Wood-trees-forest-natural We wish to thank Taylor Dardan for contributing this post.  Taylor is a dedicated environmental activist who happened upon our blog and wrote to us asking if he could guest post.  We love guest bloggers who bring their hearts and minds to our humble space!  Taylor is a recent college graduate and an aspiring writer who lives in southeastern United States.  Here's what's on his mind:

It is fairly common to associate the condition of comfortable living with having the right furniture pieces for your home. With the spreading cognizance of an eco-friendly everything, investing into some of these technologies should definitely be considered, starting with eco-friendly furniture in the home. There are a ton of benefits to choosing environmentally friendly furniture over the alternative of the mass manufactured, with one of the most obvious is the reduction of waste, a base essential of being friendly toward the environment. There are a slew of options available for eco-friendly furniture, like recycled plastic and other recycled or natural materials.

One of the more common, and arguably the best option for “green” furniture are made from natural forestry.  There are multiple advantages and benefits that come from choosing wood furniture. Being abundantly available, it’s also fairly easy to find something that will suit your own personal style.

Natural wood is a noble, beautiful material that is inherently warm and attractive with timeless beauty. Whether the style is rustic, traditional, or modern, it will most definitely be durable and age quite gracefully over time. Wood furniture creates an easier and more natural living condition as well, being exceptionally easy to clean. Regular attention through dusting and polishing can assure it lasts it lasts a lifetime. This can bring a more luxurious and richness quality into the home.

Many wood furniture pieces are also made from reclaimed wood. Reclaimed wood furniture is created with wood salvaged from old structures as opposed to being freshly cut from living trees, providing a great way to reduce the impact of deforestation, and reducing other environmental risks from manufacturing plants.

Buying new furniture from reclaimed wood is definitely a better option than putting the environment and ultimately personal health at risk by buying mass-produced and even antique furniture pieces. Both new and old production furniture can eventually damage through the use of chemicals and deadly toxins. New furniture often uses lacquers and paints containing chemicals called VOC’s that can lead to respiratory disorders and is ultimately fatal. Potential dangers in antique pieces stem from toxic lead paints and the breakdown of harmful materials used in their construction. Many old pieces can even contain reinforcement parts and paneling containing cancer causing asbestos. Leukemia, asthma, and mesothelioma are all serious health afflictions stemming from even minute asbestos exposure.

What is the best reason to choose wood furniture? You can always find a beautiful wood piece within your budget, no matter what it may be. Because there is such a diversity of wood types, from FSC certified rare exotic woods to domestically grown maples and pines, there are furniture pieces to accommodate any budget. Pines and other softer woods are inexpensive and still retain the warm, rich qualities that make most wood furniture desirable, and if you want something a little more unique and rare, there are options like FSC certified Brazilian rosewoods and even unique designs made from FSC certified petrified woods.  When using rare woods or any type of rainforest woods, though it is critical to ensure they are certified green by the Forest Stewardship Council, FSC.

As a consumer, it’s not unfeasible to do your part in making your home more eco friendly. Where your furniture was manufactured and what went in to the production of the piece are vital to making a proper eco-friendly purchase. Whether or not you may be an environmental skeptic, there really isn’t a reason to not go natural when purchasing décor for the home, and help to reduce waste and the toll our decisions take on the planet.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.