Eco-friendly furnishings

One way is to use re-cycled products. These have come a long way since the days when truck tires were turned into sandals. A California based company is leading the way in "going green." VivaTerra sells eco-friendly clothing and furnishings for the home. You can order on-line at or from their catalog (made from recycled paper) by calling 1.800.233-6011.

The company says its name VivaTerra or living earth is inspired by its dedication to living in harmony with nature - for a healthier life now and for future generations. All of the products reflect a commitment to:

ecology and elegance: goods that fuse exceptional quality and design with eco sensitivities.

organic, sustainable sources: The purest ingredients and sustainable resources possible.

earth and people friendly: Partners and suppliers who share the company's values and work to make a positive difference in the world.

handcrafted by artisans: Distinctive goods, handcrafted by passionate designers and artisans.

celebrate life: Celebrate life and human spirit by honoring traditions from cultures around the world.

Here's a look at some of the merchandise available from VivaTerra:

Ø Railroad tie dining table and chairs

We've expanded our popular reclaimed railroad tie wood collection to include this striking dining table with sturdy, waxed metal frame. The vintage ties - made from teak, pine and ironwood, with wooden pegs filling spike holes - display original weathered markings on the surface and are joined to provide ample width. The comfortable matching chairs have a slender profile, with backs angled perfectly for ergonomic support.

Table & 6 Chairs $2,098 (additional shipping costs apply)
Table only $998 (additional shipping costs apply)
Chairs set of 2 $398

Ø Driftwood succulent garden

We've paired two rugged natural survivors of wind and storm-succulents and driftwood- and given them safe harbor in a compact indoor garden that is easy to grow and even easier to enjoy. Surf and sand-smoothed Oregon coast driftwood forms a compact, rustic exterior for our handcrafted planters. Hardy, low maintenance and eco-friendly succulents thrive for many months when watered no more than every three to eight weeks. 15"L x 5"H. Price $89

Ø Oceana recycled Sea glass dinnerware

Lime, pewter, sea foam, and turquoise are the colors in this stunningly original, versatile dinnerware. They come in squares, waves and triangles. The translucent plates change partners with ease. The unique matte finish of these recycled glass dishes leaves no fingerprints. Fired at high temperatures, they are durable enough for restaurant use. Dishwasher and microwave safe.

Oceana Square Plate, set of 4 $189
Oceana Wave Plate, set of 4 $189
Assorted or single color Triangle Plates, set of 4 $119

Ø Sol Recycled glass dinnerware

As shimmering and vibrant as sunshine glistening off waves, this recycled glass dinnerware instantly brightens any meal. We provide the works: From oversized chargers/serving platters to mini bowls and saucers, all are handmade with glossy interior surfaces and have ribbed undersides. Sturdy, dishwasher safe, and delightfully cheerful. 16 piece set includes: 4 Turquoise chargers, 4 Lime Dinner plates, 4 orange salad plates and 4 red bowls Special Price $155.

Ø Cairn candle holders PLUS 2 beeswax pillars

Evoking nature's unexpected beauty, the rounded sculptural shapes of these piled stones delight the eye as they rise up below a candle. Cairns-shaped rock piles-have been used as markers since ancient times. They remind us of where we've been, and aided by the candle's glow, they gently guide to where we may fear to tread. 6.5" x 8.25"H. Price $49 for set of 2. Beeswax pillar candles $12 each.

Ø Twisty stools

Tall enough to be used as a stool, side table, or as a sculptural pedestal to display your favorite objects or plants, this kiln-dried furniture multi-tasks instantly to suit your needs. Conveniently portable, it is carved from a single piece of sustainable, lustrous monkey pod wood. Viewed from any angle, its sides spiral sensually like ribbons around a center hollow.

Twisty 23" $195
Twisty 18" $165
Set of 2 23" $349
Set of 2 23" and 18" $319

Ø Root of the earth bowls

Artisans hand-carve the discarded root balls of Chinese fir trees into magnificent bowls whose sides undulate like petrified flower petals. Equally at home as centerpieces, fruit bowls or natural sculptures, each one is as unique as its tree of origin. The bowls are untreated, so cracks and variations will occur. As dryness may encourage further cracking, please keep your bowl out of direct sunlight or heat. Regular oiling with food-grade oil will help keep it moist and beautiful. Not recommended for cooked foods or liquids. Before use, wipe clean with a damp sponge.

