turning over a green leaf
As autumn approaches, innovative materials,
books, and tips offer new ways to lighten our eco footprint
Written and Produced by MOLLY JANE QUINN
palm reader • At
EcoModern Design, a new
showroom at the Boston
Design Center, green materials
often come from unexpected
sources — coconuts, for
example, as in EKOBE tiles
from Nemo Tile (nemotile.
com). These delicious-looking
squares of naturally renewable
coconut shells (left) come in a
variety of finishes, including
shiny metallic hues that would
enhance any urban loft.
The showroom also
stocks carpet made
using coir, a fiber derived from
the husk of a coconut. Some
look like ropey sisal, while
Poona, by Design Materials Inc.
( dmikc.com), is a thick over-
dyed pile. EcoModern Design,
Boston Design Center;
This Is Yurt Life • Looking for a way to extend outdoor living into the fall? Pop up a yurt!
The eco-friendly circular structure features a canvas outer shell over lattice walls. Modeled
after those used by nomadic tribes in Central Asia, the yurts operate “off the grid”
(meaning they aren’t hooked up to a conventional electric company). New Hampshire’s
White Mountain Yurts offers hand-built, 16-foot-diameter yurts starting at $6,000.
Additional upgrades include extra doors and windows and NASA-designed Astro-foil
insulation for winterizing the structure. The largest yurt available is 30 feet in
diameter at about double the 16-foot price. And if you’re planning to use the yurt as
an office, artist’s studio, or guesthouse, check out Offthegrid.net to purchase products
such as solar chargers and lanterns and to participate in online forums with tips on living,