A few weeks ago, The New York Times ran a story about the Michelin-starred restaurant Eleven Madison Park going plant-based that momentarily took our breath away. Within a few hours, several friends had sent us the link. It was clearly a moment they knew we’d want to note.
The famously thoughtful chef, Daniel Humm, is quoted saying: “It became very clear to me that our idea of what luxury is had to change. We couldn’t go back to doing what we did before.” He was speaking about the social and environmental scrutiny of our global food system and how that intensified for him during the pandemic.
If you have been following our newsletters, you know that level of scrutiny is something we have been working on ourselves in regards to everything from sourcing our raw materials, to how we staff our studio, to how we account for our carbon footprint.
Something personal you may not know about us though is that our family has had our share of health issues over the past decade. Learning how to use plants as medicine has been a huge part of our path towards wellness.
What started out solely as a way to address personal health concerns, deepened as we learned more about food insecurity and the impacts of animal agriculture. Without getting too deep into our personal journey, we do want you to know that for a while now we have been making sure that all of our designs are available with vegan options.
What does it mean for a design studio to offer vegan options? For many practicing vegans, vegan preferences extend well beyond food to all consumer choices from personal care products to clothing to yes, even furniture. These folks look for goods that are made without the use of any animal products or animal testing. Beyond fur and leather, this includes materials such as silk, wool and down to name a few.
Over the years, we have eliminated our use of leather and make sure that our wood glues, stains and finishes are all non-toxic and plant-based. For our naturally dyed woven pillows, we now offer a pillow insert option that is made from recycled PET bottles as well as our standard feather and down insert option.
We are most excited to share that all of our braided rugs are available with the option of Sunbrella yarn. Our Sunbrella yarn is made with 50% recycled content and is Standard 100 OEKO-TEX certified. As well as being our vegan and wool allergy option, our Sunbrella rugs are fade resistant and can be used indoors and outdoors.
What this personal health journey has taught us is that the thought process behind the things we choose to consume can be complicated - and maybe nothing is as complicated as the food we eat. Becoming more conscious of this complexity is something that has shaped the way we look at our business as a whole. We strive to center human and planetary health with every choice we make and to be open about that process along the way.
To learn more about our material choices, please see our ethical policy. To see samples of our Sunbella yarn or other materials, please reach out. We’re always happy to talk it through!
Photography: Regan Wood for Amy Kalikow, Charlie Schuck, Ben Blood, Charlie Schuck, Grain and Ben Blood.