Watch: How to double green your home

The colour green has had a bit of a re-brand of late. Previously the colour of envy and, we don’t know, nausea, became the colour of juices and smoothies wielded by the health conscious. Short-hand for being environmentally savvy with the ‘go green’ movement and the colour of choice for just about every single high-end designer on the Spring/Summer 2017 catwalks.

Greenery 15-0343

No wonder, then, that the Pantone Colour Institute - the arbiter of all things taste-related when it comes to colour - has chosen a shade called ‘Greenery’ (Fashion and Home Ref number #15-0343) as 2017’s colour of the year, designed to reflect the current cultural climate. According to the colour gurus at Pantone, Greenery is a ‘fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring, when nature’s greens revive, restore and renew, adding that ‘Greenery is nature’s neutral’.

how to  double green your home

‘Double Green’

It’s fair to say we’re a nation of home lovers. Whether you have a grand design, a home under the hammer or an amazing space your home is your castle (so don’t forget to keep your building and its contents protected by getting a good price for you home insurance). And because we love our houses so much, it’s no surprise then that ever since Pantone launched its colour of the year programme in 2000, the chosen hue has influenced trends across the board, from design, interior decoration and architecture.

So, with that in mind, here are our top tips on going ‘double green’ by both embracing the new ‘in’ colour around the home and by being ‘green’ by utilising some genius up-cycling ideas to reducing waste and potentially saving money. With these hacks you and your family could make your home ‘double green’ in just one bank holiday weekend and do your bit for the environment by minimising waste at the same time as splashing on some colour and making your home look completely fabulous.

It’s time to go green or go home.

Breathe new life into tired books

Have a pile of dog-eared books that haven’t been shown any love in a long time? They can be made into absolutely gorgeous planters for succulents. All you have to do is carefully cut out a hole in the top of the book using a scalpel, line it (bin liner will do) and plant away. Ideal if you have hardbacks, as paperbacks work less well, also try to co-inside the cover with the new pantone colour if possible.

double green your home with upcycled book plant pots
double green your home with plants indoors

Bring the outdoors in

As Pantone’s ‘Greenery’ is all about bringing the outside indoors, it would be silly not to bring in a bit of foliage into your home. We love this clever up-cycling of a shoe storage system which, by filling each section with top soil and your favourite plants, can help you create a ‘living wall’.

Ten green bottles

There’s a genius way to recycle your old bottles other than chucking them in the green (sorry, not sorry) bin, and all you’ll need is one can of white and one can of pantone green spray paint. Tap into the ombre trend and give the bottles a colour-fade effect by pulling the spray can further away as you go up the bottle. Don’t worry if it’s messy - it’s all part of the design. You’ll transform your bottles from drab to fab and make lovely vases or candle holders to decorate your home.

double green your home with painted upcyled bottle vases
double green your home with ladders

Transform your dusty old ladder

Got a dirty old wooden ladder gathering cobwebs in your garden? You can transform it into an amazing decorative feature with very little effort. Simply give it a sand and paint it in your favourite green hue (or just clean it if you prefer the rustic look) and secure it to your kitchen ceiling using strong wire. Then you can hang flowers in Mason jars, or even blankets for when it gets a bit chilly onto it. We think it looks absolutely ace. 

Upcycle your garden furniture

Garden furniture can often be left alone all winter without getting much love and is really expensive to replace. Give it an instant update by sanding, priming, painting and treating it with your favourite pantone green. Or simply just recover some old cushions with pantone green fabric to make it nice and cosy and give it that instant boost. It's a hell of a lot cheaper than starting afresh.  

double green your home with upcycled garden furniture
double green your home with zesty candles

Get zesty!

You can use lime (more green) or any citrus fruit to make these beautiful homemade citronella candles which not only smell gorgeous, but will also keep nasty critters away when you’re having dinner outside now the weather is picking up. All you need to do is fill mason jars with a combination of lemons and limes, water, citronella and fresh herbs and place a floating candle on the top. It's amazingly easy.

Don’t be the butt of the joke

Installing a water butt in your garden or roof in order to collect and store water could reduce your council’s water strain. Less than 3% of the average household’s annual water consumption is estimated to be from garden use, but this can shoot up to 70% in peak times.

The RHS estimates that, even in dry districts, 24,000 litres (5,280 gallons or 150 water butts) could be collected from a roof each year, which can be stored to get you through summer. Considering how quick and easy they are to install, it’s a real game changer when the weather is good. We’ve got our fingers crossed.

The good news? All you have to do is drill a hole the size of a water butt tap into the side of a wheelie bin, file of any rough edges around the hole and securing the water butt, securing it in place with a plastic butt. Then secure a short pipe into a drilled hole at the top of the wheelie bin using a drill, which will allow the water to flow through. Simples! And this means you have water when there’s a hosepipe ban and potentially save money on your water bill.

double green your home by adding a water butt in your garden
double green your home with energy saving lightbulbs

It’s time to see the light

Swapping ordinary bulbs for their energy efficient alternative is a great way to go green. There are two types of energy efficient bulbs, Compact Fluorescent Lamps (which are more cost effective) and Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs). You'll get the same brightness as an ordinary bulb, but will have to change them less and can save yourself £70 over the lifetime of the bulb.

And while you’re replacing your bulbs, why not repurpose any tired lampshades with the newest colour of the year? And if you’re really looking for greener solutions for your energy usage, why not compare the latest green energy suppliers and tariffs.

Don’t be daft about drafts

Drafts are not only irritating, they can be expensive and bad for the environment because they encourage us to crank up the heating. Thankfully, you can make an absolutely genius draft excluder using only a scrap of material (green again please), some stuffing and an old pair of tights.

Failing that, rugs are a brilliant way to not only keep pesky drafts at bay, but keep floor heat insulated and it's very easy to dye an inexpensive rug your favourite shade of green using carpet dye. Just make sure to check that the carpet is properly cleaned - you might want to invest in a steam clean - before you begin.

double green your home by adding draft excluders

Now that you’ve got your house looking fab, make sure you’re getting a ‘green deal’ on your energy and not paying more than you need to by using our energy comparison service. Then get an amazing deal on your home insurance too, keeping your home and its contents protected right here

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