Kitchens and Baths: Use durable, nontoxic products like stone, steel, wood, and glass to stay even healthier while sheltering-in-place. These materials can be part of appliances, countertops, finishes, fixtures, and even accessories.
Home Offices: Maximize storage space in home workspaces using woven baskets, wooden boxes, and artisanal ceramics. Store on surfaces, decoratively layer larger pieces in corners or place on open shelving to create more closed container areas.
Common Areas: Create a layout that maximizes traffic flow, conversation space, and access to everyday items, like electronics, books, and games. Consider organizing with hidden storage for pillows, throw blankets, and remotes.
Bedrooms: Emphasize the rejuvenating aspects of this room, like the view of a fireplace, favorite piece of artwork, or of the outdoors, and add some luxurious fabrics and lighting! Try keeping the bedroom for sleeping and relaxing only, not turning it into an office or workout room (even though most of the other rooms in the house are multi-use).
Outdoor Living Spaces: Bring interior comforts, like accessories for morning coffee and after-dinner drinks, outside! Additionally, furnish your deck, patio or fire pit area with green products like recycled furniture made from metal, natural fibers, or wood.
By Gina Jacobson, Owner/Interior Designer, CL Designs
As preparations for snowy weather and large get-togethers begin, having engaging surroundings gains importance for many of us. With so many décor options available, I make my best choices after carefully considering what already exists in a space. In this house, expansive windows drew my eye and naturally highlighted the darker pieces in my table arrangement. Curvaceous Moser furniture offered the perfect inspiration for the twists in each centerpiece, and the russet hues in the countertops became the impetus for more warm wood features and golden lights throughout.
While complimenting the home’s fixtures, the decorations also provided a healthy alternative to synthetic objects. White candles added a crisp touch to the plant clusters, as well as innocuous flames to spotlight the details. At the same time, a bar of soap anchored the vanity with its neutral color and served as a hypoallergenic resource for handwashing. A round ice sculpture mimicked the numerous circles already in the vicinity, as it showcased herbs and, perhaps most conspicuously, vibrant flowers, local greenery, and organic produce, yielded a fresh aesthetic and wholesome nutrition for later consumption.
When incorporating seasonal furnishings into the heart of any house or office, I consider not only the environment as it is, but also its occupants’ physical well-being. During the colder months, styling projects are usually undertaken in order to satisfy clients’ desires for inviting and one-of-a-kind surroundings where visitors can gather. But my seasonal work may be just as important as a means of modernizing the entire dwelling or place of business for both that time frame and beyond.
To do that, I refer to comprehensive design principles, develop customized proposals that fit my client’s wishes, and prioritize clear procedures for each task I perform. I weigh other aspects of green interior design as well, including the recyclability, durability, local sourcing, and energy efficiency of anything I procure. I believe that the areas we inhabit can be functional, beneficial, and beautiful at the same time and that the combination of those three is what will make them truly great.
Overall, as a passionate and focused interior designer specializing in healthy products for both residential and commercial sites, I have a strong drive to create aesthetically-pleasing, intuitive, and welcoming areas. I usually find that my clients enjoy fine art, unique touches, and environmentally sensitive products. Whatever your reason, if you decide to utilize my design services this winter, you can expect the process to start with a meeting. At that time, I will observe your space and get a sense of your priorities for its design. Whether for one room or the whole building, I will then devise a detailed, personalized plan that may include everything from furniture layouts to accessories and ornamentation. Once that plan is in place, we will meet again to finalize it and agree upon implementation dates, understanding that their fulfillment signals completion of the work. Lastly, with your approval, I will photograph the outcome for future use.
• Real plants are always an easy way to bring new life into your home, and allium, cone flowers, and Virginia bluebells fit the bill in Minnesota summers. For added benefits, snake plants and Boston ferns not only look beautiful, but also counteract chemicals like formaldehyde that can be common in our interiors, and are native plants to Minnesota.
• Fill bright ceramic or glass vases with summer blooms; add even larger jugs for freshly-cut branches and leaves.
• Choose a light entryway rug that is less patterned than your mud-resistant spring version.
• Keep throw pillow covers with invigorating colors and lines and bring in more crisp, cool colors, as well.
• Bring in nature through the view outdoors to a garden scene you have cultivated.
• Invest in lasting materials like metal indoor/outdoor tables and versatile plant containers.
• Focus, broadly, on movement, openness and cross-breezes in your interiors. These are always emblematic of summer.
• Artfully display your umbrellas, wellies, raincoats and delicate shoes with chests, artisanal hooks and wooden sandal racks.
Why should I bother investing in green design?
• Human Health
There are additives in our home decor products, and in our buildings themselves, that cause health issues. Companies are not required to label these products’ ingredients like much of the food industry is, so consumers often do not even know what toxins they are bringing into their offices and homes. Consumers have a small, expensive pool of vendors to pick from when they do embark on the task of purchasing actually-green products and services. By purchasing our interior design products from those companies that are being mindful of human health, we can change that.
• Planet Longevity
The products and processes involved in the transporting, assembling, installing and finishing of the built environment fixtures and furnishings that we buy and use today are largely chosen from outdated and inefficient plans that are unnecessarily detrimental to the earth. It is exciting to contribute to those that are choosing more beneficial paths.