The Great Sofa Recovery

Every year in the UK we throw out around 1.6m tonnes of furniture and bulky waste, most of which is buried in landfill or burnt in an incinerator. The 'great sofa recovery' is a recent RSA report that set about uncovering the complexities in circular upholstery design. It looked at the challenges of dealing with this waste and the opportunities for a circular economy through the lens of design, questioning the system of take, make and waste manufacturing.
For a long time we've been questioning this one idea; "why does so much good upholstery go to waste?"

We’d love to imagine that our products don’t succumb to wear and tear but that’s unrealistic in a demanding commercial environment. They can get bashed, worn and discoloured. So, if we know from the outset that every material will change, move and break eventually, shouldn't we be asking ourselves a second, more pertinent question.

“Why aren’t more of our customers sending products back for repair or recycling?”

This is where the backbone of our new ideas emerged from.  

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It’s not a new concept, but ‘made for disassembly’ is so often overlooked in favour of ‘made for durability’. In an ideal world both should be at the top of the list but with traditional forms of upholstery you find that a stable, durable frame comes at the cost of not being able to disassemble it with ease.

Some examples:

  • If for whatever reason the framework suffers internal damage, plywood is often harder to reuse after being screwed and glued.
  • The cover is often sewn as one whole cover and stapled into place, leaving it weak for reuse if a small part becomes worn.
  • Webbing is often stapled into a frame and therefore difficult to reuse.

The list goes on but with a new mindset, a change in approach is possible and so our new Sprung chair was born with some key features that make for a welcome improvement.

  • A traditional plywood framework has been replaced by a 100% recycled and fully recyclable, durable steel frame.
  • Webbing is replaced with durable springs, each one with the ability to be removed and replaced if needs be.
  • Cushions can be separated from the frame for ease of disassembly.
  • Covers are removable and made from recycled ocean waste.
  • Coatings are made from 100% recycled powders.

We’re not just making new products for the sake of it, we’re constantly striving to make things better. There’s always room for improvement and rest assured we’ll keep on asking ourselves why. 

’deadgood for the planet’ you might say.

Watch this space, even more new products incoming...

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