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Homeowners are becoming more aware of environmental issues and many are consciously trying to do something to make things better. They are using more environmentally-friendly materials in their homes and are even choosing decor items that meet their environmental goals.

If you have been thinking about playing your own part in aiding the environment, here are seven ideas that might bode well for your spaces, without leaving a huge carbon footprint.

All things bamboo. If your flooring has seen better days and it needs replacing, you might want to give bamboo some consideration. Bamboo grows well in its natural environment without the use of pesticides and quickly regenerates. It’s durable and warm—just what your home might need.

Plan on plants. There is nothing that livens up a room more than living greenery. Plants are not only lovely to look at, they can also clean the air by recycling carbon dioxide. If you have pets, though, make sure to add only those plants that aren’t poisonous to them if ingested, such as a Christmas cactus, Parlor palm or a Polka Dot plant.

Repurpose, recycle and upcycle. Turning old stuff into new stuff can be extremely rewarding and will keep things out of the landfill. You can repaint or reupholster furniture to give it a brand-new look. Hang onto those older pieces. Vintage looks are hot right now and can really give your home a chic feeling.

Choose non-toxic materials. Whether you’re painting or redoing a piece of furniture, try to use as many eco-friendly products as possible. You can purchase things that are free of volatile organic compounds, which are extremely hard on the environment.

Nature’s bounty. Wildflowers and certain herbs can be incorporated into designs in your home. You can also add natural items like citrus or cranberries to elevate your decor. Things like driftwood can also make spaces warmer and naturally appealing.

Reclaiming architectural elements. Reusing reclaimed lumber is a great idea when it comes to beams, windows, doors, corbels, columns, floorboards and other architectural features of your home. These can even be used in new-home builds.

Use your artsy side. Can something you already have be turned into something else? How about revamping those old shutters into a room divider or turning old mirror and picture frames into a funky backdrop for your bed instead of a boring, standard headboard? There is no limit to using your creativity and imagination when it comes to creating something unique that’s easy on your wallet and great for the environment.

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