Top Ten Green Products for 2010

This year has been a great learning experience for me. I’ve researched thousands of green building products and written hundreds of reviews of eye-catching innovations throughout the building and design industry. One thing I’ve learned is that green designs come in many shapes and sizes.

The best of 2010 can’t be categorized by material, use or aesthetic sensibility, although each is contributing to healthier buildings and building practices in an important way. My top green products for 2010 address the need for eco-conscious design through material and manufacturing processes as well as providing a high level of design and creativity. The goodness of eco-friendly products is undermined if the product does not stand the test of time. Green waste, although possibly recyclable, is still waste.

3Form Remix Surface Material
1. ReMix by 3form

3form is one of the greats in terms of commitment to sustainability and creative, cutting edge design. 3form produces a series of translucent resin and glass materials that are embedded with color and textures which span a huge variety of aesthetics. ReMix is their newest strategy to achieve zero waste by recycling trim pieces left from finished panels and melting them together to create unique composite pieces. Available in 5 color themes, ReMix is made from 78% pre-consumer recycled content and is offered at a discount from standard 1/2” Varia Ecoresin.

Bird Safe Glass by Ornilux
2. Bird Safe Glass by Ornilux

Building are the silent killer of millions of birds every year. Ornilux glass, made in Merkendorf, Germany by Arnold Glas, has patterning of UV-reflective coating that is nearly transparent to humans but clearly visible to birds. With a look that has little impact on appearance of the building, and the ability to reduce bird deaths by up to 76%, the new 2011 class of buildings should show their support of the avian race.

The Emeco and Coca Cola 111 Navy Chair
3. 111 Navy Chair by Emeco

In a modern day team up between beverage giant Coca-Cola and furniture manufacturer Emeco, the 111 Navy chair is a sustainable version of a classic design. While the original Navy Chair is made with 80% recycled material, Emeco is stepping it up with the 111 Navy Chair, which is made with 111 recycled soda bottles per chair. Emeco expects to recycle 3,000,000 bottles per year through its creation of the colorfully designed chairs.

Cercasa Lifewall vertical gardens
4. Cercasa Lifewall

If you missed the era of the Chia pet a few decades past, welcome the air cleaning green tile by Ceracasa. Lifewall building facade tile is a system of 1 sq. meter panels that support plant life to create a vegetated facade. The tile is meant to be paired with another Ceracasa product called Bionictile, which works to soak up polluting nitrogen oxide from the air by using the sun’s UV rays and moisture. Together Lifewall and Bionictile create a mini ecosystem which has the potential to solve many current issues with green walls.

comfortable Knit Stools by Claire-Anne O'Brien
5. Knit Stools by Claire-Anne O’Brien

Claire-Anne O’Brien’s comfy knit stools are no brainer in the necessary seating department. Their appeal is based on color, style and warm-fuzzy association which is only furthered by O’Brien’s work with Unesco that enabled local women to make a living via knit products.

Recylced Wine Cork Tile Flooring by Jelinek Cork
6. Recycled Wine Cork Tile by Jelinek Cork

Cork is a hot green product this year from which everything from flooring to lamps to storage units have been sustainably produced. Recycled Wine Cork Tile is a quirky use for bottle stoppers which has a penny tile look that brings us back to the 1920’s. Jelinek makes recycled wine cork mosaic floor by recovering used wine corks and turning them into a beautiful, subtle flooring material.

Paper Carpet by Ritva Puotila for Woodnotes
7. Paper Carpet by Ritva Puotila

Ritva Puotila’s paper carpet designs are rooted in traditional Finnish ryijy, a rug-like tapestry, and inspired by her work with stained glass. Paper yarn is an ecologically produced, recyclable, rapidly renewable resource that is as durable and strong as it is beautiful. Carpet is a culprit of interior air pollution as well as a contributor to landfill stock.

Recycled Wine Barrel Flooring by Fontenay Wood
8. Vintage Wine Barrel Flooring by Fontenay Woods

What better way to show one’s true love of wine than by upcycling reclaimed wine barrels and using them as flooring? Recycled wine barrel flooring has a rich, aged quality, and depending on the line, also shows off the markings and hardware of the barrels. Fontenay Woods highlights the intricacy and complexity of wine through their various collections of wine barrel flooring.

Modern Felt Rugs by Peace Industry
9. Wool Carpets by Peace Industry

Peace Industry felt rugs are a labor of love and discovery. Their beautiful collection of native Iranian wool rugs works to support history and tradition through local craftmanship. Recent news of their company has triggered talk of the unexpected consequences of politics on design and cross-cultural relationships.

Madam Rubens Collection by Frank Willem, recycled mattresses
10. Frank Willems’ Madam Rubens Collection

Rounding out the year with an overly indulgent chair with a cartoon-like design is the Madam Rubens Collection. Recycled mattresses coated in a hygienic, water-resistant foam and painted with a pliable, soft paint have never looked so good. These chubby seating creations have both a sense of style, humor and an attitude towards wasteful design – something we should all add to our New Years Resolutions.

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