Browsing Tag

eco-chic party


Ode to the Reusable Tap Water Bottle

glass bottle by tap water bottles available in two formats

reusable glass bottles for drinking tap water in style

We all know that drinking tap water  is more eco-friendly than the bottled water. But when you entertain guests, you want a stylish solution to serve water at the dinner table. For that reason, I collect nice bottles like the Limonade artisanale Elixia from which I removed the labels. But then, I found it drab.

I could stencil or affix letters to write a word. I could glue diy labels or stickers. But to be honest, I never seem to find the time. Until that happens, I found an easy solution. Get a couple of  reusable glass bottles from Tap Water Bottle. A particularity of their bottles is that they are offered in smaller formats: 250 ml and 500 ml. This is because they are meant to be carried around.

glass bottle by tap water bottles available in two formats

If you go with individual size bottles, you can prepare your flavored water bottles the day before the party and keep them on your fridge. You can then create an amazing drink station. It may seem like a big investment initially since we reuse them over and over, it is like buying glasses.

You can buy online for a delivery across Canada and the United States. The tap water bottles are also available at participating Roots stores and at a few Canadian retailers.

+ photo: Limonade artisanale Elixia
+ Tap Water Bottle $10 for 250 ml, $12 for 500 ml


Throw a Dinner Party on Earth Hour

switch off your lights on march 27 2010 at 8:30 PM for earth hour

switch off your lights on march 27 2010 at 8:30 PM for earth hour

Turn your lights off on March 27th, 2010 at 8:30 PM to show that you care about the environment. Earth Hour was created in 2007 by WWF in Australia. It did not took long for the idea to spread and to become a worldwide event.

A fun way to participate is to ask friends that live close by (so they can come by foot) to join you for a dinner made with local ingredients. Remind your friends to close their lights before they go out. Naturally, you will host a candlelight dinner. You could build a menu that does not require a lot of cooking time. For example, you could serve a local sustainable fish with a salad instead of cooked vegetables.

If you like to tweet about it, the hashtag is #EarthHour.

+ Learn how you take action for Earth Hour


Paper Straws on Milk Bottles for a Baby Shower

single serving milk bottles with gray paper straws :: photos by hungrygirl

Cindy of Hungry Girl por vida captured the essence of simple elegance with these shots of gray paper straws. You cannot go wrong with single serving glass milk bottles for a baby shower or a kids birthday party. You can simply remove the commercial labels or go one step further and tailor the bottle with an event tag.

There is another reason why you will feel good. Besides its more sophisticated tones, the Kikkerland gray paper straws are more eco-friendly since they are biodegradable than the traditional plastic straws. Caring for the Earth is a good message to send at a baby shower party.

gray paper straws by kikkerland

For a movie night or a circus party, you may prefer to get a box of blue and white  or red and white paper straws. + Paper Straws by Kikkerland $3 for box of 50 + photos: HungryGirl on Flickr + via Parcel Post


VerTerra Makes Disponable Dinnerware out of Leaves | eco-friendly watch

verterra disposable, reusable and biodegradable dinnerware :: bowls and plates

I showcased several eco-friendly disposable dinnerware for parties before. I think that the VerTerra is the best sustainable dinnerware I featured so far. It is because they provide unique features. They can stand hot food and liquids.  You can use them to reheat food for up to 45 minutes at 350 degrees. If you plan an outdoor event, they can stand being under the sun without problems.

The curvy shape is stylish. They kind of look like light wood. They are made of fallen palm trees that were steamed. It is simply made out of leaves and water. They contain no adhesives or chemical products. They will biodegrade within 2 months after use.

The range is comprehensive. Plates come in 4 sizes from 4 inches to 10 inches. You can serve single-servings, tapas, sauces, chips, chili, soups, cereals and dips in the bowl collection. There is a small 7″ x 8.5″ tray/platter. By adding a few medium and large trays, you will be all set to serve an outstanding buffet for a large crowd.

verterra eco-chic salad and dinner plates

Time Saver Party Planning Tool

If you are hosting a party, use the VerTerra party calculator to estimate your dinnerware need. You enter the number of hours and attendees for the type of event you’re hosting, and they do the rest! They include “Add to Cart” links to every item they suggested for your event.

You can reuse the plates, bowls and trays many times if you wash them by hand. Beware that they won’t keep their shape if you put them in the dishwasher.

There are time where you need disposable dinnerware for a party. No need to plan a complete eco-chic party to prefer reusable and biodegradable disposable dinnerware. Frankly, the eco-friendly dinnerware collections often look better than the mass-produced disposable dinnerware.

