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Jul 07

Eco-Friendly Decorating On a Budget

For a lot of people, decorating is a creative outlet, but when it comes to realizing a vision we have for our homes, our budget can often stand in the way of our dream designs. Unfortunately, many homeowners mistakenly believe that green decorating is too expensive, or that it will limit their style. This just isn’t true. Not all green furniture is literally grass green or brown with boring lines. And going green doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg.

If you do have a little extra to spend, a great way to go green is to decorate with antique furniture. Because it has already been used, you can be sure that no new trees are being cut down to make your coffee table.

You can also buy some great used furniture at consignment shops, thrift stores, and garage sales for much less than it would cost to buy new furniture. Best of all, antique furniture is often better made than new furniture. And if you don’t like a particular finish, you can give it a quick lift with some new paint, or a new wood finish. In fact, many furniture items that seem run down or plain can be made to look like designer furniture after a new layer of paint has been added—especially white paint, which can mask low quality wood. It may take a little more effort, but it is worth the final result.

If you desire a shabby chic look for your living room, you can also go to a salvage yard to find a great piece of reclaimed wood and make it into a coffee table. Or you can give your old furniture a makeover by sanding down the paint and giving it a trendy distressed look. One easy way to do this is to paint a piece of furniture a bright color, like blue, and then paint over it with another muted color – like grey. Sand down the top layer of paint in certain places and the bottom color will show through, subtly adding color to any room. A soft white couch cover will complete the look, and bring your sofa to life again.

When it comes to décor, you don’t have to buy a lot. To bring the outdoors inside, you can take the branches from your recently trimmed tree and arrange them in a decorative vase next to your fireplace. Once you’ve completed your renovations, don’t forget to donate your old furnishings to the Goodwill, so they can be used again.

Decorating your house in an eco-friendly style can be both affordable and beautiful. Another added incentive is that it can actually lower your taxes. If you report eco-friendly upgrades to your home on your yearly taxes you may be able to get a tax break.

About the author: Jenni Sunde is a freelance fashion writer and pop culture junkie. Jenni specializes in all things lifestyle-related. From home and design to health and beauty. With her love of art and all things beautiful, she delights in sharing her sense of style from her life to your computer monitor. Her title pegs her as an editor at a website that specializes in fashion careers and another that focuses on providing people to save on car insurance, but her passion leads her into writing with a little more substance and a lot more heart.

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