Trees, that beautiful natural resource, are also vital to our planet’s survival. Wood is an integral part of furniture design and manufacturing; many other materials are used in interior design with a certain degree of success, but there is something about the look and feel of timber that just cannot be outdone. Luckily, the sustainability of the products and furnishings used in interior design has improved markedly in recent years, but how can you be certain that your items are as environmentally friendly as they appear to be?
One of the best ways to ensure that your furniture and home accessories come from sustainable sources is to look out for an FSC Certification, which is bestowed upon suppliers that endeavor to source their products from well-managed forests. As with FSC Certification, the Rainforest Alliance has created a Rediscovered Wood Certification; re-loved furnishings, or those made from recycled and reclaimed materials are also popular among the sustainable elite and will, more often than not, last much longer than their environmentally unfriendly counterparts.
The Shutter Store, for example, is renowned for following a strict environmental policy when it comes to creating their shutters and blinds, and their wooden window shutters are made using timber from replenished forests. Similarly, all materials are responsibly sourced or created, while the act of fitting shutters can cut your heating bills and reduce your carbon footprint.
Ensuring that your furnishings are sustainable, and future-ready.
So, how should you proceed when it comes to sourcing sustainable interior design products? Well, first things first: shop around, and use reputable retailers. It’s easy enough for a company to claim environmental responsibility, but do they have the certification to back this up, or the reputation to trust? Don’t be afraid to query the origins of an item, or walk away if you’re not convinced; you’ll thank yourself later when you have an exceptional item and the sustainability to match. Second hand, vintage, and re-loved are different ways of saying the same thing – try sourcing your furnishings and accessories from antique stores, specialist dealers, or even garage sales.
Similarly, look out for interior design products that have been crafted using recycled materials, as these will also adhere to the rules surrounding sustainability and environmental responsibility. Do you want furnishings that will last? Choose products that are easily fixable, so they can be mended rather than replaced. The planet will thank you, and you’ll save yourself heaps of cash in the meantime. Lastly, consider buying locally and support trade in your area.
Sustainability is vital to modern interior design, ensuring that products are built to last, responsibly sourced, and designed to give back to our environment rather than simply taking away. The products that you choose to furnish and accessorize your home have the potential to vastly alter the world around you. By choosing local suppliers, always querying the history of a piece, or looking out for environmental certification, you stand a much better chance of supporting the planet – plus, you’ll have the opportunity to home a beautiful, often unique, item. And when you’re done? Pass it on!