Can I decorate my home with the environment in mind?

13 Sep 2023
3 min read
Woman decorating

Redecorating isn’t typically something people think about when it comes to being green or making environmental choices, but there’s lots that can be done to make sure any renovations keep the environment as a priority.

Make small changes

Painting a cupboard

Maybe you don’t need an entirely new kitchen if you can repaint the cupboard doors.

Firstly, it’s worth having a think about whether you really need to be drastic. I have a friend who keeps a tester pot of paint in her cupboard and every time there’s a scuff or a mark from one of her children on the wall, she gets out her tester pot and corrects the issue. She doesn’t ever need to do a big redecorate because she stays on top of the small stuff.

Redo, don’t replace

Next think about what you can redo – maybe you don’t need an entirely new kitchen if you can repaint the cupboard doors and get new handles for the cupboards.

Search social media for bargains

Decorating pots of paint and brushes

Think about buying second hand rather than brand new.

It’s worth thinking about social media too. Website groups can be a goldmine of leftover paints and wallpaper offcuts that people don’t need, rather than buying new, have a look at what’s available and see if you can grab a bargain.

A quick eBay search for vintage wallpaper yields over 9,000 results so think about buying second hand rather than brand new too.
Many people sell or give away unwanted furniture that can be upcycled.

If you’d prefer brand new though, there are plenty of decorating brands that boast green credentials; from using recyclable materials in their paper to paint that avoids toxic chemicals and tins that are made from 50 percent recycled steel. Have a look and see what’s local to you and support a business you like the sound of. It also has potential health and environmental benefits as well.

Old carpet ready for reuse

Give away and repurpose what you don’t need

When it comes to flooring, such as carpets, if you’re ripping up what you have through choice and it’s still fit for purpose, rather than it ending up in landfill, it’s worth seeing if there are any local charities or organisations that need it.

There are a lot of things social media isn’t great for but we’re a global neighbourhood on it and there are plenty of rehoming charities that will jump at the chance of some decent carpet that can be repurposed and made to fit for someone who is just getting their own place after homelessness or domestic violence. There are plenty of materials you can replace your floor with too that won’t harm the environment:

Borrow tools

Rather than buying paintbrushes, floor sanders, or whatever you need, see what you can borrow in your local area.

Finally, it’s not just what you buy or need but the tools you use to make it happen. Rather than buying paintbrushes, floor sanders, or whatever it is you need, borrow from friends, rent them or look at to see what you can borrow in your local area.

It’s natural to have thoughts to modernise or restyle your home. Whilst you’re redecorating always look into opportunities to improve your home’s energy efficiency through insulation or plugging any gaps around windows and doors. If buying new curtains make sure they have thermal or black out lining to help keep the heat in your home.

Making a few different choices when decorating your home can go a long way to making your home and the environment happy at the same time.


The information in this article was correct at the time of writing and is provided for guidance only. Please see the full disclaimer in our terms and conditions.

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