Friday, May 1, 2009

Eco Salvage

There's an excellent article in this month's Design New England magazine by Jill Connors on the growing trend she's calling "Eco Salvage". Certainly, this isn't "new", we've all heard of architectural salvage yards. But, there are now companies that specialize in the field of "Deconstruction" where materials are carefully removed from a building slated for renovation or demolition. Companies such as ReStore in Springfield, MA might go in and do a full 'whole-house' deconstruction or only a partial 'soft-strip' where they might remove only the kitchen, for instance. Even Habitat For Humanity is getting into the act and is just beginning to offer deconstruction services. Again, this isn't a new concept. The Shakers where known for deconstructing their unused buildings and salvaging all the materials. This is why there are so few original Shaker structures still standing.

Heller Furniture has also worked hard to make use of original materials - salvaged from older pieces - in our work. From horse hair to cotton batting - these all natural materials are hard to come by today and can be reused - once they have been sterilized. An Eco-Friendly alternative to expensive, and sometimes unhealthy, newer materials.

Here's a great example of a salvage project that we just completed:

Our client had this sofa with a handsome wood base including curved wooden arm fronts and arms. They wanted more seating in their room, but still loved the shape of this sofa. They came to Heller Furniture to seek a solution.

After an initial site visit, Walter presented the clients with his vision of a sectional sofa that could be created from their original piece.

We were able to carefully strip and disassemble the sofa, saving (or should we say salvaging) the arms and frame.

And here is this wonderful sectional sofa - providing our clients with plenty of seating for the entire family, all the while retaining the feel - and materials - of their original sofa.

And, this from the clients: "Thank you, thank you, thank you! We just wanted to let you know how happy we are sitting and lounging on our new sofa. Everyone in the family thinks this is the most comfortable sofa we have ever sat on. Thank you so much. Regards, K.B."

Heller Furniture is uniquely positioned to provide this type of extraordinary service. Call us now for your special upholstery project.

1 comment:

Christine Damm said...

This is a brilliant restoration/re-creation! My concern is whether an antique piece should be cannibalized for parts for a new construction but if it's destined for the landfill anyway, it's better to use it creatively and practically.