At Plyroom a deep sense of responsibility for our community and environment is imbued into our products and practices. As a small local business, we can be more agile and proactive at the ground level to make a positive impact through the products we make, the platform we have and community that supports us.
The notion of generational permanence was one that shaped the early days of Plyroom. Founder Elise Heslop, like many of us, grew up with grandparents who looked after pieces of furniture, mended clothes and grew their own food. These childhood learnings, as well as her experience living in Italy and meeting the early collaborators of Plyroom cemented her desire to create a business that not only made good but did good, continuing this notion that items don’t need to be replaced, rather cared for, repurposed, designed for life’s changes.
It is said ‘like attracts like’ and so it is no wonder that our customers share a mutual consideration for where their furniture comes from, who makes it and how it’s made. It is our customers’ concern for sustainable and ethical production that inspires our 100% transparency on manufacturing processes and supply chain. We are always open to discuss where and how our products are made.
All of our products are manufactured either in small family-run businesses in Northern Italy, or in Melbourne and Sydney by small businesses who have an interest in small scale and sustainable production.
The term ‘sustainability’ is one that is used often and by many. It is not a binary or absolute concept, and its application comes in many shapes. At Plyroom, we aim to be a sustainable practice, from the materials and product finishes we choose, down to the electricity supply and toilet paper we consume.
We continually review our practices and implement new policies to reduce our environmental impact, but we are on a journey and we have a way to go.
Below is a snapshot of where we are today. We look forward to providing updates as we improve further in our effort to tread more lightly on the earth and support our community.
When we recently learnt only 3% of total philanthropy goes to the environment we decided to make a change. We became a member of 1% for the Planet, an organisation that drives true on-the-ground impact.
Through the program, 1% of our gross revenue (not just profit) is now directed to highly vetted environmental non-profit organisations to ensure our donations make the most impact possible.
With all the products we design and the products we offer in our collections, adaptability and functionality is at the core of our brief. We aim to create an offering of well-made, considered products that bypass trends and are timeless, but that can also be moved from room to room to suit changing needs.
Our furniture is produced using sustainably sourced Birch, Beech and Tasmanian Oak. We source materials that have either FSC or PEFC certification. We also use eco-friendly water-based finishes or food safe plant based waxes to protect our products.
We ensure that the suppliers we work with hold a similar reverence for sustainable production and therefore much of our home goods and essentials are Australian made from recycled, natural, organic and/or markedly durable materials.
We might be a bit old fashioned, but we like to know the names of the people we work with and their family. We work with several small businesses around Melbourne and Sydney who are good people as well as being great craftspeople. Our Italian manufacturers who have been working with us since Plyroom's beginning care about what they do and have as much passion for the pieces they create as we do.
We are committed to providing our customers with sustainably made products that are designed to be with you for the long term, thereby minimising their environmental impact.
We aim to package each product in our range with materials that are either recyclable, biodegradable, reusable or is made from recycled or renewable resources.
Some of our products are packaged with minimal packaging materials so that the footprint on the environment is minimised. Where more packaging is required to keep a piece safe in transit, we use FSC certified, post-consumer recycled cardboard boxes and Polycell EcoPure, a biodegradable bubble wrap which contains an organic additive to break down the plastic over time in landfill.
It is our goal for the future to work towards B-Corp certification, meaning that we obtain the highest standards of ethical measurement across all aspects of our business.
Of course, all of these efforts are part of an ever-growing approach to sustainability and social responsibility at Plyroom. What works for us today, may require re-evaluation tomorrow, and there are always opportunities to do better. Please, join us as we navigate this space. Your feedback and ideas are always welcome.