Decorating your home in an eco-conscience way


An obsession with small spaces along with a need to reclaim and recycle has maintained my interest in my living space.

Photo Credit © [Jeremy Shantz]
Photo Credit © [Jeremy Shantz]
An obsession with small spaces along with a need to reclaim and recycle has maintained my interest in my living space; I am constantly reworking how to create with function, efficiency and now green-consciousness. Our world has become noticeably greener and my home is the first place where my environmental responsibility should apply. This has to be our mantra and will facilitate a different world.

Using a space to its full potential is a multifaceted challenge on its own, but to find affordable materials that won’t add to my footprint has become the real difficulty these days. With the re-titling of old materials as “vintage” or “retro,” the options of affordability have gone from used to found. Although the age of throwaway materials is past us, and the marketplace offers an armful of new eco-friendly materials to the masses, I still prefer those three R’s buried in the corners of my brain many years ago—reduce, reuse, recycle. It’s simple to follow and has always kept my collection of reclaimed materials stocked and ready to become something new. The corner shelf falls apart and becomes a piece of the kitchen table; the old pool cue found in the alley starts its new life as a floor lamp. This new path has opened my eyes to free material sites, reclaimed timber yards, repo depots and antique dives; all have become some of my favourite places to spend time imagining not what used to be, but what could be.

In order to make my new space a fresh and eco-friendly environment, I have stopped using purchased solvents and stains for wood, new steel stock, and paints and sprays with toxic accelerants. Instead, I use older methods involving oils and wax sealants, reclaimed steel, water-based paints and new sprays made from sugar instead of petroleum.

Choosing materials that will make my home more beautiful, healthy and green is much easier to accomplish than I believed. I select wisely, always with the earth, my true home, in mind. Believe in transformation, rather than fearing the crisis.
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About the author

Obsessive collector and sculptor of things, Shantz lives and bleeds for those moments of collaboration.

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