As we become more aware of the impact our daily lives have on the environment, our interior designers are always on the hunt for the best in eco-friendly, sustainable interior design techniques to maximize our clients home efficiency, and to help reduce their impact by keeping everything green.
From building a vegetable garden to beginning a composting routine, there’s plenty you can do to help the environment while personally benefiting you, but how do you approach sustainable interior design?
To help you get started on introducing sustainable interior design into your home, we’ve devised a quick checklist that you can implement to lower your environmental imprint beyond solar panels – and no, upcycling furniture is not one of them…
Select Lighter Colors
To save you money and energy spent on lighting, reconsider your approach to your main color scheme as paler hues will reflect more light, while darker walls and décor need more artificial lighting. To help you skip out on toxic chemicals and fumes that are in most paints, there’s also a variety of paint companies now creating less abrasive options that are better for the environment and your home.
Another sustainable interior design practice our designers often take advantage of is incorporating reflective surfaces to increase the amount of light bouncing from room to room while lowering the use of artificial lighting.
Source Eco-Friendly Furnishings
Seek out companies committed to sustainable interior design with the use of eco-friendly materials and ethical production practices. Study the companies you’re ready to invest in and research their approach to environmentally conscious construction built to last a lifetime while considering their waste production.
And like you would with any purchase, source pieces built to last that you won’t get sick of after a few years.
Choose Materials + Surfaces Wisely
You might be surprised to read this as they’re often considered a far cry from luxury, but sourcing synthetic materials and upholstery can actually help the environment in the long run as they generally stay clean and last longer – just be sure you’ll be happy to see them around your home years.
Even better is to source materials created from recycled fabrications and waste as sustainable interior design takes never before considered approaches for the best results. Similarly, seek surfaces like counters and tabletops that are easy to clean, require less time, and product. Teak for one is a great alternative to more delicate wood as it is ultra-durable and quick to manage.
Bring In Carpet
Though we tend to often forget and think of them as purely décorative, rugs and carpets do double-duty as thermal insulators while retaining up to 10 % of a room’s heat.
They also work as brilliant sound insulators and can reduce noise by soaking in sound vibrations and believe it or not, they also work to improve air quality by trapping in dust from the air until vacuumed. As we’re dedicated to sustainable interior design, we suggest organically produced fabrications that are easy to clean and won’t require an environmentally devastating trip to the dry cleaners or chemical ridden products.
Install Window Treatments
When it comes to sustainable interior design, heating and lighting are two of the easiest routes our designers utilize to make our client’s homes as eco-friendly as possible. As most building’s heat escapes through windows, it’s essential that your windows are of the best quality while ensuring proper insulation.
And if you aren’t blessed with the best windows and upgrading them is out of your budget, window treatments are a smart, easy to manage and install option as they keep cold air and the sun’s heat outside while allowing you to control your home’s temperature by opening and shutting them when needed.
Install Efficient Shower Heads + Faucets
Save water and energy by updating your faucets and shower heads with more efficient models as today’s options boast up to 70% less water use. As you can see, most often, sustainable interior design updates don’t really require unlimited funds, just a thoughtful, well-studied approach.
Upgrade Your Appliances
As Energy Star-certified appliances can now be found in just about any modern home, we suggest swapping out older washing machines, dishwashers, and refrigerators for updated, energy-saving options as they’ll also save you money in the long run.
We love the functionality and eco-friendliness of LG’s Signature Refridgerator which boasts a cleverly designed transparent front that allows you to see what’s inside without having to open the door.
Invest In Nest
Brands like Nest provide beautifully designed, easy to use automation services to control heating and lighting systems from anywhere to help use your home’s energy more efficiently and economically.
And speaking of lighting, did you know that traditional light bulbs give off 90% of their energy as heat, which makes them more expensive to use and keeps your house warmer. As it’s probably one of the least expensive sustainable interior design hacks to try, we suggest using energy-efficient bulbs including halogen incandescents, compact fluorescent lamps, and LED lights as well as using timers and dimmers to save the most while helping the environment.
Images via Pinterest