UrbanMeisters, by now Emma B. Joyce needs no introduction! Emma has previously given us great tips in the domain of green homes and sustainable decor, how to make home interiors more natural and 10 green startup ideas that you can start from your own home! In her latest feature she shares tips on sustainable home decor materials. So whether you are living in a high-rise apartment or a suburban villa, here are tips that can be applied to all homes.
Sustainable home decor starts now!
There has never been a more important time to think about all our possessions and the constant need to always buy more. This ongoing process leaves us with cluttered homes while most of our possessions end up in the trash at some point. To stop this, we need to be more aware of how piling stuff up without recycling can take a serious toll on our environment. Some improvements can be done immediately, while some, understandably, need more time. Depending on your budget and the time you have available, you too can modify your home to have a more sustainable home decor in a way that works best for you.
Use plants as decoration
This is probably the easiest way to include nature in your home and also a great way to provide more oxygen in every room. Apart from that, plants will eliminate many harmful chemicals from the air, leaving you with natural freshness. There’s a variety of colors and shapes available and you should have no trouble finding the perfect fit for your home.
To make sure you’re taking care of your plants properly, ask your florist about plant maintenance and see if that is something you can handle. Don’t forget to keep eco-friendly materials in mind when choosing flower pots – that way, your beautiful additions will be a true ode to an eco-friendly lifestyle and you’ll be proud of your work.
Here are some cool green reads that will guide you on some plant planning:
Choose Natural Materials
Cork has been a very popular material for a while now, and it can even be used in the bathroom because this natural material is flexible, resilient and eco-friendly. This stylish flooring probably isn’t the first thing that springs to your mind when thinking about bathroom décor, but it comes in a variety of designs, with the mosaics being one of the most popular ones. It’s easy to install and you can choose the pattern and how it will be incorporated into your overall style.
To make it even more stylish, you can introduce beautiful bathroom vanities to add a touch of class and give it a more sophisticated look. Also, an interesting choice to implement into your home is bioglass, made out from recycled glass which is just as solid as any other type of glass. You can use it as a bathroom, living room or kitchen countertop without worrying about its structure because it’s sturdy and durable, so you won’t have to worry about breaking it.
Buy furniture made from natural materials
When it comes to pricing, we all like to save money and tend to buy cheaper furniture – although that seems like a good option, that’s definitely not the case in the long run. Budget-friendly options are usually made of plastic or some other non-sustainable material, which is something you need to keep in mind at all times.
To avoid this, try to find more affordable versions of wooden furniture and opt for ones made from sustainable materials. Just think of this as an investment into your future because all the harmful materials furniture is made of are also bad for your health, and they come with an unpleasant odor that will slowly evaporate in your home for years. Many people are surprised to learn that their furniture can cause allergies, and this is something you can do in order to prevent that.
Try different lighting material
The right lighting option can truly make a difference in your home, and when it comes to this home feature, your options are endless. The amount of lighting in your home depends on the amount of sun your rooms receive, and you need to take that into consideration when decorating them as well.
First of all, don’t add dark curtains and install lights throughout the room. People started switching to LED lighting years ago and this option is the best one if you want to save energy and money at the same time. Sure, they cost a bit more than the regular ones, but they do really pay off after some time, giving you all the light you need at a more reasonable price. Start by adding them to one room just to see whether this option suits your needs, and then install them in all the other rooms.
Pick eco-friendly décor
When you start making big sustainable changes in your home, be careful not to include any decorations that aren’t made from natural elements. Don’t worry you still have many options left – from using recycled items which you can make yourself, to buying something at the flea market as this might help you avoid buying more items.
If you decide to add plants, use terracotta flower pots: they’re eco-friendly and aesthetically pleasing, meaning that they won’t ruin your beautifully styled home. When it comes to the coffee table, you can make one using an old window or door frame, preventing these items from hanging in your garage. This useful trick of utilizing what you have and simply adjusting it to your needs is the key point in making everything sustainable.
Avoid using VOC
Volatile organic compounds (VOC) are chemicals that can be found in paints, cleaning products, air fresheners and even furniture. They evaporate at room temperature and their concentration in the indoor air is two times higher than in the outside air. Such a high concentration can cause serious health problems and you can avoid them by always checking the content of every product you want to use in your home.
This also goes for buying furniture, because wood-based items can have a finisher that contains VOCs, and they can be found in certain fabrics. This is why you always have to check the labels and read what your furniture is made of.
Explore new types of flooring
One of the best green building innovations our there is the constant rise of implementing natural materials in every aspect of our homes. Even the flooring can be sustainable and eco-friendly, and this trend is something many homeowners like to add to their home design. The most recent design include, believe it or not, coconut shell tiles that are repurposed and turned into a beautiful addition any home would like. They’re easy to clean and require only a dusting cloth with the minimal use of a natural cleaner to do the trick.
Apart from this design, you can use bamboo flooring – it’s widely known for its sturdiness and quality, which is why many people opt for this particular material to install in their homes. In the end, if you want to achieve a more luxurious look, go with leather tiles! Their biggest plus is that they’re an excellent sound absorber, which means you won’t have to be too cautious the next time you crave a late-night snack.
Going green can help you learn exactly what sustainable home decor materials you have in your home and prevent you from always being worried about surrounding your family with potentially hazardous materials. This earth-friendly tips and tricks can help you create a warm and welcoming home, but also one where you’ll feel good and enjoy a touch of nature all around you. It’s not always easy to transfer to the eco-friendly state of mind, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll start making your friends and family follow in your footsteps!
Because sustainability begins at home, here are some special features that help you maintain a sustainable home without any extra effort in your time-crunched lives: