December 07, 2011 15:45
| Shopping and Sales
We all know we should do our bit to help the environment, but many people don’t realise the easiest way to do this is to incorporate sustainability into your everyday life. Along with the usual methods of recycling, walking and turning unused electrical appliances off, investing in environmentally-friendly products is one of the easiest ways to look after the world around us.
Aside from being ‘green’, sustainable products also have the advantage of being much cheaper than other options, since they usually last longer and need fewer replacements than a more ‘disposable’ product. This is a great way to keep costs down, especially if you live with lots of lively children or pets, who would see off flimsier products in a matter of minutes. Begin by looking out for sturdy-looking furniture/accessories, preferably made from stronger, more durable materials for a lasting finish.
It’s also important to consider where the item in question will be going: if it’ll be in the kitchen, choose something that will be easy to clean to avoid having to use harsh chemical cleaning products. Similarly, bathroom storage
should come with special varnish or paint to avoid splashes of water damaging the material too quickly: ask the manufacturer about this to find out the best options.
Another good way of supporting the planet while re-decorating your home is to choose items that have been made or sold in Britain. This lowers the product’s carbon footprint by cutting down on the pollution required to get it to your home, as well as reducing delivery time into the bargain! It’s also worthwhile asking if the materials that made the product have been locally sourced: not only is this eco-friendly, it can also mean a cheaper product due to its ‘local’ roots.
Keeping your home warm and cosy during the winter months is no mean feat, and it can be tempting to just put the heating on. However, by investing in a product that has been designed to trap body heat, such as a wool cellular blanket
, you can cut down on heating costs and the amount of energy your home consumes. Cellular blankets
have been designed to trap and maintain body heat, due to the pure wool material and the large-weave design; this makes them perfect for not only cold winter’s nights, but also as bedding during the summer months, since they are generally rather lightweight. Multi-purpose products such as these are a great way of living more sustainably, since they reduce the amount of items you need and thus the strain on the environment.
In terms of decorating the home, second-hand or homemade accessories are a wonderful way of helping the environment, and also often come with a lovely back-story. You don’t need to pay a lot for them either: visit markets or even car boot sales for inspiration, and don’t be afraid to ask friends or relatives if they have any items that they no longer need. Similarly, consider mending something before scrapping it altogether
: most furniture these days is designed to be easy to fix, so be brave and head to the toolbox before the scrapyard if something is damaged!
When looking to re-decorate your home, investing in sustainable, hardwearing products is an ideal way to save money over the years, as well as doing your bit for the environment. Do plenty of research when selecting furniture and accessories for your home, and don’t be afraid to ask the company about the item you’re buying to find out how it’s been made, and about the material it’s been made from. With a bit of care, the item in question could become a treasured member of the household, and will certainly stand the test of time (and numerous re-decorations!).