The Clean Hippie

Seeking the sustainable life in New York City

New fave blog: The Zero Waste Home February 25, 2010

Filed under: Apartment,going too far,Tips — Alden @ 4:37 pm
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This woman is AWESOME. She’s like a no-waste superhero! I’ll never be as waste free as her. (She brings her own collapsible cup to parties. Mmm, maybe not.) But her tips are great.

Like this post on cleaning your house. I bookmarked that mofo.


I KNOW I KNOW, I’m a hypocrite February 22, 2010

I don’t bike. I don’t compost. I often forget to unplug electronics. And in some cases, I don’t unplug at all.

I think all these things are important, I just don’t do them. And I’m just like a large chunk of the population apparently.

Via Tree Hugger: A study done by the Yale University Project on Climate Change. Blue represents the people who think the eco-friendly action is important and do it. Grey is people who don’t think it’s important. And red? Those are the people who think it’s important, but fail to do it.

I mean, this doesn’t really surprise me. As much as we want to make changes, sometimes it can be really hard. Biking to work requires a bike, a fairly short commute, and a safe bike lane or trail – three things many Americans just don’t have. And some of this stuff is just so annoying.

Even though I fall in the red area of some of these, I’m making progress. I do do these things:

  • Use public transportation. (Except when I’m in Maryland.)
  • Buy locally grown food. (When I get around to it.)
  • Use reusable shopping bags. (Always!)
  • Reduce trash (Somewhat.)
  • Carry own beverage container (Yup.)
  • Recycle at home (Of course.)
  • Conserve water. (Not really, no.)
  • Raise thermostat in summer and lower it in winter. (Ha, if I had a thermostat. I regulate through opening windows.)
  • Reduce new purchases. (I opted out of Gilte Group. Happy?)
  • Reuse things. (I try!)
  • Wash laundry in cold water. (Dunno, that’s not an option on our building’s machine.)
  • Turn off unneeded lights. (Sure, who doesn’t?)

Look, being sustainable can be really hard. Especially when so many times you feel like you are swimming against the tide. But in the words of Dory: “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming, swimming, swimming…”


Naya Shoes are pretty darn cute. (And green!) February 6, 2010

Filed under: Food,Green fashion,Places to go,Products — Alden @ 2:33 am
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I had the pleasure of being invited to a Tweetup last week,  at a little bar called The Ten Bells on the Lower East Side. It was to showcase a new line of shoes called Naya.

First of all, let me just say that I have to get back to The Ten Bells. You could walk past its unassuming front several times (like I did) because there is no sign out front. But once you get inside, it’s welcoming. Small, but welcoming. Oh, and it serves organic wine and and what looks like delish food, including local cheeses from raw milk. When I walked in out of the softly falling snow, it was bustling with patrons sitting around the bar and gossiping over the tables. Impressive for a Tuesday, for sure.

At the back of the bar, I was welcomed by representatives of the brand, who showed me some styles. To be honest, a few were a little dowdy – no stilettos here. But once I learned that Naya is the daughter of Naturalizer, that made a little more sense. Still, in the dim light of the bar, I picked out a few shoes that I will be coming back for next fall, like a pair of chocolate brown, knee-high boots with a medium heel and tassels.

Honestly, it’s nice to find even passably pretty shoes that are eco-friendly. Last time I tried an “eco-friendly” store, it was vegan. I hate vegan shoes. They’re just plastic fakes with an extra 75 bucks tacked on. Also, I have very high standards for my shoes as far as aesthetics. Naya shoes just about make it there. Pretty, not drop dead, but pretty.

So here are their green credentials (full disclosure, I’m quoting from their marketing materials.)

  • Chrome-free or vegetable-tanned leathers
  • Natural, organic or sustainable fabrics
  • Heels made from sustainable bamboo
  • Biodegradable latex foam cushioning
  • Natural cork and rubber footbeds
  • Outsoles made with recycled materials
  • Nickel-free metal buckles
  • Recycled paper boxes
  • Water soluble glues and cements

Not bad, right?

Bottom line: I think I might get their white shoes (shown above) for spring. I’m always looking for comfy white leather summer sandals that look nice. And when fall comes… I’ll be in the stores looking for those boots!

Naya is currently available at,, and select Naturalizer stores. Later you’ll find them at Zappos, Piperlime, and Nordstrom.


Hippies and actors unite! The Broadway Green Alliance September 15, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Alden @ 8:18 pm
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Broadway Green Alliance

I was fortunate enough to attend a small meeting of the Broadway Green Alliance today, which is headed by the appropriately-named Seth Greenleaf.

It sounds odd, doesn’t it, to hear the word Broadway and Green together? One doesn’t think of the happy-go-lucky theater as a trasher of the environment, but I think it just goes to show that everyone has a role to play.

They are taking small steps toward greening the industry, and have been pretty successful. For example, Broadway produces a lot of promotional items. Seth’s group introduced a wonderful organic t-shirt to sell at an event, and it outsold the other t-shirts two to one! Obviously, there is a market for environmentally-friendly Broadway-themed items. Who knew?

Other initiatives include using more eco-friendly materials to build sets, and greening the Tony’s last year. I don’t have all the details, but the work done by this little group is impressive!

You can find them at the Broadway Cares for AIDs flea market this weekend selling reusable totes. Very cool.


I’m so COOL August 12, 2009

Filed under: Places to go,Products,Tips — Alden @ 8:49 pm
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Yay I have an iPhone! Don’t get me started on how much I want to stab Verizon and AT&T right now, but regardless, I’m PSYCHED. I looked for some good green apps and came up with Good Guide, and Green Lemur as the most useful, and free! On recommendation from my coworker I got 3rd Whale, which seems to be very popular. My roommate also showed me Urban Spoon, which has a vegetarian option. I’m not a vegetarian, but veg usually equals organic/healthy. Here are the original reviews so you can see for yourself:


The Apple Blog

On another note….

So apparently Juniper Green Gin is hard to find. I told my friend to get it for our aperitifs last night before we saw 500 Days of Summer (I totally recommend that movie!) Anyway, he called three liquor stores and none of them had it. “They seem impressed that I knew what it was,” he told me as he pulled Bombay Sapphire out of the fridge. “Why is it so special?”

“It’s organic.”

“Oh.” Noncommittal shrug and a smile. “Well I hope this will do.”

On another note, that guy did call me last night and he agreed to take me to Savoy. I checked out the reviews on the original place, Max Brenner’s at Union Square, after Morgan Harris told me I was making a huge mistake. Thanks for the tip, Morgan, but “tourist trap,” “always crowded” and “poor service” aren’t really my thing. Besides, just had some Ben & Jerry’s, (they are combatting global warming!) and I’ve had my fill for the day of chocolate.