Whilst we’re busy revolutionising our sustainable wardrobes, the rest of our surroundings can sometimes be forgotten. Furniture is not often an area where we think about making a shift to green alternatives but these innovative solutions could change your mind.
From recycled to upcycled, these 5 items will help you improve your home in an environmentally conscious way.
The Berlin company Geyersbach is all about sustainability. Built from wood sourced from old abandoned buildings in Berlin and Brandenburg, every piece bears its history; each one unique in age and texture. Often crafted from hundred-year-old pine, the old floorboards are transformed into beautiful benches, beds, wardrobes, stools and tables.
Once the wood is located, it is left to breathe in the studio, cleaned, sawn, and finished with hard wax oil. Indeed, a lot of old floor boards have been carpeted and painted in their past lives, so this restoration period takes time and consideration.
These rustic pieces could add a stylish edge to your home. Also, all of their products are crafted from start to finish in the studio, reducing their carbon footprint.
Smile Plastics is an innovative company turning old plastic into chic hand-crafted panels. Their creations range from furniture and house products to large-scale installations and construction.
“Our mission is to change people’s perceptions around waste via innovation – to use art and technology to unlock the hidden potential in recycling, and open their eyes to the unexpected beauty of scrap,” say the brand on their website.
Each panel is crafted by hand, consistent in strength, but unique in design. Patterns vary from stunning flecks of gold and silver to vibrant rainbow colours. The surfaces are easy to keep clean and maintain and are completely recycled and recyclable, thus promoting a closed loop. Importantly, no VOC off-gassing is emitted by Smile as the panels are made from "chemically inert plastic waste".
These beautiful panels can be made into your perfect kitchen countertop through their bespoke service. With clients such as Selfridges, Stella McCartney, Christian Dior, and Liberty, this chic no-waste company is the way to go.
Providing the answer to more sustainable design, Ikea has come out with their KUNGSBACKA – Kitchen fronts, which are made from upcycled plastic bottles. As usual, the company’s design is sleek and clean and now complemented by a stylish dark matt finish.
Recognising the company's vast number of consumers, Ikea comments, “Our products are bought by a lot of people, and by offering more sustainable alternatives, we actually have the opportunity to contribute to a change.”
Each cabinet door is crafted from Converting PET bottles into a plastic film which encases a recycled wooden frame. Up to 25 half-litre bottles per front are used in the process and at the end of the day, your entire purchase is fully recyclable when it’s done its job.
From creating furniture and clothes hangers to phone cases, Pentatonic is a European brand upcycling all types of materials. Founders Jamie Hall and Johann Boedecker believe the upcycling process is endowed with all types of potential.
The passionate designers believe that “with enough creativity, each incarnation can be better than the last – with less impact.” Storming the circular economy with their modern technology, the company has collaborated with the likes of Starbucks and varies from creating a P.E.T felt material to futuristic furniture design. Purchasing from Pentatonic could add a cool and ethical twist you’ve been looking for to decorate your home.
Quooker hot water taps can provide your kitchen with a sleek design and ease. Such an appliance can supposedly save a significant amount of water since users dispense only the amount of water they need whilst regular kettle users waste water through overboiling, reboiling and “excess” water being poured down the drain. According to The Telegraph, brand Director Stephen Johnson claims “a hot tap can save around 100 litres of water a year.” The design of Quooker also reduces heat loss through its vacuum insulation. Depending on how you use it, this hot water tap could be a handy eco appliance to add to your kitchen.