The biggest barrier has been what to use as a replacement. Mattresses are not cheap, and most are composed of metal coils, often plastic coated, encased in fabric and padding. As a result of their materials and manufacturing, they also contain Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), formaldehyde, and chemical fire retardants that will off-gas over time. And, with a price tag of over $350 for a full size mattress, this option isn’t particularly economical.
However, there is such a thing as eco-friendly and organic mattresses. These usually contain organic cotton or wool, non-toxic fire retardants, natural latex rubber, and recycled metal springs. But with an even heftier price tag of around $1000 for a full size mattress, this isn’t really an option for me at all.
Then today, Mrs. Homegrown @ root simple posted a piece about homemade mattresses and it really inspired me to consider several alternatives.
After all, I am always in favor of re-cycling, re-using, and whatever else we can do to help mitigate the destruction we heap on this lovely blue planet we call home.
There is a lovely older couple in the next county south of here who raise pastured sheep, and I buy my lamb from them. I know she collects wool and weaves, but otherwise my knowledge of wool is rather limited. Our farmer's market opens for the season tomorrow, and if she's there I intend to pick her brain about wool for a mattress.
Mrs. Homegrown also mentioned mattresses of buckwheat shells. I have a neck pillow (somewhere) that is filled with buckwheat but I no longer remember if it's just hulls or actual buckwheat. I should find it!
Years ago I had a friend who made eye shades (for sleeping) that were just a soft fabric filled with flax seeds. The seeds were cheap, and slick and shiny enough to move and adjust to any body configuration. I wonder if they'd make a good mattress filling?