The Green Diaries

Danielle has worked at Marmalade Interiors and LiveLikeYou for the last year and her passion for the environment has been very contagious. Her home is entirely green down to the mattresses they sleep on! She is a master “craigslister”, helps “green” school environments, and is a huge fan of salvaging trash. If she comes over to your house and you eat take out dinner, she might very well start packing up your trash to bring with her(!), saying something like “Fairfax county doesn’t recycle grade 5 plastic but they do in my county, so I’m bringing it with me.” Huh?

We should all be like that! I think more and more it’s our responsibility as citizens of the earth. As a kick off to a regular green post on this blog, I asked Danielle to share her TOP 10 eco-friendly advice for the home.

Check out the awesome couch she found (as is) on Craig’s list, and chic flea market mirror!

Danielle’s Top 10 ECO-friendly advice for your home:

1.REDUCE! Do you really need another duvet for your bed or another shower curtain? Think of ways you can live without.

2. REUSE Why not dye your old duvet cover with natural dyes or update a curtain with a ribbon? Or paint a piece of furniture. Look for ways to reuse what you already have.

3. RECYCLE If you don’t need that extra lamp that’s sitting around collecting dust, then give it to a charity, sell it on Craig’s list, or give it to a friend.

4. UPCYCLE Upcycling is the process of using waste materials or useless products and turning them in to new material or products of better quality and higher environmental value. Eat a lot of jarred food? Why not make a light fixture out of them? Check out this unique project done at Design Sponge.

5. USE NON TOXIC PAINTS Now that you want to paint your dresser instead of trashing it, you need to think about the chemicals that off-gas from conventional paints. Look for low/voc paints at your local paint store.

6. BUY SUSTAINABLE – Maybe you need a new sofa but you feel a little uneasy buying a used sofa and recovering it with organic cotton fabric. If so, there are many known manufacturers using sustainable woods and soy based foam cushions these days. Check out this adorable and affordable sofa from Crate & Barrel.

7. USE NATURAL MATERIALS – Instead of buying that plastic storage bin, think of how long it will take to decompose and all the chemicals that went in to making it! Once you go down that path options become easier! Instead of plastic, I buy glass containers instead. And for rugs – sisal,wool and organic cotton are great choices.

8. BRING THE OUTSIDE IN Buy plants instead of “stuff” to improve your air quality, and plant them in ceramic pots. Plants can help reduce the toxins in your indoor air.

9. GREEN YOUR OUTDOOR SPACES Even your outdoor space can become environmentally friendly. Why not look for your garden furniture on Craig’s list or flea markets? It’s amazing what new paints and cushions will do. And even outdoors, it’s important to use natural materials. Outdoor resin wicker furniture is pvc. Instead opt for natural wicker or metal. Jill recovered her old Restoration Hardware outdoor pieces in Trina Turk fabric and got a whole new look.

10. LIVE LIKE YOU You don’t have to sacrifice style for being green. There are so many new green and uber stylish products out there to satisfy any design. And look to the past…remember how stylish mid century interiors were? So get a glamorous side board from your local flea market or antique dealer.

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7 thoughts on “The Green Diaries

  1. Great advice Danielle! I used to be very mindful of all this and as soon as I moved to the US it all just went away. I found it frustrating because noone had put recycling into place and I wasn't sure where to start – good excuse huh? Well, I guess I don't have an excuse anymore now thanks to you! Love to get some more advice!

  2. Thanks Erica!!! And Jill, this made me laugh because I don't know how many times I have taken other peoples trash home with me to be recycled. And watch out on trash day, I get mean. If I see recycle-ables in the trash and not in the recycle bin…I get upset. I have even dreamed of recycling. So happy that Live Like You will have the green diaries!!!!

  3. Great advice! Looks like being green is a lot easier than I thought! Thanks for the awesome post and I hope to see more for sure!!

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