Why you shouldn't be overlooking synthetic fibres
Over the years designing, I have always been a staunch advocate for good quality woollen carpets. I would hand paint a design, then transfer that to graph paper, work out repeats, tracking etc, select the tufts of wool it was to be produced in & then sent that off to one of the main carpet manufacturers for them to produce a hand trial for me. When I was happy with this trail sample, we would then go to production with a bespoke design that would be woven specifically for a client. Its part of the design process that I have always loved & when the new generation of synthetic carpets came to the market, I always stayed with my origins of wool, until now.
Sustainability has become a buzzword used by many companies in their marketing and communication. A new breed of carpet manufacturers are taking this on board, it’s about assuming responsibility. Endorsing the UN guidelines, working for a higher degree of sustainability, the Global Compact consists of principles on human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption. These companies are willing to find new ways of making production more sustainable – by focusing on recycling materials, cleaner manufacturing processes and alternative sources of energy. The product that is now coming to the market is surprising & shall come to your home, or business, with a sense that you did something toward our fragile world.
One of these manufacturers has been working with the renowned fashion designer Mr Christian Lacroix for more than a decade. Reaping the benefits of each other’s skills, Lacroix has tailored a number of impressive wall-to-wall carpets. Together they have achieved a degree of detail in patterns and colours, making them a natural choice for this extravagant designer.
From the traditional tiles or linoleum in a kitchen or bathroom, there has been an emergence for polished concrete & the like. Polished lime is now becoming more available & gives a similar appearance but greener footprint. The process of manufacturing hydraulic lime releases green house gases, however, unlike concrete, lime reabsorbs CO2 as it sets. As the market for this product increases, the green credentials will continue to improve as production of lime becomes more efficient.
Another manufacturer offers a unique collection of dye-infused strand woven bamboo flooring in a range of colours. Made from sustainably-harvested bamboo manufactured to the toughest standards of durability and environmental responsibility, they bring to the table an engineered cross-ply construction of strand bamboo on top and bottom, with a regular bamboo core that ensures extra stability — especially when glued to or floated over sub-floors or in damp climates.
It's rated on the Janka hardness scale as 3271, which is in the top 1% of all hardwoods and means it will handle just about any wear and tear. It also contains no added urea formaldehyde in its adhesive, and uses a zero VOC finish which will not off-gas any toxic chemicals.
Other green flooring is available & is non-toxic, environmentally-friendly and made from sustainably harvested, recycled or reclaimed sources.
My eyes have been opened, I never thought I would see the day when I would happily promote synthetics alongside natural fibre. In today’s world, the idea of being able to recycle products that would otherwise be discarded is just one way we can make this world a little greener & reduce our carbon footprint. Maybe if you are looking for new flooring options that look great & will last the test of time, look into the options, I hope that you may be surprised also.