No matter what it is we are producing, manufacturing puts a huge strain on our planet.
Every part of the process leaves its footprint on our world, from the pesticides used to grow the cotton that will be turned into a throw pillow, to the factory runoff and energy use of production. Luckily, we are learning more every day about steps we can take to help secure the future of our environment, or at least lessen our impact.
// As a consumer, working more sustainable pieces
into your home is a great first step. //
More and more companies have been shifting their materials away from things like conventional cotton, which requires a chemical treatment process and leaves a dramatic carbon footprint, to more organic materials like bamboo and hemp. Steps like these are helping to propagate environmental awareness and conservation in the design industry, and supporting these businesses and items means that more and more companies will be looking to take on the environmental challenge. (Photo Credit - Ahmed El Hainouni)
In today’s world of fast fashion and constantly dynamic trends, it takes an inordinate amount of work to keep up. Unfortunately, the silent victims of today’s consumer climate (the sweatshop workers and underpaid artisans across the globe) shoulder the burden of mass production. Companies dedicated to sustainability work to ensure that production is ethical, safe, and beneficial for everyone involved when it comes to working environments and wages. In essence, these companies exhibit just as much care for the people and places they source from as they do for their own bottom line.
Pieces made to cater to momentary trends don’t often last long. Often a statement piece found at a chain store is only meant to function until the season changes or the trend loses favor. Products of fast fashion and design not only add to the trash clogging our earth, but they just aren’t made to last. Sustainable pieces are often more durable and reduce waste, meaning that you get the most joy for your dollar. Buying sustainable and environmentally friendly pieces means ensure that both you and your home are looking great and doing good.
Sustainable practice often coincides with handmade or locally sourced items. When you make ethical purchases, you are not only supporting local (or global) individuals, small businesses, or artisans- you are investing in a piece that was created with care by the hands of another. These items connect you to new places and people in ways a machine-made or mass-produced item never could and make you part of that artisan’s story and vice versa. Instead of grabbing a non-descript item off the rack, let sustainability help you transcend continental and socioeconomic boundaries in a deeply meaningful way. (Photo Credit - Lisa Lev Design)