The biggest change I've noticed in the world over the last five years, would be the world wide awakening that has happened as far as our responsibility to this earth, and how we can evoke positive changes. I have to say, that I am thrilled with this new state of being. I am a nature lover, most peaceful in the mountains, and being half Lumbee Indian, I always felt a special connection to the earth, the forest, the rivers, the air . . . So, naturally I've tried to incorporate respect for the earth in all areas of my life, including my business. And, as more and more demand for eco friendly products emerge, so do the resources to create them. That is one of the reasons I love business, it will make available what we demand, and if our consciousness turns toward more responsible behavior, business will be right there to meet that desire. So many people ask me how they can make a "green" nursery, and the good news is, there's more choices now than ever before. Here is a list of a few easy things you can do to make the environment for your child even greener.
10 Great Tips for Going Green in the Nursery:
1. Buy furniture that will grow with your child, ensure the quality and the design will last. By keeping your furniture longer, you are decreasing waste and furniture turnover that eventually ends up in our land fills.
2. If purchasing wood products, ensure the wood has come from sustainable forests. What this means is the trees used in the wood products are harvested and then replanted which ensures a replenishments of the worlds trees.
3. Don't be afraid of "engineered" wood such as MDF. MDF is an environmentally responsible choice for production. Engineered wood products make far more efficient use of the available resource today than ever before and can be manufactured from fast growing, underutilized, and less expensive wood species grown in privately managed forests. That helps safeguard older forests that as a society we have chosen to preserve. Byproducts from other production processes—small chips or unusable bits of wood—can be recycled and reused in engineered wood products. Engineered wood also eliminates many of the defects found naturally in wood, thereby improving upon many of the material's inherent structural advantages. Simply put, manufacturing wood is energy efficient.
4. Consider wrought iron as a medium for your furnishings. Wrought iron is sustainable, long lasting and renewable by nature.
5. Consider organic and natural materials for your textiles: crib bedding, rugs, curtains.
6. Use only organic and natural/non toxic cleaning products. Babies mouths end up everywhere!
7. Cut down on plastic. Plastic is a major contributor of indoor air pollution. When available choose furnishings, fixtures and toys with little or no plastic.
8. Ensure only non toxic paint and finishes enters the room, weather its on furnishings, toys, or walls, it all needs to be non toxic. *Also, make sure room is painted well before baby arrives and has been completely ventilated to ensure all fumes are gone. Give mom a day at the spa when the room is being painted, she doesn't need the fumes when pregnant.
9. If you have wall to wall carpet, consider getting rid of it and opting for bare floors, wood, bamboo or even cork. Dangerous toxins are often found in new and old carpet alike, and no matter how much you clean your carpet, it can still be highly toxic and filled with germs.
10. Less is more. There's a tendency to fill up that nursery long before the baby arrives. Be conservative and thoughtful in your purchases cutting down on over consumption and waste.