Posts Tagged ‘brooklyn/nyc’

upcoming workshops (updated!)

February 18, 2011

Check out my latest workshop offerings and new collaborations that I’m pretty excited about!

UPDATE: I’ve included some related events that I thought you’d like to know about, too. (Workshops in green are led by me and/or collaborators.)

Thursday, February 24

Domestic Detox | Pollution is Personal
Open to all, this community presentation aims to raise awareness about the thousands of untested and unregulated synthetic chemicals in everyday household products and offers practical solutions to help families create a healthy toxin-free home.

Date/Time:
Thursday, February 24
7:00pm – 8:30pm

Location:
The Commons Brooklyn
388 Atlantic Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217

More Info:
The Commons Brooklyn
347-689-3908
http://thecommonsbrooklyn.org/
http://www.plasticalbatross.org/


[Image from The Worsted Witch]

Tuesday, March 8

Green Housekeeping for the Domestically Impaired

led by Olivia Lane of Olivia Lane Housekeeping & Organizing!

Let’s face it: You’re busy and you like to have fun. Housework is time-consuming and you have 10 million things you’d rather be doing, that is, if you could stop tripping over the same pile of stuff on your way to do them.

Attend our workshop and learn not only how to fit housekeeping into your full and fabulous life, but learn how adopting a happy, eco-friendly housekeeping practice can make your life even better. Olivia will offer practical, personalized advice on how you can say goodbye to clutter and hello to all the good stuff you really need, want, and deserve. She’ll also share her secrets for making cleaning and organizing a sacred, self-healing and renewing ritual you’ll actually look forward to! Liz will explain how the products we clean with impact our health and our environment. She’ll also demonstrate how to mix our your own homemade cleaning product.

Participants will leave with a mini-guide to eco-friendly housecleaning, a homemade cleaner, and a fresh perspective on life, love, and dust bunnies!

Please bring a small 4oz jar.

Olivia Lane is a professional apartment cleaner and organizer offering creative, positive, and personalized eco-friendly service to Prospect Heights, Crown Heights, Park Slope, Bed-Stuy, Clinton Hill, Fort Greene & Lower Manhattan. Visit www.olivialanehousekeeping.com for more info.

This workshop is brought to you by Brooklyn Skillshare in collaboration with:

LaunchPad
721 Franklin Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11238
718-928-7112

Tuesday, March 8
6:30pm to 7:30pm

Cost: FREE!


Sunday, March 20

Natural Beauty: Make-it-yourself Body Care

hosted by The Good Life’s Melissa Danielle!

This workshop begins at 10:30am. You are invited to join us at 10am for a light potluck brunch.

Are you ready to get crafty making luxurious lotions, polishing cleansers, and other body care products? In this hands-on workshop, you’ll learn the simple art of mixing up your very own customized goods that enhance your natural beauty. Many of the ingredients we’ll work with can be found in your cupboard, or are easily located at your local grocery store.

Everyone walks away with 3 products (all-over body cream, facial cleanser, body scrub, deodorant; subject to change).

Please bring: three 4-oz. glass containers (mason or baby food jars work great.) We will also have containers on hand to purchase if need be.

The Brooklyn Free School
372 Clinton Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11238

Sunday, March 20
Light brunch at 10am
Workshop begins 10:30am, ends 12:30pm

Cost
– $35 for Non-members
– Free for Members of The Good Life

Register here

More info about The Good Life

Wednesday, March 23

Why Can’t the Laundry Do Itself? Housekeeping for the Domestically Challenged

Let’s face it: You’re busy and you like to have fun. Housework is time-consuming and you have 10 million things you’d rather be doing, that is, if you could stop tripping over the same pile of stuff on your way to do them.

Attend my workshop and learn not only how to fit housekeeping into your busy, fabulous, fun life, but learn how adopting a happy housekeeping practice can make your life even better. I’ll offer practical, personalized advice on how you can say goodbye to clutter and hello to all the good stuff you really need, want, and deserve. I’ll also share my secrets for making cleaning and organizing a sacred, self-healing and renewing ritual you’ll actually look forward to!

Participants will leave with an original, handmade mini-guide to eco-friendly housecleaning and a fresh perspective on life, love, and dust bunnies!

