Using Grasscloth and Natural Wallcovering for Eco-Friendly Decor

 

Our homes are one of our primary outlets for self-expression. Whether we are entertaining guests or simply welcoming friends and family, our home decor says a lot about who we are and the type of atmosphere that we wish to present. For those with eco-friendly or earth-based style preferences, finding wallcoverings which project your personal style can sometimes present a challenge. Fortunately, there are a number of grasscloth and natural wallcovering options which will flatter any living space while complementing your home’s existing eco-friendly style.

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In case you are unfamiliar with these products, grasscloth wallpaper is a type of wall covering which is created by weaving dried grasses together and affixing them to a paper backing. Based upon the types of grasses used, it comes in a variety of colors and patterns, and with textures varying from fine to coarse. Because it is crafted from sustainable, natural materials, grasscloth wallpaper is considered an environmentally-friendly option for both homes and commercial spaces.

Note, however, that there are some factors that you should consider when choosing grasscloth wallpaper. The first is that because this is a natural product, it varies in color and pattern. That means you will not be able to perfectly match the rolls to one another. The result is visible seams which can be disconcerting to those who are used to flawless wallpaper patterns. Also, note that you should not use grasscloth or other natural wallpaper in smaller bathrooms or any space in which humidity might be a problem.

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Most varieties of grasscloth wallpaper feature a single piece of seagrass held in place by a thin cotton thread, which is attached to the paper backing via a light adhesive. This means that grasscloth wallpaper is susceptible to damage if placed in a high traffic area. While grasscloth makes a lovely wallcovering choice for many homes, you should consider your space itself before making the grasscloth choice.

For spaces in your home for which grasscloth simply is not well-suited, there are a great number of designer wallpaper options from which you can choose. Options vary from vintage to modern styles, and textured options provide a great way to add depth to any living space. Choose a simple floral pattern or a unique color scheme to suit your home’s decor. Best of all, most wallpapers are suitable for any room, and provide a beautiful alternative to natural wallcoverings in the high-traffic and potentially humid parts of your home.

grasscloth_wall_designWhether you choose a grasscloth or other natural wallcoverings, you should take your time in making your selections. Unlike artwork, mirrors or other decor items, wallpaper of any kind is not easily interchangeable. Therefore, you should choose a pattern which does not overpower your space and can accommodate a variety of decor pieces should your preferences change over time. With a respectable time investment, you are sure to find something which will bring beauty to your home while showing off your personal style.

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By |September 24th, 2016|Design, Fixtures, Modern design, Products, Surfaces, Tips|0 Comments

Tiny Home Fits Family of Three

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Tiny homes are considered too small for families by many, but some are still making it work. Like the couple living in this 400 sq ft home with their baby and dog. Their home was designed by Tiny Portable Cedar Cabins of Idaho.

The so-called Urban Cabin measure s12 ft by 28 ft, and showcases a wonderful blend of rustic and modern elements, complete with a shed-style roof. It’s also quite mobile, since it is considered a park model RV, meaning it’s possible to move it using a semi-trailer truck. Though it wasn’t designed to be hauled around as often as other, smaller tiny (more…)

By |September 22nd, 2016|Modern design|0 Comments

Bring Lasting Beauty to Your Home With Eco-Friendly Redwood

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© California Redwood Association

When it comes to creating sustainable, eco-friendly homes, some homeowners may feel they need to turn a blind eye to beauty and appreciate the greener features that may not add to their curb appeal.

There’s a building material available today, though, that defies that assumption: redwood.

Grown and harvested under some of the world’s most stringent environmental guidelines certified well managed and sustainable, redwood is one of nature’s most versatile building products that will bring both strength and natural beauty to any design aesthetic. It is like the supermodel of softwoods.

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© California Redwood Association

Redwood is a sustainable building product – start to finish. A Life Cycle Assessment study of redwood showed that redwood lumber is much more environmentally friendly than the production of engineered alternatives. Because redwood is all-natural, it can be recycled or repurposed after its project has reached the end of its life. Synthetic solutions such as composite decking can just end up in a landfill.

In addition, redwood trees continuously scrub carbon (CO2) from the atmosphere, converting that carbon to wood. Even better: that carbon remains stored even after a redwood tree is milled for lumber. That means the average size redwood deck holds on to a half-ton of carbon.

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© California Redwood Association

More than just beautiful and eco-friendly, redwood possesses an excellent strength to weight ratio and can span greater distances than plastic composite decking, making it even more economical to use. In addition, it is naturally resistant to decay, termites, and even fire. With periodic maintenance – cleaning and refinishing – a redwood deck will last 25 years or longer.

Redwood’s versatility means it is the perfect addition to any part of the home; more than just a decking material, redwood can be the starting point of a dramatic outdoor kitchen, pergolas, exposed timber beams, full walls of paneling, and more. The only limit is really the homeowner’s imagination.

