Social & Environmental Responsibility
Thankfully, society as a whole is becoming more aware of what it means to be socially and environmentally responsible. Messages abound from the green revolution relating to our individual and societal carbon-footprint, the importance of sustainability and the conscious steps that are being taken by companies to bring options, cognoscente of these concerns, to consumers. Unfortunately, there can be little substance behind some of these claims
There are many innovative developments and clever ways on construing how a product is ‘Green’. However, many of these fail to touch on responsible use of the resources utilized to create products. With respect to the individual elements, this lies in the quality of each component and how they contribute to a high quality finished product as a whole; one that will be resilient over long periods of time and use.
This is our thinking: when considering how we at ELE CUSTOM will do our part to be responsible with the environment and the elements that we utilize to create our products, we start with the end in mind.
Creating a high quality product that reflects our artistic and functional sensibilities, such that design carefully considers and never compromises on the need for each piece to be able to withstand the expectations of daily life, everyday, for years to come.
A simple thought that has always been at the core of what we do and, now it’s become fashionable to talk about it.
So, let’s talk about it:
When using the resources of the earth, one should be respectful and take pride in what is created from them. A company can use FSC certified wood and talk about sustainability, and have improperly engineered frames, or use inferior foam and fabrics such that the longevity of the piece is dictated by these shortcomings, and it’s off to the landfill with another piece of furniture.
At ELE CUSTOM, our frames are locally made from regional sources of lumber. The implications of this are responsible forestry, ethical labour practices and local employment. The Foam that we use is also locally made and is composed of the highest level of soy content that ensure a product is not just ‘green’ but also durable promoting a long lifespan. The fabrics that we use are formaldehyde and phthalate free, preserving our water and everything that depends on it, which is, essentially, everything. All of the leather used is a by product of the meat industry – a component that would otherwise be wasted. Leather is a valued for its durability, functionality and beauty, ultimately promoting a long lifespan for a product which is a green facet of manufacturing. Our leather is primarily made in northern Italy, by generations old tanneries which offer local artisans a place to earn a proper wage, supporting and sustaining their economy, as well.
All of these components are brought together in our facilities in Toronto, Canada, where skilled craftsmen marry these to create something beautiful and extraordinary; something unique to each item – made specifically for you. Local manufacturing means that we ensure that ethical labour practices are always surpassed, that people with passion to create things with their hands are afforded a place to utilize their skills. That the people who make your furniture have quality jobs with good wages, to sustain and further what it means to live in a great country.
End of life:
When the day comes that you are ready to part with your furniture, we will be able to help you relocate your piece to organizations that repurpose these. There are many organizations located in North American Cities that repurpose used furniture and make these available to those in more challenging situations. We can help connect you with these and, in some cases, make the arrangements for the removal of the furniture from your home.
Should you feel like you’re ready to change up the look, we offer cut and sewn covers that can be shipped to you, where you can have a local upholsterer recover the piece. The purpose of this is to forego the prohibitively high cost of reupholstery associated with needing a specialized trade person spend considerable time creating patterns to recover an item. Realizing that the future is uncertain and that we make quality pieces for decades of use, if our furniture outlives us as an organization, we will create online resources where patterns for the pieces that we manufacture can be downloaded. This way, you will always be able to access the information needed to reimagine the look of your piece and reuse it, keeping those precious resources in use and out of landfills.