Eco-Trends Of Window Shades And Blinds: Defining Terms
Jun 3 2010
Consumers are becoming more eco-minded and are looking for ways to incorporate environmentally friendly elements into their homes. However, many consumers are unsure as to what the different environmental terms mean. Blinds Chalet has defined the following terms in order to help consumers shop wisely:
Sustainable materials: Sustainable materials usually refer to wood products or hemp products. These products grow and are harvested in such a way that the biological systems remain productive and intact. Bamboo is a similar to a weed in the amount and speed with which it grows. When the plant is cut, the root system remains intact and bamboo quickly replenishes itself.
Energy Efficient: Anything described as energy efficient helps consumers decrease their energy consumption. These products save energy. A good example of an energy efficient product is the cellular shade. It can just as effective as installing double paned blinds. The reduction of need for artificial heat and air conditioning means fewer pollutants are created and released in the air. It also reduces the use of fuel and minimizes the need for fossil fuels. In addition...some energy efficient products can qualify consumers for up to $1,500.00 in tax credits.
Environmentally Friendly Products: An environmentally friendly product means a product is recyclable. This decreases the amount of unusable products that end up in landfills. Environmentally friendly products are not made from either volatile organic compounds or PVC (a plastic substance that can be an environmental toxin; it takes a very long time to break down). A common example of PVC-free window products are the Eco-Green line (solar sun and roller shades). Other environmentally friendly products are made from hemp or organic cotton or bamboo materials.
Recycled Materials: Recycled materials are also considered environmentally friendly. Using recycled or reclaimed wood has become a popular trend. Other manufactures use recycled fabrics to construct patchwork designs or vintage style blinds.
Product descriptions also often mention how the materials were processed. Bamboo is a sustainable material, but some companies incorporate harmful chemicals into their processing of the natural material. It can leach into water systems damaging fish and other wildlife. Leaders in the environmental movement are open about their products' materials as well as their processing methods and their manufacturing process.
Shipping is another consideration. While a company may do everything the right way environmentally, if they have their products manufactured overseas, the carbon footprint of shipping the materials has to be considered.
Consumers have access to many ways of incorporating green materials into a home or office space: vintage furniture and reclaimed architectural elements (cabinetry, flooring, etc.). There are endless opportunities. But with window treatments these environmentally minded consumers should consider bamboo wood blind products, Eco-Green Roller Window Shades and cell shades. Replacing outdated shades and window treatments allows consumers to increase their homes' energy efficiency while incorporating unique color combinations and designs creating stylistic focal points amongst their interior decor.
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