The Brooklyn Free School
372 Clinton Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11238

Wednesday, March 23
7pm to 8:30pm

Suggested donation: $12; pay what you wish. No one will be turned away.

Register here

About Olivia Lane Housekeeping & Organizing
I am passionate about helping people design balanced and fulfilling lives built around their own ideals and I use housekeeping and organizing as a tool to assist people with this. When our homes are unkempt and uncomfortable, it only makes sense that we too feel a little out of control and uncomfortable. The foundation of my housekeeping and organizing philosophy is to stay creative and positive. It’s not about how clean or organized your home is now; it’s about how clean and organized you’d like it to be, and I can make it happen! I work with clients to discover and co-create the kind of environment they are happiest in. Whether you need me to help unearth a closet full of New York Times dating back to the 1970s, visit regularly to keep things “just so”, or simply spruce up after a party, I can help make big or small domestic changes that will make you feel great at home and empower you to do great things out in the world.
I use only natural (non-toxic and biodegradable) cleaning products that are not tested on animals. I also use recycled and re-purposed materials whenever possible.
Serving Prospect Heights, Crown Heights, Park Slope, Bed-Stuy, Clinton Hill, Fort Greene & Lower Manhattan.
www.OliviaLaneHousekeeping.com

Coming soon…

Monday, March 28

Another round of Green Housekeeping for the Domestically Impaired with Olivia Lane

at Sustainable NYC

Stay tuned for full details!

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raganella’s adventures in nyc

October 19, 2010

When I’m not working on my next workshop idea or helping clients choose (or make) healthier household products, I’m off in the wild. The wild of the city that is. Recently we (my boyfriend & I) experienced a series of local excursions of note all around the city. There is an urban wilderness to be found out there and I’ll be sharing more of my explorations as I experience them. Stay tuned!

________________________________________________

Inwood Hill Park

This 196.4 acre wild park at the uppermost tip of Manhattan holds the last forest (Oak-Beech-Hickory) of its kind on the island, as well as the last salt marsh.

Out to the river, out to the sea

We were amazed by both the unkemptness (in a good way) of the park, as well as its proximity to the Westside Highway (we had to traverse it twice, both times via tunnel). We heard many uncommon (to our ears) bird calls and upon encountering a couple of birders, learned there were kinglets and black-capped chickadees in our midst. NYC boasts a diversity of wildlife way beyond the grey squirrel (and black & albino varieties) and pigeon. Check out this great article by Robert Sullivan to learn more.

Another thing NYC has that might surprise people is some great foraging finds. We spotted a chicken-of-the-woods from the path and without much hesitation (possibly) broke the park rules by hightailing it up the side of a hill to check it out (and grab enough fungi for 4 meals!).

From the woods we could see the salt marsh below. The marsh meets the Spuyten Duyvil (for the most part, the East River) before it heads out to the Hudson. Sea gulls and other wading birds seemingly lounge about, scooping up crustaceans and fish during low tide.

In the visitor center, one of the rangers showed us a flounder and striped bass that were caught in the marsh the day prior. They also had turtles, snakes, and walking sticks, all native to the area.

Marshy marshy marshy

To get to Inwood Hill Park, take the A to Dyckman St (200 St) or 207th St or the 1 to 207th St (10th Ave) and walk west. You can’t miss it!

________________________________________________

Brooklyn Navy Yard

Open House NY (OHNY) is a free annual event that introduces otherwise closed off parts of NYC to residents and tourists alike. Our first OHNY excursion was at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

What was once an active port is now home to artists, fabricators, industrial companies, and film set builders.

After checking out an art exhibit, we wandered around a bit (until we got “caught” by security). It’s a bit like wandering through an abandoned town, albeit a bit more maintained.

on the waterfront


Visiting the Brooklyn Navy Yard seems to be a tricky venture. You can visit during Open House events like we did, or if you’re interested in leasing space, you could probably make an appointment to get inside. Otherwise, you can stand outside the gate, staring in longingly. To the south of the visitor’s gates, you can get a glimpse of the decaying old Officer’s Row residences in the yard. A great way to see how nature takes over when we don’t interfere. Directions to the Navy Yard.

Noshing nearby: If you’re peckish and up for a little walk, check out Vinegar Hill House. Delicious!

