A re-post of a great blog post by our former design assistant Tammy Romer. We love educating our clients to think beyond the granite slab. Great information to share.
We asked to co-write a blog post for UK Flooring Direct. Given the company’s wonderful product and service offerings, we were more than happy to do so.
If asked the question, What is the most important surface in your home or office? What would you answer? THE FLOORING OF COURSE. What you decide to put on the floors literally lays the groundwork for all of the forth coming design decisions. With this design element, FUNCTIONALITY is the most crucial factor to consider. The amount of traffic and type of traffic the floor will need to endure, the exposure to moisture, the care and maintenance for the floors are factors that must be considered. There is an ever expanding array of options in terms of how the floor LOOKS AND FEELS; including eco-friendly options such as Cork, Bamboo and even Teak.
If you are in the United Kingdom,UK Flooring Direct should most definitely be on the list of vendors to work with. They carry an extensive product line for virtually any flooring needs you may have.
“However comfortable and durable your kitchen floor you shouldn’t have to compromise on the appearance and even with all of these great qualities it shouldn’t have to cost the earth.”
Wood, tile, cork, laminate, vinyl and linoleum are all good options to consider for the kitchen floor. Within each of these flooring types, many color and even format options exist. For example, cork is available as tiles or planks.
“While everyone wants an attractive option it is also very important, because it is such a wet environment, to make practicality a priority. This will ensure that you get a product which can cope with the demands placed on it without being damaged.”
Do you have to use tile? NO!! Other good design options include laminate, vinyl and even cork (sealed of course) are great options to explore.
One design note on tile —now increasingly popular in commercial and home environments are tiles that look like wood planks.
Here again many options are available. The branding for the business will guide the aesthetic decisions, while durability factors are the primary concern. Wood, carpet (tiles or wall to wall glue down), tile, vinyl, laminates and even cork should be considered.
A word on CARPETING—
Many people prefer to place wall to wall carpeting in the bedroom spaces so they have soft feeling underfoot throughout the room. Carpet is also a good choice to help with acoustics in a room, especially those with high ceilings. Here again, options for the material, look and feel are plentiful.
Suzanne Lasky, Allied ASID, is the owner and founder of S Interior Design, the exclusive provider of Pawprint Design Services™. Suzanne works with her clients to develop a winning combination of design elements that result in warm, comfortable and functional spaces that reflect each client’s personal style. Suzanne and her team specialize in residential, contract and hospitality interior design, from simple color selections, to office build outs, to restaurant, spa and hotel designs. Suzanne shares her years of expertise through the power of social media. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and at this blog. To speak to Suzanne about your interior design needs, please call 480-220-4659 or visit her website at www.sinteriordesign.com.
S Interior Design is pleased to bring you this guest post on ideas to help make your bathroom environment eco-friendly. Like any room or space in a home or office, using materials derived from nature (cotton, linen, plant-based), versus chemical compounds is taking a step in the right direction. So forego the PVC vinyls and harsh chemical cleaners. When it is time to replace your toilets, look for low water usage or dual flush options which are readily available. And don’t forget your lighting options-go LED for long-lasting beautiful light, and whenever possible day light from windows or Solatubes.
How to Keep your Bathroom Eco-Friendly
If living in an eco-friendly world is important to you, then it’s time to start with your own home. Which room do you utilize the most? Other than the kitchen, the bathroom comes in at a close second. This is a great place to start, though you may not consider it at first.
TheEnvironmentSite.org suggests, “… You will be amazed how much you could do to make your bathroom more environmentally friendly. This can start with the cleaning products you use end with how much water you use for flushing your toilet.” From cleaning supplies, to your basic bathroom items, you can go green from every angle.
DIY Cleaning Ideas
Photo Credit: onyxdistribution.com
If you feel ready to take this project into your own hands, get ready to make your own cleaners. Utilizing many products that you may already have in your house, this is an easy task that’s worth taking on. Not convinced? Care2.com says, “Ounce for ounce homemade cleaning formulas cost about one-tenth the price of their commercial counterpart.” Time to get started; here are your basic formulas.
- Shower: Baking soda and water or lemon juice and vinegar.
- Mirror: Mix vinegar and water – 2 tablespoons of vinegar to a whole gallon of water.
- Clogged drain: Put half cup of baking soda into your drain and wash it down with 2 cups of boiling water.
