Going green doesn’t mean giving up style or taste, nor a low budget. Eco-friendly can be budget-friendly, and when it comes to accessories, the sky, sea, and earth are the limit!
- There’s nothing more green than buying used! Yard sales, antique shops and consignment shops are the perfect start for green accessories – it’s the ultimate in recycling.
- Fabrics made from organic materials have dropped in cost and are now more widely available in colors and prints, bamboo, hemp and organic cotton add an environmentally friendly throw or pillow cover.
- Bamboo is a popular environmentally friendly product since it only takes 3-5 years to reach a harvestable height, 1/10 of the time of hardwoods, and it doesn’t require fertilizers or pesticides to grow. Try woven bamboo baskets, bamboo shades, and even area rugs.
- Reclaimed wood offers a wonderful patina and warmth to a room in any use, not only for flooring, but for art and accessories as well.
- Plastics aren’t necessarily out for accessories, just make sure you’re using recycled plastics – there are some fun, funky accessories out there in bright, cheerful colors for planters, vases, even clocks!
- Rattan is a sustainable fiber and offers some hot accessories, such as stacking rattan ottomans from Gaiam for under $95.
- Cork accessories, flooring and wall coverings are hot – cork comes from the bark of the cork Oak tree, which doesn’t need to be cut down or destroyed to harvest the cork. The cork tree only takes 9 years, 1/3 of the time for a hardwood, to harvest, and cork is lightweight and durable and adds a great texture to the room.
- Nothing’s better for the environment than a little candlelight, turn out the lights and add plenty of candles to decorate – soy blends are longer lasting and hold scent better.
- You can’t get much greener than plants – freshen indoor air and decorate the room all at once with live plants in environmentally friendly containers such as earthenware with non-toxic glazes and recycled plastics.
- Use national fibers such as feather or cotton fill for cushions and pillows – forget polyester or foam, you’ll love the feel of naturally filled cushions.
Going green doesn’t have to break the bank, look for the FSC certification for wood furniture and accessories – the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) promotes environmentally appropriate and economically viable management of the world’s forests. Choosing an FSC product gives you the peace of mind that you're protecting forests, not destroying them. Walmart has stepped up to the plate in offering FSC products.