+ VerTerra
+ Verterra Pressed Leaf Plates – Hors D’oeuvres or Dessert $5.50 USD for 8
+ Verterra Pressed Leaf Small Trays $4.50 for 4 trays
+ Verterra Pressed Leaf 6 x 8 Bowls $6.50 USD for 8
+ Verterra Pressed Leaf Dinner Plates $7.50 USD for 8
+ Verterra Setting for 8 – Pressed Leaf Plates, Bowls, & Trays starts at $21 USD
+ Via Design Milk


Stylish Sustainable Housewares by Canvas at Ochre

bistroware ceramic, recycle glassware and cedar boards from canvas

Canvas aims for a collection that represents simple, sustainable style. The Canvas line is available at Ochre, a store that I will definitely visit the next time I go to SOHO in New York.

The Bistroware ceramic dinnerware collection is elegant and simple. I read on Remodelista that the plates vary from $15 to $20 each. The Moroccan recycled glasses ($11-$15) are original. I would like to own a bunch of round cedar boards ($32-$38) to use as serving trays.

water tower table bench at ochre, as seen on Apartment therapy

Apartment Therapy posted photos of new products at Ochre after they visited the SOHO store. If you are a fan of the modern rustic look, check out the water table and bench.

+ Canvas
+ US Ochre store
+ More photos on Apartment Therapy


MYdrap Delivers Single-Use Cloth Placemats and Napkins on Rolls

mydrap single-use and reusable cloth placemats and napkins

MYdrap is a Spanish concept of table linens that is quite unique. For the first time, you can get the efficiency of single-use napkins and placemats without letting go the elegance of your table. There is more. MYdrap are the first cloth serviettes, available in roll or pre-cut, that offer double the possibilities: for single use or to be washed and used again.

mydrap home and hospitality ranges

MYdrap is a range of reusable, washable, biodegradable and recyclable cotton or linen placemats and napkins. I really like the roll idea. There is a line designed for home usage and an hospitality range targeting restaurants, catering companies and airlines.

MYdrap is available in 17 colors. The neutrals are made with linen. The brighter colors are made with cotton. The napkins are available in cocktail napkins, lunch napkins and dinner napkins. RollPack UK is the distributor in United Kingdom while Virages introduced the collection in France this summer. At this point, MYdrap seems to have no intention to cross the Atlantic. I would have like to try them.

+ MYdrap


My Eco-label Salmon BBQ party | part 1

eco bbq service table

When my friend Eden Spodek of istudio asked me if I would like to host a party at home for tasting True North’s eco-certified farm salmon, I immediately said yes. We cooked more often fresh salmon fillets on the BBQ than we prepared burgers. Plus, it was a great way to launch my outdoor entertaining season.

I invited a good of foodies within my friends. I kept it small so we can all sit down comfortably at my outdoor dining room. The theme was eco-chic BBQ. The food and the fact that I did the party on the World Environment Day led to that concept.

eco bbq details of the menu and table

It was a casual event. Not going overboard and using what I already known seemed more appropriate with the party theme. I invited my friends using a private event on Facebook.

I did not use placemats and we ate on my wooden table. I felt more natural. I put on my table my real china, glassware and flatware. No need to get an outdoor dinnerware set. You save money and space.

My florist designed two centerpieces that were elegant but carried a wild-flower vibe. We went with Hyacinths (jacinthes d’Hollande) that look amazing and smell wonderful. I usually stayed away from flowers with a noticeable perfume when I am indoors but outside, it does not matter.

My Menu

I originally thought of a first course that I could serve with wooden plate. My husband was craving for the seared scallops and crispy prosciutto with roasted tomatoes and smashed white beans by Jamie Oliver. The recipe is on The Naked Chef Takes Off cookbook. Therefore, I made it.

eco bbq first course :: seared scallops and crispy prosciutto with roasted tomatoed and smashed white beans

This is a tasty and unique recipe that everyone adores. You never tasted something like that. Beware that although the technique is pretty simple, they are many steps to make this recipe. I recommend that you familiarize yourself with the recipe before a party, unless you are an experienced cook.

We served the grilled salmon with an assortment of grilled vegetables. We do not marinated the vegetables; we simply put a light coat of olive oil and grill them on each side for 4 minutes. Put more olive oil on the asparagus and the zucchini slices. We prepared a typical French dijon vinaigrette to go on top of the cooked vegetables. It is a classic side dish at our barbecue party.

eco bbq :: opera cake for dessert

A guest brought an Opera cake (it was the birthday of his wife) that we savored with a sparkling wine. We served white tea to finish the night. The party was a success. Everyone loves the food and the company.

In part 2, I will talk about the eco-label and the goodies I received from True North Salmon for making this party a reality.

+ Shown of the pictures are people active on Twitter : @JoseeStAmand of, @simonrivard, Nathalie Rivard (@indigonat), Laurent Maissonave (@zelaurent) and @ihoule
+ You can see the body of my husband @jeromeparadis. Follow me on Twitter @kimvallee


Paper+Cup Birch Utensils at Anthropologie

paper + cup wooden utensils made of sustainable birch

Whenever you do a picnic or an other event when you wish to add a vintage vibe, you are that wooden utensils will set the right tone. The beautifully crafted wooden utensils of Paper+Cup are available at Anthropologie. Think of reusing the red and white strings on your party accessories.

