We're all making more sustainable choices through our shopping habits. One way to ensure sustainability is to invest in quality items that won't go out of fashion.
The Covid-19 pandemic has forced us all to spend more time at home and take stock of our surroundings.
For many of us, our homes are now an office, a gym and a classroom, as well as our safe space.
This extra time spent in the home has sparked a DIY buzz, a renovations frenzy and an interiors overhaul. But we're also more conscious of our shopping habits in 2020 and are choosing to be more sustainable with our purchases.
An effective way to ensure we are making ethical purchases is to veer away from on-trend pieces that will go out of fashion. Shopping more sustainably, by investing in handmade or vintage items, will ensure you keep (or upcycle) your interiors items for longer.
Here are five interiors purchases worth investing in, especially now that it looks like we'll be spending even more time in our homes than we previously thought.
Perhaps the most used item of furniture in the house – next to the bed – the humble sofa can be put through its paces. It's our haven for curling up on on movie night, a climbing den for the kids, and a place to trek muddy paws for the dog. Investing in a sturdy sofa that will last the test of time is the most cost-effective solution for a busy household.
This Madison sofa, from Irish furniture store finlinefurtnure.ie, is made from the most luxurious Silver Collection fabric, meaning you'll never want to leave it once you sink into its comfort. Its muted tone and classic shape means it will never be 'off-trend'. Everything from Finline is handmade to custom order, so the Madison will remain a staple in your home for many years.
Madison sofa in Edinburgh French truffle, Silver Collection fabric, price depending on size
And if you fancy an interiors update, you can always upcycle the sofa with a sustainable throw, such as this organic 100% cotton herringbone design from White and Green. It's machine-washable and durable.
Organic cotton herringbone throw, €89
2. Quality bed linen
We spend at least eight hours of our day in bed – more if you haven't quite got round to purchasing that WFH desk – so it makes sense to invest in good quality sheets, pillow cases and duvet covers.
Organic cotton sheets, made with a 300 thread count, will ensure a sound night's sleep due to the softness, breathability and durability. It also means you won't be rushing to buy new sheets after every wash.
White and Green is a family run Irish company specialising in ethically produced, amazing quality bed linen and homewares.
Its very Instagrammable duvet sets are made from the finest 100% cotton for the most luxurious sleep. And its special bundle offer is a great one-stop shop as it includes four pillowcases, one duvet cover and one fitted sheet at a discounted price, starting at €239.00 (double size).
Complete your sophisticated bed spread with an organic cotton mattress protector (€107 for double bed), available from single up to emperor size, with nifty elastics at all four corners to hold it in place under your fitted sheet. White and Green's mattress protectors are certified to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) and are easy to wash and care for too.
Organic cotton duvet set in Oxford Edge with white trim, from €185
3. Silk pillowcase
Once you've tried a silk pillowcase, you'll never go back!
Firstly, the softness on your skin will make you never want to leave your bed.
Secondly, it can work wonders for your beauty routine. The natural proteins in silk create less friction against your skin and hair, so you are guaranteed to wake up with pretty much no 'bed head'. And according to Steve Kucsera, creative director of Hair Café in Dublin, there is less frizz and damage done to the hair after a night's sleep on a silk pillowcase. "If you have coarse hair or split ends a silk pillowcase can be kinder to your hair," Steve previously told IMAGE.
And the delicate fabric can also help reduce sleep lines. Consultant dermatologist Dr Rosemary Coleman, of the Centre for Restorative Dermatology at Blackrock Clinic, previously told IMAGE, "Because of the smoothness of a silk pillowcase there is less friction, which could possibly reduce sleep 'lines' which are often vertical and especially visible on the forehead. Particularly for somebody who sleeps on their tummy with their face squashed into the pillow, you'll find they go to sleep on the same side every night."
Organic silk pillowcase, €79
With us living, working, homeschooling and working out at home, it is imperative we have good lighting. Especially for those Instagram snaps... we mean work video calls.
Hedgeroe, an Irish female-led interiors company, offers everything from quality furniture to handmade accessories. It stocks a wide range of table and floor lamps. This Plantation Lamp caught our eye for its unique design, but also because it's small enough to fit on our desk for working during the day and on our bedside table for reading at night.
Investing in a lighting fixture in a neutral shade and durable material will ensure you reuse it again and again in every room of the house.
Plantation lamp in weathered vintage shade, €276
5. Garden furniture
Okay, so we're not getting much use of the garden with the current weather situation. But the Irish weather is exactly why you should invest in some hard-wearing furniture that will see you through every season. And won't it be lovely to sit out in your back yard with the laptop during the week when the sun does decide to come out, and enjoy a socially distanced barbecue on the weekends?
Home Street Home is an Irish store that sources statement pieces from around the world, as well as stocking Irish designs, up cycled designs and furniture using reclaimed wood and other materials.
This handcrafted shelf made from reclaimed teak wood is the perfect conversation starter and addition to your garden furniture. Its zinc top will ensure it is sturdy – ideal for serving up barbecue treats or tea, and it comes with storage on the bottom shelf. If you're particularly outdoorsy, this would also make a fantastic planting bench.
And if the weather isn't playing ball, simply move it inside for a beautiful addition to the hallway.
Treillis shelf unit with zinc top, €595
For more information on White and Green, or to shop luxury organic bed linen and homewares, see here.