Books & Literature

Book Review: The Art of the Natural Home: A Room by Room Guide, by Rebecca Sullivan

A practical guide to living more eco-friendly by naturally enhancing your larder, cleaning your home & indulging in health and beauty care for men & women.

If you are going to buy one book to improve your footprint on the planet and make your home a more natural, less chemical-based place, spend $40 on this book!

Rebecca, who lives in Adelaide, has produced a book that harks back to a bygone era of natural, seasonal products that are used or preserved. She advocates local and seasonal produce and provides inspiration along the lines of what Grandma used to do or use. The ingredients are simple and the products are comprehensive.

The book is divided into two parts, the first showing ways to enhance your larder, and clean and produce herbs in mini gardens. She has tips on using vinegars and oils, fermenting and preserving food, making your own candles, soap, cleaning and laundry products all made with easy to get ingredients and many of which you will already have in your cupboard. Should special items be required she has also included an online guide for buying.

The second part of the book shows recipes and ideas for health and beauty, both generally but also with a section for making products especially for the fellows to use. There are tonics and scrubs, masks and make up all produced from salts, oils and herbs.

Many of the products in this book could be given as gifts with individual flare by choosing essential oils for differing fragrances, or use her guide to the benefits of oils and herbs if you wish to target specific needs. She has included a section on medicinal use of herbs and honey but, to her credit, also asks for people to seek medical advice where necessary.

The introductions to each section, which contain snippets of both personal insights and information, are followed by many related recipes and provide this entire book with an engaging feel that enables you to see where the ideas have come from and how they relate to your life on a personal level.

As a result of having this book in my library, I will be making many more items for my home myself. I will no longer need to buy wood polish, air fresheners or even washing powder and will be slowly detoxifying my environment as I follow her example and head back to simpler, more eco-friendly practices.

Reviewed by Leanne Caune

Rating out of 10:  9

Released by: Simon & Schuster
Release Date: May 2017
RRP: $39.99

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