Sharon L Sherman kitchen designer northern nj bath designer northern nj

Recycled glass is beautiful back splash material

Design Trends 2017  How to create a healthy Eco friendly home.

If you have stood on line in a Whole Foods you can see that Organic has gone main stream. Studies show families are concerned about their living environment and want to know How to Create a Healthy Eco Friendly Home. Today companies everywhere are incorporating this idea of sustainability into their products but what does that really mean?

Here  are a few questions you should ask about the products you purchase for you home.

  1. Where does it come from? Consider the source and buy local. Products made within a 500 mile radius are considered local. Reduced transportation time uses less fuel. Is it packed in plastic and Styrofoam or blanket wrapped?
  2. How long will this last? Buy quality. The cabinetry I use, Pennville Custom Cabinetry, is an example of that quality. They believe that using the best materials made by American craftsman building quality products that will stand the test of time is the first step. Purchasing a lower quality product made without any quality standards which will not last is not the way to go. It has become way too easy to just “get a new one.” Well designed quality can be transformed and re-imagined.
  3. What’s it made of?  Oceanside Glass tile, a favorite resource of mine, uses recycled materials in their manufacturing. Nice to be know you can be sustainable and trendy at the same time.
  4. How healthy is your home’s air? Improving indoor air quality: Start with the walls. Most paint companies like Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams manufacture products which have low or no VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds) which make a healthier while still beautiful painted surface.
  5. What about lighting? I always consider natural lighting in all of my spaces. Skylights are a great way to use “free” lighting from the sun. When the sun goes down, go LED. Although initially more expensive than the traditional incandescent bulbs, they will save you money and don’t have to be replaced very often. Think of that hard to reach light fixture.
  6. Does it cost more? Using Eco friendly furnishings in your home really do not cost more when you look at the overall value. Safer materials for your family, longer lasting products, less impact on the environment.

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Here are some things to consider when purchasing home furnishings:

Case-goods: Furniture or cabinetry

  • Frame: certified wood
  • Panels: solid wood
  • Glues: low formaldehyde
  • Pulls: recycled metal
  • Finish: Water Based
  • Local: Made in the USA

Eco Upholstery: Sofas and chairs

  • Frame: Certified wood
  • Springs: recycled metals
  • Cover: Organic or natural
  • Cushion: bio hybrid foam
  • Wrap/Fill: Recycled foam
  • Local: Made in NC


  • Frame: Certified wood
  • Springs: Recycled metals
  • Foam: Latex or bio hybrid
  • Tufting: Wool
  • Cover: Organic Cotton
  • Local: made in the USA

Working with a designer who is GREEN AP certified is a great way to create a healthy and Eco friendly home.  Want to learn more about sustainable products, visit the Sustainable Furnishings Council website for member companies.  If you want more information about choosing cabinetry for your home, check out my blog choosing the right cabinets for your home.

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