Green Design Philosophy
Design professional protect the environment by using sustainable
resources whenever possible.
For the porous of improving the quality of
life, protecting health and environment, wonderful solutions are developed.
These days a lot of design professionals use these solutions to promote
environmental considerations by using and specifying products that are
recyclable or good for your health and well-beeing of the planet. The
development of environmentally sensitive interiors is called Green Design.
One of the finest examples of Green Design is the preservation and reuse of
Green design and preservation of
American heritage began in the 1800 and continues today.
One of the most important aspects of a green design is the physical layout
of the building. Several design criteria assist in the conservative use of
materials and energy.
1. The more square the shape of the exterior walls, the less the cost per square
foot. Cost does not in-crease in direct proportion to a structure's square
footage - jogs and angles drive construction costs higher. Two stories cost proportionally less than a low, rambling plan,
because the roof and foundation can serve twice the space, and the second story
provides extra insulation against summer heat and winter cold.
2. Adequate insulation reduces heating costs, as do wood- or coal-burning fireplaces
that meet strict EPA requirements.
3. Locating the structure to take the best advantage of the climate saves on
heating and air conditioning bills. The winter sun should strike long walls and
large windows, but in the summer large areas of glass should be screened from
the afternoon sun. Positioning the house wisely also reduces
the cost of connecting other utilities from the road to the house.
5. Centralized plumbing saves energy. Bathrooms can be placed back to back,
or one above the other. Kitchen and utility room plumbing can
be located to take advantage of the same major drains.
6. Fireplaces can be planned to take advantage of a common chimney
7. Materials found on-site in the construction area, called indigenous materials,
offer great savings. Flawed materials may cost less and character can be gained
by making a feature out of a fault.
8. Consider the cost of upkeep of building materials over a long period of
time. This is called life-cycle costing. Some items that are more costly
initially are the most economical in the long run. For example, brick may cost
more than frame facades, but it never needs painting and the building's resale
value is usually higher than for one made of wood. Hardwood balusters are more
expensive than pine, but pine balusters are easily broken and replacement may
soon add up to more than the cost of the hardwood.
Increasing Thermal Performances of Your House
Ample quantities of the precious natural resources are taken from earth and
depleted on home heating, impacting an environment an putting our health and the
future of our planet in danger. That is why finding solutions and thinking about
how to minimize the amount of heat used to create a necessary comfort level is
an important part of green design.
By increasing insulation, improving your windows, doors, floor surfaces and by
using solar energy you
can conserve energy and implement green design in your home. There is a lot of
things you can do for home energy
conservation that will save you money and improve quality of life.
In Green Design orientation and basic construction of the house largely impacts the thermal performances
of the home. Even though in most cases orientation and basic construction are already given
denominators you still can significantly reduce fuel and energy costs while
creating a comfortable home environment:
Reduce the heat in your home by couple degrees. You will not only reduce your heating bill but
you will feel better as well
- Energy demands can be reduced by increasing insulation in your home
- Retain as much energy as possible by sealing your home, but you also have
to be sure that your home is adequately ventilated as well.
- Control your heat consumption, and use it where and when it's needed
- Use the most efficient fuel, heat source, and method of heat distribution available
- Take advantage of the free heat from the sun. By letting sun in
you will not only increase the thermal performances of your home, but in addition, your
home will look more attractive and bright, filled with rejuvenating energy.
Keep your home warm by minimizing the loss of warm air through drafts. There are
two ways of doing this:
1. Seal gaps around doors and windows with rubber gaskets or nylon brush weather stripping;
2. Make a vestibule at each external door.
These can make attractive entrance areas that are also useful for storing coats
and shoes or displaying plants.
When sealing your home, make sure that you
create adequate ventilation to keep the internal air healthy. The ideal is a warm house that stays at a reasonably
constant temperature and has adequate and controllable levels of ventilation - a
principle described by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as "seal tight, ventilate right".
Green Flooring and Air Quality
Flooring is one of the most important factors in establishing
the feeling and quality of a home. Usually, when designing your home the first
think you choose is flooring. Not like wall color, changing your flooring
material can be very difficult, inconvenient, and costly. For that reason you
have to be sure the flooring you choose will meet not only aesthetic needs but
your practical requirements as well. Getting your floor right from the first
time will bring you endless pleasure; getting your flooring wrong, will make it
a daily headache.
Indoor air quality in the home is enormously affected by the conditions and type
of flooring. The floor surfaces are the largest dirt-collecting surface.
Floors also can become a source of dirt: walking on the floor's surface degrades
it and adds to the amount of particulates in the air. These particulars are
settling on the floor and are stirred up in the air every time you walk though
In general, the harder the floors, the easier to keep them
clean-- therefore they are better for your health. It is not really so
important what your floors are made of, the fact is - a healthy floor is a clean
floor. In terms of Green Design: manufacturing of most flooring materials
require substantial amount of natural resources, so it is important to look for
flooring that is made of recyclable materials.
Like sunshine and clean water, fresh air is vital for healthy body processes,
and access to it has been taken as a right. Today, we tend to forget its importance
and have almost managed to eliminate fresh air from our lives. We need fresh air in our homes,
not only for the body's metabolic functions but also to remove mold spores and viruses
from the home and prevent the accumulation of chemical off gassing, dust, and
uncompensated gases from
home appliances. In addition, it cools us when interiors become too warm.
On today's market you can find a large variety of furniture
manufacturers of which does not contain harmful chemical and which do not cause pollution,
which would impact the indoor air quality. When looking for green furniture,
remember the "3R" and reduce, repair, and recycle as much as possible.
When building your furniture collection, you will want to pay special attention
to acquiring at least some antique pieces. Not only do these old pieces tend
to be beautiful in their artistry, they have soul that turns inanimate objects
into living artistic expressions of life's value. Furniture from a quieter,
gentler era balances out the high-speed machines of today. If you have a
passion for antiques, try to add one new piece to your collection each year.
Rooms breathe with energy and truth if you give them "gifts" of old furniture.
Why do antiques bring so much emotional comfort? What is it about an old piece
of furniture that energizes a space? The answers to these questions all stem
from the rare beauty and craftsmanship that have been treasured by generations.
Antiques take you back to an earlier age, a time of handmade artistry long
before the dawn of the information age. When an artist puts his heart, hands,
and soul into his work, the object is infused with his spirit. Over the years,
this piece of furniture has been rubbed, polished, mended and tended, sewn and
restored. Antiques are more than mere possessions scattered around the house;
they are indeed your friends, physically and viscerally adored. As you move
these lovable objects from place to place, room to room, or house to house, they
bring warmth and continuity wherever you live. They share your life with you.
As with so much else today, you have the option of following older
traditions that have little impact on the environment or choosing items made by
new, clean production methods.
In order to help protect the environment, you should ask manufacturers for
their policies and statistics on sustainable forestry and about their compliance
with the Clean Air Act before buying their products. Traditionally hand-crafted
furniture used natural materials in simple, economic, efficient ways. This
approach has produced some of the world's finest furniture - from primitive items
to the more sophisticated simplicity of Shaker furniture - and it's still equally