Furnishing your home in a sustainable way may be daunting when you’re not familiar with the basics of a green household. However, with current environmental pollution levels, finding new ways to preserve valuable resources is something definitely worth your while, as it can help preserve the environment for future generations. And since you’re already planning on getting new furnishings, you might as well go for the eco-friendly versions of them. Even though it may seem like a small step, eco-conscious decisions add up and ultimately create a big impact on the environment. In this article, we’re sharing five tips for furnishing your living space in a sustainable, eco-friendly way. Read on!
Take measures to avoid costly (and wasteful!) replacements
Although this first tip is a no-brainer, you’d be surprised how many pieces of furniture end up in landfills simply because we don’t plan in advance. The mistake many homeowners make is they go shopping without a clear goal in mind, and what they end up with are usually furniture pieces that either don’t fit into their living space, or don’t exactly match the style, scale, or the color scheme of the room. Besides being costly, replacing your furniture can be incredibly wasteful. Plan in advance, and before you go shopping, be sure to measure the space for furniture. From walls and windows to the length of the walls and the height of your ceilings – measure each area, write down the measurements, and make a drawing of your floor plan so you know what furniture to look for.
Create a list of your must-haves
Now that you’ve got the exact measurements of the available space, the next step would be to write down your list of essentials, so you have a general idea of what to look for first. For most people, their list of must-haves contains a quality bed frame, a comfortable mattress, cozy bedding, curtains, and a carpet (low VOC, of course). Those are the bare essentials, and then the room is made functional with the addition of a desk, a bookshelf, and a closet with hangers. Finally, with the addition of decor items such as plants and paintings, the room becomes aesthetically pleasing. Dividing your purchase into these three steps is useful as it forces you to prioritize and decide what you need now and what can wait, thus preventing you from making impulse purchases.
Look for furniture made from natural materials
When it comes to designing sustainable and eco-friendly spaces, natural materials are imperative. There is something about materials such as wood and wool that reconnects us with nature and provides a sense of warmth and comfort, and when furnishing an eco-friendly home, it’s only logical you’d reach for such materials instead of artificial ones. Opt for quality timber wood beds to add an organic tone to your bedroom and include wooden tables and chairs to your dining room to create a homely, welcoming feel. Cover your floors with handmade, jute rugs and add a cozy, wool rug under your coffee table for an added feeling of comfort. Not only do sustainably-sourced materials produce a number of environmental benefits, but they can also provide your living space with an aesthetic appeal like no artificial material can.
Incorporate pieces that have multiple purposes
Everyone who is interested in making their home more sustainable knows how important it is to maximize the use of their space. If you happen to have a home with smaller square footage, a great way to make the most of your living space is to implement multipurpose furniture. Coffee tables and ottomans with built-in storage are perfect for creating space-savvy homes, while a sofa that easily turns into a bed will host any unexpected plus ones without a hassle. Investing in sustainable, long-lasting and versatile pieces will not only make your space more practical and functional but it will also eliminate the need for any additional furnishings and save you money in the long run.
Invest in eco-friendly appliances
Choosing your white-goods wisely is another way to create a more sustainable living space. If you happen to have older appliances in your home, don’t throw them out just yet. If they still look decent and are able to do the job properly without using up too much energy, keep them. However, if they consume too much electricity and water, you might want to look for new, more eco-friendly appliances. When shopping for a new stove, fridge, or washing machine, look for models with a high EnergyStar rating – this means they will conserve energy, which translates to lower utility bills and reduced impact on the environment, making it an upgrade worth your while.
Upgrading your living space in a mindful and eco-friendly way is sure to reduce your carbon footprint and create a healthy home you’ll cherish even more. Use our tips as a guide to designing a space where you and your family can thrive while also making a lasting difference to the environment and our planet.