Wrapping Christmas Presents with CareChristmas gifts are a wonderful opportunity to show your appreciation for loved ones, but why not show your appreciation for the environment as well?Here are some nifty eco-friendly ideas to wrap your gifts that will not cause needless waste this holiday season!Fabric for the Win – Japanese FuroshikiA Japanese style of wrapping utilizes fabric for an environmentally friendly gift wrap.Furushiki is a Japanese art form in which cloth is used to transport goods. Furushiki means “bath spread” because the cloths originated as mats in bath houses and were used to carry supplies.Despite leveling off in use with the arrival of plastic bags, there has been a renewed interest in the art of cloth wrapping with the increased awareness in environmental issues. This has gradually made its way into Western culture as a creative and artistic way to gift wrap items.T...
Strong Oaks Woodshop – Front Royal, VirginiaMike Schmiedicke was a normal guy with a white-collar job for many years. Doing web programming and database development meant he sat at a desk and stared at a computer day in and day out. But when he came home, he went into his garage and he built things. “It was my therapy,” Mike said. “My wife and I had a deal. She would bring me a kids’ catalog with a learning tower or rocking horse in it and ask me to make it. Once I did, I could spend that money we saved on my collection of carpentry tools instead.”Back in 2001, starting a wood shop out of a hobby was nothing more than a hope and a dream – but the seeds of an idea had already begun. Mike came up with a plan to gradually transition from web development into woodworking full-time. In 2008, he started selling things on Etsy – he was actually one of the first furniture makers to ut...
When you think of a “living fence,” what comes to mind? Perhaps a vision of towering evergreen trees, their branches swaying lightly in the wind. Maybe you picture a flock of cardinals, singing as they hop around a festive holly bush. Either of these scenarios would be right on track, because living fences give any landscape the perfect blend of diverse ecology and lively splendor!Natural fencing is very beneficial both for the homeowner and the environment. Fences made of shrubs, trees, and other such resources comprise a natural “edge habitat,” where various types of wildlife can find shelter and food. Living fences effectively keep away unwanted guests. Natural barriers also add charm to any landscape, and come in a range of beautiful, functional varieties. No matter what you are looking to add to your lawn – tall, wide trees, a short and neatly-kept hedgerow, or sprawling bushes...
Craft breweries are not just for millennials. They are becoming the new “pub” house – a gathering place for young and old alike. “Breweries have become third places, outside the home and office, where Americans congregate,” said Mike Stein, a beer researcher employed by DC Brau Brewing Company in Washington D.C., in an article for the latest Smithsonian Magazine. “They are gathering places that are in many ways replacing things like libraries and recreation centers within a neighborhood,” George Homewood, director of planning and community development for Norfolk, VA, said in the same article. “I read a quote – and I don’t remember from where – that you put in a microbrewery and a tasting room and if you’re not careful a whole neighborhood will grow up.”What Is a Craft Brewery?According to the Brewers Association for Small and Independent Craft Brewers, a craft brewery must be...
Welcome to your guide on how to turn your garden into a
masterpiece with the help of garden art. Pulling from traditional elements and mixing with modern style - your garden is your canvas and garden
art is your paint. The beauty of turning your garden into a work of art is that
by doing so, you are making your space unique and original.Choosing Your ThemeDepending on what type of garden you already have, you will
most likely want to incorporate your art pieces into the already existing
theme. How do you choose a theme? Horticultural
expert Barbara Damrosch says,
“There are no hard and fast rules, but if you have a modern house or a very old-fashioned
house, what will compliment it?” Try
to keep in mind what your foundation is and plan accordingly.Here are a few themes to consider:If you like a whimsical garden feel, then go for a fantasy
garden. You can achieve this by filling your garden wit...