As the green culture grows and becomes more desirable, more retailers and manufacturers are adding eco-friendly products to their offerings. However, there are a few companies that stand out from the crowd — some because they started with a green foundation, and others because they offer sustainable products with the same zest and prominence as their more traditional offerings. Here are my picks for the top 10 online retailers for eco-friendly home decor:
| 1. VIVATERRA — There is no beating VivaTerra when it comes to green products. From furniture and bedding to sculptures, tableware and trinkets, you could furnish much of your house by shopping on their website. Their commitment to sustainability is in everything they do, from planting trees and building wind generators to printing their catalog on recycled paper. And then, of course, are their products. Nearly everything is made of recycled, sustainable, organic, reclaimed, Fair Trade or renewable resources.
PHOTO: Helix Stool | $159-289 | Carved from sustainable blond mango wood (aff)
| 2. GAIAM — Although their offerings extend beyond home decor to clothing, yoga products and more, their selection of housewares is large enough to make it one of my favorite resources. There is a reason Gaiam is one of ten businesses nominated for Co-Op America’s Green Business of the Year. Gaiam sells everything from organic bedding to solar powered lighting. Though many of the products are more practical than they are stylish, there is enough style to satisfy a savvy decorator.
PHOTO: Deluxe Organic Flannel Bedding | $44-100 | Made of 100% organic cotton and finished without harsh chemical softeners or chlorine (aff)
| 3. VIVAVI — There is no way I could create a list about eco-friendly home decorating without mentioning this green giant. Founded by the “Lazy Environmentalist” himself, Josh Dorfman, Vivavi is the epitome of eco-luxury. You will regularly find products in the 4- and 5-figure range, but they are all made sustainably and built to last a lifetime — or a few lifetimes, really. If you’ve got fairly deep pockets, you can furnish your entire home without leaving the site.
PHOTO: Tetrad Bamboo Shelf | $3460 | Made of bamboo with an herbal oil finish and low-VOC adhesives (aff)
| 4. 2MODERN.com — I loved this site long before I really understood what “green” meant, because it truly lives up to its name. Their product offerings are perfect for the modern home and for anyone who loves contemporary style. But what’s even better is their tremendous selection of eco-friendly products, which is quite nearly as large as the number of non-green products. And what you may have lacked in style at Gaiam will easily be made up at 2Modern. This site was a tusted resource for my Green Rooms in a Box series.
PHOTO: Hive Wine Rack by Boom | $35 | Made of suistainably-harvested wood with water-based lacquers
| 5. Design Public — This is another site that I fell in love with for its modern aesthetic long before I found its collection of sustainable products. From furniture to kids’ products and more, you’ll find that green is much more than just a color here. It’s a very stylish, very attainable way of life. Sure, some of the products are pricey, but you know what they say: you get what you pay for. And in this case, what you’re paying for is a cleaner, greener future — not to mention a safer home.
PHOTO: Suzanne Wallpaper by Graham & Brown | $75 | 50% of this wallpaper is sourced from recycled material or from FSC-certified sources (aff)
| 6. Design Within Reach — Though the green products can be a bit harder to find because of the product descriptions. The search feature makes things a little easier, though not by much. Once you do find the green products however, they are worth the wait. The key word in “Design Within Reach” is “design.” Everything I have ever found at the site has been stunning and unique, though definitely on the pricey end.
PHOTO: Nine-0 Stacking Barstool by Emeco | $425 | Made of 80% recycled aluminum, has an estimated lifespan of 150 years and contributes to LEED credit
| 7. Uncommon Goods — This name is as much a brand as it is a description. Uncommon Goods is an online store that features all manner of unique and functional products, many of which are eco-friendly. You’ll find art and mirrors made from recycled license plates and billboards, and organic cotton towels and pillows. It’s a great place to browse, even if you’re not buying. It has given me crafty ideas of recycling projects on more than one occassion, though I have yet to complete any of them.
PHOTO: Recycled Wine Barrel Side Cabinet | $850 | Handmade from a recycled wine barrel
| 8. Etsy.com — If you don’t know what etsy is, you must not have been reading this site for very long. Thousands of artisans use etsy to peddle their wares to customers who can appreciate the time that goes into making products by hand. This is inherently more eco-friendly and resource efficient than mass-produced items that tend to waste resources and energy. Etsy also has its fair share of recycled, upcycled, sustainable and organic products. In fact, you can find many of them at EcoEtsy.com.
PHOTO: Forest Horse Original Eco Art by Tanis Alexis | $46 | Made with water-based pigments, inks, rice glue and recycled paper pasted onto reclaimed/salvaged maple wood
| 9. GreenCulture — This is the parent company of a variety of eco-stores, from Eco-Furniture.com to Eco-Lights.com and EcoHousewares.com, all of which you can reach from the GreenCulture home page. Based on the names of the sites under its umbrella, you can tell what is sold at each. GreenCulture tells you the sustainable qualities of each product on its decription page. Some of it isn’t as sustainable as I would like, and the search feature isn’t very useful. But if you’re willing to take the time to look, you can find some great items.
PHOTO: Soho Dark Cherry Armoire | $1347.50 | Made of sustainably harvested hardwoods
| 10. Craigslist — I know what you’re thinking…Craigslist isn’t a store. But it is one of the best resources for finding used, local furniture. One of the greenest shopping decisions you can ever make is to buy furniture that is in its second life. And because Craigslist has sections for every state and pretty much every major city in the U.S., as well as some smaller towns, if you’re willing to look, you can really find some used gems.
PHOTO: Ikea Malm Bed & Queen Mattress | $175 | Used