Here’s a secret: despite common belief, eco-friendly home decor doesn’t have to be ugly. Many people believe that to be green means to be simply functionable, not at all fashionable. These are lies! In fact, as an earth-friendly mindset becomes more mainstream, green home design follows closely behind with chic and modern options available for every room. If you’re thinking about going green, get ready, set, go!
Create with Clutter
No matter how style savvy your home is, over the years it starts to fill with clutter. To jumpstart your go green initiative, gather up unused items to donate to a charity recycler. For example, Go Green Charity Recycler is a non-profit organization aimed to educate about textile recycling and they facilitate zero textile waste. They accept textile items including linens, clothing and shoes.
However, we know some stuff is just too nostalgic for you (or your kids!) to toss out. Instead of letting it collect dust on the shelf or take up space in the closet, try to upcycle or reuse it in your decor. For example:
- Turn the tops of T-ball trophies into coat hooks by screwing them into a reclaimed piece of wood
- Use chemical-free paint to upcycle old plastic toys into bookends, mantle pieces or lamp bases
- Upcycle your hand-me-down rocking chair into a flower planter on the front porch
Switching to energy-efficient CFL or LED lightbulbs is a great way to light your home for less. But to really transform a dark and dreary room, consider installing skylights. They are great for letting in natural light, and they reduce energy use and promote more sustainable living. Can’t afford a remodel? Consider replacing bulky with more eco-friendly window treatments like solar blinds, which can let in natural light, reduce glare and provide UV protection.
Going green doesn’t mean you have to completely live off the land. Sometimes it just means knowing what you’re buying and where it came from. The easiest way to do that is to research the stores you shop at, and then adjust accordingly. To get you started:
- Agedwoods.com reclaims wood from decade-old barns and recycles them into plank flooring
- VivaTerra.com features a variety of green decor ranging from organic cotton sheets to recycled glass dinnerware
- Pottock.com offers modern wallpaper made with recyclable paper and water-based inks all without chemical waterproofing
Grow Your Greens
You may have already switched to organic, but there’s a way to make your homemade meals even more green. That’s right—by growing your own indoor herb garden! Use Mason jars or glass mugs to plant seeds of basil, oregano and parsley, some of the easiest herbs to grow indoors, according to Organic Gardening. Not only will this add a pop of green to your kitchen windowsill, but they can purify the air you breathe.
Love the idea of house plants, but don’t have a green thumb? Buy an underwater plant or two from a pet store (in the fish tank section). Place it in a decorative, large mouth vase you already have at home, fill it with water and voila, you have a simple, low maintenance and chic way to incorporate natural elements into your home.
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