The message coming through loud and clear for the year ahead is that going green is going to be bigger than ever. From renewable energy to cleaner cars and even edible coffee cups (yes really) 2018 has a distinctly green hue about it...

When it comes to being green, little things make a big difference. Whether it’s buying rechargeable batteries or turning the heating down a notch, there are loads of little ways most of us are already making a positive difference in and around the home. And with the arrival of eco-rated boilers, fridges and tumble-dryers, you can reduce your carbon footprint almost every step of the way.

Getting green with your furniture

But what do you do when it comes to furnishing your home? How can you make a bed or dining table more environmentally friendly? With energy and resources going into in the manufacturing process, it would be good to know you could offset things somehow. But just as importantly, you want it to look good too.

Here’s the good news. As the UK’s biggest retailer of reclaimed furniture, over 35% of our dining and bedroom ranges are made from reclaimed and upcycled materials. So you can show a little extra love to your home and the environment at the same time.

Hyatt Canning Dining Table & Benches

Meet Little Tree Furniture…

Better yet, because re-purposed material is used throughout, each item is unique with its own story to tell. Take our Little Tree Furniture collection: handmade by time-served craftsmen in India, the wood could be anywhere between 75 to 150 years old and have previously been anything from a fortress door to a fishing boat.

Timber is carefully selected for quality and character. Any dents or blemishes as the result of age simply become integral to the design, shining though as extra detail to give the final piece individual appeal and personality. The traditional carpenters employed in India even use original colonial tools, giving extra authenticity and to the look and feel of the furniture.

Little Tree Furniture Mary Rose Sideboard

It’s not just the environment that wins either. Little Tree Furniture also makes a difference to communities in India and the UK. Besides bringing jobs to the local area, fair trade rules ensure that the Indian craftsmen benefit personally from the furniture they make.  The company’s links with charities in the UK include sponsoring a local school football team. It’s more than just new strips, however, as the initiative fosters communication and understanding between the team and their counterparts in schools and orphanages in India.

Making a difference one tree at a time

Likewise, we work hand-in-hand with the ground-breaking Trees4Trees initiative in the heart of the Malaysian rainforests. Their aim is to replace trees used in the manufacture of furniture with new ones, so the forest becomes a sustainable resource.

By teaching forestry management skills to the communities that sow, grow and harvest the trees, the forest becomes an ongoing source of employment and trade for farmers and their families who normally live a hand-to-mouth existence. In addition, the new trees help to offset the C02 produced during the furniture manufacturing process as well as provide a forest canopy for native wildlife. Making the world a better place for every living thing to enjoy.

Furniture that looks good and does good

It all goes to show that you can have furniture that looks good around your home and helps do good outside of it too. That’s something we’ve long believed in here at Barker and Stonehouse, with many of our stores using natural living walls that are home to flora and fauna, as well as eco-lighting and thermal insulation to cut down on energy use. With a long-standing commitment to recycling 98% of all waste as well, you could say we’re the feelgood furniture company.

Living wall at our Teesside Park store

It's never been easier to make eco-friendly choices when it comes to buying furniture. While you’re here, why not take a minute to look and see what our recycled furniture could do for you and your home?