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Monday, February 8, 2010

Timeless Tuesday ~ Two

Beth Slifer

Recall in my definition of Timeless Tuesday, I spoke about trends that one hopes to become a timeless classic. I'm going to speak about one of those today. Although it hasn't been a 'trend' to all those in the furnishing industry, we hear it spoken about a lot these days ~ with good reason.

I'm talking about Green, Eco-Friendly, and Sustainable design and product. These terms are highly used interchangeably but the preferred phrase is Eco-Friendly since the attempt here is to support a healthy Ecology defined as the branch of biology dealing with the relations and interactions between organisms and their environment, including other organisms. That's us folks ~ an organism that relates and interacts with our environment. We haven't been very kind or smart in this area and now we are suffering the consequences for it.

Jim Logan published in Elle Decor

I think there is a lot of confusion about what is eco-friendly design and product when it comes to furnishings. Some companies say they are 'Green' when they really are 'green-washed' meaning they have done some minor adjustments to their product line but still contribute quite a bit to the demise of our environment. Saying your 'green' is trendy these days that's why it is important to know what purchasing an eco-freindly product actually means. If it is important to you, don't take retailers word for it when they say they are 'green.' They may not even know themselves what that means. So ask questions. If they cannot answer them with a straight answer, it likely means 'green' is part of their marketing slogan and not integrated into their products' manufacturing as we would like to think. Here are the specifics about what a true eco-friendly product is per the Sustainable Furnishings Council:

1) Casegoods (tables, chests, cabinets, etc.) ~
a) made from certified wood ~ stamp of approval from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)
b) made from rapid renewals (e.g. bamboo)
c) commercial harvest ~ plantation grown wood vs. taken randomly, or worse, stripped, from nature
d) made from recycled content
e) low VOCs (volatile organic compound) in glue and finish

2) Upholstery (sofas, chaise, lounge chair, ottoman, etc.) ~
a) frames and exposed wood made from certified wood
b) made from recycled content
c) bio hybrid cushioning
d) eco-friendly leather
e) organic textiles

3) Accessories ~
a) made from rapid renewals
b) made from recycled content

4) Bedding ~
a) bio hybrid cushioning
b) organic textiles

All it takes is a little research and some direct questions if being eco-friendly is something you value. Can your home be 100% eco-friendly? It would be very difficult to have it be that way but every little bit helps. I've written on eco-friendly products before. Give it a read it you would like specific companies that produce eco-friendly furnishings.

Jim Logan

Also, understand the the emissions footprint the product you purchase are making. What that means is that buying imports, even if they are eco-friendly, had to be transported a long way to get to you. Emissions are an important factor in global warming. Buying products made as close as possible to your home decreases the footprint significantly. If an import is the only product available, hopefully it is a eco-friendly one in it's material and manufacturing process.

Eco-friendly, I hope it becomes a timeless classic!

It's your turn ~

To join Timeless Tuesday:

1) Add your permalink below ~ not your blog's address in general but the specific post you want people to visit. To obtain the actual post link, click on the title of your post once you have published it and copy and paste the URL into Mister Linky.

2) Leave your name and say a couple of words to describe your post (e.g. "Coco Chanel suits" or "Classic interior design for children" or "Delicious meals in a snap."

3) Copy and paste the Timeless Tuesday logo button (on my right sidebar) to your blog's sidebar and your Timeless Tuesday posts. This is a sure way for your readers to know you have joined in the party.

4) Link back to the host blog, that's me ~ Paula Grace Designs Blogspot Timeless Tuesday ~ so all the bloggers that joined the party will receive many interested visitors.

It's that easy! Thanks for joining! Have fun perusing all the timeless classics.


  1. Love the idea of eco-friendly as timeless. Its time has come!

    Think your list of the basics on eco is brilliant. There is so much confusion around green, sustainable, eco. So much to learn and this was a great overview.

    Thanks so much! Looking forward to following you on your blog and Twitter.

  2. So busy raving about your post that I forgot to mention mine. LOL!

    Short version - What could be more timeless than love, romance and these beautiful design confections for your sweetie?

  3. Organic textiles are the softest--especially the bamboo!


  4. Choosing quality that stands the test of time and doesn't end up in a landfill is the epitomy of being eco friendly.

  5. I agree with Kristen completely! I also think that purchasing vintage and antique is a great way to go :)

    This is such a great topic, Paula Grace!


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