With its natural strength, universal aesthetics and sustainable roots, redwood is the perfect green touch to complete your eco-friendly home.

Author Bio
Charlie Jourdain is president of the California Redwood Association. Reach him at [email protected] or (888) CAL-REDWOOD.

Celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2016, the California Redwood Association is one of the oldest trade associations in the lumber industry. From the very beginning, the association’s primary mission has been to promote redwood products and educate builders and consumers on the advantages of using redwood. To learn more about redwood, visit the CRA at Real Strong Redwood.

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© California Redwood Association

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© California Redwood Association

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© California Redwood Association

By |September 17th, 2016|Design, Modern design, Tips|0 Comments

Every Room in the Home Has a Place for Bamboo

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© kireiusa.com

Properly sourced and manufactured bamboo can be an alternative to wood if you like that look but want to use something that is more sustainable in your home.

“Bamboo is considered a rapidly renewable material, meaning that it can be harvested in less than 10 years and is used in the interiors of many types of projects,” said Lisa Kamphaus, an associate professor of interior design at La Roche College in McCandless, Pennsylvania, near Pittsburgh.
Although it is durable like wood, bamboo actually is a form of grass.

“It is lightweight, strong and versatile,” said Kamphaus, who also is the chairwoman of the Design Division at La Roche.

“While it is commonly used as flooring, it is becoming more widely used for furniture, textiles and window coverings.”

Bamboo traditionally has been used in many ways in Asia. In fact, Kamphaus said, there is an an Asian saying that “a man is born in a bamboo cradle and leaves in a bamboo coffin.”

Now, bamboo is becoming more common in the United States. “Bamboo definitely has become more of a mainstream product over the last 20 years,” said Aurora Sharrard, executive director of the Green Building Alliance in Pittsburgh. She said bamboo flooring even is available at Home Depot and Lowe’s.

Bamboo can be used in many places at your home, from the outside in.

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Yards
Outside the home, bamboo is an attractive material for privacy fences.

Fences can be made from bamboo stalks for an Asian look or from bamboo formed into slats for a look similar to a traditional wooden fence.
Check out a variety of styles by searching for “bamboo fencing” on Pinterest.

 

 

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© kireiusa.com

Living Rooms
Designtrends.com has a web page on “Modern Bamboo Living Room Designs and Ideas” that can give you plenty of ideas for ways to use bamboo in that room.

Photos show examples of bamboo flooring and the wide variety of stains and grains.

You also can see examples of bamboo wall paneling and ceilings and even bamboo frames for sliding glass doors.

 

 

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© kireiusa.com

Kitchens
The uses of bamboo in the kitchen include flooring, countertops and cabinets. You can find more than 1,000 photos on Pinterest in the category of “Design Trends: Bamboo Bliss.”

At the Houzz website, you can check out the gallery of “Modern Bamboo Kitchen Home Design Photos” to see different styles of bamboo cabinetry.

The most common uses for bamboo in U.S. homes are in floors and cabinetry, said Asa Foss, LEED residential technical director for the U.S. Green Building Council, based in Washington, D.C. “Bamboo products can have a similar look and hardness to other hardwood floor options,” he said.

 

 

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© kireiusa.com

Bedrooms
Bamboo flooring and paneling also can be used in the bedroom.

The About Home website’s gallery of “Bamboo Bedroom Floor Pictures and Ideas” says that “bamboo has an intrinsically serene demeanor” and can be a good choice for bedrooms because it promotes “a sense of soothing energy” in the room used for slumber.

 

 

 

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© kireiusa.com

Bathrooms
Bamboo has a place in the bathroom, too, where it can be used for cabinets, vanities and even vessel sinks.
Go to the Houzz gallery of “Bamboo Sink Home Design Photos” to see some of those sinks, along with other examples of bamboo in bathroom design.

 

 


Author Bio

Madelyn Dinnerstein

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By |September 13th, 2016|Design, Green Building, Modern design, Tips|0 Comments

Sol Pod Makes a Great Workspace

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Vina Lustado, a designer from California recently created a quaint tiny studio. It’s a mobile (towable) structure, which can serve many purposes, such as an additional workspace, home office, guesthouse, or even vacation cabin. It’s called Sol Pod and, as the name suggests, it gets its electricity from the sun. (more…)

By |September 5th, 2016|Modern design|1 Comment

The First Freeform 3D Printed House in the World Coming Soon

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The architecture studio Wimberly, Allison, Tong & Goo (WATG) has drawn up the plans for what they believe will be the world’s first freeform 3D-printed house. The home is called Curve Appeal and it recently won Branch Technology’s Freeform Home Design Challenge. As a result, it will be printed soon. It will also boast of many sustainable features. (more…)

By |August 13th, 2016|Modern design|0 Comments