Wednesday, September 2, 2015

What is Sustainable Furniture?

Six years ago, EcoSelect Furniture was named a finalist in the North American Sustainable Enterprise Awards. These honors are given by the Institute for Sustainable Development, headquartered in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. EcoSelect was recognized for our “impressive example of triple bottom line sustainability" and for helping to “push the boundaries of what it means to be sustainable in the furniture industry.”

A primary reason consumers flock to our website is they are searching for chemical-free furniture. The key search term? “Non-flame retardant foam.

”This is due to the increased awareness of the health risks of flame retardants, including cancer. Those in the market to buy furnishings for their homes, have spearheaded a growing call for a product that delivers classic, traditionally crafted and designed, made of high-quality sustainable materials, priced at or below cost of most major brands, following high safety standards. 
Currently we have twelve collections of sofas and chairs in custom color hemp fabrics and leathers. We regularly work with customers to handle specific, and often unique requests. For our loveseats, chairs and sofas, every part of the production process is made by using locally employed, skilled trades and crafts people.
Why is local so important to us?
After being in the furniture industry for forty years, I was totally frustrated when I witnessed giants in our field closing down shop, abandoning the strategies that made the goods coming out of American factories world-renowned. I watched as production was shipped overseas in search of cheaper labor, the least expensive raw materials possible, and facilities required minimal standards for employee safety and environmental responsibility. For these reasons, I began EcoSelect in 2009. Based in South Carolina, our family-owned manufacturer is located in our neighboring state of North Carolina.
I’m proud that we use hardwoods from American certified forests that adhere to strict guidelines for sustainability and conservation. We utilize the most environmentally friendly fabrics available. Our leather tannery is certified “eco-friendly,” and the foam in our cushions is a soy-blend foam that does not have any flame retardant chemicals added.
I have built the EcoSelect brand for a clientele that is looking for quality products that co-exist with concern for our planet. They are classically designed and comfortable. Since our product is locally made, we can compete with comparable high-end furnishings that have a longer distribution channel cost, a much higher carbon footprint built into their selling price, and use toxic chemicals and environmentally damaging materials in their processes. Our philosophy of furniture production is the antithesis of using materials and processes that are detrimental to the environment.

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