Even if you don’t live on Phinney Ridge, this is a home show of a different color. Mainly of the green shade. Not all the exhibitors are green or sustainably minded, however a large portion is. You can meet all kinds of people involved in everything to do with homes. One of the most popular tables there is comprised of the very people who approve your building permits. That alone is worth the price of admission!
A couple must-sees are the NW EcoBuilding Guild Booth. They will be promoting the free NW Green Home Tour this April. Of course not to be missed is the friendly neighborhood Green Realtors with Cooper Jacobs Real Estate promoting “Green” in the “Red Room”. Stop by the booth and I will be providing useful information if you are in the market to purchase, build or remodel your home. This is one of my favorite events of the year, a home show in a relaxed informative setting, very different than the typical corporate home show. Think home show on a human, Norman Rockwell scale!0rr
Seattle area residents are lucky enough to have a Green Home Tour that is drawing interest other parts of the country. This years tour is appropriately on Earth Day weekend. A popular home is back this again this year so more people can be inspired by seeing how one growing family did so much for less money than you may think.
Does “green” mean:
Using fewer resources?
Re-purposing existing elements?
Saving energy and costs?
Improving indoor air quality?
Improved indoor air quality?
Increased comfort and simpler lifestyle?
Planning for the future?
In short, YES!!!
Here’s an opportunity to see why simple (and not so simple) things can make a difference, why it may not look like you think it might, and why it’s worth it!
This West Seattle home provides a story of innovative use of materials, green and healthy finishes, energy conservation, integrated, expandable solar, and a multitude of solutions to accommodate the ebb and flow of a young and growing family.
The mainstay of this project is conservation — conservation of costs and conservation of materials; all the meanwhile maintaining a high level of sustainable building measures and excellent indoor air quality.
The house is a 1980, rambler which when purchased in 2006 had clearly not had any finishes or renovations made to it since it’s completion in 1980. A remodeling plan was put into place to update the home’s aesthetics, remove low-quality and crummy fixtures, and to find better solutions for a growing family’s spatial needs.
As we mentioned, the big story in this home is conversation and simplicity. The projects feels tangible, something anyone can do to make big change to the use and/or aesthetics of their home… although truth be told, the work not only took fine craftsmanship, but a dedication to thoughtfulness and a lot of patience. The budget was a driving force to the schedule of projects and part of keeping to the budget often meant waiting for the ‘right’ salvaged or re-purposed materials to present themselves.
The scope of the remodel to-date includes:
Maintaining existing footprint to maximize outdoor spaces
Salvaged or re-purposed materials in every room.
Low-impact flooring (including bamboo and remnant marmoleum) replaced vinyl and carpet.
Low-/No-VOC or reused paints throughout.
Tool-shed entirely from salvaged materials.
Smart powerstrips throughout (as appropriate).
Radiant ceiling heat (office only)
Expandable solar installed (1-panel up, brackets ready for 3 more next spring, system ready for 23 more!)
Redesigned yard for fun, privacy, and low-water and low-maintenance with a few edibles thrown in for yum.
The kitchen itself is exemplary of all the attributes of the remodel:
Butcher block countertops re-oriented and re-worked into an island top
Paperstone countertops surround
Salvaged garden window
Low-voltage pendant light
Dimmers on all switches
Salvaged pantry shelf
Marmoleum backer for future wine rack
Energy Star and Water Wise appliances/fixtures
Smart cell phone charging station
Some of the other features of this sustainable home are in the choices made on a daily basis furnishing and living in the home. From homemade cleaning products to a “no-more new plastics” intention, every decision is made with indoor air quality, health, and sustainability forward.
The kitchen is exemplary with salvaged, low toxic materials and energy-efficient appliances
Low-impact flooring and re-purposed materials make this living area supremely sustainable
Stay tuned to learn more about a post-tour class about buying or greening an existing home April 28, 2012
Northwest EcoBuilding Guild – 2012 Green Home Tour – Call for Sites & Sponsors
This just in:
The 2012 Green Home Tour hosted by the Northwest EcoBuilding Guild (NWEBG) is underway. People want to ‘do the right thing’ when it comes to remodels, retrofits, and new construction but often times need to see “green” in action and how the benefits to people, planet, and profit unite in everyday practice. To that end, the inaugural 2011 Green Home Tour hosted 28 sites and over 1,250 visitors with great success! This year we’re planning to build off that success and make it bigger and better! There are 4 ways to participate:
Showcase Your Project. (early bird deadline Jan 16, 2012)
Showcase Your Services/Products through Sponsorship.
Volunteer Your Heart Out.
Attend and Tell Your Friends to Attend!
Two Tours – One Great Weekend! 2012 Green Home Tour is being hosted by the Seattle and the South Sound Chapter April 21 & 22, 2012. Puget Sound Cooperative Credit Union has already stepped up as an event sponsor, and we’ve just gotten started! The earlier you get involved, the greater benefit will be realized by everyone!! Website updates are underway, in the meantime contact Cate O’dahl, Event Lead (Seattle Chapter), 425-670-1342; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last year there were sites all around the Seattle area. Several in North Seattle, some in West Seattle, and several on the Eastside including Bastyr University. If you want to see your neighborhood represented then have a green home in your area sign up for the tour.
If you participate in the tour or just want to enjoy the weekend learning about sustainable building mark your calendars now.
This Saturday, September 10th ( of course), is the annual Northwest Eco Building Guild‘s presentation of localsustainable buildings by the people who designed and/or built the structures. This year many of the projects were spearheaded by women (in celebration of the 100-year anniversary of the International Women’s Day) and all the projects are real tried and true examples of thoughtful design and implementation.
This years event is being held at the Bastyr University Auditorium in Kenmore. The University happens to be the location of a significant site for sustainable design. You can arrive as early as 4:00 p.m. to tour the project and then stay until the program which begins at 6:00 p.m. The 10 projects as in the years before will be varied and creative. What makes this an enjoyable evening is the fast paced presentations. Each speaker will only have 10 slides and 10 minutes in which to describe their trials, tribulations and successes with each project. To make the evening even more enjoyable, the emcee will be Patti Southard, of the King County Green Tools Program.
If you want to know more about what “green” building is, what makes it different and if it is more expensive, then this is a great place to start. As an added bonus, you might walk away with some great raffle prizes as well.
Last year’s Empty Bowls event held at the Ballard Community Center was a huge success. This year it has been changed to the Nordic Heritage Museum. Just like last year, this year’s event will have lots of live music, yummy soup provided by Ballard Market and fresh baked bread. The best part of the event is the ability to peruse a large number of handmade bowls (some don’t even work well with soup!) and go home with the vessel of your choice. They also have ceramics meant for Fluffy, Fifi or Bruiser!
The suggested $15 donation goes to the Ballard Food Bank — in need of help more than ever this year. The event runs from 4-7 PM Saturday night. This is a great way to top off the day after touring the Northwest Eco Building Guild’s Green Home Tour. You can visit several of the many stops on the tour, work up your appetite and carpool to Empty Bowls at the end of a satisfying day learning about the latest in sustainable building in Seattle.