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Eco-Friendly Interior Design Ideas for Keeping Your House Green

September 16, 2022

Est. Reading Time: 6 Mins

It is no surprise that the climate crisis is no longer a minor issue. Many individuals, as well as corporate companies, have begun to be more environmentally conscious as the years go by. 

No longer is thinking green a niche design trend, but now the forefront of innovation and smart living. 

You might not know this about yourself, but some of the decisions made in your home may not be the most eco-friendly or sustainable options. 

Mary Lee Smyth, an interior designer at La-Z-Boy Kingston, says, “there are lots of people out there that think what they’re doing is green, but in reality, it’s not.” 

No need to worry! You can still turn the tides in your house and create a more eco-friendly and sustainable environment.

This article will discuss 6 interior design ideas to stay conscious of when it comes to being environmentally friendly with the furniture in your home.

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In This Article… 

  1. Don't Believe Everything You Read Online
  2. Consider Buying Local & Good Quality Products
  3. Buy Long Lasting Furniture
  4. Do Not Throw Out Your Furniture If There’s a Way to Repair It
  5. Consider Wool Rugs
  6. Always Choose Harwood Flooring
  7. Add Plants to Your Decor

     

1. Don't Believe Everything You Read Online

Ironically enough, since this article is online, it is important not to take every online source at face value. Mary Lee says, “There are a lot of articles online that say ‘don’t trust this brand, buy this instead,’ and it’s actually not any better than other things out there.”

This is why it is important to look at multiple sources online to make a proper and informed decision on what is considered 100% sustainable and eco-friendly.

You might even look at some of the things we mention in this article and decide to look into it more with further research!

Some things like building materials, for example, have to be carefully considered and researched before making an eco-friendly purchasing decision. Mary Lee mentions jute as a material that is said to be sustainable but actually might not be. 

Jute, which is used in the construction of area rugs, might be eco-friendly in many ways, but it also creates some issues for sustainability. The main concern for jute is that it loses its resistance when it becomes wet.

So, if you were to spill a drink on your jute-made area rug accidentally, your rug will lose its strength.

That being said, ensure you are as informed as possible about the sources you look at.

 


2. Consider Buying Local & Good Quality Products

When choosing what to incorporate in your home, it is always a good thing to know where the materials of your furniture or decor items come from.

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If you’re purchasing something from outside the country or even the continent, the amount of energy used to bring those items into your home can affect the environment in numerous ways. 

Staying green and sustainable means considering where your furniture and other materials come from. For example, most woods are taken from trees in North America and are made in local facilities.

If you want to learn about Where La-Z-Boy Furniture is Made or the Quality of Wood at La-Z-Boy, check out this article.

 


3. Buy Long Lasting Furniture

Sustainable Furniture

Along with making sure your furniture is good quality and local, you also want to make sure your furniture lasts a long time. Yes, higher-quality furniture is considered expensive. However, these furniture pieces last a longer time than others, meaning they might be worth the investment in the long run.

“You want to buy something that’s going to be for you and your guests but is also designed to be durable,” Mary Lee says. 

High-quality furniture is also advantageous because it can be gifted to members of your family or friends who need furniture. “Most people buy La-Z-Boy again, not because their furniture is no good anymore; it’s because they’re bored with it.”

So, if you do become tired of your furniture, instead of throwing it in a landfill, sell it to someone you know or on websites like Kijiji and Facebook Marketplace.

 


4. Do Not Throw Out Your Furniture If There's a Way to Repair It

“Most people are so quick to get rid of furniture if there’s a tear or something else wrong with it,” Mary Lee says. 

Unfortunately, she’s right. According to the EPA, Americans generated over 12.2 million tons of furniture waste in 2017 alone. But that’s not all. About 8/10 of that furniture waste went into landfills, which is a normal and unfortunate occurrence.

Not only should high-quality furniture last a while, but if there’s a way to repair any minor damages, Mary Lee says to take the advantage of repairing your furniture.

