Conscious by Chloé

Chloé Lepeltier - Conscious By Chloé

Follow Chloé’s journey to a simpler, greener and happier life.

The Conscious by Chloé 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

Holiday Gift Guide 2016 PNW Misty Forest by Conscious by Chloé

'Tis the season!

Surprisingly, Christmas shopping makes me nervous. I feel like every year after the holidays I promise myself to keep a gift idea list all year long so that I don't panic when December comes. But no matter what, on the last week of November second week of December, an adrenalin rush pushes me to madly browse through the Internet to find the perfect gift to send to my family (#expatlife).

It is kind of ironic, knowing that I usually go visit my favorite Portland shop owners/friends whenever I get a chance.

But this year, I killed two birds with one stone by working on the Conscious by Chloé Shop update. While I found a multitude of responsibly made products on the various platforms I visited, I decided to only publish a curated selection of the shop and kept the rest in my back pocket as I knew it would be useful some day.

And this day has come!

Over the next few days, I’ll update this post with links as I publish each one of the following holiday gift guides:

  • Gifts for her
  • Gifts for him
  • Gifts for the host
  • Gifts for the adventurer
  • Gifts for the techie
  • Gifts for a zero waste journey
  • Gifts under $50

I selected these gifts for their aesthetics, their usefulness, their makers and their country of origin.

I hope you'll find what you're looking for here but also highly recommend you to visit your local small shops to find the perfect hand- and locally made gifts for your loved ones.


Picture by Octave Zangs for Conscious by Chloé.

Conscious by Chloé Shop Update

Conscious by Chloe Shop selection of ethically and locally made products

As you might have already seen on Insta stories, I've been working on a massive Conscious by Chloé Shop update for the last couple days.

Just like last year, I curated a conscious selection of items ranging from non-toxic beauty products, to the ultimate zero waste shopping kit or beautifully crafted ceramics. Everything you need to make your life simpler, greener, and happier!

As you'll see, I'm sticking to a neutral palette -with the exception of some French stripes here and there- and I've tried to add as many US handmade items as possible. #shopsmall #shoplocal

Also, it's been a lot of fun for me to learn a couple new skills along the way (Photoshop, that's you I'm talking about) and learn a bit more about the brands I've been wanting to feature.

I hope you'll have as much fun browsing though the shop as I did during my search.


Now, I'd love to know what's on YOUR wishlist. Books, tools, experiences? I'm slowly updating my wishlist on Pinterest, but we all know that opening my own shop was basically an excuse to create a gigantic wishlist and share it with my friends & family the world.

Simpler, Greener, Happier

Oregon Coast Moody Weather

So it's been a while since I last wrote here. The last couple months have been full of projects, trips and new adventures and I've relied a little too much on my pre-scheduled posts, so when September came, I realized I had many post drafts, but no pictures and no time/inspiration/location to take any, and became a little disillusioned.

I found many excuses for ending up in this situation. I started taking classes and went on a couple field trips on week-ends as part of this training, I co-wrote an e-book, I started a new part-time job, I taught green living classes while continuing to work as a freelance translator with a couple big projects scheduled for the end of last month. I felt it was a little bit much to add blogging to the equation.

So, instead of posting irregularly, I decided (or it happened) that I took a real big break. A 2-months long one. It wasn't planned, and weirdly happened on my 1 year "bloganniversary" as they call it.

Not only did I stop blogging, but I also stopped posting on Instagram, which is pretty uncommon for me.

Nonetheless, I continued to repost relevant news and events on Facebook, and have had tons of fun using Instagram stories. This break was just what I needed to read books, watch eye-opening documentaries (and a couple TV shows along the way) to get inspired again. It was also a great occasion to take a step back, identify issues and redefine my vision for the blog and reflect on my use of social media.

I identified the following issues:

  • I have trouble finding the time or motivation to take and edit pictures.
  • I tend to overthink the content (length, links, images).
  • I have doubts about keeping my personal Insta for the blog.

I also realized:

  • I missed writing here.
  • I missed you guys, our discussions, your comments, your ideas.
  • I missed the rhythm of having a weekly assignment (Creating habits is very important to us freelancers).

So here's what I'm gonna try:

  • Be regular.
  • Don't overthink it.
  • Draw the line between my personal and blog social media platforms.
  • Schedule time to shoot and edit.

And here are the measures I already took:

  • I asked my landlord whether we could repaint the house (I can't stand the yellow mustard and beige walls): --> epic fail!
  • So I bought a white board to shoot flat lays and I'm thinking about setting up a photo studio in the garage, or maybe in the living room.
  • I opened separate Instagram and Twitter accounts for the blog.
  • I connected with awesome creatives here in PDX and project a couple collaborations.

And, last but not least, I reminded myself of the blog's motto:

Simpler, Greener, Happier

Be ready for some changes over here.