________________________________________________

Newtown Creek Digester Eggs

After eating a tasty and fitting omelet breakfast at Williamsburg’s Egg, we hightailed it to the Newtown Creek’s digester eggs.

From digesting eggs to digester eggs

If you’ve ever looked across the East River to Brooklyn from the midtown Manhattan side (east), then you’ve seen the giant silver orbs that are the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment facility’s anaerobic digester “eggs.” I didn’t really think of them as beautiful until I got upclose & personal with the eggs at a recent tour (another OHNY event). We actually got to go to the top of the shiny lovelies to learn more about their function from one of the employees.

Here are a few fun facts about the facility & eggs:

  • Each egg (there are 8 of them) weighs 33 million lbs. They were manufactured in Texas, shipped to New Jersey, and piece-by-piece transported over the George Washington Bridge over 4.5 months. The eggs were assembled on site as they received each piece
  • The eggs utilize anaerobic bacteria to digest sewage. Three million cubic feet of methane is one of the byproducts of this anaerobic process. Only 20% of this methane is used to heat the plant. The rest is currently burned off (in carbon filtered cylinders). The facility is in talks with National Grid to channel this methane back into the grid. (Keep your fingers crossed!)

Methane release

  • The facility currently handles 240 million gallons of wastewater per dry day, 500 million gallons on a wet day, and when the facility is fully complete, it will handle 700 million gallons per day at its max
  • Wastewater enters the facility at 150 parts per million of pollutants and leaves at 15 to 20 ppm, an 85% reduction in pollutants (which apparently exceeds the EPA standard)

To learn more about what happens to the water that we flush down the toilet, sink, or shower, check out this fact sheet about wastewater treatment in NYC.

The view from the top

To get to Newtown Creek visitor center – which is open to school groups on Tuesdays & Thursdays and the general public on Fridays & Saturdays – take the G train to Greenpoint Ave. Use the Greenpoint/Manhattan Ave exit. Walk along Greenpoint Avenue one long block east and cross McGuinness Blvd. Continue on Greenpoint Ave to the next traffic light and cross Provost. The Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant will be on your left. Follow the fence-line and continue walking until you reach the main gate to the plant, at a traffic light on Humboldt St.

I also highly recommend the Newtown Creek Nature Walk, which runs along the East River and includes native plantings and insightful sculpture work.

________________________________________________

Green-Wood Cemetery

Green-Wood has been on my list of places to visit for a while. And on this past super-sunny Sunday, away we went to the famed cemetery. We walked from our apartment (stopping for brunch at the yummy Thistle Hill Tavern on the way) to the gates at 25th St & 5th Ave (a 2.5 mile walk).

The light was intense & dreamy as we made our way around the windy pathways, stopping to admire the graves of people like Louis Comfort Tiffany & William “Boss” Tweed.

My favorite grave marker was that of Peter Cooper (of Cooper Union fame). It’s an amazingly thought-out memorial, including all of Mr. Cooper’s achievements, a poem by Joaquin Miller, as well as his wife Sarah Bedell’s epitaph.

Peter Cooper's amazing epitaph

Patriot, philanthropist, sage

Peace on the dim Plutonian shore

Aside from the interred humans of note, there are some stunning tree specimens throughout the 478-acre cemetery. It’s also home to at least one very large hawk, a growing flock of wild parrots, and it’s a stopping-off point for many migrating birds as well.

Persimmon tree

To get to Green-Wood Cemetery, take the R train to 25th St in Brooklyn. Walk east one block to Green-Wood at 5th Ave and 25th St. (There are also entrances at 9th Ave & 20th St and on Fort Hamilton Ave, though not as grand as the main entrance.)

Watch this space for more city-centric adventures!

farming brooklyn – youth edition

December 21, 2009

BK Farmyards – the decentralized urban farming network (that also happens to have been founded by my friend Stacey) – is kickstarting a youth farm in Crown Heights. The thing is, they need a little help from their friends.

Would you like to help city kids learn about the amazing world of growing food? You can. Visit the BK Farmyards Kickstarter page and give (generously) – you may even be rewarded for it.*

*If you…

Pledge $20 or more

A big thank you for your support on Twitter, http://www.bkfarmyards.com, and our newsletter

Pledge $50 or more

A stylish, reusable grocery bag crafted by bk farmyards and made from all recycled materials. We’ll include a satchel of aromatic cooking herbs from one of our farms.