If you are still unsure about which option is right for you, take a look at our article about Repairing Vs. Replacing Furniture.

La-Z-Boy, for example, has some product repair services available through the manufacturer’s warranty and protection plan if your furniture is to get damaged. 

Mary Lee also says that repairing your furniture is often less expensive than buying a new furniture piece altogether. So, you would likely save money in the long run while still keeping the furniture you love.

If you want to learn more about the Cost to Reupholster a La-Z-Boy Recliner, check out this article.

 


5. Consider Wool Rugs

Wool Area Rugs

https://www.potterybarn.com/products/chunky-wool-jute-rug/ 

Some people love getting area rugs for their living rooms because it creates the perfect cherry on top of any room. However, one must be conscious of what kind of materials should be used in these area rugs.

Polypropylene is a synthetic material that is used in most construction of area rugs. However, these area rugs can produce Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), which can be dangerous in your home long term.

You can learn more about VOCs in the article, Is La-Z-Boy Furniture Toxic?

Instead of synthetic rugs, biodegradable and sustainable rugs are more efficient and last longer. Wool is a primary example of a natural material that lasts a long time. 

Not only are wool rugs biodegradable, but they also last 20 years longer than synthetic area rugs, thus helping reduce the load on landfills.

 


6. Always Choose Hardwood Flooring

Certain flooring materials are actually more durable and better than others for the environment. 

Some of the best kinds of flooring for houses are either hardwood, concrete, or tiles. These kinds of flooring do not produce as many toxins in your house, and they are much easier to clean than full carpet flooring.

Mary Lee says that, out of the three options mentioned above, she would go with hardwood flooring. “Hardwood takes less energy to be made than concrete and tiles, meaning it’s better for the environment overall.”

Even though both wood and concrete are burned in a specific kiln, the material to make concrete takes much more time and energy to get. 

Wood comes from trees, meaning manufacturers don’t need to dig too much into the ground to retrieve materials for this type of flooring.

You might think that certain floors like terracotta are also sustainable as well. However, Mary Lee says certain tile floors like this are not produced in North American countries. So, It is important to know the pros and cons of each flooring before adding it to your home. 

It is also essential to know which hardwood floors or tile floors are more suitable for eco-friendly purposes. Certain hardwood floors like bamboo flooring are more eco-friendly because they are highly sustainable and naturally resistant to mildew and water.

Another interesting alternative is cork flooring, which is made from harvest bark. Cork trees stay intact from start to finish meaning these trees replenish all on their own, without minimal damage to the environment.

 


7. Add Plants Into Your Decor!

Biophilic House

Lastly, adding plants as decor in any of your rooms is an excellent way to keep your house not just visually green but environmentally green. This type of interior design is called biophilic design!

Adding plants to your room is also great for your health, as they help filter the air in your home and help reduce the harm and long-term risks of VOCs. 

Mary Lee also says that you may not feel as alone in your house because “you’re forced to take care of these living decor items, and you can give them cute names  to help motivate yourself!”

Mary Lee also says that you don’t need to have typical house plants in your house. If you have space, you can add unconventional plants to your home, like vines, to “shake things up,” in Mary Lee’s words.

If you want to learn more about How to Incorporate a Biophilic Design Into Your Home Decor, check out this article

What's Next?

Now that you have more knowledge about how to keep your living environment eco-friendly, you can now have a clear vision of how to live your life in a sustainable way.

With that being said, La-Z-Boy has a complete line of sustainable fabrics made primarily out of recycled water bottles. If you want to learn more about that, as well as our iClean Fabrics, check out both of these articles.

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While you’re checking out our sustainable fabrics, why not try seeing what it looks like on our furniture? La-Z-Boy has many furniture products to choose from. Check out some of our best-seller articles to see what speaks to you!

You can start shopping by visiting one of our local showrooms located in Ottawa or Kingston. You can also schedule a visit online before coming in.

Our design consultants are always eager to lend a helping hand. Take advantage of our interior design services to see how our sustainable furniture could fit in your home design. 

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