Oct 13, 2011

It IS easy being 'green'! (Unless you're Kermit THE Frog.)

When you're thinking of buying items for your home, updating a room, or just swapping what you have for something new, consider buying eco-friendly items. The following suggestions are affordable, easy to find, and easy to do:
1. Replace incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent lights in table lamps, ceiling and pendant fixtures, and can lights.  There are many styles to select from and they look great.Many are dimmable as well.  Try the bulk packs at Home Depot and CostCo for very competitive prices.  You'll use 75% less electricity and still have great lighting.

2. Save water and create a new look by swapping fixtures in your bath and kitchen with WaterSense labeled fixtures. Check out Delta for some beautiful, affordable and functional fixtures. You could save over 500 gallons of water per year!

3. When replacing a floor or carpet, look for products made from reclaimed, renewable or recycled materials. Strand bamboo is a beautiful, durable wood with many color options and is made from renewable materials. Porcelain tile is often made from recycled content as tiles in  Crossville's, sustainable options. Even carpets have post-consumer recycled content and are luxurious and elegant.  Take a look at products from Mohawk for some fabulous texture, durability and performance.

4. Give your room a quick face lift by painting an accent wall in no VOC paint from Sherwin Williams.  The Harmony line of paints is both no-VOC and low odor; try "Warm Stone" for a rich, neutral look.

5. When you update your bedding, purchase sheets and towels made with bamboo.  The fibers are soft, luxurious and affordable. There is no pesticide used in growing, bamboo is an easily renewable resource it is naturally antibacterial, and towels are highly absorbent. A bonus for allergy sufferers...bamboo linens are gentle and unlikely to cause reactions.

6. Think of new kitchen or bath surfaces try Caesarstone.  Made from granite and resin, these counters are durable, stain and heat resistant, and anti-bacterial properties. Glass and porcelain tiles are also wonderful floor and wall surfaces, with eco-friendly manufacturing, recylability, and low cost maintenance.