Pledge $100 or more

Adopt a Chick! You will receive postcards from one of our hens over the course of the year. Watch how fast they grow and know that you made fresh eggs available for the neighborhood.

Pledge $500 or more

Dinner for 2 in a New York City restaurant that features local organic produce. We know some great chefs: your taste buds will love you forever! Prior to meal, we will inquire about your dietary requests.

Pledge $1,000 or more

You and a friend will tour New York City’s urban agriculture scene with one of our farmers for a day. Take a behind the scenes look at urban farmers day-to-day life and discover some hidden treasures throughout he city.

Pledge $2,500 or more

Do you want to develop your own farmyard? Enjoy our consultation services for a growing season. Send us photos of your yard as well as your dietary preferences, and we will draw up a crop plan for you along with a schedule for starting seeds. During the season, consult with us about any pest or disease concerns in your new farmyard: we will give you information about pest cycles you should be aware of for your crops. We will also provide consultation to improve your soil health: your crops are only as healthy as your soil!

holiday shop the old-fashioned way

December 11, 2009

Maybe the really old-fashioned way to give material love during the holidays was to make something special for your nearest and dearest. But if you don’t have the time to get crafty, walk or bike to the small, local businesses in your neighborhood. Keep your hard-earned dough in your community. It’s good for the local economy, and you may just meet some great people along the way.

Here are some of the stores in or near my neighborhood with unique goods and friendly faces.

Cog & Pearl

190 Fifth Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(718) 623-8200

http://cogandpearl.com/store/

I’m always inspired by the selection at this cute little shop on 5th Ave in Park Slope. Beautiful locally made jewelry, soft & cozy screenprinted tees, and a slew of upcycled goodies. Some of the sustainable merch they’ve got:

Eko-logic upcycled mittens
the cool thing about these is that you can peak your fingers out the top, or tuck them under a cozy flap inside

Picture 1

Preloved upcycled sweaters

preloved1preloved2

Book Journals
(super cute, made from old school books)

bookjournals

Remake It Home

remake-it-home

Bob & Judi’s Coolectibles

217 5th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11215-1256
(718) 638-5770

You can’t go wrong with a sweet vintage find and this quaint little shop is chock full of interesting goodies. I especially love the vintage Christmas cards and decorations, including vintage glass ornaments that remind me of my grandmother. Here are some other things I spied there…

Vintage Xmas cards

vintage-christmas

Vintage decor

vintage-ornamentself-decor

Lots of vintage & antique finds

vintage-camerasflasks-and-suchscale

Also… Though it’s about half the size of Bob & Judi’s, just down 5th Ave is a similar selection of vintage baubles at Under the Pig.

Unnameable Books

456 Bergen Street
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(718) 789-1534

Recently relocated from Bergen Street on the other side of Flatbush, this book nook is full of carefully curated new & used books, including a few kids selections. The staff is friendly and helpful, and they’re always playing great college-radio-like music. Here’s a title that caught my eye:

Fat of the Land – Adventures of a 21st Century Forager

fat-of-the-land

Green in BKLYN

432 Myrtle Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11205

718-855-4383
http://www.greeninbklyn.com/

Elissa Olin, owner of this great green shop in Fort Greene is sweet as can be. So is her adorable Basenji-mix, Lola (wish I would’ve snapped a pic of her!). If you’re looking for an organic baby gift, housewares, or personal care, she’s got it all. Right now, Elissa’s running a special end-of-2009 promotion – spend $20.09 in the store and you’ll be entered to win a green gift basket (value $200.90). A few green standouts:

Aminals organic stuffies

aminalsaminals2

Stuff for your furry friends

eco-pets

Soaps
(the felted ones double as a washcloth; skinny-skinny soaps are made in Brooklyn)

felted-soapsskinny-skinny-soap

Root Stock & Quade

297 7th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(718) 788-8355

http://www.rootstockquade.com/

I’d love to just sit in this shop all day long and stare at all of the dreamy greenery.  Now that we’re all spending some more time indoors due to the frigid weather, the shop is full of terrific houseplants, including low-maintenance snake plants (also good for filtering polluted air). But this Fort Greene plant shop also specializes in garden design. They’ve also got festive mistletoe – but take care – be sure to pick & discard the poisonous berries if you have kids and/or pets roaming your home.

