11 eco-friendly sofa makers in the UK: sustainable designs

Girl lying on eco friendly sofa

11 eco-friendly sofa makers in the UK: sustainable designs

Made in trendy styles or embracing chic designs, a sofa is an essential part of finishing a modern living space. However, the world of furniture production is not always the most sustainable. So, to embrace sustainability and style, we are rounding up the brands making eco-friendly sofas in the UK, that are making a conscious effort to be kind to people and the planet.

What makes a sofa eco-friendly?

There are important components that go into making a sofa sustainable. The foundations of any sustainable product are the raw materials used.

Many models in the conventional sofa industry contain polyester fabrics, essentially plastic fabrics. Also commonly used in the furniture sector are polyeurethane foam, unsustainably sourced leather and wool, and materials treated with a variety of toxic chemicals and flame retardants.

Sustainably made sofas change this story and focus on environmentally friendly and ethical materials. Eco furniture makers stay away from harmful chemicals and incorporate sustainable sources in supply chains.

Some materials to look out for when buying a new sofa include:

  • Organic cotton – a natural material, cotton is versatile and widely used. It’s important, however, to look for organic cotton to minimise the environmental damage and ethical issues associated with the conventional cotton trade.
  • FSC-certified wood – most sofas require internal frames to provide strong structures. These are often constructed with wood. To ensure ancient forests weren’t damaged in the harvesting of wood, Forest Stewardship Council certifications should be looked for.
  • Recycled materials – the use of recycled materials helps to reduce waste in the industry. Materials certified by Global Recycling Standards (GRC) provide the most assurances for sustainably recycled materials.
  • Natural linen and wool – Wool and linen are other great natural materials that can be used in the furniture industry. Again, be sure to look for organic linen. In the case of wool, be sure to look out for Responsible Wool Standard certification if buying a sustainable sofa containing wool fibres.

People and animals

Ethical sofas also take a kinder approach to production.

Ethical labels ensure fair and safe supply chains. The supply chains have robust policies that prohibit child and forced labour, discrimination and unsafe, exploitative and predatory behaviour. They work to create supply chains that are kind to animals, either with vegan certifications or animal rights accreditations such as the Responsible Wool Standard we already mentioned.

The best eco-friendly sofas in the UK

Supporting sustainable practices, these stylish labels are making some of the best eco-friendly sofas and couches for UK conscious consumers.

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1. Swoon Editions

Based: UK                       Ships to: UK 
Price: £549 – £3,279
Sustainability creds: Ethical working principles, aims to improve sustainable practices, small batch manufacturing 

Making furniture styles that stand out from the crowd, sofas from Swoon Editions come complete with stylish designs and jewel colours. These colourful creations have a fresh and modern feel, while still retaining an element of sophisticated charm. From brass capped legs to button back designs, no detail is overlooked in the Swoon Editions range.

While there is more that Swoon could do in terms of sustainable practices, it does commit to ensuring ethical manufacturing across its supply chain. The organisation is also looking into ensuring wood is sourced from sustainable sources which is a great positive step.

2. Nkuku

Based: UK.        Ships to: Worldwide
Made in: Predominantly India
Price: £650 – £2,950
Sustainability creds: Some handmade products, use of some sustainable materials, charity partnerships, works with artisans

Nkuku creates sofas that are sophisticated while still having a classic charm. These beautiful pieces of furniture offer a favourite place to curl up, but still bring a classic element to a chic living room aesthetic.

While Nkuku does still have some work to do on its sustainability journey, it has started to implement sustainable and natural materials in its furniture ranges. The label also has engaged with charitable initiatives and supports a slow production approach by engaging with artisan makers for some of its products.

3. Sofa Club

Based: UK.        Ships to: UK
Price: £399 – £3,399
Sustainability creds: Tree planting projects

As the name may suggest, Sofa Club, are the sofa and armchair experts. The label has a wide range of trendy styles to suit any taste and has affordable options to cater to a variety of budgets.

The organisation has started to consider sustainable practices, evidenced by its partnership with Ecologi to support tree planting programs. Sofa Club have produced one sustainable sofa, so we can’t wait to see them apply these practices and policies to the rest of its ranges. 

4. Kate Watson-Smyth Collection

Based: UK         Ships to: UK
Made in: UK
Price: £1,498 – £2,797
Sustainability creds: FSC-certified wood, GRS-certified, Oeko-Tex, sustainable materials

Created in collaboration with award-winning interior journalist, Kate Watson-Smyth, this collection, available through Love Your Home, puts sustainability at the forefront. While the selection is limited, these stylish armchairs and sofas embody aspects of timeless designs, while still embracing a contemporary feel.

The collection encapsulates an innovative approach to material selection. Foam is created from coconut fibres and natural latex rather than petroleum. Recycled velvet and cotton are incorporated and wooden frames are constructed with FSC-certified timber.

