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Easy Ways to Make Your San Diego Home More Sustainable

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I’m Niki, the founder and designer of Enji Studio Jewelry. We’re a sustainable luxury jewelry brand based in beautiful north county San Diego.

at Enji we’re on a mission to bring you meaningful, modern, ethical design that shows off your style, honors the journey of your life, and reflects your values. We craft each piece for you in our Carlsbad studio bringing new life to recycled gold and silver and using only FairTrade and ethically sourced diamonds and gemstones.

Enji was founded in 2014. We take steps toward positive change in our industry by practicing ethical sourcing and manufacturing and giving back to the local and global community. We create our pieces for everyday wear.

Enji is about modern, minimal design that is made ethically and sustainably and gives back to the community. As creators and consumers, our choices now have a global impact. This is why we consider how things are made to be important and this to be part of our responsibility as a business and global citizen. As a designer and jeweler, I only work with suppliers that share this view. This is why we make all of my pieces using only recycled gold and silver, ethically sourced and fairtrade stones, chains and findings that are made in the USA and Italy, and packaging and marketing materials made using recycled paper and clothing.

Niki is a GIA Graduate Jeweler. She was awarded the 2016 Halstead Grant Award and 2014 Windgate Fellowship Award by the Center for Craft, Creativity, and Design. She has exhibited in galleries throughout the United States and Europe and her work can be seen in the pages of Glamour UK, Basic, Evening Standard, National Jeweler, and more. To see her one of a kind art pieces and CV check out nikigrandics.com

Enji is about modern, minimal design that is made ethically and sustainably and gives back to the community. As a designer and jeweler, I only work with suppliers that share this view. We make all of my pieces using only recycled gold and silver, ethically sourced and fair mined stones, chains and findings that are made in the USA and Italy, and packaging and marketing materials made using recycled paper.

As a member of Ethical Metalsmiths, we hope to be among the first movers bringing transparency and sustainable practices into the luxury fashion jewelry world. Ethical Metalsmiths and Fairmined gold and gems.  All our pieces are made in our studio in San Diego and we use low-impact, environmentally conscious studio practices to lessen our footprint. 

We take steps toward positive change in our industry by practicing ethical sourcing and manufacturing, because it’s important. To us, to you, to the women and men who mined the stones we use to create our pieces. We also donate a portion of each sale to organizations that help empower women locally and globally and work to end domestic violence and human trafficking because that’s part of the future we want to see.

Ethical sustainable jewelry fairtrade fair trade fair-trade jewelry recycled gold recycled sterling silver San Diego Carlsbad ethical gemstones ethically sourced sustainable

Easy Ways to Make Your San Diego Home More Sustainable

Niki Grandics

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San Diego, and California in general have always been ecologically friendly especially with the recent droughts we’ve had. Clearly getting energy efficient appliances makes the most sense toward reducing your carbon footprint in your home, but can take a lot of time and money. Here are 5 simple ways to make your San Diego home more sustainable.

Unplug unused electronics

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Electricity is a necessity to power our lives. One small adjustment you can make in your home is to unplug unused electronics. Anything plugged into the wall still uses electricity regardless if it is use or not. I personally have unplugged all lamps that are unused but help with aesthetic appeal. I have a nice little reading corner that looks wonderful, but I don’t use it as much as I would want so I keep that lamp unplugged.

If the idea of unplugging and plugging back electronics you may or may not use sounds like a hassle, don’t worry. Many places such as Home Depot and Amazon offer outlets and plugs with timers varying in price and outlets to accommodate even the pickiest customers. These outlets/plugs can be programmed to turn off after automatically.

Use vinegar

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Many of the homes built in San Diego do not have air conditioning, and this is mainly due to climate change. Back when San Diego housing was being constructed there was moderate weather, it didn’t get too hot, and there was no need for air conditioning. But recent global changes have forced San Diego to have radical climate with colder winters and sweltering summers. The constant battle of humidity left from condensation from both seasons has made many homes susceptible to mold.

Any easy and effective way to clean mold is to spray Vinegar instead of other harmful chemicals. Vinegar will effectively destroy mold, calcium buildup, and bacteria while remaining nontoxic. It is versatile enough to use on counters, bathrooms, kitchen appliances like coffee makers, and is safe enough for pets or babies to be around. Simply spray vinegar on the desired area, scrub, wipe, and repeat if necessary.

Bring the outdoors inside

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It has been estimated that 90% of the population spend their days indoors. This means the air quality is very important to keep from getting sick and inhaling harmful deposits. One way to combat this is to bring plants indoors. There are various species to help clean your air all ranging in gardening experience. If you tend to have more of a black thumb than a green thumb like me, I suggest the Spider plant. Contrary to its name it is not a scary or difficult to cultivate. These are among the easiest houseplants to grow, making them a great choice for beginners or forgetful owners. This plan can even multiply and give you smaller spider plants making your money well worth it. The spider plant removes formaldehyde and xylene.

Take advantage of windows

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The sun is undoubtedly the most useful ally when it comes to energy proving it can cook an egg during the summer. Use the sun’s unlimited energy to your advantage. During the winter open your curtains and blinds to allow as much sunlight as possible. This will help heat up your home when you are at work. You can also use thicker curtains for extra insulation at night and closing them will help retain heat during the chilly nights

This also works the other way around. When the summer arrives in San Diego, draw your blinds to reduce the energy transferred by the sun. Darker rooms tend to be colder than rooms with a light source. Both will help reduce the usage of electricity and heat to warm or cool a place down.

Close unused rooms

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 For those of us who have pets we are already used to closing door to rooms we are not in. A good way to reduce using your heater is by closing unused rooms and only heating up the ones occupied. This helps reduce the time it takes to heat up a home and reduces the amount of gas used. Another way to help circulate the hot air is by taking advantage of a ceiling fan.

It is the same thing in the summer months if you have AC. Closing door prevents electric waste when certain rooms are unoccupied.

Take advantage of Ceiling fans

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Ceiling fans are one of the most common appliances in San Diego. During the winter months, you can turn on your heat source and place your ceiling fan on reverse. This is where science kicks in. The hot air will naturally rise to the ceiling, a ceiling fan will force the hot air down and help distribute heat evenly.

During summer months, a ceiling fan will help circulate the air and create slight breezes. However, to fully enhance this we suggest opening windows to create cross breeze from room to room. The ventilation will reduce pollution and stale air in the home by working together with the windows.

 

Sources:

https://greatist.com/connect/houseplants-that-clean-air

https://www.usgbc.org/articles/9-ways-make-your-home-greener

http://home.howstuffworks.com/home-improvement/construction/green/10-ways-to-make-your-home-green5.htm

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-24757144