Set of 3 (small, medium and large) $149
Small $35
Medium $49
Large $95

Ø Summer Fruit Parchment bowls

Inventive natural sculptor Margaret Dorfman brilliantly transforms edibles into luminescent vessels. Building her bowls slice by slice, Dorfman presses each one into durable parchment, which she hand shapes to resemble large, bright undulating flowers with vivid repeating patterns. We've added two summer flavors-cantaloupe and orange, just in time for outdoor entertaining. They perform their own visual magic by transforming the texture and color of these succulent fruits into astonishing decorative pieces. Invisibly coated to maintain their vibrant translucent colors, the bowls comfortably hold a votive candle in a cup. Not food safe. 7.5"D x 4.5"H

Cantaloupe $42
Orange $42
Set of 2 $79 (one of each)

Ø Bamboo wood dining chairs with and without arms

We know how difficult it is to find the perfect dining chair. By carefully selecting only the strongest bamboo and tight-grained hardwood frames, we've given ours the heft, substance and subtle accents of fine furniture and designed them to coordinate beautifully with most dining tables. Buffed to a satin finish, the chairs are so comfortable they need no cushions. We chose renewable bamboo for its tensile strength and partnered with a small eco-conscious furniture builder whose craftsmen meticulously hand-build each chair. 21"L x 19"W x 42"H

Pricing: (additional shipping costs apply)
Dining Chair $325 or set of 2 for $625
Arm Chair $345

Ø Recycled Sunrise rug and "good times" mat

Made from recycled plastic, easy to clean and strong enough to withstand kitchen or garden foot traffic, our design displays a pastel palette and a merged stripe pattern that evokes the first light of dawn. It's there to provide a cheery good morning, indoors or outside when you need to clear out the cobwebs, invite inspiration at the stove, and lighten your mood over a reflective cup of tea.

4 x 6 $45

Runner (2.5' x 8') $49

Good Times Mat

Grip the handles, scoop it up, and party on! A breeze to tote to picnics, parties or the beach, our mat is washable, shakable and virtually indestructible. Made from recycled plastic scraps, it displays a pastel palette and a merged stripe pattern that brighten any setting. 4.5' x 5" $29

Ø Flip flop bins

Shoes, muddy boots, kids' stuff, bulky objects that need a home - you name it. These recycled flip-flop bins - cheerful and indestructible - are tough enough for anything they hold. Like our rugged doormats, they're made from leftover flip-flop material. That's why we trust them every step of the way. 14"L x 23"W x 14"H, 11.5"L x 18.5"W x 11.5"H. Set of 2 $135

Ø Flip flop mats

Made from material left over from colorful flip-flops once the foot bed is stamped, these recycled factory remnants become rugged doormats that are as colorful as they are indestructible. No two are alike.

SMALL 25" x 15" x 1", $29
MEDIUM 36" x 22" x 1", $49
LARGE 60" x 36" x 1", $89
RUNNER 22" X 60" X 1", $79

Ø Bamboo box knife holder

We discovered a creative design studio in Europe that makes the most inventive and eco-savvy knife holders we've seen anywhere. Hundreds of slender bamboo skewers fill the interior of these stable bamboo rectangles, providing a safe, secure cushion for knives without dulling their blades. Two sizes for taller and shorter knives. Available in red or white.

SMALL 2.5"L x 7.75"W x 6"H, $49
LARGE 5"L x 7.5"W x 10"H, $89

Ø "This Rules" step stool

How to reinvent the basic, mundane but indispensable step stool: (1) Discover an ingenious designer and furniture maker with a stash of old yardsticks and soda pop crates, (2) Marvel as she applies her clever craft to solid, conventional stools, (3) Take note that she coats each unique stool with a transparent slip-proof surface as tough as steel. (4) Climb to the highest step, salute and shout: "Voila! This rules!"

14.5"L x 15"W x 19"H, $325 (additional shipping charges apply)

Ø Candy wrapper tote bag

Juicy Fruit meets Christian Dior. Not exactly, but allow us a wee bit of license to do justice to this yummy tote and carryall with recycled leather handles and dangling pod and bead adornments. Made from 100% recycled wrappers headed for landfill, the roomy interior of this slightly tapered and wide-bottomed tote bag holds objects large and small. Price $229

Ø Barrel stave chairs

A clever furniture designer transforms aged, recycled oak wine barrel staves into furniture that adds unusual character to your patio or deck. But style alone isn't enough. These gently arching, armless chairs provide remarkable comfort and fold flat for storage or transport. 17"W x 33"D x 33"H (additional shipping charges apply)

Price $189
Set of 2 $349

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