Friday, December 14, 2007

Green Coffee, Eggs and Ham

You all know about shade grown and free trade coffee, but I discovered another way to keep your daily cuppa easy on the earth.

If you use a standard coffee machine with cone filters, try using the smaller size 2 cones instead of the lager size 4. I know, sounds small, but saves on paper. Also consider using the unbleached versions or check out this great Hemp filter, size 2.

Now the next caffeine hit won't mean a hit to mama earth.

Drink up!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007 Goes Green

And we're thrilled! the web's leading directory of online giveaways for the discerning contest entrant (100% spam and linkbait-free enjoyment!) is hosting their Eco Baby Giveaway and has generously included us in the prize pack. Okay, so we give some stuff away, but this is a fun site with rotating 'blockbuster giveaway' programs that feature some wicked merch.

We're in fine company with Green to Grow's BPA-free bottles for babes. HABA's wooden and plush toys for tots and from The Soft Landing: Natursutten natural rubber pacifiers, which apparently should be replaced every 4-5 weeks. I feel like a bad parent with the pacifiers I still have from the hospital. Fortunately, my little binkie boy kicked the habit around 5 months. Win and you'll get a 6 months supply. And last in the line up is Amnesty International's Citizen of the World toddler tee or onesie.

Prizey on!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Feed the world - one grain at a time

John Breen is at it again and he's a total inspiration. The founder of, which was purchased by at the height of the late nineties dotcom bubble, just launched FREE RICE dot com. The site's fantastic. Each visit lists a word for which you have to click on the correct definition. Each click generates 10 grains of rice to the UN World Food Program (they spell it British); the same beneficiary that launched with a decade ago now. Nice that John kept up relations.

The site takes me back to SAT vocabulary prep tests and while I never felt that smart then, I do now. Maybe the words are easy and I think they're meant to get progressively more difficult as you keep guessing correctly. Either way, you're rocking the rice campaign.

The program is completely legit. Advertisers like Liz Claiborne, Toshiba and RD - Reader's Digest - those I just saw listed at the bottom of the page pay for our eyeballs. Hopefully their ad buy with John will turn us all into electronics-purchasing, alarmist magazine reading, middle aged sartorialists with a heart. I'm game.

Happy defining!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Sustaining the Earth, Sustaining Our Community

Pediatric Interim Care Center’s Newborn Nursery facility in Kent is a nonprofit medical facility for infants suffering from prenatal drug exposure. We at Satsuma thought that there were no babies more deserving of our organic, hypoallergenic, antibacterial blankets than these most vulnerable babies for whom even the softest touch can cause extreme discomfort. We were happy to be able to donate blankets to this wonderful facility and want to give the big kudos to the amazing community of nurses, social workers and doctors that work around the clock with these most needy babies.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Crave a little cozy?

The first ever CRAVE Show is happening this weekend in Seattle and Satsuma Designs will be on hand to debut our newest collections. I'm excited to be part of what I know will be a great event for women. Two days - Saturday and Sunday - of exploration, indulgence, fashion and more, CRAVE Show is taking the Crave party concept to a whole new level.

Creative genius and founder, Melody Biringer, is offering a great line up of speakers, seminars, spa treatments, fashion shows, shopping opps and great eats to please every craver.

Satsuma's piece of the action involves a booth in the fashion section where we'll be sharing our new cozy holiday collection. Bamboo velour and cashmere throws for babies and big babies will be on hand in fun new colors. Custom color orders are available too in our new cashmere line.

Now that's something you'll CRAVE!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Why Go Green Redux

Seattle's fashion community is a little greener thanks to the great insights from our illustrious panel of design professionals at last Thursday's seminar. The event welcomed a great mix of fashion, beauty, interiors, education and sustainable living professionals from around the city.

Our gracious hostess, Sandy Campbell, swung wide the doors of One Earth One Design, her home interiors and consulting business on the edge of Shoreline. Among the panelists was Rebecca Luke, owner of Les Egoistes and co-founder of the Sustainable Style Foundation (SSF).

Rebecca shared a fabulous new program sponsored by SSF called SSFtags. Read below to learn more about this sustainability seal of approval that's great for both businesses and consumers.

Rebecca made a great point last Thursday too when she encouraged trade members in the audience not to get too hung up on being 100% sustainable or green in your business, but rather take smart steps to do the best you can. The truth is that many industries including fashion and beauty aren't tooled up to support all the 'green' decisions we'd like to make, but if over time we all ask for it, so it will be.

The mission of SSF is to educate, support and inspire people from all walks of life to make more sustainable personal lifestyle choices at home, at work and at play. SSFtags is a consumer- and producer-friendly awareness program with an internationally recognized logo that indicates that a product, service, event, project, company or organization, etc. has incorporated sustainability into their efforts in some way.

Nice work SSF!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Green Houses Make Great Homes

My friend Sloan Ritchie has just listed his new townhome development by Cascade Built. Sloan's tag line is good living tm and it is. He has used LEED prescribed green building guidelines to create incredibly well designed and stylish living.

LEED is the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program. The organization is made up of building industry leaders who believe that green design and manufacturing is critical to happy and healthy living. Their members and supporters also realize that it can be good for the bottom line as green building resources begin to drop in price and are competitive to the big box retailers' pricing and selection.

Here's a great article on the real versus perceived costs of going green in construction projects from industry resource

Kudos to Sloan, Cascade Built and all those LEEDers out there!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Seattle Retail Rules!

