the Pure Design store from now until 11pm on Friday 4th September. Not only that, for existing and new members we're still offering free shipping - offer extended until Friday 4th September!

To become a member, sign up now for free and receive discount codes in your welcome email. So better hurry and and check out the store for some bargains.

Happy shopping!

Elaine & Shelley x

Smokin Hot!
Award-winning Firehose Belts from EaKo
Check out the discounts you can now get on the EaKo range of belts and bags made from fire hose that would have ended up in UK land fill. We've spotted Cameron Diaz and singer Justin Rose wearing one! We're also proud to announce that EaKo are finalists in the Good Entrepreneur 2009 competition which awards ethical and ecological ideas and businesses. We're keeping our fingers crossed that they win.

Summer Lovin
Still got a few late summer weddings to go to and not found the dress? Well your luck is in because now you can get 20% off Julia Smith dresses at Pure Design. If you have the dress but need the hat then click to see Julia's great hairpieces.

All Things Bright and
Ann Ellis transforms the everyday plastic carrier bag into unique, bright and eye catching jewellery. Check out the Faux Boa, Pin Wheel, Chrysalis and Pebble ranges of earrings, necklaces and bracelets.

And don't forget......

There's our free shipping for members extended till Friday 4th September! It's so easy. Available on all orders over £25.00. If you're not already a member subscribe now for free and receive details of the promotional code.Tweet the Post

Thursday, 6 August 2009

Meet our Friends: Delectable Natural Bodycare From GreenOreNatural

Tweet this Post GreenOreNatural share Pure Design’s mission to raise awareness of ecological and ethical issues.

GreenOreNatural’s body care is natural, SLS and paraben free. Their range of Sow Tomorrow soaps are beautifully packaged in fully biodegradable seed paper. And because Suzanna and Kevin developed GreenOreNatural to change their own health for the better, they are convinced you will feel the benefit of their all natural body care too.

August '09 Pure Design Members Offer:

Pure Design Members will be automatically entered into this month’s draw to win a natural and organic bodycare pack from GreenOreNatural containing Sow Tomorrow organic soaps in zingy lemon, sweet orange and grapefruit and ginger crush and dawn mist organic bath oil. The draw will take place on 01/09/09 and the winner’s will be contacted by email and will be announced in our September newsletter. Not yet a Pure Design member? Subscribe now for free.

GreenOreNatural is a home-grown business, established in 2006 with eco entrepreneurs Kevin Moseley and Suzanna Miles at its heart. Like many entrepreneurial start-ups GreenOreNaturals came about because of a problem Suazanna was facing and that she couldn’t find an existing solution to. In 2005 she was diagnosed with ME. Suzanna was determined to do what she could to maintain her health and support her immune system. She was advised to reduce the levels of toxins in her diet as the less ‘invaders’ your body has to fight off, the more energy it will have to support the rest of your body to function in a healthy way. Not only did she take stock of her diet, eliminating obvious toxins such as alcohol and caffeine, Suzanna also looked at hidden toxins that might be harming her body by stealth, such as chemicals found in everyday body care products like shampoo. It is quite shocking just how much we absorb through our skins and how little thought most of us give to the chemicals in the pots and potions on our dressers. Our skins are permeable; think about how nicotine or hormone patches work, and how quickly chemicals are absorbed into our bloodstream. Yikes!

When Suzanna struggled to find truly natural products free from toxins, she and Kevin (her partner and a qualified pharmacist) decided that they weren’t prepared to compromise Suzanna’s health. And so created a range of new and natural soaps, lotions and scents that were all natural and they could trust and GreeOreNaturals was born.

The GreenOreNatural collection….

Sow Tomorrow – naturally scented soaps and plantable packaging

These naturally scented organic soaps are SLS and paraben free. The inner wrapper of Sow Tomorrow soaps is designed to be planted after use by following the planting instructions on the outer sleeve. A percentage of profits go to one of the following charities, The World Land Trust, Tusk, Send a Cow, Acorn & Bath Cats & Dogs Home.

And if you are new to organic skin care like I was you are probably wondering what exactly is so bad about parabens and SLS…

Here’s the science bit….
Synthetic parabens can be found in everyday products around the home, toothpaste, shampoo, body lotions etc and they are used as additives to add colour or flavour or as a preservative to reduce spoilage. Although parabens have been used for many years, of late they have fallen under greater scrutiny and have been linked to damaging health effects such as premature ageing of the skin, increasing oestrogen which affects female and male reproductive organs and most frightening the possible increase risk of breast cancer. SLS (Sodium Laryl Sulphate) is a detergent that started it’s career as an industrial degreasant and garage floor cleaner. Yikes again!

