Although many home furnishings and decorations are not great for the environment, decorating your apartment doesn’t have to be detrimental to the planet. Follow these guidelines to decorate your new home in a totally green, eco-friendly way.
One of the best things you can do for the environment is avoid the use of plastic in all its forms, as it isn’t biodegradable and a significant amount of it isn’t recyclable. Although the cute plastic decorations you see at the store might seem like they’d be a perfect fit for your apartment, you should always opt for more sustainable décor. Materials like glass and metal make great decorations and aren’t as damaging to the environment as plastic, so consider using those as decoration instead.
Make Your Own Decorations
If you’re crafty, you can make your own home decorations out of materials like wood and glass. Aside from the benefit of sustainability, homemade decorations add a completely unique and personal touch to your home. From wall decorations to shelves, planters and tabletop décor, DIY decorations look nice and are often functional as well.
Use Eco-Friendly Decorating Materials
Make sure that furnishings like curtains, rugs and throw pillows are made with eco-friendly materials like hemp, linen or cotton. Be mindful of the materials used in lampshades as well. Try to find lampshades made with these same eco-friendly materials, especially if they’re recycled.
Use Energy Efficient Light Bulbs
Light your apartment in an eco-friendly way by making the switch from traditional incandescent bulbs to CFLs or, ideally, LED light bulbs. Not only do energy efficient light bulbs benefit the environment, they also last longer and save you money on your energy bill. Most importantly, remember that daylight is the best light source. During the day, keeping your curtains open will light your home in a way that is totally free and sustainable.
Shop at Green Retailers
Bedeck your home with furnishings from retailers that work to be friendly towards the environment. Shopping with retailers like GAIAM, The Green Depot and VivaTerra is a great way to furnish your home with high quality furniture and décor while still benefitting the environment. When you shop at eco-friendly retailers, you’re filling your home with high quality furnishings as well as supporting a business that will continue to work in eco-friendly ways.
Decorate Your Home With Plants
Arguably the most environmentally friendly way to decorate your apartment is with plants. The vibrant colors and funky shapes liven up any room, plus most plants absorb carbon dioxide and other volatile organic compounds, thus purifying the air in your home. Adding a few green friends to your apartment is the most eco-friendly way to decorate.
Ultimately, decorating your apartment doesn’t need to be unfriendly to the environment. When you follow these guidelines, you can embellish your home in a way that is sustainable and kind to the planet.