Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Monthly Slow News Summary: May 2011

On Slow Fashion:
The wonderful Slow Fashioned Pledge. Yeah, I took it. You should too.

EWG's indispensable Skin Deep Cosmetics Safety Database has gotten a much-needed makeover and relaunch. Also, Canada's Environmental Defense have brought out a report on heavy metals in makeup.

Slow Fashioned posted a genius primer on how to spot fake vintage.

Author Lucy Siegle wrote an article for the Guardian, Why fast fashion is slow death for the planet, outlining the arguments of her new book To Die For. I know that book's on my must-read list.

On Slow Food:

Currency suggested some budget-wise tips for getting the most out of the farmer's market - and Duncan Kinney made a brilliant case for shopping there being one of the most effective ways of making change in his article Dangerous Housewives.

On the Slow Food USA blog, an article suggesting ways to move from concern to community action on food issues.

On Slow Travel:

Inhabitat called attention to a gorgeous green-roofed round resort in Japan that is absolute architecture pron. But where is it actually located? I can't actually find out where "on the coast of Japan" it was built, and the word resort does imply tourism, no? If anyone knows please comment.

Jorg & Olif profiled Six Senses Resorts & Spas' new property in Mumbai, and On Slow Life interviewed the company's marketing director. The same group has previously created the Soneva Kiri spa in Thailand, which looks like a permaculturists' wet dream to me with its stone-adobe-and-cob green-roofed Eco Villa and cob-built cold cellar for wine, and they're about to open their first European spa in the Catalonian region of Spain. For a luxury hotel chain, they seem to be pretty serious about sustainable building using natural materials, with several of their properties aiming for or having LEED certifications, and they pride themselves on offering local cuisines in their restaurants. It's not slow travel in the immersing-yourself-in-local-culture way - how can anyplace that offers package vacations be? - but each of their hotels do offer a variety of off-property experiences to guests. So they're making an effort to make luxury about localness.

Remember this photo from my post about Japan's Sloth Club
It's from a Six Senses spa in Jordan
Turns out this is the organization's marketing slogan.

On Slow Living:

Create The Good Life! did their monthly essay on resourcefulness, which they define, "in terms of borrowing, fixing, sharing, and experiencing". A must-read. 

In related news, Jorg & Olif profiled the UK's Street Bank sharing site. The guys who run it say on their Twitter feed that they're working on an International version - brilliant!

American decorator Gloria Battista-Collins wrote a lovely meditation on what the slow home movement means to her.

Wendy Abrams' brilliant On Slow Life blog had a great post back in February on the joys of knowing your neighbors. Can't believe I forgot to mention it before. More recently she interviewed architect Sarah Susanka about her book The Not So Big Life.

On Sustainability:

Lloyd Alter brought our attention to stunning calculations by cycle infrastructure blogger James Schwartz that show the average American (and probably Canadian too) are working close to three hours a day just to feed their cars. Wow. 

Shabby at La Poubelle Verte has written a thought-provoking essay on overpopulation.

...and I'm off to Japan for the next two weeks!

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