Create an eco-friendly bedroom
You've heard about a sustainable kitchen, and you've certainly read about ways in which to make your bath more green. But what people really aren't discussing these days are methods for transforming your own bedroom into something that meets the standards of green design.
There are so many things to make green in the bedroom, from lighting and low-VOC paint, to organic bedding, formaldehyde-free furniture and natural flooring.
For starters, you can remodel your entire bedroom to meet LEED standards specific to lighting. LED and energy efficient light bulbs are sold everywhere, and although they are initially more expensive, they'll save you energy in the long run, while eliminating waste.
Now it's much easier to build a house from the ground up using reclaimed materials, but it's always possible to knock down a few walls and take out some floorboards for the greater good. Reclaimed and recycled materials like hardwoods are readily available at most hardware stores, and are environmentally welcoming. Everything from your bed frame to your dressers can be made from recycled wood materials. And it doesn't end there.There are even choices for organic latex and foam beds. Sheets, clothes and carpets can all be made from 100 percent organic cotton.
Pretty much anything labeled organic, recycled or reclaimed is what ideally should be used to create a more earth-friendly living space. It's always wise to purchase windows that are recycled, and can capture a natural draft. This means positioning them on opposite sides of the room. Likewise, larger windows permit more natural light, saving you energy as well.
As we progress further into the 21st century, these green suggestions will soon start to become standards. Although it will take a while, if met, these standards will eventually help us create a more sustainable earth.
For more information, see our Going Green at Home research center.
Teena Hammond Teena Hammond has published more than 2,000 articles in People and W magazines, Women's Wear Daily, and in dozens of newspapers and books. She also wrote a home improvement, remodeling and decor column that ran in Gannett newspapers nationwide. She's interested in all things green and would love to hear from you with your story ideas.