What Is Green Furniture?

Green furniture companies are emerging in response to this need, producing sustainable and ecological furniture for the environmentally conscious consumer.

The sustainable furniture has the objective that its design can be continuously reused, disassembled and then reused again, or that can be used throughout life (or two). Most sustainable furniture companies also aim to reduce the environmental impact of their items, such as the use of recovered materials or non-toxic furniture stains.

The relationship between the environmental impact and the purchase of ecological furniture is often overlooked. Traditional sofas, beds and other furniture are the main polluters of our homes.

In addition, the EPA suggests that indoor air quality in our homes or offices is often 2 to 5 times more polluted than outdoor air quality. Since we spend 90 percent of our time indoors, buying furniture that is good, not only for our health, but also for the environment, is important. Many people are curious to learn how to find green and sustainable furniture, as well as green furniture companies.

How to Find Sustainable Furniture

Finding sustainable furniture all begins with research. It’s easy for companies to claim their furniture is green or eco-friendly, but many organizations now certify sustainable furniture materials. Educate yourself about these certifications and what qualifies furniture as sustainable, and you’ll be able to make smart decisions regarding your furniture purchases.

What Are Sustainable Furniture Materials?

Sustainable furniture materials include a variety of resources, including reclaimed wood. The type of material with which they are manufactured, as well as the way in which they were obtained, is taken into account in their sustainable classification. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), for example, certifies that the wood is harvested sustainably. Sustainable and responsible crops protect the natural ecosystem and make the collection area remain in place and be able to support itself. In this way the forest can grow and continue producing wood in the proper way. Forest farms and forests are examples of areas that qualify for certification.

Sustainable furniture with women

Recycled and Reclaimed Materials

To make sustainable furniture companies use recovered or recycled materials, such as wood, glass and iron. Antique furniture, houses and other structures often provide the recovered materials needed to make this furniture. Companies have even used factory lumber or defective wood pieces for their sustainable furniture. Wood is a popular choice for manufacturers because it is durable, even if it has been mishandled over the years. The recovered pine, for example, is the perfect material to reuse.

The Rainforest Alliance is the organization that determines whether a piece of furniture actually uses reclaimed wood and provides the Rediscovered Wood Certification for furniture pieces qualifying its sustainability. Sustainable furniture can also be certified Cradle to Cradle (C2C), which in part says that the furniture can be dismantled and its individual parts can be recycled in one facility or reused in other furniture. The simplicity disassembly of the furniture also allows quick and easy repairs, which prolongs the life of the piece.

Furniture made from recyclable materials, such as plastics or metals, helps green furniture companies not to buy additional resources.

Non-Toxic Lacquers

The familiar smell of "new cars" associated with cars, furniture and other items is the result of manufacturers using unnatural and sometimes toxic substances, such as solvent-based lacquers, to treat or finish a product, which contributes to pollution. , in any interior, when emitting or degaussing volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as formaldehyde. Therefore, we recommend the use of water-based lacquers as a green alternative to the finishing of wooden furniture.

The furniture can be certified with a low toxicity index by Greenguard or by Oeko-Tex. You can also find unfinished furniture, which can be varnished with natural wood finishes to prolong its useful life and protect them from heat, humidity and general wear.

If you are not sure if a varnish is solvent or water based, check the label. You must make sure that the varnish has a low VOC, which is what you need.