We get rid of things because a better design exists or the quality or longevity of the material was not great, to begin with. Perhaps the design was a fad that has come and gone. Most people value quality materials such as solid hardwood floors, natural stone surfaces, and well-made or solid wood furniture pieces. These are also good from an environmental standpoint. Waste is a function of poor design!
From a design perspective, I have always tried to make furniture choices that can serve different functions so that I can reuse and repurpose them over time. As we grow in our homes with family or different work needs, I think it is so important to be able to move furniture around to suit needs. Cost does not have to be a barrier to well-made furniture. There are a number of ways to purchase great quality furniture for less. Consignment stores or even Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace are good sources.
Making the investment once is far better for the environment and our pockets than buying what is being called fast furniture. The idea that better quality furniture is being resold and keeping it from landfills, makes me want to purchase more of it!
As many of you know, we stage all of our listings at no cost to our sellers. We use a collection of old and new pieces. Our staging inventory is often purchased from consignment stores, estate sales or smaller resellers. We love shopping at stores like Urbanite where we can always find something amazing that has been saved from a landfill. When we buy new, we love Nadeau or City Home for solid wood tables and chairs. We know the pieces will stand the test of time, can be re-finished or painted a different color if we desire to do so down the line. Some of our staging pieces started in our own homes and were repurposed. While we are helping the environment, we are also created really well curated spaces that do not feel staged!
Most importantly, when we are done with any of our staging items, we give them to a family in need or take the furniture or accessories to Community Warehouse. This furniture bank connects household items with neighbors in need.
Each year, Americans throw out more than 12 million tons of furniture and furnishings, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Only a small percentage of that is recycled. This statistic was shocking to us. We believe that waste is a function of poor design. However small our part is in minimizing the waste, we are committed to trying to make a differnce.
If you need help sourcing ways to keep furniture that you no longer need out of landfills, give us a call! We would love to help.