Planning for a Green Baby – Nursery Floors

Hello again,

Somehow the holidays took all my blogging time away from me and it took me all of January to recover! I would like to continue on with our Planning for a Green Baby and would like to apologize to my readers for missing 2 months of blogging!

As Scott & I planned the conversion of our spare bedroom to our baby’s nursery, we decided we did not want carpet in the nursery. For starters, the previous owners of our house had covered the wood floors with white carpet (not sure what they were thinking… white is possibly the WORST carpet color!), secondly, carpet can give off VOC’s, and thirdly, this carpet was old & dirty, not something you want to bring a brand new baby home to. So for a “Fresh” start we wanted it torn up. Since we already knew the floors were wood underneath, the decision to tear up the carpet was an easy one. The only problem was we had no idea what kind of condition they wood floors would be in. We figured any condition was healthier and more green than laying new carpeting. New carpet gives off many VOC’s, causing the air quality of the room (and your home) to decrease. The last place I want poor air quality is in the nursery! (There is carpet out there that is considered “low-VOC” it is quite pricey and not easily found.)

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Well, we lucked out, besides a few small blemishes, the floors looked great! The previous owners used a water-based sealant on the floors to give the oak a lighter color, but, we found out, water-based sealants are not as durable. So the nursery floors were dull and a bit of a lighter color than our hallway. It would have been nice to have them refinished, but I didn’t want the mess and chemicals in the house while I was pregnant, nor did I want them lingering when we brought our baby boy home.

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My mom recommended a wood repair product she had used in the past, although she wasn’t sure about its eco-friendliness. I did some research on the product, which is called, Rejuvenate . Turns out it is safe to use, does not contain harsh chemicals (and if you accidentally ingest it, all you have to do is drink a bunch of water… makes it seem safe, right?) The floors took some time, and a decent amount of work; removing the carpet, pulling up the staples, sanding the bits of paint that were on the edges, and then  cleaning the floors multiple times with our plant-based It’s Good To Be Wood by Method floor cleaner. After that process, I did a few coats of the Rejuvenate wood floor repair and they started too look pretty nice! (Sorry I can’t find the larger photo of the rejuvenated floors!)

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Of course, after all this hard work, we put a large area rug down, which was always in the plan, but it may make the previous steps seem useless. The area rug took some research too, I searched and searched for eco-friendly rugs, that were appropriate for a baby’s nursery. Let me tell you, they are hard to find! Jute, is an option, and looks great & earthy, but it is not soft, so it does not seem appropriate for a nusery room floor. I settled on a beautiful braided rug that was Made in the USA! I figured a Made in the USA product is the next best thing to an organic/eco-friendly rug! (Just a side note: buying products Made in the USA is a green choice, as these products do not travel as far, which reduces the pollution travel causes, but more on that later!)

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Have you found any eco-friendly options for floor care? Or have you ordered the low-VOC carpet??

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