- Toilet cleaner: Baking soda, washing soda, distilled vinegar, liquid soap and tree oil
Buying the Right Cleaners
If DIY cleaning isn’t your thing, you can head to your local grocery store to find some eco-friendly products. Because environmental awareness is on the rise, almost every bathroom cleaning company offers recycled or earth friendly options. Before making your purchase however, look for these key ingredients. Greenhome.com suggests looking for:
- Avoid any cleaner with phosphates or chlorine, which are harmful to people.
- Look for plant born ingredients such as d-limonene or lauramine oxide.
Eco-Friendly Bathroom Items
Photo Credit: theuptown.net
While you may consider keeping your cleaning supplies eco-friendly, it’s important that your bathroom is green all over. That means you want to be stocked with all the right products. You can find all your basic bathroom necessities in organic, recycled or bamboo materials which are better for your bathroom, your family and the environment.
- Natural fabric shower curtain: The plastic curtains that eek that ever-recognizable “plastic smell” are made with PVC and should be avoided. Find naturally made curtains in your local home goods store.
- Recycled toilet paper: Many mainstream companies now offer recycled version of their traditional product, such as Seventh Generation.
- Towels: Find bamboo and organic materials. According to Bliss.com, “Both are better for you and the environment because they aren’t made from plants sprayed with insecticides and pesticides and often use low-impact dyes.”
If you’re serious about going eco-friendly in the bathroom, there are a number of ways to incorporate bits and pieces or go the whole way. From cleaners to your everyday necessities like towels, you can do your part for the world while making a healthier environment for yourself, your family and visitors.
Sara Fletcher enjoys learning about all aspects of the home ranging from affordable double vanities, interior design, and green furniture. She one day hopes to build her own dream home, complete with luxury bathroom vanities.
This week I visited Underfoot, a amazing trade only resource for flooring and counter top materials for every space and design imaginable. While I was there, one of the owners was excited to share Indo Teak Design with me.
This is teak wood that is recycled from the beams and posts of historic buildings in India slated for demolition. All three layers of the IndoTeak engineered wood floors are composed of the reclaimed teak (unlike most engineered floors that use ply wood for the substrate) making it truly eco-friendly.
The options are amazing! Choose a finish-smooth, wire brushed, a natural patina. The teak can be stained using a plant based natural oil finish with zero VOCs and no harmful chemicals. You can choose from seven colors.
See the colorful boards showing pinks, blues and greens? That is what they call a patchwork of painted and finished teak wood reminiscent of traditional Balinese fishing boats the “jukung”.
If you need design ideas of how to incorporate IndoTeak into your home or office, give S Interior Design a call!
Here at S Interior Design we are always on the look out for unique and environmentally friendly options to use in our design projects. When we were asked to take a look at this product, it got an A+ rating on both counts. So, we are pleased to share with you, and promote the product for the manufacturer.
That’s right –these are eco friendly 3d-wallpanels made out of Sugarcane bagasse
Eco 3d-wallpanels give an extra dimension to your walls!
WallArt will bring your walls to life with their eco friendly 3d-wallpanels made out of the fibrous residue of sugarcane also called bagasse. This fibres of crushed sugarcane stalks, remaining after raw sugar is extracted from the juice of the sugarcane by shredding it, is now the raw material that forms the base of this easily installed eco friendly interior product. The raw material used for WallArt 3d-wallpanels is 100% recycled, compostable and therefore 100% biodegradable.
WallArt 3d wall panels are all made out of a renewable source which is biodegradable and therefore contribute to sustainability. Bagasse, as a residue of sugarcane, is one of the world’s most renewable sources because sugarcane can be harvested up to 3 times a year. The total harvest worldwide is more than 1.2 billion metric tons yearly and out of each 3 ton of sugarcane there remains 1 ton of bagasse. By using this recycled raw material we can say this 3d-wallpaper is a real eco decor product.
WallArt introduced their 3d-wallcovering in Europe in 2011. They’ve been the first entering the market with this eco friendly home decor and interior product. At this moment there are 12 different models of the WallArt 3d wall panels available, for more information about WallArt and their 3d decorating wall panels please go to their website www.mywallart.com and check it out. WallArt 3d decorative wall panels are not only environmentally friendly but the 3d effect give an extra dimension to your walls!