Kids today, growing up post-An Inconvenient Truth, will be far more aware of environmentalism than we were as young tikes, so why not start the next generation of eco-warriors off on the right foot by investing in sustainable baby furniture? Not only will you feel good about giving your money to ethical companies, but you can also rest assured knowing that your baby will not be exposed to toxic chemicals or other unsafe construction materials.There are tons of companies out there that specialize in baby furniture made from nontoxic, renewable, recycled and/or recyclable pieces at every price point and in virtually every style: Oeuf, ducduc, EcoTots, Spot on Square, Dax Stores, TerraLunaSol and Go Natural Baby are just a few examples. If you want to take the recycling concept even further, consider buying sustainable baby furniture second hand through websites like eBay or Craigslist. By not buying brand new, you can preserve even more resources. Also, when shopping for furniture — new or secondhand — look for brands that are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, which ensures that the wood used comes from sustainably managed forests. And, don’t forget to complete your baby’s nursery by investing in non-VOC wall paint, organic cotton bedding and rugs or carpet made from nontoxic materials.
Our children are going to grow up in a very different, more eco-conscious world than we did. When I was growing up in the ’80s, for instance, Styrofoam hamburger containers were everywhere, and curbside recycling was a rarity. Even though my parents were pseudo-hippies, if you had suggested to them that they buy sustainable furniture they probably would have laughed at you. It just wasn’t something you thought about, because that kind of thing wasn’t readily available.