THE 2006 HC&G IDEA HOUSE
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And because the cork comes in three layers—a bottom moisture barrier, a spongy middle layer and the cork surface, which is available in different shades—the thin, quarter-inch planks can be laid directly on concrete. Cork is also an ideal choice for other areas of the house, like kitchens.
Huberty chose low-VOC (volatile organic compound) paints, which are latex or water based, emit minimal pollutants and are virtually odor-free. A mural in the window well was created by Huberty and Erin O'Donnell of EMOD Art in Brooklyn using natural pigments mixed with cement (limestone and sand). Likewise, all of the toys and decorations in the room are handmade and the fabrics are 100 percent cotton, soft for kids and easily washable. With a room like this, the challenge will be to get the kids to play outside.
Tips to Create a Greener Playroom
- Since children are most often confined to playrooms when the weather is inclement, the indoor environment should aspire to be as much like the outdoors as possible.
- Traditional plastics and polyesters should be ignored in favor of natural materials like woods and cotton. Chemical-based products slowly emit pollutants—not ideal for playrooms, which often have poor ventilation.
- Cork flooring is a healthy alternative to carpet or wood. It's durable, moisture and mildew resistant, cost-effective, sustainable and great for horsing around on.
- Instead of plastic bins and toys, choose wicker baskets for storage and handmade wooden toys or stuffed animals made from natural fabrics and fillings.