Visit Trudy Dujardin's new blog, Holistic House. They discuss anything and everything about sustainable design. For a more in depth look, check out our recent article about Dujardin and her company. See an excerpt below.
With Every Breath You Take
Posted By Trudy Dujardin, ASID, Leed AP on January 10, 2011
"There is a priceless gift you can give to yourself, and to your family: the gift of health. Most of us try to eat nutritiously, and exercise to keep our minds and bodies strong. We may take vitamins and supplements, meditate, or know the importance of sleep at night. There is, however, another element to consider. The environment we live in either supports us or stresses us. We’ve long thought of the environment as something “out there”— acid rain, air pollution, a diminishing ozone layer. As important, though, is our indoor environment, and the quality of the air we breathe in our homes.
I have been privileged to work as an interior designer for many years, in some of the most beautiful spaces on earth. Nantucket, in particular, has long been my home and one of my favorite places to design elegant interiors. The crisp ocean air blows cobwebs away from mind and body; homes there reflect the invigorating effects of sand, salt air and sea. The natural next step is to ensure that the air in our houses remains as pure as the breezes that first blew in, even when the windows are closed. That’s why creating homes that are both warmly inviting and supportive of health has been my design passion since 1987.
What causes indoor air pollution? The list is longer than you might imagine, and includes chemicals like formaldehyde and polyurethane, emitted from both furniture and wood used for cabinets, stairs, banisters and trimwork. Fabrics and stuffing from upholstered furniture can be a source of noxious indoor fumes; mattresses and bedding can be laden with chemicals intended to keep us safe (for instance, flame retardants) and yet be dangerous to our fragile immune systems. Paints and finishes emit VOCs (volatile organic compounds), a term for chemicals that emit harmful gases."
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