Project Earth: Selfridges launches initiative to help customers change the way they shop and to be mindful of environmental impact — Life & Soul Magazine

Luxury department store Selfridges has launched a transformational sustainability initiative, Project Earth, which aims to help customers change the way they shop. Project Earth aims to help customers change the way they shop in three ways: by addressing the materials used in products, launching and exploring new retail models such as repair and resell, and […]

Project Earth: Selfridges launches initiative to help customers change the way they shop and to be mindful of environmental impact — Life & Soul Magazine

Naturkraft: World’s first sustainability theme park dedicated to nature opens in Denmark — Life & Soul Magazine

Naturkraft, the world’s first sustainability theme park dedicated to the powers of nature, has opened in Denmark. The nature-focused theme park, set on 50 hectares of former seabed right next to the city of Ringkøbing in West Jutland, invites people to experience and learn about nature. Naturkraft, which has been described as an “exploratorium and […]

Naturkraft: World’s first sustainability theme park dedicated to nature opens in Denmark — Life & Soul Magazine

Greenery and nature come face to face with animal force- STK Restaurant in Olomouc- Nisha Designs

STK Restaurant in Olomouc, Czech Republic

Olomouc Steak Restaurant

Steak restaurant housed in a former car repair shop.

Spontaneity, raw materials, pristine nature and above all – meat. The best steaks in the city of Olomouc.

STK Restaurant in Olomouc, Czech Republic

Ten years back, you would have come here to have your vehicle inspection certificate stamped. Entering the place, you would have covered your ears to escape the noise of the roaring car engines and watched the mechanics checking clutches and brakes. As the shift ended and the chaps clocked out to leave for home all hungry, they might have been dreaming about one kind of meal.

STK Restaurant in Olomouc, Czech Republic
STK Restaurant in Olomouc, Czech Republic

The juicy steak they would eat seated at a solid wood table supported by raw steel legs. Greenery and nature come face to face with animal force. That’s the core of Steak Restaurant’s (STK) interior, housed in a former car repair shop which gave the steakhouse its name.

Olomouc Steak Restaurant design by Komplits

STK in Olomouc emphasises simplicity and quality, both in its food and its interior. Instead of trying to deny and erase its greasy automobile heritage, the place embraces it. The 320 square metres of the restaurant authentically engage individual elements of its past.

Olomouc Steak Restaurant interior dining meat

This is evident from the materials, which include raw metal sheets, black steel and rebars. We even turned a seemingly problematic layout into an advantage, transforming bearing walls in narrow spaces into a vertical garden and a platform for a barbecue.

STK Restaurant in Olomouc, Czech Republic

Dominating the space are two huge steel bulls – the owner’s wish and a clear message to guests about the type of cuisine they should expect. In STK, heavy elements merge with nature. Willow branches wrap themselves around the tables and climb the walls, rising up to the ceiling and over the bulls’ heads.

STK Restaurant in Olomouc design by Komplits

Formed from solid oak boards, the tables have a rough hewn appearance and irregularly shaped steel legs. Here and there, plants spring from the ceiling and walls, changing the interior’s look with each new leaf that sprouts. Cowhide covering one of the walls and woven rope complete the signature style of the steakhouse.

Olomouc Steak Restaurant interior design
Olomouc Steak Restaurant interior design

Steak Restaurant Olomouc – Building Information

Studio: Komplits
Author: Pavel Kříž | principal architect
Contact e-mail: hello@komplits.com

Project location: Lipenská 11/7, Olomouc, Czech Republic
Project year: 2018
Completion yea: 2019
Usable floor area: 320 m2

Client: steak restaurant | http://www.steak-restaurant.cz | info@steak-restaurant.cz
Photo credits: BoysPlayNice | http://www.boysplaynice.com | info@boysplaynice.com

Olomouc Steak Restaurant interior design
Olomouc Steak Restaurant interior design
Olomouc Steak Restaurant bathroom mirrors washroom

About Komplits

Why do all houses, flats, offices, schools, hotels or tables out there look similar, when we have unlimited fantasy and possibilities? That was Komplits’ starting point, a belief uniting its members. They like exploring the roads not taken. A new day brings a new idea, shape or use of material. “But this is a material for fences! Well – we’ll make a chandelier from it”. Based in Olomouc, a city that encourages creativity, a team of architects, design and civil engineers take Pavel Kříž’s fantastic universes from paper and transform them into reality.

We create our own worlds. Houses, restaurants, schools, hotels and offices. But also desks, lighting, a bar or a hanger. One clear signature style and plenty of room for imagination. The more we hear something is impossible, the more excited we get about it.

