Sorry for the relative silence here. All three of us suddenly have an overwhelming amount of work! I don’t know why. But based on experience, I blame it on the nearing holiday season. Projects, events, and deadlines start to pile up beginning in October because everyone wants to finish everything before Christmas.
So, it’s not that we already ran out of interesting ideas and projects to share. In fact, we already have several posts lined up! We just need to find the time to work on them. Here are some posts to watch out for:
- Lilli and Ana’s trip to Calauan, Laguna to join Habitat for Humanity’s Blogger’s Build
- Ardel and Lilli’s trip to La Union to tour Thunderbird Resort, Poro Point and to attend the launch of Point Residences
- New spacelift projects c/o our df readers Ina and Weng
- An update on UP ID’s Upgrade Project
- Heima’s new furniture collection
- New space matters feature on a compact condominium studio
Tags: conscious living, environment-friendly, green
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Now on its 26th year, Metrobank Art and Design Excellence (MADE), an annual competition of Metrobank Foundation Inc., has been giving recognition to up and coming Filipinos in the fields of painting, sculpture, architecture and interior design.
For the past years, MADE highlighted environmental design as the theme for both the architecture and interior design categories to inspire and raise awareness on how environmental issues could be addressed in design. I am proud to say that two of the past winners in the interior design category are our friends from college—April Frigillana (2008 Grand Prize) and Pauline Cuevas (2009 Special Prize).
April’s design entitled “Nature’s Links” (top and above) integrated creative recycling, reusing, and repurposing in her design. Read more about her design here.
On the other hand, Pauline’s “Cool Chic” concept took a fresh approach on sustainable design. Apart from featuring green design strategies, she also made an effort to make her design (below) look and feel young, hip and current to make it more relevant and appealing to the younger generation. “I want to bestow a fresh and young feel to the [interiors], hence the use of lively colors. Sustainable design doesn’t have to be boring,” she explains. More on here design here.
Apparently, one of this year’s winners in the ID category also happens to be a good friend! Will be sharing his winning design tomorrow. -ardel
*images via metrobank foundation inc.
Tags: environment-friendly, green design, interior design, made, space matters
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A green space is a space that is built with the local climate in mind. Our country is a tropical climate. And one of the major difficulties of tropical climates is cooling interior spaces.
Cooling a space mechanically generally takes up as much as 50 percent of the electricity bill. By cutting down on your use of the air-con, not only do you save energy and money, but also any greenhouse gases that may have been emitted by the production of electricity. This series looks at the various ways of being comfortable without turning on the energy.
One of the best tools you can apply to your space is a compass. Finding the orientation (where the north, east, south and west) of the space will help a lot in identifying, literally, the hot spots.
For our country, the sun (the major source of heat) travel, most times of the year, from east to west in a southern path everyday. From that alone, at any time of the day, three out of four sides of your space is exposed to the direct rays of the sun. Plus, the tropical sun, coupled with the thinning ozone layer and little cloud cover, can be quite intense. The sun can be found at the east in the morning, south at noon, and west in the afternoon. That leaves north as the coolest part.
Diagram by Arch. Stanley Fernandez
Let’s say you’re building your dream house. You place at the north side of your home the important spaces or rooms you spend the most time at during the day. It can be the bedroom or the den. You can place large window facing northwards, assured that no direct sunlight shall enter that room. (The absence of direct sunlight does not necessarily mean dark spaces. The intensity of the tropical sun can light up spaces indirectly.)
It’s also a lot easier if you want the space cooler because you are not starting from a higher temperature. An additional fan (that coincidentally uses a lot less energy than an air-con) may be all that’s needed.
You normally want to put the service areas at the hot parts (east and west) of the house. That can be the kitchen, laundry, bathroom or other spaces you spend time in fleetingly.
So, save up on future energy costs by just finding the right places for your spaces.
Tags: conscious living, environment-friendly, green, green design, home, passive cooling, philippine architecture, philippine design, tropical design
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[I am so happy that my good friend, Green Guide, has agreed to be our guest blogger for our Conscious Living section! Green Guide is an architect and a graduate student majoring in Building Science under the College of Architecture in UP, Diliman. With his substantial background in sustainable design, he is one of the most credible individuals I know who could share basic, yet proactive, strategies on how to be “green” everyday.
GREEN IS SMALL
Let’s start small.
Green design is considering being small.
Small means taking up less space.
Having less space is having less of other things.
Less space is having less clutter. With a smaller space, we do not have the compulsion to fill it up. We have fewer objects (furniture, knick-knacks, bric-a-brac and/or, god forbid, other non-biodegradable products) to buy, store and display. In fact, we gain more space to buy, store and display the more important things (furniture, knick-knacks, bric-a-brac and/or other biodegradable products).
Less space is having fewer costs. With a smaller space, we don’t need to build, roof and finish a bigger area. (Save on construction expenses!) We spend less time and effort in cleaning up the place. (Save on cleaning products!) We have less space to maintain and upkeep. (Save on repair bills!) And with a smaller space, we spend less if we ever want to redo things again. (Save on renovation costs!)
Less space is having fewer complications. With a smaller space, we save on lights and power in cooling the space. Consequently, we reduce our electric bills. By saving on energy, we contribute in burning less fossil fuel. With a smaller space, we gain a bigger open area. That open area can turn into a garden. And if we plant a tree in that garden, that tree can absorb all the carbon dioxide and pollution in the surrounding area.
Having less space does not necessarily mean small thinking. It’s just having the bigger picture in mind.
Tags: conscious living, environment-friendly, green
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