I am really proud of the award that we received for a recent project. The reason this award is special to us is that the organization that sponsored the contest, The Sustainable Furnishings Council has a mission that is very much aligned with my business. Heck, even our names sound the same. I love creating beautiful interiors, with stylish furnishings and beautiful upholstery, but I think the manufacturing process for all of these items should follow the Hippocratic Oath, "First do no harm." The SFC shares this value, here is a pledge I signed:
As a business leader I am concerned about the health of our world - my employees, customers, communities, and the global environment. I am committed to reducing the use of chemicals that pose harm to human health and the environment.
As a first step, I commit to ask my suppliers about the presence of the following chemicals of concern in the products that we produce, specify or purchase: flame retardant chemicals, fluorinated stain treatments, antimicrobials, vinyl and VOCsincluding formaldehyde.
This seems like a no brainer, you furniture shouldn't make you sick, but it is harder to achieve than you might think. Furniture contains many component materials, from sources around the globe, to create a product that is usually evaluated by a consumer by two characteristics: how it looks, and what it costs. (sadly, comfort and quality are seldom considered, but that is another tragic topic for another blog post.)
Despite the size of the challenge, the SFC works to educate consumers, reward companies who do the right thing, and research what changes in furniture manufacturing make the most impactful changes in human health and environmental preservation.
So you can see why I was excited to win for in SFC's Get Your Green On contest in "Shared Spaces" catagory with my family room project. I deeply researched the individual materials in each of the items of furniture used in this home, and I feel confident that they are some of the healthiest couches, chairs, tables and cabinets around.