hanging-plantsucculentsxmas-cactusbranches

I brought home some mistletoe (mwa!)

mistletoe

And here’s a fave o’ mine on the other side of the river…

Kaight

83 Orchard Street
NY NY 10002

212.680.5630
http://www.kaightshop.com/

I have to give props to my girl, Kate, owner of this super eco clothing shop. She’s got an eye for gorgeously designed, sustainable & fair trade clothing & accessories. Plus, many brands are Brooklyn, NYC, and/or USA made. Kate will help you pick out something special for most everyone on your list, like one of these beauties:.

yhst-29499468329874_2085_8907416yhst-29499468329874_2083_6372976lindaloudermilkwaternlyhst-29499468329874_2080_3086751yhst-29499468329874_2082_3232185

get your craft on

December 4, 2009

This weekend is chock full o’ holiday crafty cheer. It would be hard not to find a unique gift for most people on your list at one of these fine events. Check ’em out!

Etsy’s Holiday Handmade Cavalcade
Saturday (tomorow!), Dec 5, 11am-8pm
201 Mulberry St
Get the full details

handmade_cavalcade_HHC09

With over 50 Metro New York artists, designers, and crafters bringing their handmade creations together for this one-day shopping event, this year promises to be even more fun and exciting.The Holiday Handmade Cavalcade runs from 11am-8pm on Saturday, December 5th, at the Openhouse Gallery, 201 Mulberry Street.

Be sure to enter our free raffle for a chance to win some creations from participating vendors, packed up in hand-embellished tote bags. Raffle tickets are free with each purchase, so the more you shop, the more chances you have to win….

So join us for some holiday cheer in our handmade shopping wonderland. Spread the word, tell your friends, and we’ll see you there!

DUMBO Winter Pop-up Flea Market
Every Saturday & Sunday
11am-6pm
81 Front St, Bklyn
More info here!

81 front horizontal

BUST Holiday Craftacular
Sunday, Dec 6
10am-8pm
Metropolitan Pavilion
125 W 18th St
$2 to get in
More details here!

460x274_holiday

Get gifts–and give back–at this year’s BUST Holiday Craftacular. Get your shop on all day browsing the hottest handmade wares from over 200 vendors, including handbags, jewelry, and clothing. Then, meet the adorable pets available for adoption from Animal Care and Control NYC, snap up some holiday cards to benefit City Harvest and pick up a cookie in support of the Lower East Side Girls Club. Rockin DJs, free java from Joe all morning, snacks, goodie bags for the first 500 attendees, amazing raffle prizes and more! Admission: $2

Independently owned and operated, BUST Magazine has been a leader in the crafting movement since 1993. Now in its 16th year, BUST continues to support and influence the handmade revolution though constant editorial coverage, sponsorships, and events such as the BUST Craftacular. Always on the cutting-edge, BUST is a revered and trusted authority in the DIY and crafting community.

The Metropolitan Pavilion is located at 125 West 18th Street in NYC, not far from the 1 train at 18th street, or the F, V trains at 23rd street. BUST Magazine’s Holiday Craftacular will take place from 10:00 AM – 7:30PM on December 6th. Your entry ticket also gives you a shot at winning a BUST-load of booty in the Craftacular Raffle!

Punk Rock Flea Market and Show
Sunday, Dec 6
1-7p, bands at 3ish; $1
456productionsgmail.com
456productions.tumblr.com/
Death By Audio
49 S 2nd St (btwn Kent & Wythe) W’burg
More info here!

Be ready to get your shop on just in time for the holiday season. We have a variety of vendors selling items such as jewelry, clothing, records, vintage items, and art. Maybe some sweets too.

