Contributed by Diana Cooper, Green Cluster, Economic Development Office
I was in for a treat this week when I got a sneak peek of Valery Philip’s latest project. Tucked beneath her Living Naturally yoga studio in Bloomfield is the most eclectically appointed shop, brimming with eco-friendly products for house, home and soul.
Committed to a small eco-footprint, Valery was pleasantly surprised by how much she could find re-used, right down to the paper cutter and vintage wrapping paper. Social media and Face Book helped: “Put it out there and ask for what you need. People save things because they realize they have value but have yet to come up with the idea of how to re-purpose it”.
The store was built using reclaimed and low impact materials: antique tables, shelves made from window valances from her grandfather’s house. Finding things, cleaning them up and giving them new life is second nature to Valery like the old cat creamer she now uses as a string holder.
Valery has collected an inspiring line up of funky, joyful items, many re-purposed and seen again through fresh eyes: picnic blankets made from up cycled fabrics, vintage teacups made into garden accessories.
Local creations are predominantly featured like Katherine Orok’s gorgeous clothing made from re-purposed fabrics, art by Brandy Gale and Sarah Renauld and soaps and balms crafted by Big Tub Botanicals and Honey Pie Hive and Herbals.
An aromatherapist, Valery will have quality oils as well as Canadian made yoga clothing, mats and books.
Valery recounted a visit to the Rose House museum where she saw a wooden butter mold. When she turned it over she discovered a carved rose inside that would leave an imprint on the finished brick.
“It struck me that no matter how busy this woman was, she took the time to make beautiful something as everyday as butter. We have lost ownership of creating beauty for ourselves.”
Living Naturally Gift Shop opens it’s doors on Saturday May 21 from 11 am to 5 pm and will be open every day but Tuesday.