Above, the lovely Shannon of Green Guru with one of their repurposed dog leashes (I got one, it’s my favorite).
I attended the Grand Opening VIP party at Ellie’s a little while ago—saw much of Boulder, Colorado’s who’s who of the natural products and eco entrepreneur world—including my buddy Davidson Lewis (my father’s name happens to be David Lewis, I’m his son of course, so I call Davidson ‘dad’).
Davidson’s the principal force behind Green Guru and Ecologic, one of the US of A’s leading young eco gear companies. They gather old wet suits, old climbing rope, whatever…reclaim, stitch n’sew, and out come creative, hip, functional and green-as-green-can-be products.
Thing is, they don’t play ball with the big boys, yet, so they don’t have first-tier distribution. Which means grassroots support is all they got—which means you. If you live in Boulder, be sure to check out Ellie’s and buy something (small, large, cheap, pricey, don’t matter) of Green Guru’s. If they do sufficiently well, sales-wise, Ellie’s will take ’em on more permanently.
While running down to buy an eco dog leash (below) may not be as fun or important as grassroots organizing to fight Prop 8 or the like, supporting great indie green companies with your hard-won dollars at a green home store like Ellie’s is the definition of the active, conscious consumer that has done what no government has had the guts to do over the last 20 years—create a market for ‘green,’ for ‘eco,’ for wind, solar and organics.
Via our pals at Green Guru: “Ellie’s Eco Home Products is a full service environmentally friendly product stor…Green Guru is there as a featured vendor displaying a colorful mix of billboard bags, bike inner tube products and climbing rope dog collars and leashes. Come on over to the Village Shopping Center at Arapahoe and Canyon on the SE side of McGuckin Harware in Boulder, Colorado.” Support ’em, I love their dog leashes and tote bags, particularly.
Above: Steve Savage, Eco Products founder, cuts the ribbon at the recent grand opening.
Adapted from a recent press release:
Creating a convenient one-stop shop for eco-friendly home, office and building products, Ellie’s Eco Home Store is a 9,700-square-foot store, located in Boulder at 2525 Arapahoe Avenue, next to Sunflower Market.
Ellie’s is the first green department store supported by an industry pioneer — 18-year-old Eco-Products, the nation’s largest manufacturer of compostable food service items. In 1996 Eco-Products expanded to include a building division offering green office and household products. That department, located in the same building as the Eco-Products offices and warehouse on3640 Walnut Street in Boulder, rebranded to ellie’s in December 2007. November’s opening marks the store’s official expansion into its own location.
According to the Natural Foods Merchandiser’s 2007 Market Overview, natural and green house-ware product sales increased 32.4 percent last year, from the prior year reaching $365 million, and the sales of natural household cleaners and supplies increased 18.8 percent to $73 million from 2006 – 2007.
The green building products market is projected to be worth $30 billion to $40 billion annually by 2010, according to the Green Building Alliance.
“Ellie’s will provide the security that our community is looking for regarding safe products for their home and families,” said Steve Savage, founder and president of Eco-Products. “We are ready to educate our shoppers on better options for their homes and to take suggestions about products that they trust,” he added.
Ellie’s numerous departments include children and baby, green building, energy efficiency and cleaning supplies. Shoppers will be able to reduce their environmental “footprint” and avoid products that may pose health risks from chemical exposure.
Below, Steve’s daughter—Ellie herself (with her mom)—is featured in one of the many evocative store displays.