“Wellness” may be a buzzword, but health and environmental concerns are no trend, and they are impacting the way we design, build, and decorate. “The consumer has a big role to play,” says eco-interior designer Jillian Pritchard Cooke. “Conscious consumption sends messages to manufacturers.” Here’s where to shop for a green home.
Buying secondhand items is inherently green. “Always ask if there is an existing item that can be used and kept out of the landfill,” says Cooke. Her favorite sources include Antiques & Beyond on Cheshire Bridge Road and the designer-run Swoox Curated Consignment in Buckhead.
Home furnishings shop and design studio Dixon Rye carries upholstered furniture from ecofriendly companies Cisco Brothers and Lancaster Custom Crafted Upholstery. These pieces are made with sustainably harvested or recycled wood, water-based glues, and natural and organic fibers. Lee Industries, a founding member of the Sustainable Furnishings Council and a go-to for local designers, can be found at B.D. Jeffries, Bungalow Classic, and Lewis & Sheron, among other shops. Lee’s NaturalLEE line even includes furniture with pillows made from recycled bottles. Selamat Designs, found at Verde Home, offers teak tables and rattan lighting made sustainably and ethically in Indonesia. Major brands like Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams and Room & Board are also known for their green initiatives.
Flooring and Walls
Natural, renewable materials like bamboo, sisal, and linoleum are best. Cooke suggests Dalton-based Myers Carpet, with a location on Northside Drive, for its customizable sisal and jute rugs, as well as eco-options from Swedish company Kährs. Most major paint manufacturers now offer low- or no-VOC options. Try Benjamin Moore’s Natura line, Sherwin-Williams Harmony, and Behr Premium Plus. For decorative paint, the new water-based Jolie Home is perfect for DIY furniture transformations.
Interior designer Jillian Pritchard Cooke calls her company, Wellness Within Your Walls, an “industry disruptor” for its role educating designers, architects, builders, and consumers—that is, everyone—about healthy, ecoconscious living. WWYW works across the country providing certification to people, products, and buildings that meet her list of criteria for environmental responsibility and health, considering factors like production methods, sourcing, and materials. Cooke, who worked on the first LEED-certified house in Atlanta in 2006, rattles off chemicals and heavy metals common in our homes. But don’t knock down your house just yet. “We’re not unrealistic,” she says. “Scrapping everything isn’t sustainable.” Her site provides a list of locals—including designers—who can help create a healthy home in small steps.
This article appears in our Spring 2020 issue of Atlanta Magazine’s HOME.