Some vendors include Sean Douglas, Mark Bloomanthal, Kayla Cohen, Wendy Chan, Ivey Elizabeth Jewelry Company, Lauren Guida, Anna Gonick, Nicole Salas, Liz Medina, Rockliffe Douglas, and Showpaper. Featuring music by Graffiti Monsters (Brooklyn), Mincemeat or Tenspeed (Philadelphia), the Monte Vista (Brooklyn), and Insouciant (Philadelphia). Come early for the best stuff, stick around for the bands.
[via nonsense nyc]

Brooklyn’s Bizarre Bazaar
Sunday, Dec 6
12-8pm FREE
Brooklyn Fireproof
119 Ingraham Street, Brooklyn

Artists, musicians, performers, fantastic cooks, pack rats, children, moles, and crafty peeps showing off and selling their wares for you to gift to friends and family. Swing by for a tasty beverage, some good tunes, and perhaps a holiday purchase. Bound to be live painting, book reading, music playing, munching, and all around merriment.

The Who’s Who: Your Boyfriends Band Sux!, KidRainbowShines, Rachel Trachtenburg and Supercute, T-time, DaliGlam, and over 40 independent vendors. Come out and support the little man. He supports you!
[via nonsense nyc]

Gifted
(brought to you by Brooklyn Flea)
20 E 4th St (@Lafayette)
Manhattan
See below and here for hours & details

GiftedpostcardGiftedpostcard2

And if you want to make your own…

DIY Holiday Gift Workshop
Sunday, Dec 6
10am-12:30pm & 2-4:30p; $40
Hester Street Collaborative
113 Hester Street, Manhattan
RSVP to 212-431-6780 or jess(at)hesterstreet.org

Hester Street Collaborative leads this community design workshop. They provide the materials and instruction, you create five awesome, handmade gifts, including poured beeswax and soy candles, felted jewelry and ornaments, silk-screened hankerchiefs or napkins (or bring your own material), screen-printed cards, wrapping paper, and gift tags. All ages are all welcome to participate. (Continues Tuesday 6-8:30p.)

[via nonsense nyc]

Holiday Giftmaking
Tuesday, Dec 8
10am-12pm; $10
Materials for the Arts
33-00 Northern Boulevard, 3rd Floor, LIC, Queens
mfta.org

Why spend money on gifts this holiday season? Learn to create a variety of fun products that anyone would be happy to receive. Some examples include napkin holder rings, decoupage serving trays, jewelry boxes, button bracelets, ornaments, and baskets made with glue.

[via nonsense nyc]

enter to win a session with me – tonight!

December 3, 2009

Tonight at the GreenEdge NYC 3rd birthday bash, they’ll be raffling off a healthy home consulting session with me! And if you buy tickets to the party now, you’ll get 6 raffle tickets – increasing your chances to win! There are other great prizes, too, like a personalized living-foods training session, a gift certificate to Fort Greene restaurant iCi, and so much more.

Plus, special guests bk farmyards, Root for Trees, Leda Meredith, and more!

So join the party tonight, details below.

GreenEdgeBdayBash

GreenEdge NYC 3rd Birthday Bash
Littlefield
622 Degraw St (btwn 3rd & 4th Aves)
Brooklyn
7:30 to 11pm
$20 at the door
Pay now & get 6 raffle tickets! More chances to win great stuff!

Picture54

foraging find!

November 23, 2009

This past Saturday I had a lovely afternoon of foraging in Prospect Park with friends Leda, Meredith, and Liza. We spent most of the expedition picking garlic mustard and bishop’s elder, and digging up field garlic. But then eagle-eye Meredith spotted the mother lode – oyster mushrooms!

oyster-mushroom

If I had to guess, I’d say it was about 5 pounds (or more) and I had to use my trowel to divvy it up. Each share was at least enough for a dinner for two. It was the first time I’d ever found an edible mushroom – I usually buy them (for a pretty penny) at the farmer’s market.

brooklyn skillshare: a day of learning, making, sharing, doing

September 21, 2009

I just love learning new skills. How ’bout you?

In the last year I’ve taken classes on block-printing, jewelry making, and sewing, and taught myself crochet. I’m also learning about permaculture, and I’ve signed up for a lotion and soap-making class that starts this fall (oh yeah, Happy Autumnal Equinox!). I keep piling on learning upon learning, and I’m hoping there’s room in my noggin to squeeze in some more new skills.

That’s where Brooklyn Skillshare comes in. The Brooklyn Skillshare is a one-day event of learning, making, sharing, doing!

