Clothing is one thing. But have you considered shopping for the best sustainable furniture brands for your home, too?
By Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi
Here at Eluxe, we talk a lot about shopping for sustainable fashion. And we know that our readers try really hard to choose eco-friendly materials for their clothing. But what about furniture?
What is sustainable furniture?
As with clothing, it’s common for furnishing companies to use toxic finishing chemicals on their fabrics to keep them from wrinkling or staining. They can use eco-friendly fabrics like hemp and recycled plastic – or not. They can use nasty glues and preservatives that harm your health. And just as with clothing, the most sustainable furniture is pre-loved; even antiques fall in to that category!
In a nutshell, sustainable furniture could be:
- Made from sustainable materials. These could be woods from sustainably managed forests, recycled materials or organic fabrics
- Free from all toxic chemical finishings
- Upcycled, recycled or antique
- Sourced from nearby your home to reduce their carbon footprint
- Made by local craftsmen using traditional techniques
Or any combination of the above!
Where can I buy eco-friendly furniture?
If you’re looking for new stuff for your home, you’re probably wondering: what are the best sustainable furniture brands I can buy? Can I order eco-friendly furniture online for delivery? What makes a furniture brand ‘sustainable’?
I would like to help answer those questions!
I’ve searched the web for brands that don’t use harsh chemicals to create their beds, tables, sofas and so on. Companies that use natural, upcycled and/or recycled materials, that are ethically and sustainably sourced. And you know what’s cool? Some of these sustainable furniture brands also sell clothing, too!
Ready to make your home more gorgeous – and eco-friendly? Read on!
Image below: Joybird
Best Sustainable Furniture Brands For Your Home
Did you know that most mattresses are highly toxic? They’re infused with flame-retardants and other chemicals, the fumes of which you breathe in each night. They’re also usually made from polyester and other non-ecological materials.
Luckily, Avocado brings an environmental touch to your sleep, with their eco-friendly beds! Their frames, headboards and other bedroom furnishings are all made from 100% reclaimed wood finished with a zero-VOC sealant. Their mattresses are made from 100% organic materials. And the best part? They offer pillows, sheets and blankets that are also purely organic AND vegan!
Based in: USA
What’s on offer: Mattresses, bedding, bedroom furniture
This thoughtfully-sourced furniture manufacturer is focused on designing chic, minimalist, eco-friendly pieces for the home. Kiln-dried alder hardwood is used for furniture frames, whilst solid walnut and maple are the materials for tables and other hard goods. Of course, all their wood comes from FSC-certified forests. Medley creates what they call ‘people furniture,’ because it’s ethically made by artisans, using old-school techniques at their workshop in Los Angeles. But we’d call it ‘earth furniture’ too, since it’s kind to the planet, too!
Based in: Los Angeles
What’s on offer: sofas, beds, accent chairs, dining, ottomans, benches
Looking for locally made or reclaimed furnishings from small makers and sellers? Welcome to the treasure trove that is Etsy! Whether you are looking for tables, chairs, or wardrobes, you’ll be sure to find some beautiful pieces that are for sale near you. You can search for whatever you prioritise; for example: ‘reclaimed wood desk’ or ‘vintage lamp’ to ensure you get the sustainable qualities that matter most to you. There’s just so amazing stuff you can choose from here!
Based in: Worldwide
What’s on offer: Lamps, tables, chairs, wardrobes – you name it!
4. West Elm
Social and environmental sustainability is key for this British company. Apart from being one of the best sustainable furniture brands for every room in your house, they are also dedicated to supporting ethical initiatives such as Fair Trade community development through their products.
West Elm’s Furniture is as green as can be, thanks to their use of FSC – certified woods, organic cotton and other certified non-toxic materials.
The brand is very proud to allow its customers to shop according to their values. You can search for handcrafted, organic, or Fair Trade certified furnishings, for example.
Based in: UK
What’s on offer: Soft furnishings, coffee tables, media consoles, desks, dining tables, carpets and more
5. Made Trade
Artisanal craftsmanship from around the world defines this Fair Trade, family-run company. They offer classically simple, clean-lined furnishings for the home. There are also eco-friendly soft furnishings such as carpets, bedding and curtains made from organic cotton, linen, TENCEL and hemp. But the best part? They sell ethical and eco-friendly clothing and accessories, too! It’s really a one-stop online department store for all your sustainable needs.
Based in: Portland
What’s on offer: Wall decor, bedding, accent chairs, hampers.
6. Eco Balanza
This is one of the best sustainable furniture brands for organic sofas and chairs. All items Eco Balanza makes combine classic styles with modern colours and lines. It’s a sad fact that today, most companies stuff their sofas and chairs with polyfoams and cover them with chemically-treated fabrics. But not this brand! Eco Balanza always chooses more sustainable materials for its creations. They are proud to ensure their products are 100% free of all nasty chemicals, which prevents any potential allergies on your skin, as well as any detrimental aspects on the planet.
Based in: USA
What’s on offer: Headboards, sectionals, sofas, armchairs
If you’ve always wanted to live in a log cabin in the woods, but are currently stuck in an urban setting, we’ve found a mid-way solution! You can now recreate a naturalistic look inside your home with Vermont Wood Studios. This company’s goal is to promote sustainable wood furniture as an alternative to pieces made from vulnerable species of wood.
Not only do they only use FSC certified lumber, but they replant loads of trees, too. So far, they’ve established more than 60,000 to date, in fact! Plus, all their tables, desks, shelves and other furniture is made by Vermont-based artisans.
Based in: USA
What’s on offer: Dining tables, desks, beds, chests.
For an element of whimsical charm, go shopping at ABC Home. Here, aesthetics celebrate individuality and creativity, whilst minimising their environmental footprint. The brand only sources from ethical supply chains and never uses toxic chemicals in their fabrics and carpeting. No wonder customers cite them as one of the best sustainable furniture brands. Not just for ethical homes, but for businesses like hotels and restaurants, too!
Based in: USA
What’s on offer: Lighting, bedding, bath, dining, storage and more
What makes a house look cosy and “lived in” is when it’s full of unique pieces full of character. And you’ll find plenty of those at The Citizenry, a brand that offers unique hard and soft furnishings made by fairly paid master artisans. These small furniture makers cleverly coalesce traditional techniques with modern approaches.
This is one of the best sustainable furniture brands for beautiful, luxurious items, such as hand-woven alpaca throws from Peru, colourfully hand-loomed rugs from India, hand-sewn Ottomans from Morocco and much more.
Based in: USA
What’s on offer: Ottomans, poufs, headboards, tables, shelves, bath furniture.
Sustainability favours quality over quantity. As with clothing, with furniture, we should consume less and invest more in a piece that lasts forever. This is exactly what Joybird does: “slow furniture”. Craftsmen create each item from natural raw materials. These babies are built to last!
This is one of the best sustainable furniture brands for nature lovers, too. This conscious brand has planted over 300,000 trees in an effort to establish more trees than were used in the manufacturing of their goods.
Based in: USA
What’s on offer: Sofas, chairs, wall units, night stands, dressers, chests, outdoor tables. They also have a great software program that allows you to virtually model your living space with their furniture before you buy.
Which of these do you think are the best sustainable furniture brands? Do you know of any others? Let us know in the comments, below!