What is sustainability?
Everyone has a different way of describing what sustainability means to them. The most generic definition can be found on Dictionary.com, who defines environmental sustainability as “the quality of not being harmful to the environment or depleting natural resources, and thereby supporting long-term ecological balance.” But like we said, there are many different definitions of sustainability. Twink.org says the definition of sustainability is “the ability to continue a defined behavior.” There are different meanings of sustainability because there are different categories and groups of sustainability that you could look into. Just to name a few, there is environmental (which we already defined), economic, and social sustainability. For us, we define sustainability as any action or process of preserving the environment and not destroying the natural resources, or any part of the Earth for that matter. And like there are different definitions of sustainability, there are different ways to be sustainable.
What is REology?
Sustainability goes hand-in-hand with recycling and as we know recycling is all about reducing and reusing. Reducing, reusing, and recycling is a way preserving the environment and maintaining its natural resources. A workshop studio and retail idea shop was founded in Lancaster City, called REology Studio. The “re” stand for reusing, repurposing, and refurbishing. Their mission is to
reduce the amount of “waste” in the environment and reusing and repurposing that “waste” into new and unique finds. Their idea of “waste” are old, unused, and unwanted items that people would normally throw away. Along with repurposing old items, they are also known for using special, all natural milk and chalk paint powders with their new and repurposed items.
What is offered at the REology Studio?
REology offers a creative studio venue to host private or public events or “studio socials” as they call them. A studio social can be an artist exhibiting their work to the public or a group of people coming in for a creative session where the materials, supplies, and tools are at their fingertips. At those studio socials, the artists learn how to repurpose old items into something brand new so that after their session they can do it on their own instead of throwing away old items.
Along with studio socials and the retail shop, REology Studio specializes in teaching artists about the paint products they use. Homestead House Milk Paint is the oldest known natural paint. The milk paint, which comes in the form of powder, contains 5 all natural ingredients – clay, limestone,
chalk, milk protein, and iron oxides for natural earth based pigments. These paints also have zero volatile organic compounds (VOC), are biodegradable, non-toxic, and organic. The paint is also versatile so you can use it on any surface and achieve many different looks. The other all natural paint product REology uses is Websters Chalk Paint Powder. Chalk paint was created to reduce the need for almost all sanding and priming. Like milk paint, chalk paint contains no VOC’s, is non-toxic, and environmentally friendly. Both paints are for sale at REology. They are great alternatives to other kinds of paint since they are environmentally friendly and can be used on almost all surfaces.
How do they repurpose items?
Instead of throwing away old items that might end up in a landfill, the REology staff and other artists repurpose old items into unique and one of a kind items to sell at REology’s retail idea
studio. At their studio socials, they teach you ways to repurpose almost any old item laying around your house. From forks, to old frames, to empty bottles, the REology staff can find a way to create something new out of any item. The studio itself is even repurposed from an old dock into an event venue. Artists can rent the venue to show off their work or host their own workshop to teach the public about their specific specialty.
Although REology doesn’t grow any natural substance or make organic foods, they are still being sustainable be reusing old items as opposed to throwing them away. Most items they use are not biodegradable, so those items would never decompose, adding waste and pollution to the earth if thrown away. We think what REology is doing is a great idea and wish more people would repurpose their old items. One day REology hopes to expand locations so more people will begin to repurpose old items.
What events are held during studio socials?
One of the greatest things about REology is that it’s in the heart of Lancaster. Located downtown in Lancaster city gives REology plenty of opportunity to reach a vast community. All kinds of people are welcome to enjoy the studio, to learn how to repurpose items but also to learn how to take one step in saving the environment. Their events calendar allow for ample opportunities for anyone to come. From women, to children, men, teens, and young adults, all are encouraged to walk through the doors of the studio. Anyone can book a group workshop, attend an open studio session, and many more events that they host. They make all of their events easy to find and learn about through social media outlets, as well as on their website.
Their open studio sessions are a time where the community is welcome to come join and create any of the “Seize the Season” projects. Some of those projects for example are creative quote boards, photo blocks, jewelry holders, and vases. Each seize the season project is designed specifically for the season. For example, some December products feature words like “JOY” and “Ho Ho Ho” for the Christmas season. These open workshops are a set time for guests to bring their own item that they would like to repurpose, or they are able to purchase an item from the shop to “REimagine” in their own unique, creative way.
REology is an amazing studio with an amazing purpose – to reuse, refurbish and repurpose. The studio combines the love one has for the environment and the earth, with the love one has for art creates a whole new meaning to sustainability. “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime” is a widely known quote about passing on a necessity to the survival of humanity. REology teaches people who come to their studio to fish in their own way. They create a foundation of living a sustainable lifestyle. They teach people the importance of making things new again. It’s not easy to look at something you want to throw in the trash, and imagine it to be something you would end up hanging on a wall or using in your home. However, REology makes it easy. They pass on the trend of “Do-It-Yourself” and give people the knowledge they need to do it again. Once you go to the REology studio and learn how to create a useful piece of art, you won’t want to throw out items capable of repurposing. REology is an inspiring studio that will change the way people view sustainability. Reology is truly “a place where creative souls gather”. We hope more people will visit this studio and pass on the importance of reusing, repurposing, and refurbishing.
Biodegradable– capable of decaying through the action of living organisms
Environmental Sustainability – the quality of not being harmful to the environment or depleting natural resources, and thereby supporting long-term ecological balance
Organic – relating to or derived from living organisms
Refurbish – to repair and make improvements to
REology – A creative studio event venue,specializing in creative Studio Social events,and how-to Paint Workshops
VOC – (volatile organic compounds) one of a number of chemicals, including benzene and acetone, that evaporate or vaporize readily and are harmful to human health and the environment
REolgy Studio (n.d.) Retrieved from www.reologystudio.com
Thwink.org (1990) Environmental Sustainability. Retrieved from http://www.thwink.org/sustain/glossary/EnvironmentalSustainability.htm