Inspiration Friday: Eco-friendly designer, Evette Rios

Evette Rios, showing how happy she is about green crafting!

This week’s Inspiration Friday is brought to us by designer and TV personality, Evette Rios, 28.

This native New Yorker’s passion is incorporating eco-friendly attitude into everything she creates. Combining that love with her knack for offbeat recycling – she has solidified her title as a green crafty expert. Her former co-host gigs include HGTV and TLC, and these days you can see her share ideas on The Rachael Ray Show, and as well as The G-Word on the Planet Green Network (part of the Discovery Channel networks). Click here to see when it airs in your area.

I keep up with her by reading her blog, and you can too!

KATHY CANO-MURILLO: You’re very active in the green movement when it comes to crafting and DIY décor. Now you get to demo it all on the G List! Why do you think it’s an important message?

EVETTE RIOS: It’s an issue that we all need to pay attention to. What I like about the show is that it is not really a crunchy granola kind of show. It’s sort of the kind of show that teaches people how to do great things with minimal effort. A lot of the stuff that’s out there these days – it’s like you have to get solar panels, hybrid cars, eat organic, grow your own food. It’s not realistic! The G-Word has that new-type quality, and not that kind of preachy stuff – you know, like “Here’s what is out there, and you have to go buy it right now.”

Exactly. It doesn’t guilt you, it makes it fun. What is your role on the show?

I’m currently the Salvage Queen. I go around New York City and revamp a bunch objects. I surprise people by bringing them back to life. I recently turned an armoire into a really cool desk space, and a futon into a shelving unit. The fun thing is that after I revamp the items, I bring them back to the people who originally threw them out.

What is one easy project you can share with readers?

Everyone has a bookshelf that’s always falling apart. A quick, easy project is getting a set of legs from a hardware store – I’ve done it with wheels too – and you paint the bookcase and give it some wall paper and put it on its side. Put the legs on it and it becomes a really cool horizontal long bookshelf. It looks better if you have really cool paper.

How is life on the Rachael Ray Show? Have any fun insider stories or craftastrophes to share?

Rachael is great, she is super fun and enthusiastic. Here’s one: Once I made this mixture out of water, salt, and aluminum foil. You can use it to remove tarnish from silver. It’s a very green way to clean. But… I brought in a bowl I had bought at a flea market that was really old and tarnished. When I went on camera it didn’t work! But it had worked at home! Rachael saved me, she just kind of showed everyone the clean ones that had worked, and brushed through it. It was very, very embarrassing. (Laughs)

Well it is good to know it happens to all of us! Have any holiday advice for us?

– I like to wrap my gifts with fabric or scarves instead of paper, since the fabric is reusable. I love to use the Japanese folding technique, Furoshiki, to wrap my gifts. I especially love the double wine bottle fold. It rocks!

– I try to give gift certificates to local things for the holiday. Instead of sending folks to a chain store, it’s better to give a gift certificate to your favorite restaurant. It helps the local economy by keeping money in your town.

– When cleaning up after your holiday guests, fill your dishwasher as full as you possibly can each time, and run that rather than doing your dishes by hand. A University of Bonn, Germany study proves that the dishwasher uses only half the energy, one-sixth of the water and less soap too.

What are some of your personal decorations?
I’m going really funky this year. I found this great old fashioned art deco style Christmas tree stand on Ebay that I am so excited to use. It’s so cool that you don’t need a skirt for your tree. As much as I love the fresh cut pine scent, I think it’s a little sad to have a cut tree in the house, so I am going all out with a fake tree. I painted it Robin’s egg blue, and using all orange and brown ornaments. I think it will look really cool! I also created this cute collar for Baloo, my dog, by covering a nylon collar with and old scrunchie, then pinning on a bunch of bells and using a small unbreakable ornament as a name tag…super cute.

Here is some video of Evette in action!

See the new line of Crafty Chica products at HERE Amazon.com!! All content/photos copyright, © Kathy Cano-Murillo, 2008.

Love & light,


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Kathy Cano-Murillo

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Hi, I’m Kathy, The Crafty Chica! My specialty is creative motivation. I’m an artist, author, and speaker and this is where I share my craft tutorials, artwork, articles, books, product lines, and workshops!

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