In the meantime, I'd love your feedback. What would you like to see more of in here? Tips, looks, DIY, recipes, random articles, Portland-specific articles? Are you a blogger? What issues do you face? How do you overcome them? I'd love to have your insights!

Reset your phone, reset your life

Girl with hat looking in the distance by Conscious by Chloé

You know how sometimes one little event ends up making you reflect on your life in general?

This happens to me a lot, especially when I'm clearing my closet...

This time, both a book and my phone made me re-evaluate my habits. Here is how it went:

During our road trip - which I highly documented on Instagram and that will be the subject of an upcoming article - I read many books, different kinds of books, and one of them was by my favorite happiness expert, Gretchen Rubin.

As you know, I listen to her podcast and was also very inspired by The Happiness Project, her best-seller. Unsurprisingly, her latest book, Better Than Before, was on my reading list. This time, she tackles this critical question: How can we make good habits and break bad ones?

With September coming up, a big project that will keep me busy for weeks and this general feeling of going back to school, the long hours driving along the Western States roads were the perfect opportunity to reflect on my habits. I assessed my New Year Intentions and formulated some new ones for the coming month.

But the implementation of these habits came in a funny way. I had been having issues with my phone for a while now and had postponed the inevitable restoration for too long. A thorough restoration is something you really do not want to have to do. It means losing all of your beloved settings, reinstalling numerous apps and re-entering a countless number of passwords (At least, I was glad I used 1Password. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, head out to my favorite apps article.)

In the end, it took me an entire afternoon to tackle this nagging task. What I would never have imagined though, is that evaluating whether every single app in my phone was worth reinstalling would make me reflect on my lifestyle in general.

Better Than Before helped me identify certain aspects of my personality. I'm a questioner, a procrastinator and probably an abstainer. This came as no surprise, but actually writing it down in my notebook helped me realize that what I needed was a) tools to organize my life and prompt me to do certain activities at certain times, b) an accountability partner and c) to identify activities that should be paired together in order to ensure they will be done (you'll understand what it means later).

I fell into a fitness-related vortex and spent way too much time linking well-being related apps to the Health app (I use an iPhone) and installing new ones that were suggested to me. Since my health data had completely been erased, I was motivated to start afresh and capitalize on the good cycling and hiking habits we had set during the holidays. So I reinstalled Runkeeper and Strava for walking, hiking and cycling. I also reinstalled my precious Clue app (period tracking), and the fun Sleep Cycle one. As one of my goal for the year was to drink more water, I also installed the Waterlogged app. And it's been pretty successful so far. Even Octave asks for a glass of water whenever he hears the waves sound of the app reminder.

Octave got me into mountain biking during this trip, and as we got back home, I finally managed to convince him to go indoor bouldering with me. We went to an intro class this week and got a pass for the next two weeks. Let's see how it goes. Accountability really works for me, so I hope that this fitness & fun partnership will go a long way.

As for work organization, I followed a friend and colleague's technique and set reachable daily goals in order to finish on time (duh!) and avoid the stress of the upcoming deadline, the sleepless nights, etc. I also try to wake up and go to bed at the same time, start working and stop working at the same time and take a break to listen to a podcast while walking after lunch (Rubin's strategy of pairing activities). That's basically office life at home, except that I'm allowed to make a couple exceptions.

This will hopefully give me more stability and eventually make me healthier, and happier!


Have you ever had such an experience? What happened? Did you quit your job after painting your nails? What are your habit hacks? I'd love to hear it all!

Podcast - A conversation with Sean Barron of The Portland Cool Podcast

The Portland Cool Podcast Reading List by Conscious by Chloé

Guess what? Being an avid podcast listener can lead to surprising outcomes.

As you know, I love podcasts. They keep me grounded, teach my a lot and make me discover incredibly talented people.

I sometimes reach out to their hosts to share my enthusiasm and opinions. But what happened this time was pretty amazing because, one thing leading to another, I ended up being invited to participate in one of them.

And what better podcast could it be, than Portland's coolest podcast?

I was pretty sad to learn that the Portland Sustainability Podcast was going to broadcast its lasts episodes, and was really surprised to be invited to talk about sustainability on its sister podcast, the Portland Cool Podcast. But in the end, it makes perfect sense. Sean is a Master Recycler, Portland is the greenest city I've ever lived in, everything's cool!

Amongst many subjects, Sean & I talked about how I got interested in sustainability, what particular event led me to open Conscious by Chloé last September and how one can start shopping in the bulk aisle.

Here is the conversation we recorded a couple weeks ago (in my kitchen). I hope you'll enjoy it.

PS: I may have mixed the information about recycling in Switzerland. Don't believe the numbers I give. Just know that I'm pretty proud of countries and counties that have a strong recycling policy, but that I would like to see more efforts made into avoiding waste production ahead.


Don't forget to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes & co and to leave a comment to support it. I would really like to be able to listen to more and more episodes about the people of Portland. Also, I'd love to know what your favorite eco-conscious podcast is. Fire up!