Passion for fashion and the environment got designer Melissa Baswell to start Mountains of the Moon Eco-Fashion — and telling the story of her green business struggles just netted Melissa $10,000.

Yesterday, Intuit named Mountains of the Moon the first place winner in its Small Business United Grant Competition. The Chicago-based sustainable clothing line’s made locally using only eco-friendly materials like hemp, tencel, and organic cotton. In addition, Melissa often takes part in eco-fashion showcases; her dress from recycled candy wrappers was showcased in an exhibition at Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art last fall.

Melissa story was selected by judges based on “quality, creativity and public ratings.” Selected from nearly 2000 entrants, Mountains of the Moon was the only green-minded business venture to receive one of Intuit’s five business grants. Watch Melissa tell her story below for inspiration to achieve your own green dreams.

Mountains of the Moon fashions are available at a number of boutiques as well as online. The new hemp-tencel-organic cotton Coco Dress (left) from the spring 2009 line costs $284, and the great-for-all-occasions Audrey wrap dress (middle) costs $84. For a more affordable deal, check out the hemp-and-tencel Edie Dress (right), now on sale for $59.

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