5. Rockett St George

Based: UK         Ships to: Worldwide
Price: £550 – £3,450
Sustainability creds: Use of some recycled and reclaimed materials, elements of some packaging is sustainable, aims to improve sustainable practices, charity partnerships

Quirky and contemporary, sofas from Rockett St George are designed to fit with a unique modern vibe. Launched in 2007, the label makes funky sofas in rich colour palettes. The company embraces contemporary design, crafting pieces that embody effortless style and stand the test of time.

6. Snug

Based: UK.        Ships to: UK
Made in: UK
Price: £999 – £4,259
Sustainability creds: Vegan sofa options, sustainable materials, sustainable packaging incorporating recyclable materials, upcycling programs, tree planting initiatives, partnership with Crisis, pledge to be carbon neutral by 2025

From sofas to armchairs to eco-friendly sofa beds, this UK brand has a sofa for every occasion. Styles come in rich hues and earthy tones, and are made to be the perfect place to snuggle up on a cold night, or chill on a lazy afternoon.

Snug makes a conscious effort to create eco-friendly sofas with a lighter environmental impact. From manufacturing locally, to implementing recyclable packaging, Snug has put thought into incorporating sustainability at every stage from the manufacturing processes to eventual disposal.

7. Raft Furniture

Based: UK         Ships to: UK
Made in: UK
Price: £1,805 – £3,386
Sustainability creds: Supports social and environmental initiatives, sustainable practices and policies, FLEGT-certified teak, handmade products

Established back in 1999, the team at Raft Furniture has a wealth of experience when it comes to making quality home furnishings. This UK label’s eco-friendly sofas are elegant in their design while still embracing an individual charm that sets them apart from the wider market. They are also all handmade from start to finish in-house in London.

Raft takes an innovative approach to sustainability. It was the first company to use solar-powered kilns in Indonesia and has provided handmade desks for local school children. The company has supported tree planting events and adopts an approach of giving back to the local community.

8. Sofas & Stuff

Based: UK         Ships to: UK
Made in: UK
Price: £1,630 – £3,406
Sustainability creds: Partnerships with ADVANSA and Plastic Bank, use of some sustainable fabrics, FSC-certified suppliers

Having created beautiful bespoke sofas for generations, Sofas & Stuff are a family-owned company from West Sussex. The label’s quality pieces of furniture are handmade at a factory in Lancashire and crafted from luxurious materials.

Sofas & Stuff focuses on ideals of timeless quality rather than a mindset of cheap and low-quality products that feed a mindset of rapid replacement. They give the choice to opt for sustainable materials. The label offers consumers the option to have cushions made from fabric constructed with recycled plastic bottles and other ocean-bound plastic waste.

9. Graham & Green

Based: UK         Ships to: UK & Ireland
Price: £1,695 – £4,575
Sustainability creds: Use of recycled materials, supports charitable causes

Graham & Green create luxurious sofas that have an elegant vibe while still being enviously comfortable. With deep seats and cushions filled with foam and feathers, these sofas are created to be cosy and comfortable furniture pieces, while still maintaining a classic charm.

Graham & Green has some products made to order, which indicates some preference towards a slow production approach. The label has also begun to use recycled materials in some of its products. 

10. Barker & Stonehouse

Based: UK.        Ships to: UK
Price: £525 – £8,999
Sustainability creds: Carbon Neutral Plus, founding partner of Trees 4 Trees, sustainably designed stores, electric vehicle deliveries

Sofas from Barker and Stonehouse are chic while still having an almost industrial vibe in their overall aesthetic. The ethical furniture brand uses rich and early colours and uses everything from leather to velvet fabrics to make sofas that complete any room.

Barker and Stonehouse engage with tree-planting initiatives and have taken steps to create greener delivery options. The label has also achieved Carbon Neutral Plus certification. 

11. Oka

Based: UK                      Ships to: UK (contact the store for a possible international delivery) 
Price: £1,695 – £6,995
Sustainability creds: Aims and goals to improve its sustainable practices including carbon footprint reduction 

Stylish sofas from OKA perfectly combine a sleek contemporary aesthetic with a classic elegance. These beautiful eco friendly furniture pieces incorporate luxurious materials,from high quality linen to leather and velvet. With everything from cosy two-seaters to corner sofas big enough for the whole family, OKA has a style for every room.

OKA has made some steps towards increasing its sustainable practices. The label has goals to reduce its carbon footprint and increase its use of recyclable packaging. While OKA may be early in its sustainable journey, any steps organisations make to reduce their environmental impact is part of building a greener tomorrow.

Sustainable UK sofas

UK brands making sustainable sofas bring an eco-friendly approach to creating a home you love. Embracing quality materials and ethical design principles, ethical furniture manufacturers are reshaping the modern homewares industry into one that can create a positive impact.

From the cosy to the chic, the modern to the minimalistic, these sustainable furniture brands are making eco-friendly sofas that can become your new favourite seat in the house.

For more sustainable internal design ideas for your home, check out our articles on ethical furniture brands and non-toxic mattresses.

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