One of the real benefits of holding an Interior Designer license in FL is that I am required to take 20 hours of Continuing Education Units every 2 years. Although a lot of times the classes are hard to fit into my schedule, I am always pleased with the new info I can bring back to my work and share with my clients.I'm sure you have been hearing the buzz of "Green" products and "LEED" certified buildings and homes. We all want to breathe cleaner air - especially in our home - our sanctuary - and since I develop so many kitchen and bath renovation designs, I was particularly interested in a recent course on eco-friendly cabinetry and what new features I might bring to my clients who are renovating their kitchen or bath.
Here are some key elements to look for when evaluating a manufacturer for "Green" products:
Here are some examples of "Green" products and their resources that are readily available for kitchen and bath cabinet designs:
- Use of formaldehyde-free adhesives in cabinet construction
- Use of waterborne stains and paints for all finishes
- Use of renewable resource species such as Lyptus and Bamboo - examples below
- Member of the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC)
- Member U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)
- Member Environmental Stewardship Program (ESP)
Eucalyptus trees grown on plantations in Brazil produce beautiful eco-friendly Lyptus wood.
Lyptus wood is known for its density, finish ability, overall strength and exotic appeal - all elements desirable when designing a functional kitchen or bath that is also beautiful.
Side note: being a Florida transplant from Ohio, I have been so intrigued with Bamboo, that I decided to plant some on our property last year. With the advice of the experts at Bamboo Gardens in Palm Harbor, I planted Bambusa Oldhami (Giant Timber Bamboo). Bamboo is truly amazing - a grass that grows to a harvestable height of 60 feet in three to five years, growing as much as 2 feet per day! This material is available in both veneer and solid 1/2" and 3/4" plywood - everything you need to create beautiful bamboo kitchen and bath cabinet designs.
I'm designing a very spa-like guest bath right now and we have selected the bamboo in the center for the cabinets - stay tuned for renovated bath photos in the near future!
I now have some shoots about 20 feet tall! It's amazing to me how it grows - it sprouts out of the ground already 2" in diameter - hardly the typical tiny shoot. It's fun to go out to my garden every day and see how much the stalks have grown! I'm looking forward to cutting my own bamboo and exploring how I can creatively use it in my designs - maybe even in a unique kitchen or bath renovation? What are your ideas?Click on these links or
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Action Step #1: Switch Your Switches
Action Step #2: Light Your Life with Lamps and Lights
Lighting Series Intro: Lighting Interior Design Ideas - Lift Your Spirits with Light
Action Step #3: Accentuate with Accent Lights - Coming Next
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