The best part is, it’s free to the public with a suggested donation for participation. But in order for it to remain free, Brooklyn Skillshare needs your help. They have 18 days to reach their goal of $1200 to cover costs such as renting the venue for the event, paying a bike valet, supplies, food, and more.

It’s shaping up to be an amazing event with the following groups sharing skills:

* Bags for the People – create sustainable alternatives to plastic bags using re-purposed materials
* Fiber Arts – knitting and felting using natural materials
* Treasure Everywhere! – glass bottles into cups, bowls, and vases
* Home audio production using Digital Performer
* Bicycle Mechanics 101
* How to brew kombucha
* Natural/organic metal casting and jewelry making
* Screen-printing basics & DIY techniques
* Taking care of yourself with massage basics
* DIY Electronics: Fun with LEDs, solder, sound, and the Arduino
* Basic Raw Food Preparation: the art of “uncooking”
* Party Favorites: infused liquor, homemade ginger ale & tasty snacks
* Make Your Own Butter and Ricotta (with Recipes and Ideas for Using Both)

It’s an all day affair with 5 blocks of classes that are 1.5 hour long, and 3 classes happening per block. You can attend as many or as few classes as you wish, so make the most of it and attend the whole day!

Won’t you help fund this incredible event? I just did. So far they’ve received $221 in funding. That means they only have $979 to go. You can pledge as little as $1. So after you pledge (click on the widget above or go here), go tell 978 of your friends to help out with this amazing day of skill sharing.

Oh, and here are the details for the event:

The First Annual Brooklyn Skillshare
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 10th, 2009

@ Gowanus Studio Space
119 8th street
Brooklyn, New York, 11215
Suite 202, Between 2nd and 3rd Avenues.

See you there!

do chickens get seasick?

August 19, 2009


Below the BQE, in a barren industrialized part of Brooklyn, was docked the Waterpod

Do chickens get seasick? Does sea air help or hinder the tomatoes? If you get a chance to visit the Waterpod – 3,000 square foot living ‘art-installation’ barge – could you do me a favor and ask these questions? A combination of heat and a weekend’s worth of permaculture lessons fried my noodle when I went to visit the operation on the Brooklyn waterfront last Sunday.

Here are some things to look forward to on your visit (they’re currently docked in Staten Island):


Bucky, eat your heart out.


Hey, your squash is hanging out!


These ladies are just minding their own business.


Grey water filtration system – awesome!


There shouldn’t be a mutiny on this bounty. (Ouch!)


Looks like a healthy tomato crop – no scurvy here


Some worthy shipmates saving amaranth seeds


Inside the living room – it was pretty cozy I’ll have to admit

Get the poop on the Waterpod

And some press on
NY Times

bk farmyards fundraiser: come & get it!

August 17, 2009


Howdy pardners! The dinner bell’s ringin’ and I’m hungry for some change. And by change I mean bringing some country to the city – that new ol’ fangled thang called urban farming.

BK Farmyards is itchin’ to grow food on your tiny parcel of city land. So mosey on down to this Saturday’s fundraiser to support the cause (RSVP here). Then take a gander at my latest post about BK Farmyards on the Brooklyn Food Coalition blog. But before you leave this here page, check out this video on Stacey Murphy, the lady behind BK Farmyards:

NYC’s Cool New Backyard Farms: Growing More Than Just Produce from SkeeterNYC on Vimeo.

Here’s the info again in case you missed it:

AUGUST 22
BK FARMYARDS FUNDRAISER
3pm-12am
hosted @ COMPOUND brooklyn
1287 Atlantic Ave, near Nostrand
2 blocks Nostrand A stop;
2-3 blocks B44, B65 , B25;
LIRR Nostrand stop steps away

Please RSVP on Facebook

Live bands, original artworks, dance troupe, local food & drinks, growing display, cooking demonstrations, and games: Fun for all ages. Bring along a blanket to picnic on the grass. Suggested donation $5 at the door or pay what you can. All donations go toward creating more farmyards. We are currently working with developers on converting 3 acres to farm next year. Gift certificates for Get Fresh Table and Market, Ici, Franny’s, The Farm on Adderley, Brooklyn Kitchen, Edible Brooklyn, and more will be auctioned off.

Pass the word along! Help us build more farms!