Photography: BoysPlayNice | info@boysplaynice.com | www.boysplaynice.com

Source: https://www.e-architect.co.uk/czechrepublic/stk-restaurant-in-olomouc

Upholstery fabric with purity technology- Nisha Designs

DELIGARD upholstery fabrics: unrivaled in cleanliness and easy maintenance. Bacteria, dirt and moisture don’t stand a chance with this pattented innovative system. In hotels, restaurants, retirement homes and clinics textiles create an especially relaxing atmosphere by reducing noise and spreading warmth and comfort. DELIGARD upholstery fabrics have a singular anti-dirt protection; they thus offer protection against contermination which is of great importance in highly frequented public areas. They are the solution for long-lasting stainless upholstery.

Each individual fiber is enclosed by a protective sheath, replacing the commonly used “shallow” surface coating found in other fabrics. The special layer on the reverse side prevents the penetration of moisture and wetness. This innovative technology provides lasting protection against impurities and dirt, and is easy to clean.

Brooks DELIGARD expands this successful series of upholstery fabrics. It is characterised by its discreet graphic pattern and a soft touch. With this combination it not only offers a discreet and modern look, but also gives rooms a cosy atmosphere.

Here is an overview of the DELIGARD characteristics: 

  • resistant to moisture and dirt
  • breathable
  • skin-friendly
  • prevents the growth of bacteria
  • hydrophobic
  • urine-resistant
  • disinfectant-resistant
  • extremely durable
  • environmentally friendly and pollutant-free
  • easy to upholster
  • particularly soft due to the textile reverse side
  • Flame-retardant properties: DIN EN 1021 Teil 1, DIN EN 1021 Teil 2, BS 5852 Crib 5, IMO Res. A652 (16)
  • Martindale: 30,000 Tours

Brooks Fabrics: https://www.delius-contract.de/en/products/contract-fabrics/brooks

Do you need samples or advice? Then send an e-mail to nisha@nishadesigns.com or call us at 702.622.8321

ZeroCabin: Zero impact sustainable cabins for off-grid living in the thick of nature

Chile-based ZeroCabin has created a collection of 100% self-sustaining and off-grid cabins for those who want a retreat in nature that leaves zero impact.

Developed by a small team of scientists with no architectural training, each cabin is built by the ZeroCabin  team upon an elevated base of two-metre high wooden piles to maximise views in nature.

The timber-framed structures, which are built without using nails, use biodegradable insulation and thermally efficient glazing systems, which cut down on the use of active heating and cooling systems.

The “kit of parts” offered by ZeroCabin includes maintenance plans for photovoltaic panels, waste recycling and rainwater collection through reverse osmosis. These kits provide buyers with the tools and information to create a self-sustaining cabin with negative impact customised to function anywhere in the world.

ZeroCabin say: “The ZeroCabin is zero impact, it is a perfect symbiosis between you and nature. We build it wherever you want, we just leave a path, we don’t use a boom truck. 10% of our utility is invested in plans to preserve native forests and wildlife.”

Each cabin is oriented at a precise angle within its context for optimal exposure to the sun, making the most efficient use of solar panels for on-site generation of energy.

ZeroCabin

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyle including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at Rosamedea.com

Mexican entreprenur puts invasive species of brown algae, sargassum, to use as a building material

Mexican entrepreneur Omar Sánchez Vázquez has devised a way to transform an invasive species of brown algae, known as sargassum, into building bricks. The brown algae, which traps turtles and fills the air with the smell of rotten eggs, is a threat to both the marine ecosystem and tourism.

The organic, thermal and functional construction material utilises the same technique used to make adobe bricks, although it costs 50% percent less than adobe bricks. The building bricks are also said to be resistant to hurricanes.

Omar Sánchez Vázquez first saw an opportunity in the brown sargassum seaweed to grow his gardening business in 2015, when he spotted that the sea began to dump vast amounts of the algae on beaches of the southeastern Mexican state of Quintana Roo.

Initially he used sargassum as fertiliser at his BlueGreen Nursery and sold small amounts to his customers. Yet at the same time the BlueGreen founder wanted a little adobe house, one that he would build with his own hands, and so took out all the permits needed to patent the first block of sargassum.

In 2018, Omar Sánchez Vázquez erected his first house in just 15 days using 2,000 bricks produced with 20 metric tons of sargassum. The rustic house, which is named “Angelita” in honour of Omar Sánchez Vázquez’s mother, is an exact replica of the house in which he grew up in Guadalajara in western Mexico.

Omar Sánchez Vázquez’s construction team is currently working on two building projects using sargassum. The first is a build of 10 residential homes which will be donated to poor familes, and the second, is a private project in Tulum, also on the Mexican Caribbean, where they are building 40 residential homes.

