Let Mother Nature be your guide in adding natural touches to a kitchen crowded with appliances. Transform a windowsill into a miniature herb garden with a few plants inside colorful pots. Add a framed photograph of outdoor plants or flowers to wall space above a counter. A sturdy natural fiber area rug in a neutral shade can bring it all together.
There are many great ways to turn your kitchen from the most energy- and resource-guzzling room in your home into a smart space that operates cleanly and efficiently. Rather than overhauling all of your appliances and dumping thousands of dollars into a complete kitchen renovation, you can take small and simple steps towards running a more eco-friendly kitchen with these easy, affordable tips. Because the kitchen is probably one of the busiest rooms in your home, it’s a great place to start if you want to make your whole home more eco-conscious.
It’s wise to incorporate environmentally friendly décor into your home with all-natural flooring like natural fiber rugs. Many people don’t realize that rugs made from natural fibers like bamboo, jute, sisal, mountain grass, seagrass and wool can actually be more durable and long-lasting than traditional flooring, making them great for rooms that see a constant flow of foot traffic. Natural fiber rugs are ideal for laying over ceramic tile or hardwood because they protect the flooring from scratches and stains and feature built-in backings that will help keep the rug in place over slippery and wet surfaces.
Stronger rug fibers like bamboo and seagrass are constructed to help repel dirt while holding up to constant foot traffic, so you can be sure that your flooring won’t deteriorate after years of day-to-day use and entertaining. These styles are also more stain-resistant than synthetic flooring and some even feature fire-retardant and anti-static properties for additional kitchen safety. No matter the shape or size, lightweight, natural rugs can be easily transported outdoors to be shaken out.
Today’s natural area rugs come in many textures, colors and sizes to suit your unique kitchen configuration. Contemporary kitchens benefit from the naturally beautiful look and feel of eco-friendly natural fiber flooring that has been woven or dyed into a vibrant and elegant pattern. Neutral rugs provide a warm, welcome aesthetic for earth-toned kitchens, while bold wool or bamboo rugs will complement bright and modern décor schemes.
Another great way to enhance your kitchen’s sustainability is by installing eco-friendly countertops. Typically constructed from fast-renewing or recycled materials like salvaged glass, reclaimed wood or bamboo, environmentally friendly countertops give you all the practicality of high-cost options like marble or granite without the high price tag and overconsumption. Gorgeous bamboo or rugged reclaimed wood countertops pair perfectly with the all-natural look of natural fiber rugs.
Small changes can have a big impact when it comes to overhauling your kitchen’s sustainability. Consider implementing super simple enhancements, like saving cooking scraps and cultivating a compost pile to create rich soil and divert waste from entering the landfill. Composting may inspire you to grow vegetables and herbs that you can put back into the kitchen to create healthy meals and save money.
Other uncomplicated ways to ensure that your kitchen operates at peak efficiency include keeping a stash of reusable grocery bags on hand, keeping your recycling bin easily accessible and replacing your cheap, throwaway cookware and utensils with long-lasting tools that won’t need to be replaced nearly as often.