Here’s how making eco-friendly changes can give your space new life

Sustainable home improvement has become a huge trend lately, especially since the majority of us spent the last two years indoors and we have become more conscious about how our purchasing decisions affect the environment.

What I love most about eco-friendly home decor is not only are you putting the planet first, but hands-on activities, such as recycling and repurposing, will make you appreciate the end result even more. Plus, it's a lot easier on the bank account.

If you've been wanting to brighten up and spruce up your home, the change of seasons is the perfect time. To make the process easier, remember to plan and gather as much inspiration as possible before getting started.

Browse through for some of our favourite ideas to freshen up your home...

1. Upcycle statement pieces

Coffee tablePinterestLooking for a standout piece, such as a coffee table? One of the key considerations in eco-friendly home decorating is trying to avoid purchasing new. Instead, look around to see what you already have, and think about how it can be used in a completely different manner. For example, an old door frame, a piece from a dresser, or a vintage suitcase could be turned into an amazing table—and would add a lot of character to the room. Upcyling definitely puts your creativity to the test, but it can be worth it in the end. If you aren’t able to find things around your home, then the next step would be to check online such as Facebook Marketplace, your local Buy Nothing group, or head to your neighbourhood thrift store.

2. Upholster cushions, pillows and chairs

cushionPhoto by DESIGNECOLOGIST on UnsplashBrighten things up around the home without breaking the bank. Instead of getting rid of cushions and pillows, gather material and sew new covers. This way, your decor will be extra-functional and you can just take the covers off once the next season comes around. Shades such as pale yellow, light blue and sage green are always great options because they tend to complement other neutrals and add a fabulous pop of colour. The same method can be used to revamp chairs, and opting for fabrics that have different textures adds some interest.

3. Get a sustainable rug

sustainable rugPinterestIt’s time to pack away the cozy rugs and heavy carpets and bring in lighter materials that will make your space look and feel more breathable. Some of our favourite sustainable options are made from jute, seagrass, and even recycled plastic, which come at a variety of price points. Tip: Make sure to properly clean your winter rugs and carpets before putting them away for the season since they gather a lot of debris and dust which can contribute to seasonal allergies.

4. Bring in houseplants and flowers

plantsPhoto by Annie Spratt on UnsplashNothing adds more happiness and colour into your sanctuary than houseplants and flowers—and it’s one of the easiest ways to refresh the space. Plus, there are a number of other benefits as well: you will be breathing cleaner air as plants are natural purifiers, and greenery is also known to be therapeutic, and boost your overall mood.

5. Add colour

colourPinterestHere’s another simple yet effective decorating trick. Changing the colour of a wall can make a big difference in a room, and a fun activity for the summer. The most important thing is to make sure you are checking the labels before you purchase a product. Most interior paints are filled with low-level emissions called Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), which can evaporate into the air and cause allergies and even headaches. Eco-friendly paints will be VOC-free, solvent-free, and many will also be Greenguard Certified. Also, try and opt for sustainable brands that use recycled packaging.

6. Switch up the lighting

lightingPinterestOur lighting sets the mood, and when the days are longer, it means we don’t need to use as much electricity. Your current light switches can be replaced with smart ones which are sustainable, or you can even install dimmers so that you can control the brightness in different rooms, plus they are far more energy efficient. Another wonderful way to play around with lighting is to bring in candles into the space. Not only are they decorative, but add to the ambiance of the home, and the fragrance is just the cherry on top. There are many natural options available which are made from beeswax and soy.