It is understood that the sargassum bricks could soon be used to build a new eco-hotel in Tulum.

Since the seaweed crisis began in the Mexican Caribbean, numerous projects have been launched to take advantage of the algae, from disposable dishes and cups and shoe soles to its use as a fine-foods ingredient and in exotic drinks.

It wasn’t long before people interested in replicating the sargassum-house model were getting in touch with Omar Vazquez, people from

Countries including Belize, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Barbados, Malaysia and the United States have also been affected by sargassum, which has hit their shores with vast amounts of seaweed daily.

Images Credit: BlueGreen

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyles including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at Rosamedea.com

Spiritual Living is Security- Nisha Designs

Photo by @kjp

As an artist, textile designer, women business owner it is my responsibility to create and service that serves the greater good leading by example and shifting my own life. And it is important to be aware how my life choices impacts the environment by my energy, thought, belief system, choices and actions. What I create, how I use the energy and intention behind that creation, service will tell me if my focus is on physical or serving the greater good. If I create art, design, sell the products that I am selling with the intention of money, pride, popularity, then no I am not serving the greater good. Because here my focus is about physical things. But if I create my art, design service products because I love what I do, love what I provide to my customers regardless of the outcome for that design, art piece, fabric then yes I am serving the greater good. That is my security. That pure joy in creating, servicing and not focusing on physical and what it will bring me is the spiritual living taking care of me.

Living spiritually is where our security is. When I shifted my focus from physical things and people to complete spiritual living, I had and have complete security for life now. My purpose becomes my security. My life every moment, energy, thought, belief system, choices and actions are spiritually guided that which serves the greater good. Each of us born here are here as a guest, temporary not permanent. As a guest it is my responsibility to treat Mother Earth and all of her resources with respect and kindness. That means my life belongs to Mother Earth in everything I do. It is my responsibility to respect the land that has given me a life to experience Mother Earth. Your focus on Physical and financial things, body do not give you security. Security is your inner being, soul and higher mind not your conscious, money mind. Approaching life as a physical and material security can and will be taken away from you at any given moment in split second. You think you have but no you have no control on anything physical. If you say your job is a security? Hmm it can come to bankrupt or close down at any given time, money? Hmm that also can be taken away from you at any point, car, health, home, career, business, acquiring physical things, falling in love with a body than the inner being can be taken away from you at any given moment, if you think having a physical body to love, marry, kids is security then really look deeply they all can be taken away from you in split seconds coz you are focus on the physical not who they are inside. Physical things including physical bodies are not security. This so called magickal life you say by doing things, going to places, traveling, clothes, restaurants, brands you buy all have a physical focus. A magickal life is living spiritually that magickally takes care of you. And what gives you magickally will also be sustained magickally. You truly have no control on your physical life. But if you stay spiritually connected then yes it will secure you. Living spiritually is your security. Your focus is the key. Believe and you will see. Shift your focus. Just by shifting your focus you can bring change not only to your life but to Mother Earth. That is what is required to shift and bring change so mother earth can do what she has to do to bring things to balance.

Looking at your life what would you say is your foundation based on? What does security mean to you?

Mushrooms: New exhibition delves into the use of mushrooms as upcycled agro-waste to sustainable shoes and more

Mushrooms like most things that come from Mother Nature are incredibly versatile – they can be eaten, they can bring on hallucinations, they can be used as a material in the design of furniture and clothes, and they can even eat through plastic.

Now the humble mushroom is the subject of a new exhibition, Mushrooms: The Art, Design and Future of Fungi, whichcelebrates the rich legacy and potential of the remarkable organism, the ideas it inspires in the poetic, spiritual and psychedelic, and how it is inspiring new thinking around design and architecture.

The exhibition, which is currently on at London’s Somerset House until 26 April, features the works of over 40 artists, designers and musicians who take a look at fungi’s colourful cultural legacy, exploring sustainability and our relationship with the planet.

Mushrooms is split into three themes – Mycophilia, Magic Mushrooms, and Fungi Futures – and includes sculpture, hand-cut collage, painting, drawing, photography and film, and bio-based materials.

Among the works on display is a specially commissioned mycelium-based chair from British designer, Tom Dixon; a solar-powered mushroom suitcase from conceptual artist, Carsten Höller; a decomposable mushroom burial suit by Jae Rhim Lee designed to reduce the damaging environmental impact of the funeral industry; and a sustainable shoe design using mycellium by Belgian shoe designer Kristel Peters.

