What’s the deal with organic cotton bedsheets? Are they really better for you? Is it really worth paying that little bit more? To help you answer these questions – and a couple more – here’s six top reasons why organic cotton bedsheets trump commercially-made.
- It’s better for you
Take a moment to ponder this – commercially-made bedsheets are literally awash in chemicals. During production, they’re used to enhance whiteness, provide a wrinkle-free finish and throughout the dying process. From chlorine to heavy metals – not to mention the raft of insecticides and pesticides used during cultivation – it’s pretty scary to think about what you’re literally sleeping up against (particularly if you sleep bare skin-to-sheet!).
“Many of us spend nearly a quarter of our lives in bed. The bedroom is a sanctuary for our family; a place where we sleep, play, and relax. We take comfort knowing our sheets are organically produced and free from toxic chemicals,” say David O’Weger, co-founder of Knotte Organic Cotton Company along with his wife, Minna.
Now think about pure organic cotton – if manufactured in the right way according to Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) standards, it’s produced in 100% toxin-free environment and your guarantee of certified organic process.
“The GOTS standard covers every aspect of cultivation and production, all the way to the ecological and social impact on local farming communities. Each step of the manufacturing process is closely scrutinized to meet GOTS guidelines. Certification covers thorough inspections of farms, fields and processing facilities, detailed records, and periodic testing of soil and water to ensure that growers and handlers are meeting standards. This means we keep our environment and products safe and free of harmful chemicals,” says David.
With no nasties at any stage from soil cultivation to harvesting to production to packaging, it’s difficult to argue this way isn’t the best for your skin; even more so if you have allergies or sensitivities.
- It’s better quality
Avoiding the use of pesticides and herbicides during cotton cultivation produces a more durable breed of yarn. When following a natural process during harvesting too (i.e. handpicking), each cotton boll is treated with the utmost care to preserve its integrity. It can then be crafted into sheets of much higher quality than their commercially-made counterparts.
- It feels better
Growing a higher caliber of cotton often means you get longer staples or fibers. The longer the staple, the fewer the amount of knots needed when joining fibers together. This makes for a much smoother and softer bedsheet.
- It helps – rather than harms the environment
Cotton fields require copious amounts of water. Commercial production methods also use a vast array of synthetic fertilizers, insecticides and pesticides, none of which are good for the environment.
But the organic process offers up some fantastic alternatives. Farmers use biodynamic growing methods – such as crop rotation and composting – to enrich the soil. This increases its water-retention abilities and reduces the need for excess watering. They also use natural forms of pest control such as complementary crop planting and beneficial insect introduction. All of these things have a positive, rather than negative, impact on the environment.
A true organic method is employed at every single step of the production process from seed to sheet. This includes the workers who grow, harvest and produce the final product.
In the commercial cotton world, such workers are often exposed to harmful chemicals in the farming fields and manufacturing plants leading to devastating terminal illnesses such as cancer. They’re often also paid a pittance to perform their daily job.
Organic cotton farming flies in the face of this. It seeks to protect the worker by banning the use of chemicals during production giving them a cleaner and safer environment in which to work and live (many producers are families who live on farms).
Another key way the organic cotton process helps is by ensuring basic social criteria is met – things like fair pay for workers and strict safety requirements.
As you can see, there are many reasons why organic cotton is better for you, the environment and the people that produce it. The next time you’re buying bedsheets and debating between organic and commercially-made, consider these reasons. When you weigh it all up, the choice is actually very simple.
How You Can Add Value To Your Home
The largest asset most of us will have in our lives in our home. For some of us, it’s our retirement plan, for others, it’s a stepping stone on the property ladder towards a dream home. Either way, we all hope the value of our homes increases so we see a greater return on our investment. If we want to maximise the return, we need to understand how to add value to where we live now.
Below we will look at some the things you can do to add value:
Convert the Loft
Adding a room is a sure way of adding to the properties desirability, and therefore worth. One of the easiest ways to add an extra room, that can be used as a bedroom or bathroom, is by converting your loft. This is not the most invasive of tasks, either, as in most cases the work can be done from outside the property. The important thing to remember is that if you want to add value to the house the conversion must fit the look and feel of the rest of the property.
Add a Steel Building
Most potential buyers will be drawn to a property that they can imagine living in. The addition of a steel outer building is a great way to create that desire. A steel building can be used as a shed, man-cave or even a she-shed. It offers the potential buyers a space of their own away from the stresses of the house. The steel building is cheap to buy thanks to suppliers such as Armstrong Steel who will lock the price for you to avoid any problems arising with steel prices, as well as being eco-friendly and can be designed for any application.
Build a Conservatory
When selling a house, a property’s size can play a determining factor in its worth. One of the most common ways to extend your living space is by building a conservatory. A conservatory is often a space added to the back of your property that is used as additional living space such as a TV or games room. To maximise the return on investment on a conservatory it must feel like a natural part of the property, preferably without a separate entrance.
Convert the Garage
Like adding a conservatory, converting the garage can add additional living space to the property. The truth is that most garages are not used for storing cars, they are often wasted assets sitting collecting dust and old furniture. Changing that and making use of that space can add greatly to a property’s value.
Pave over the Garden
Paving your garden is not for everyone. If you are green fingered or like a nice garden, then simply keeping it tidy will add some value to your property. However, for those with properties in built-up areas, where parking is a premium, having additional space for cars can be a massive draw.
Cosmetics to the Outside
First impressions are everything and even if your house is stunning inside, if you have an untidy outside then the property may lose value. Simple touches such as painting the house, new front door or changing the windows can have a big impact on the look of the property.