Organic First
Wherever possible, GreenOreNaturals source organically certified raw ingredients for every product they manufacture. Where this is not possible they select high quality, wild harvested, fair trade and/or local ingredients instead. They do not use SLS or Parabens in their skincare and soaps and generally what's good for you is good for the planet.

GreenOreNaturals’ only use preservatives that are accepted in organic standards. To ensure their products are as natural as they can make them, they use the absolute minimum preservative that would be effective. Suzanna told us “there are a number of products out there that claim to be totally natural but when you check the labeling it isn’t totally clear which and how much preservative is being used. We make sure our labels are clear and easily understandable, so our customers can be certain of what they are using.”

This Month Pure Design Member’s Offer:
Win natural and organic starter pack from GreenOreNatural containing Sow Tomorrow Citroheaven organic soaps in zingy lemon, sweet orange and grapefruit and ginger crush and dawn mist organic bath oil. All Pure Design members will be entered into August's prize draw. Take advantage of this and other great offers now! Subscribe now for free.Tweet the Post

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Vote for an idea that will change the world!

Tweet this Post Watch Elaine pitch her idea for ethical eco design and fashion to the CNBC dragons. The closing date is 31st July, so share your comments of support and votes now - they will make a difference.

If you want to see the design and fashion industry change for the better - please support Elaine's pitch.

“Anita Roddick is my inspiration. I want Pure Design to be to the design world, what The Body Shop is to the beauty industry”

If you haven't watched Elaine's "Pure Design - Ethical design retailer" pitch watch it now.

The individual named “The Good Entrepreneur of 2009” will receive a prize package valued at more than €250,000 in support of their ‘good idea’. The package includes exposure on CNBC as well as comprehensive business support from Allianz.

The finalists will then be filmed to feature in a four-part televised series on CNBC, documenting the progress of each person. In the series finale, a panel of high profile judges will reveal the winner of the competition. The series will be broadcast across Europe, the Middle East and Africa and in Asia during the autumn of 2009.

Watch Elaine's pitch for a more ethical and eco design industry now.Tweet the Post

Sunday, 12 July 2009

New Designers 2009 - I spy with my little eco eye...

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2009 New Designers in Islington opened its doors to the public this Thursday, and for the fourth year running I was there to see what promising new graduate talents are in store for the UK design industry, and of course my radar was set to sustainable!

What is special about this design trade show?

With over 3,500 of the best new design graduates represented for the two weeks the show runs, New Designers is definitely one of the highlights of my design calendar. Not only is the quality of the work on show fantastic, the buzz about the place is great, and the designers are overwhelmingly positive and all eager to talk about their work. Week one exhibitors include contemporary applied arts, ceramics and glass, jewellery and precious metalwork graduates, and the ‘One Year On’ exhibit tracks award winners from the year before. Week two includes product & furniture design, visual communications and spatial design, and as above ‘One Year On’ of award winners from 2008 in these disciplines.

How to spot the green goods?
The irony when searching for new eco design products and talents for Pure Design online boutique, gallery and gift shop, is that Pure Design is a design-led sustainable company – so we don’t go looking for accessories that look green we go looking for design pieces that have the ‘ah’ factor and then we ask the designer the deal breaker “are your products eco or ethical?” So it is actually quite hard to ‘spot’ eco products in a way. In my view the best eco design does not scream out “I’m green and good, pick me, pick me” – it is quietly and confidently stylish and doesn’t need to flaunt its virtues to be noticed.

Over the past few years of visiting design fairs and exhibitions and interviewing designers, I have learnt which disciplines of craft and design tend to score high and low on the eco scale. There is often little eco joy to be found in acrylic - although I have met several designers trying to reduce, reuse or replace the use of plastic, for example opting to use plant based bio-resin alternatives. Ceramics and glass are usually not particularly eco, and sadly many of the textile designers I speak to do not use natural or non-toxic dyes. However, I have been pleasantly surprised when I have been proven wrong and a designer has pointed out that they have found a way to turn a material on its head.

This year, with limited time and a few hundred stalls to get round I decided to try the top to bottom approach, so duly started on the top floor and set off into the world of ceramics….

Now I have to admit I do usually move quite swiftly through this section as to date, with the exception of Sarah Jerath of Sustain Ceramics who incorporates recycled car window glass and reclaimed china in her work, I haven’t encountered much in the way of eco ceramics. However, I am ever hopeful and would be delighted to be proven wrong, so answers on a postcard please if you have any tips on eco ceramics!

