Green living: Save Our Earth By Living Green

Recycle when you redecorate

It’s hard to be green when you want to revamp your home with new decoration and furniture. But it can be done – it may just require a bit more effort and research.

Use a coffee table with shelves
Image: facebook.com/harveysfurniture

Recycle furniture. Although there’s plenty of cheap furniture available, it’s not always possible to find cheap furniture with good green credentials. If you want to buy new, make sure you check with the retailer about the supply chain used to make the sofa or table that you are thinking about buying. Check whether the wood used has been forested responsibly, and find out whether any fabrics used are produced without using pesticides and toxic dyes.

Alternatively, check online for swap shops and second hand furniture depots. Many people now get rid of unwanted furniture at this kind of outlet rather than taking it to the local tip. And what may be perceived as junk by one person might be just the thing to suit your taste and style.

Often, it’s worth asking around as friends of friends may have pieces of furniture they no longer want, and that you can find a use for.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for second hand, then check out a local sofas sale and see if you can get a bargain price on a good quality sofa that has all the right environmental attributes.

Read the labels. If you’re planning on repainting as well as buying new furniture, take careful note of the ingredients in the paint you choose to use. There are many organic and earth-friendly paints available now and these come in a range of finishes. However, traditional household paints often contain Volatile Organic Compounds, which are harmful for the environment. VOCs have also been linked to problems like bronchitis and asthma.

While decorating and refurbishing in a green manner may take a bit more time and effort, it can be done!

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