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By Chere Di Boscio
Recently, I renovated a new flat. Top of my list of concerns was how to do this sustainably.
For the furnishings, that was fairly easy–I bought everything second hand. But when it came to redoing the bathroom and kitchen from scratch, things got a bit more complicated, but I did realise one thing: sticking with natural materials such as locally sourced wood and stone was probably the best way forward.
After a bit of a search, I found Team 7 kitchens, an Austrian based company that uses sustainable wood from European forests. What that means is they use only as much timber as will regrow. But all Team 7 furniture is also manufactured in such a way that it can be returned to the natural cycle at any time: the wood is free from pesticides and boards are created without harmful formaldehyde or chemicals. Only natural linseed, safflower and walnut oil is used to finish the wood.
This lack of lacquers, stains or other chemical constituents means the wood remains free of toxins and maintains its outstanding properties: it absorbs moisture, releasing it slowly to ensure a pleasant and healthy climate in the room. For you, it means you’re not inhaling dangerous chemical fumes that often come from toxic paints, wood lacquers and glues.
Team 7 is also very careful about how they use wood: the furniture is designed from the outset to ensure that the material is used as efficiently as possible. The company itself strives for cleaner production: they produce their own energy by incinerating biomass, using wood chips but also wind and water power, as well as biomass.
Besides setting the standard for sustainability, the company also features sleek, modern furniture design with functionality and comfort at its core.
They may not be cheap and they do best suit airy, open spaces that are rare in cramped, overcrowded European cities, but these natural kitchens certainly provide dream kitchen ideas for aspiring interior designers, carpenters, and home owners like me.
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