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The Greening of Sustainable Design

Trend Report

Steadily evolving from buzz phrase to serious commitment, sustainable design is on an upward trajectory — and these 6 modern furniture and lighting brands are leading the way.

Sustainable Design - Emeco Broom Stacking Chair

Emeco Furniture: "Make more with less."

In a throwaway culture, design that lasts a lifetime is an anomaly—but Emeco, a Pennsylvania-based maker of modern furniture, has been up to the task for nearly three-quarters of a century. The company's Navy Chair, created in 1944 for use on submarines, is still in production, employing a 77-step process in which recycled aluminum yields a near-indestructible object. The Broom Stacking Chair, above, a Phlippe Starck creation, comprised of polypropylene waste and reclaimed wood, and the 111 Navy Chair, which counts 111 plastic Coca-Cola bottles in its material composition, are virtual paeans to both good design and eco responsibility.


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Emeco ALFI Low Back Barstool
Emeco Hudson Chair
Emeco 111 Navy Chair
Emeco Parrish Side Chair

Sustainable Design - David Trubridge Coral Pendant

David Trubridge Lighting: "Artistry from Nature"

By his own admission David Trubridge is 'not interested in trends or fashion,' but, luckily for us, Trubridge's eco-conscious design philosophy is becoming increasingly fashionable. The New Zealand-based designer looks entirely to the natural world for his creative inspiration, overseeing a collection of ethereal contemporary lamps—including the popular Coral Pendant, above—comprised of sustainably sourced bamboo. Shipped flat-packed, as 'kitsets' that can be easily assembled onsite, the David Trubridge lighting range fulfills the designer's desire to bring "cultural nourishment into people's lives without using up precious resources and energy."


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David Trubridge Navicula Pendant
David Trubridge Belle Pendant
David Trubridge Koura Pendant
David Trubridge Kina Pendant

Aimee Wilder Cheetah Vision Wallpaper

Aimee Wilder: "...sustainably forested with care."

Aimee Wilder wallpapers are designed and produced in America, ensuring the start-to-finish process stays close to home. Distinguished by a range of whimsical, nature-inspired and animal-centric motifs—Jungle Dream and Cheetah Vision, above, are amongst our favorites—contemporary wall coverings by this New York-based company are hand silk screened on sustainably forested paper, using non-toxic and VOC free inks. With a range of motifs especially aimed at capturing the imagination of kids, Aimee Wilder wallpapers will assuage the concern of parents seeking clean, green decor for their children's rooms.


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Sustainable Design - Cerno Levo Bedside Reading Light

Cerno Lighting: "...efficiency, quality and beauty..."

Cerno is a California-based modern lighting brand determined to keep its footprint compact by designing and manufacturing locally. In business for more than a decade, Cerno designers leverage new technologies in service of efficient lamps, distinct for their clean, architectural forms, composed of walnut wood, metal and polymer elements. By keeping the designing-prototyping-manufacturing process entirely local, Cerno has produced range of original contemporary lamps—including the best-selling LEVO LED Wall Sconce, above—that reflect a love of hand-applied craft and mindful modern design.


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Cerno Calyx Pendant Light
Cerno Acuo Wall Light
Cerno Mica Mini Pendant
Cerno Camur Linear Pendant

Sustainable Design - Copeland Exeter Extension Table

Copeland Furniture: "Preservation and stewardship..."

For the Vermont-based Copeland Furniture company, eco-friendly design is a local endeavor. Using sustainably managed North American hardwoods, sourced from within a 500 mile radius of the factory, Copeland leverages New England talent to produce contemporary furniture inspired by Vermont's natural beauty, and influenced by the work of American masters, like Frank Lloyd Wright. Recognized by the Sustainable Furnishings Council (SFC) and the American Home Furnishings Alliance (AHFA) for its environmental stewardship, Copeland aims for furniture that transcends eras and lasts generations—and hits the mark every time.


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Copeland Estelle Dining Chair
Copeland Astrid Bed
Copeland Audrey Bench
Copeland Catalina Round Extension Table

Loll Bolinas Surfboard Cocktail Table

Loll Designs: "...make the environment better for mankind."

Loll Designs, a Minnesota-based modern furniture company, has found a way to turn single-use milk jugs into stylish, durable outdoor furniture. By using 100% post-consumer plastic, Loll has created a range of striking outdoor seating and tables that may be the very definition of 'green' design, equally at home in contemporary and traditional outdoor settings. The company's Adirondack Chair, a remaking of the famous outdoor lounge chair, is constructed from approximately 400 used milk jugs, ultimately yielding an object that itself is fully recyclable—and seamlessly embodies Loll Design's enviable Cradle to Cradle™ designation.


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Loll Rapson Lounge Chair
Loll Adirondack Flat Chair
Loll Go Porch Swing