Make Celebrations Special
Who doesn’t love celebrations? They bring fun, laughter, and joy. In the span of a year, there are many different occasions people celebrate whether that is birthdays, Easter, Halloween, graduation, Mardi Gras, Valentine’s Day, weddings, the holidays or more. Each event requires different planning as each event is different. In order to make the occasion a truly special day, there are a few considerations to keep in mind. First, you must tailor the planning to the event. Painting eggs with friends and family may work for Easter, but it’s an odd activity for Valentine’s Day. Moreover, there are certain DIY additions you can add to any celebration for a thoughtful touch. Last but not least come to the finishing touches for any event.
Tailor planning to the event
First, you must know what event or celebration you are planning for. Has your son or daughter graduated high school or university? Are you planning a Valentine’s Day getaway with your loved one? Perhaps you are planning a birthday surprise? Once you know what it is you are planning for, you can start getting everything together. In this instance, say the event is a birthday party. You will want to plan a full day of awesomeness. What are their likes and dislikes? Next, come the gifts for a birthday party. A person’s birthday is a great time to shower that person with presents, as it is their birthday, after all. Next, you will want purchase a whole lot of birthday related items to surround the house such as balloons, streamers, piñata and candy, for example.
Thoughtful and DIY additions
Previously, it was mentioned that when it comes to birthdays, the star of the day should receive presents. There are other ways of making someone feel special, outside of store bought gifts. This can often be in the form of DIY crafts or DIY presents. For instance, if you can bake and make holiday-related treats for everyone during the celebration. You could even make that special someone a birthday cake. Should a family member have just graduated, make graduation invitations with Adobe Spark. Invite the nearest and dearest to the celebration with a beautiful custom invitation. This is sure to make the graduate feel special, especially when they see this heartfelt invitation.
So, you now know you must tailor the planning to the specific event and add your own special touches to it with DIY additions. To wrap up a successful event, there are finishing touches that must be put into place. Any event or celebration will require some final creative thinking on the last day. For example, the finishing touches for a wedding. Finishing touches can sometimes create the most impact, as these are often accent pieces. For instance, the bride may want to add a colorful sash to her wedding dress or add finishing touches to the table arrangements. Making sure everything is sorted can ensure you make the most of the day.
Celebrations are some of the most fun moments in life. Although fun, they always require planning. Most of the time they aren’t spontaneous events that just happen overnight. They require some creative thinking and the necessary finishing touches. Still, the planning process is part of the fun, especially when that special day comes, and you see all that work pay off with people’s smiling faces.
How to Prepare Your Home for a Sale
Buying and selling a home can be incredibly stressful, but with a little preparation, it is possible to reduce your stress levels and make the process a much smoother experience. There are a few ways to make the sale of your home faster and more profitable, with some preparation and awareness of the key issues that will affect both the viability of the sale and the price that you can expect to get for your property. If you’re in the process of starting the sales process, or your home has been on the market for a while, and you want to increase the likelihood of making that important deal, then here are the best ways to prepare your home and allow you to move forward into your new life.
Look at your front door
It seems like such a small thing, but your front door is a lot more important than you think. The majority of house-buying decisions are made before the potential buyer has even seen inside the property, which is why curb appeal is so important. If your frontage is unappealing, then that negativity will extend throughout the tour, so start things off right with a fresh splash of paint on your front door, or ever a full-on replacement if necessary. Never underestimate the need to make the best first impression.
Remove most of the evidence
When people are looking at a property with the intention of buying, they are trying to picture themselves living there. That’s why it’s important that you remove the majority of evidence that you live there. Of course, you’ve tidied up and done the washing-up, but you’re going to need to look at removing more in the way of evidence than that. Family photos are an unpleasant reminder then this is someone else’s living space, and they are a reminder to the potential buyers that they don’t yet live there. Remove excessive pictures, and create more of a blank canvas that the buyers will fill with their own personalities and hopes for the future.
For the garden
Like curb appeal, don’t underestimate the importance of well-tended garden. Whether you have price-boosting features in your garden or not, an untended and too wild garden is a distraction, and you’re going to want to show it off as best you can. If time is a concern, then make use of a professional lawn care service that can take over the hard work for you and make the most of your outdoor space. A garden has huge potential and is one of the key wish-list areas for new homeowners, so make the most of what you have and don’t neglect the acre that your garden deserves.
They’re easy to dismiss when you see them every day, and eventually, those imperfections in your home can even become part of the charm. Home-buyers will not see them the same way. So if you’re hoping to speed up the sale of your home, then you’re going to need to make repairs to those minor issues and give your home a makeover. Repair or replace the cracked tiles on the walls of the bathroom, do touch-ups on the paint that has started to crack or the wallpaper that has begun to peel, and you may soon be presenting a different home than you would have been. Fix those leaking taps and replace the missing tiles on the roof, and you’ll find that even the smallest of fixes can make the difference between a sale and not.
Get rid of the pets
As much as we love our family pets, they are not something that you need to highlight when it comes to house viewings. You’re going to want to remove all evidence of them before you open your doors, so when you’re showing people around, make sure that your furry family members are not in attendance. Let friends and family look after them for the time that you need, and do a thorough clean. Remove cat hair and the smell of litter trays, repair the scratched floor in the kitchen from the dog’s claws, and give your home a good airing.
Even though the housing market fluctuates, following this basic advice will make it much more likely that you will make a sale and be able to begin your moving preparations. Never forget the importance of first impressions and always use the tools at our disposal to make the most out of your home. That way you could be packing and handing over the keys to the new owners much sooner than you expected.