We’ve just returned from a trip to High Point Market – furniture showrooms as far as the eye can see. It can be an overwhelming experience knowing what to see, where to start. It’s always a good idea to narrow the focus. We wanted to highlight some of the sustainable furniture vendors and offer some quick tips on how you can shop more sustainably!

  1. Shop Local

Even when you find sustainably manufactured furniture, shipping can account for a lot of negative environmental impact – the more you can support your local maker communities by buying furniture made in the USA, you eliminate some of the carbon footprint that results from shipping. 


Norwalk Furniture and Cisco Brothers

We love companies like Norwalk and Cisco that manufacture in America! 

2. FSC- Certified Wood

Typically the wood, plastic, and fabric in most furniture is made or finished with toxic materials, so the furnishings selected to make a space livable actually create indoor air pollution that is harmful to human life. Formaldehyde, a known indoor pollutant, is used as an adhesive in most residential wood furniture. 

Keep an Eye out for Sustainable Furnishing Council Members

Brands like Norwalk and Cisco both their furniture passes the hard tests. They use FSC-certified green sources to be sure the furniture in your home is healthy! 

3. Buy Better, Vintage, and Antique

This is maybe an obvious one, but the most sustainable thing is the thing that lasts the longest. That means reupholstering pieces you already have and if you’re going to shop new, splurge on the best quality thats built to last. Vintage and antique buys are always a safe bet here!

Smith Honig

Smith Honig introduced some beautiful one-of-a-kind decor and quality fabrics that with stand the test of time.

4. Upholster in Performance Fabrics

Those pieces you’re going to upcycle and reupholster: Cover them in indoor-outdoor, performance fabrics! The technology has come such a long way. Outdoor fabrics used to have a stiff, utility to them and now they are indistinguishable from luxe indoor fabrics. Why would you opt for anything else? 

Crypton Fabrics

Crypton Fabrics were everywhere at market – they are changing the way the industry views performance. They’ve been on our radar for years and we’re excited that this concept of indoor-outdoor fabrics is finally becoming mainstream. 

outdoor pool lounge cabana with performance fabric

5. Fair Trade

If you prefer the look of furniture and decor that comes from overseas, (who doesn’t love an Indian rug!?) be sure you’re shopping sources that give back to their local communities and prioritize ethical treatment of their workers. 

Jaipur Rugs

Jaipur Living is an excellent example – They manufacture their rugs and accessories in India and give back to the most economically stagnant communities. They prioritize ethical treatment of their artisans and workers and pay fair wages. 

For the most comprehensive guide on how to go green, stay tuned for the release of Green Interior Design, second edition

Green Interior Design by Courtney Porter and Lori Dennis