Five smart interiors brands with an eco-social conscience
Interiors can be beautiful as well as sustainable – and the best schemes feature furniture, accessories and fabrics that have a story to tell. We explore five ethical brands whose products are just as alluring as their eco-credentials…
An unexpected relocation to Burma prompted a complete change of lifestyle for former art advisor Sophie Garnier, who used her skills to set up a business helping local craftspeople to sell their products internationally. Kalinko was conceived in 2016, initially collaborating with 36 craft families, recently expanded to 102 across the country, with plans afoot for 500 or more by 2021. Products include on-trend rattan furniture, hand-blown coloured glass tumblers and vases, chic placemats and colourful cushions and throws. Look out for new tableware in zesty orange and deep inky blue.
Husband and wife team Joanna and Nick James set up their contemporary bedding company based on a simple premise: a desire to create comfortable, stylish bedlinen that is ethically made and affordable. Bedfolk produces fine quality cotton products, woven and finished without harmful chemicals or synthetics, in partnership with responsible mills. Its offering is enticingly simple: Relaxed, Classic and Luxe ranges are available in three colours – Snow, Rose and Dove. Bedding is priced from £99 for a double bundle, comprising a duvet cover and two pillowcases, and arrives packaged in an eco-friendly cotton bag.
Images: Ted Todd
Specialising in reclaimed, antique and new wood floors, all made or restored in its Cheshire workshop, Ted Todd has been working with sustainable wood for nearly three decades. The family business, with Robert Walsh at the helm, sources wood from far and wide. Notable finds include reclaimed pine from the War Offices where Winston Churchill worked, to beautiful teak sourced from fishing boats in the Far East. ‘Wooden flooring is natural, renewable, biodegradable and has a long lifespan and low VOC levels,’ says Robert. ‘It is a perfect choice for an eco-friendly interiors scheme.’
Images: Weaver Green
It might be hard to imagine that a discarded plastic bottle can be turned into anything both beautiful, practical and luxurious, but in the hands of design duo Tasha and Barney Green, the possibilities are limitless. Honing their knowledge over seven years, the pair have created a trend-led collection of soft-as-wool, cosy, machine washable rugs – and each is made from up to 3,000 recycled plastic bottles. Ranges have recently evolved to include elegant blankets, throws and bags in an array of mellow hues and contemporary designs, from smart stripes to graphic geometrics.
Images: Edward Bulmer
Architectural historian Edward Bulmer’s eponymous range of natural paints, in a collection of luminous but mellow hues, suit period schemes just as well as contemporary. Edward and his family live in an historic Queen Anne building in Herefordshire, and it’s here, in a large brick fodder barn, that paints are mixed and produced. Emulsions are made with minerals combined with a plant-based binder, while eggshell paints are made with linseed oil, natural resins and pigments. ‘The trend I want to see is for plastic-free, non-toxic, non-polluting paints,’ says Edward. ‘That would be a satisfying achievement.’ Look out for timeless hues that nonetheless strike a contemporary note, including plaster pink Jonquil and dusty pink Cuisse de Nymphe Emue.
Article written by Emma J Page