There will be a number of events to coincide with the exhibition including TABLE, a mushroom-inspired pop-up dining experience from chef and Spring restaurant founder Skye Gyngell.

Mushrooms: The Art, Design and Future of Fungi is currently on at London’s Somerset House until 26 April 2020

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyles including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at Rosamedea.com

Microcosm of the Macrocosm: 7 Planet-Focused Stories from Around the World- Life & Soul Magazine

Here’s a roundup of some of the stories that have captured Life & Soul Magazine’s attention this week:

1. 5 Indigenous And Native Activists Who Made An Impact In 2019 – Huffington Post profiles five Indigenous and Native activists who have had a powerful influence this year on their communities and in the world.

2. How quickly do fashion materials biodegrade? – The vast majority of materials on earth will biodegrade. The problem is that some, like plastic, will take a millennium to disappear. So what does it mean when a product is labelled as “biodegradable”? Vogue Business asks.

3. 2020 Will Be The Year Of Sustainable Business: Here’s Why – The first fundamental shift we will see in the next year will be some of the world’s biggest companies actively transforming their supply chains to become “circular,” under pressure from ethically-minded consumers, says Forbes.

4. Chew On This: Farmers Are Using Food Waste To Make Electricity – Dairy farmers in Massachusetts are using food waste to create electricity. They feed waste into anaerobic digesters, built and operated by Vanguard Renewables, which capture the methane emissions and make renewable energy, NPR reports.

5. This world map rates countries by the sustainability of their food systems – Food systems are going to need to be resilient to withstand climate change’s effects on agriculture. Looking at 20 factors, researchers now have a big picture about which countries are most under threat, Fast Company writes.

6. How Tesco, Sainsbury’s, M&S and other UK supermarkets are reducing plastic waste this Christmas – From ditching glitter to removing black plastic packaging, this is what UK stores are doing to take out plastic this December, the Evening Standard reports.

7. No-waste cooking: used orange and almond cake recipe – The Guardian features a zero-waste recipe from Amelia Wasiliev that makes use of used orange halves.

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyles including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at Rosamedea.com

Mural by Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada in Turin raises awareness of Sustainable Energy — Inspiring City

A mural created to raise awareness of the importance of sustainable energy has been created in Turin. From Barcelona based Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada. It is a piece which, according to the artist, “alludes to the importance of acting now to assure a positive outcome.” Called ‘Promise’ it features the image of a young girl. She is…

via Mural by Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada in Turin raises awareness of Sustainable Energy — Inspiring City

On Trend: Resurrecting the Sublime

At first sight, the Pure Spiritual trend might awaken preconceived ideas about organic materials and earth-based dyes. But on closer inspection, what differentiates Pure Spiritual from other nature-based trends is its ability to go far deeper. Instead, this trend also shows how technology can be embraced for the greater good, and what opportunities exist for individuals to use technology in a way that intersects with nature.

It’s a trend which reconciles the past with the present, evocative of a recent project that similarly explores the natural world. Resurrecting the Sublime is an ongoing collaboration which “allows us to smell extinct flowers, lost due to colonial activity.” The work of many, the project is created by artist Dr. Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg, smell researcher and artist Sissel Tolaas and the team at biotechnology company Ginkgo Bioworks, encompassing engineers and researchers led by Director Dr. Christina Agapakis, with the support of IFF Inc.

It all started with specimens of three flowers stored at Harvard University’s Herbaria, which each had small amounts of DNA extracted from them. Using this DNA, the Gingko team predicted and resynthesized gene sequences that had the potential to encode for fragrance-producing enzymes. With these findings, Tolaas was able to use identical or comparative smell molecules in her own lab to reconstruct the flowers’ fragrances. 

Outside its origins in the lab, the project has taken on a physical form and appeared in galleries around the world. From a solo exhibition as part of the Biennale Internationale Design Saint-Étienne to group shows at the Centre Pompidou, the Barbican Centre and beyond, previous iterations of the installation have included a vitrine with smell diffusion, limestone boulders and animations. While the project’s foundations focused on our olfactory system, the overall experience actually engages multiple senses.

In the context of today’s global conversations surrounding climate change and sustainability, Resurrecting the Sublime feels more pertinent than ever. While the collaboration began with the question, “Could we ever again smell flowers driven to extinction by humans?”, it invites audiences to not only reflect on what we’ve lost, but what we must sustain for the future.

Header photo: Resurrecting the Sublime by Christina Agapakis (Ginkgo Bioworks Inc.), Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg & Sissel Tolaas, with support from IFF Inc, Courtesy of Harvard University Herbaria © Ginkgo Bioworks, Inc., The Herbarium of the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University. Heimtexblog

Nina Jung