Tomorrow’s News Jewellery

Having exhausted the ceramics section quite quickly I moved into the contemporary applied arts section and immediately spotted some jewellery that intrigued me. Sidling up to the cabinet for a closer look and to read the designers statement, I saw the magic words ‘eco range’ – bingo! I am pleased to say Julie Linn the designer was also nearby and having spotted my obvious interest she very kindly chatted through her range, ideas and ambition of creating a fully recyclable range of recycled paper jewellery. Julie’s range recognises the transient nature of fashion and offers an affordable and sustainable product that can reinvent and recycle itself with every new season. In my opinion a great alternative to the endless new ranges of bright plastic or cheap metal jewellery the high street retailers seem to be awash with at the moment.

Intrigue & Attics
I had also received an inside tip from an ex-colleague (from crafts charity The Making) that there were some intriguing flying light bulbs at the Falmouth college stall which I couldn’t resist seeking out and am very glad I did.

Curious, intriguing, humorous and a little Tim Burtonesque are just some of the adjectives I would pick. Luckily before I had a chance to meddle and break the delicate workings of these automata pieces, Richard Hackney the designer came over and explained that all of the parts were salvaged treasures from his grandfather’s loft. As a self-confessed attic/second hand /antique shop addict, I found these little reclaimed sculptures instantly likeable and how great that they were the result of a dusty rummage through family treasures.

I then descended onto the main floor of the centre – awash with textile swatches, banners of printed paper draped floor to ceiling, upholstered gilded armchairs in bespoke textiles and eye-catching screen printed dresses and fashion designs.

Amongst the sea of textiles, the next promising designer I met was Jenny Clarke a graduate from Nottingham Trent University. Jenny carries out intricate hand embroidery on reclaimed textiles and second hand clothes and unlike one of her chosen subject matters ‘Marmite’ I didn’t think it was a love or hate affair. I really liked Jenny’s work – the concept was simple but the application of her craftsmanship and creativity inspiring, and I am sure her work would appeal to a wide range of audiences. And amongst all the super modern technologies, trends and textiles, Jenny’s work showed that even the very traditional applied crafts such as embroidery have a place and a market in our style obsessed but eco 21st century world.

Elaine Dutton is the founder and Director of Pure Design, contemporary ethical design online, and an award-winning social entrepreneur.

Pure Design sell beautifully designed and made environmentally friendly gifts, eco fashion and contemporary jewellery, and decorative arts and accessories for you and your home. And because Pure Design only sell products that are ethically and ecologically sourced you can feel good about shopping with us too.

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Thursday, 2 July 2009

Go Green Team! 10th July Green Britain Day is almost here...

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10th July 2009 - "Green Britain Day" marks the launch of Team Green Britain. The aim is to have London leading the world on climate change by 2012. Whether you're an eco-beginner or an eco-warrior, you can get involved.

And we will be doing our bit by hosting a special ‘Pure Design Team’ and would love it if you joined us. In fact we are also looking for a great team name so please email us your ideas. ‘Eco Angels’ is the current winner! We’ll be having a ‘swishing party or two’ (swopping clothes) as I have my eye on Victoria Pendleton’s fabulous Wayne Hemingway dress! Watch a video on Victoria and Wayne Hemmingway on our YouTube Favourites. We will also be getting involved in lots of green activities and sharing everything we learn about how to lead a greener life with you. It's also a great way to meet like-minded people, so don't be shy - get involved and help us make the most of our team!

As part of my personal commitment to a greener life I am turning veggie for a week in the run up to Green Britain Day. Which is no mean feat for a BBQ and bacon butty loving girl!

Did you know The UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation has estimated that meat production accounts for nearly a fifth of global greenhouse gas emissions? And I recently read in The Guardian that vegetarians are less likely to develop cancer than meat eaters; so hopefully my week will do my body some good too. And as I tend to do all the cooking, my husband (who is Dutch - which equals carnivore) will involuntarily be vegging out with me. So that's two people living a greener life already!

If you do want to get involved all you have to do is first sign up on the Green Team website, and let us know that you'd like to be part of our team by dropping us an email, or by subscribing to our newsletter and opting in to receive our news and updates and to be a member of our Green Team when prompted. Subscribe now!

In a few weeks time we will be in touch with more information about the team and how you can get more involved.

And as a wider member of Team Green Britain, you'll also get the opportunity to win a day at the London 2012 games....

Go Green, Go Team!Tweet the Post

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Celebrity Eco Chic! Cameron Diaz models EaKo's Firehose Belt

Tweet this Post Cameron Diaz was photographed in US Vogue by Mario Testino wearing EaKo's firehose belt.

Lead singer Jarvis from Phoenix Rose wears EaKo's Big yellow...

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