If you wish a custom message for your event, order directly from Paper+Cup. You need to order a minimum of 50 pieces. It starts at $87.50 USD.

If you are aware of this fact, Anthropologie opened two weeks ago their first Canadian store in Toronto. Lucky Torontorians! For the rest of us in Canada, we can still rely on Anthropologie’s online shopping.

+ Wooden Ice Cream Scoops $14.95 USD for 24
+ Wooden Utensils for 8 $22.09 USD for 8 knife, fork and spoon settings
+ Canadian store is located at Shops at Don Mills 1090 Don Mills Rd. (at Lawrence Blvd)
+ Find directions to an Anthropologie store near you


Bio Aperitif Set Brings Green to The Cocktail Party | Eco-Friendly Tuesday

disposable tableware by pandora design

Over the years, I introduced pretty cool social plates. Mingle plates are a must for the stylish hostess. They make you look resourceful. My latest mingle plate discovery comes with everything you need to sip and taste hors d’oeuvres and canapes.

This is the brainchild of Pandora Design, a Milan-based company known for their amazing disposable tableware. Pandora used to be a cater company but they saw a market in modern design disposable dinnerware. Pandora Design went green with their latest project for YOOXYGEN. YOOXYGEN is an eco-friendly initiative of YOOX just launched to celebrate Earth Day (April 22, 2009).

bio aperitif setting by pandora design for yooxygen

Bio Aperitif is the ultimate disposable tableware alternative for an eco-chic cocktail party. The handmade set shows imperfections. This is the new trend to infuse an authentic look. More importantly, it is more ecological since you do not throw away lots of rejects.

Bio Aperitif is made from Mater-Bi, a 100% biodegradable corn compound. Some components of the Bio Aperitif set were adapted from the existing product range of Pandora design. The only drawback is that is it not cheap; I assume they are for single usage.  A set for 4 guests costs $38 USD. Each set contains:

  • 4 Sunglass glasses
  • 4 Tapas plates
  • 4 2Spin toothpicks and
  • 4 Moscardino sporks.

The design is sure to make a lasting impression on your guests.

+ Bio Aperitif Set by YOOXYGEN $38 USD for 16 pieces
+ Pandora Design
+ Via MoCo Loco


Basic Tips on How to Host a Green Party for my Eco-friendly Tuesday

I participated in my first #eventprofs chat on Twitter yesterday. Ready 2 Spark launched her weekly Twitter chats to keep in touch with event professionals a few weeks ago.  Last night, they were discussing: Is green more or less relevant in today’s economy? This gave me the idea for today’s green living post.

How they serve tap water at La Fabrique

For everyday entertaining, we may use these actions for convenience or for cost savings, but the important thing is to the reduce our footprints.

  1. Use online invitations instead of printed invitations, unless it is a milestone event. With Facebook and plenty of free event invitation management services available online it is easy to do and look stylish.
  2. Add a link to Google maps for people to find the directions to your home. With iPhone and BlackBerry, people often will not print the instructions.
  3. Let go of the imported bottled water. Instead recycle glass and cute plastic bottles to serve tap water. Look at the modern bottle they used at La Fabrique.
  4. Avoid as much as possible disposable tableware when you host a party.
  5. Tea towels make wonderful napkins. You can buy them in bulk or sew your own. In the long run, it is cheaper than using patterned paper napkins.
  6. Try to promote carpooling
  7. In summer time, use local flowers that you get at the farmer’s market or in your own garden

If you are curious to know how its work, Lara of Ready 2 Spark produced a video tutorial that explains everything. I could be fun to host Twitter chats from time to time about everyday entertaining topics. Would you be interested to participate in something like that?

+ Eventprofs chat by Ready 2 Spark


My 2008 Posts in Review: April

I do not know if it is spring that inspired me but green living made my headlines often in April 2008

raw food and eco-friendly party tips :: reusable shopping bags

+ To celebrate Earth Day, I gave you my tips on how to host an Eco-Chic Dinner Party. Raw food was on the menu.

+ I listed my favorite Reusable Ultra Compact Shopping Bags. After months of usage, the Flip & Tumble is still my favorite for its ease of use. The Envirosax gained places. Its large size, compared to the Flip and Tumble, comes handy.

 gourmet and fresh organic baby food :: cake decorations

+ Better eating habits are part of the overall green living movement. The Ready to Serve Gourmet Baby Food by French maker Menus Bébé illustrates parent concerns for healthier baby food. In the US, pomme bébé produces small batches of fresh organic baby food. Get directions to pomme bébé in Newport Beach, California.

+ April coincided with my 500th post. I featured the stunning and artistic cake creations of I Dream of Cake, a cake maker located in San Francisco to commemorate this event.