We're at retail! I think of it as form of VERY positive validation for our company concept and product line. Satsuma can now be found in stores around the Northwest, Alaska too! In Seattle, we're very proud to be featured at Village Maternity and Birth & Beyond that cater to the with or soon to be with child set. We're also carried at Fresh, A New Lifestyle Boutique Located in the Heart of Seattle’s Wedgwood Business District. Wendy and Julia there are great and are ready to help you find the best in gift, home and of course babies. Stop by and ask for Satsuma.

Happy Shopping!

Saturday, September 22, 2007


Fashion Group of Seattle and Sustainable Style Foundation Present:


Enjoy an evening with some of the region's leading design professionals who have made the case for green fashion, beauty and lifestyle products. Discover business reasons to incorporate green design, sourcing and sales techniques in any successful 21st century business. Proceeds benefit the Sustainable Style Foundation and Fashion Group of Seattle.

Feast on organic bites from Seattle’s Herban Feast and wash it down with organic wine.

Panelists include:
□ Rebecca Luke, Co-Founder, Sustainable Style Foundation and CEO, Les Egoistes
□ Sandy Campbell (our fabulous hostess!), Founder and Owner, One Earth, One Design
□ Scott Branscum, President and CEO of SB Premier Brands, LLC and Born Clothing
□ Lisa Fran├žoise, CEO, Sweet Beauty
□ Leigh Anne Van Dusen, CEO, Oeco Textiles
□ Tarah Prater, Designer and founder, Urban Fashion Network
□ Moderated by Jennifer Porter, Co-Founder, Satsuma Designs
More to be confirmed.

Date: Thursday, October 25, 2007
Time: 6:30p-8:30p
Location: One Earth, One Design (
14300 Greenwood Ave. N, Suite A, Seattle, WA 98133 - (206) 418-8120 - Street and neighborhood parking available.

Cost: FGI Members $20/Non-members $30/Students $10 – includes light refreshments – proceeds go to Sustainable Style Foundation and Fashion Group of Seattle.

RSVP: To reserve your spot – space is limited – email FGI Membership Chair, Theresa Olson at or dial (425) 489-2461.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Mining Sickens (and kills) - Let's lobby for another way

As if it weren't apparent that we need to rely less on fossil fuels (coal et al) to run our homes, cities, and country, Bill Moyers Journal ran a very informative and important piece on Mountaintop Mining also called surface mining in the hills of the Appalachia.

The method features blowing the tops off the hills to 'clearcut' and mine coal. Families down river from the mining sites are being poisoned by sludge/slurry, byproducts of the process. It was sickening to see the black water that filled one family's washing machine as they tried to do a load of laundry; not to mention the fact that every person interview suffered from kidney stones and some level of mineral poisoning. These people couldn't drink their own tap water.

Ridiculous! And the BAdministration (with a capital B) just made it easier for mining companies to conitue these practices for the foreseeable future.

Here's background on the Journal investigation and here's the show. And here's how you can contact your member of the House and Senate.

Thanks for taking action.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

How to go green: when you're lazy like me

I feel the pressure. Not only to be responsible to our environment, but with the business, I really should walk the talk. That means composting. Yes. I can't tell you all the food scraps I shove down the insinkerator (which I love!) that could be going to nourish the soil where I grow my half-live hostas and hydraengas (sic).

So I've made a change and am using a large Ziploc brand (FIL works for the makers of these WONDERFUL products that are 100% recyclable) tub with top to contain the remnants of meal prep and mealtime. I decided I'm going to try to empty it a couple/few times a week. More if opening it becomes a biohazard experience.

I keep it under the sink and it's been pretty easy to manage the routine. I've been doing it for 4 days without complaint. I'll try to take it out to the yard waste bucket today when I bring in the recycling and garbage cans that my husband hauled out at the crack this morning. Good egg.

When I get really ambitious, I'll start a compost pile and feed the worms, but for now, I rest.

Good luck going green!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Satsuma launches!

We did it! We're officially up and running and have been really excited about the response to our first product - 100% bamboo jersey swaddling blanket for bouncing babies.

We hosted a party for our incredibly supportive friends who snapped up the blankets and gave invaluable feedback on our next product - bamboo velour blankie and we had enough interest in an adult size that we plan to produce a throw. Doesn't hurt that Pottery Barn is featuring a bamboo rayon throw. We figure the market's there.

Next phase involves activating our three tiered approach to marketing - wholesale (through our incredible friend Melissa Dodge), online sales, and media outreach to local media and a concerted effort to connect product-focused gift, parenting and mommy blogs.

Thanks for stopping!


Thursday, June 21, 2007

Confessions of a bamboo blanket

I didn't start out like this. I've changed, I know. Who can blame me, though? I've been caught up in an exhilirating ride. I've come far - from the Eastern world and now find I have a small part to play in illuminating the Western world.

I grew quickly as a little bamboo stalk - grass really. In a couple of short years, I'd reach maturity and was invited to join fellow stalks in a journey that brought me here - my first photo shoot.

I admit I was nervous, but photographer and now friend, Jeff Beck was incredibly patient as I grew to love the camera. Wrapping my warmth around the lens, I became part of a world I only dreamed of. Jeff said a shoot wasn't complete without some celebrity gossip and while I couldn't add much, I learned to appreciate the nuances of the Paris/Nicole relationship and their collective and individual yearning for acceptance that their parents have withheld all these years.

I have a new friend in Jeff, of course, but was surprised at the immediate raport I had with bunny. I couldn't figure out the peter pan complex and an actual peter pan collar, but judge not, I try to tell myself. Once work got off the ground and we found ourselves facing the camera together, our mutual insecurities and strengths surfaced. Who would have known that bunny and I share the fear of having our right side photographed. Well, we made it through together.

I'm thrilled to say that we've contracted to work on another coming shoot and I look forward with anticipation to our next meeting. Hopefully, bunny will have some new gossip to share.