All Shades of Green Gifts and Home Furnishings

In the gift industry, planning starts right after the holiday season with a series of gift and home décor shows back to back, starting with Americas Mart Atlanta International Gift and Home Furnishings Market followed by LA Mart, Las Vegas Market and ending with NY NOW.

Perhaps the most important take away from all these events was the Sustainable Furnishings Council’s “What’s It Made Of” initiative. Susan Inglis, Executive Director of the Sustainable Furnishings Council, presented the initiative at the Las Vegas Market and I walked away wondering how garbage became our most abundant resource.

The initiative asks suppliers to have transparency about the presence of chemicals of concern in the products that they produce, specify or purchase including flame retardant chemicalsfluorinated stain treatmentsantimicrobialsvinyl and VOCs.   

Emissions from burning fossil fuels and transportation as well as deforestation and indoor air quality all factor in. Keep an eye out for more recycled fibers. Cotton, if organically cultivated will lead to a significant reduction of pollution while wool is largely stain resistant so less need to artificially treat it and hemp has low impact to cultivate.

We shopped these shows with trends in mind and here is what we found.

Things you didn’t know you needed

SoapStandle has a handy and eco-friendly product to save your bar soap and your wallet. This practical tool sinks its “teeth” into bar soap to allow drying and avoid “goo” development. When “goo” develops, bar soap deteriorates faster, but with SoapStandle the life of your bar soap extends by 30% allowing you to save money and clean better.

Butterie is a stylish butter dish that makes it super easy and convenient to enjoy soft, spreadable butter at anytime. It’s patented and unique flip-top design keeps the butter protected and your counters clean. Even though it’s small and compact as to not hinder counter space, the Butterie can hold multiple butter sticks with ease.

Aura Glass aims to prevent those dreaded red wine spill stains. This new wine glass has a metal ball at its base that prevents accidental spills while retaining the simplicity of a traditional wine glass. It’s functional design also promotes easy swirling to aerate wine and blend its natural aromas and flavors.

Over two decades ago, Picnic at Ascot brought the British tradition of elegant picnics to the U.S. This SoCal family business provides picnic baskets, outfitted coolers, wine carriers and more. Each pack is designed to hold everything you would need for an afternoon in the sun neatly and accessibly. With over 10 different designs, it’s easy to have a traditional picnic at the park with the convenience of today’s lifestyle.

Something for every day 

Daring to challenge the norm, Molla Space Inc. is dedicated to providing lifestyle products with a focus on design and originality. Their multi-channel distributional platform encourages uniqueness and self expression. Representative of brands with efficient everyday products, they offer bags, stationery, electronics and more!

Based out of Japan, Harvest Label crafts lifestyle backpacks inspired by military design. Since its inception, the brand has evolved to include a wide range of unisex designs perfect for carrying what you need and keeping you on top of the latest trends. Offering three different bag collections with various designs for each, Harvest Label has the bag for you.

Better Beauty 

Skinny & Co provides the only chemical free, additive free, and non acidic coconut oil in the world. Every product starts with handpicked, raw coconuts from the jungles of Vietnam, and is processed through a patented nutralock system that keeps the oil cool and 100% raw. With 5 or less ingredients in each product, these cleansing balms, body scrubs, deodorants and more are proving that healthy really is beautiful.

Triumph and Disaster believes in simple natural formulations for face, body and hair. Their products are a combination of the best science with the best of nature to bring their customers products that work. The brand believes wholeheartedly in integrity and honesty and provides a detailed list of all ingredients used in their products online. With local indigenous ingredients on the list, this skincare foundry is really bringing the glow.

Removing your make up just got easier! The Original Make-Up Eraser is a patented blend of polyester that erases waterproof mascara, eyeliner and foundation with just water! This dermatologist approved tool is great for sensitive skin providing two sides, one for exfoliating and the other for easy make-up removal. The cloth is ultra-soft, reusable, machine washable and guaranteed to last for 3-5 years.

 The Unexpected 

Mr. Bird creates quality wild bird seed products that are not only fun for the birds, but also for you. They make handcrafted gifts for everyone including decorative bird houses, owls, bells, and even skulls made entirely out of bird seeds. Using ingredients that attract a variety of birds and repel other pesky critters, bird feeding is now for everyone.

Splendid Music Box Co. is a four-generation family owned business that exclusively designs musical jewelry boxes. Splendid Music Box Co. handmakes these elegant boxes and pairs them with enchanting melodies to soothe and dazzle.

Infinity Massage Chairs are great for active people to sit down, unwind and recover from a long day. Doctors and celebrities swear by this soothing machine and with over 10 different massage chairs to choose from the relaxation options are endless!

Comfy Clothing 

Tourance supplies luxurious, stylish and easy to care for faux fur, real fur and pelt textures. Their products are super soft and provide gorgeous focal points for any space. Not only do they have lavish pillows and blankets, they also offer scarves, ponchos, robes and even kid-sized accessories like smaller baby blankets so the whole family can appreciate these must have textures.  Perfect for the Kardashians…

Inspired by life at the lake, Lake Girl believes in an outdoor, casual lifestyle. Getting its start in Minnesota, the brand brings quality, comfort and a feel-good attitude to all its clothing. With t-shirts, hats, dresses, flip flops and more, Lake Girl wants you to embrace the outdoors, get down to the lake, and look great in beautifully designed, easy-to-wear, makes you smile pieces.

Fun Décor

Laura Park has created a line of textiles and home accessories to bring color and beauty into your life. Believing everyone should “live vividly,” Laura was inspired to make her colorful abstract paintings into household décor and accessories. From aprons and scarves, to pillows and shower curtains, Laura Park designs are sure to bring pops of color into any dull space.

Setting out to make your home beautiful and fun, Lily Juliet curates handmade designs that are unique and special. Each piece is designed to be useful for entertaining while adding artistic interest. Unlike anything else, these handcrafted bowls, serving utensils, shell dishes and trays, will make a statement at any house party.

Modgy strives to bring innovation to home décor. Using BPA-free plastic, Modgy takes everyday products, unexpected materials and edgy artwork to transform typical home goods. Dedicated to delivering beauty in interesting ways, the eco-friendly company creates luminaries, vases, wine glass shades and even dog bowls out of reusable and recyclable plastic.

Mixing old technology with new, Pendulux creates stunning home décor inspired by antiques. These hand-crafted industrial, nautical and militaristic pieces bring history into the home. Enthused by timepieces and mechanical instruments, these lamps, clocks and desk/shelf objects supply remarkable beauty to any room.

Using only the finest stones sourced throughout the world, Kathryn McCoy has designed some of the most beautiful home décor items I’ve ever seen! Utilizing natural and pure rocks like quartz, amethyst and selenite, Kathryn makes dazzling candle holders, lamps, bowls and vases! These incredible home accessories are so seductive, you’ll just have to get one.

When craftsman and designer Irvin Hoover first realized his tin ware skills in 1960, Irvin’s Tinware was born. As the company grew, products expanded from just tin lanterns to now include not only lighting but also kitchen, dining, bed, bath and home décor. These beautifully crafted decorations were made to enhance and revamp the home.

South Africa’s Lifestyle Hub represents talented artists and designers throughout South Africa who lack access to the American market. All products are handmade from hide, beads, clay, or fine linen, with the utmost attention to detail and beauty. Collections range from furniture, home décor and giftware all created from South African artisans

Fantastic Furniture

Worlds Away prides itself on designing chic pieces that can relate to today’s interiors while still hinting at the past. Inspired by Hollywood regency, mid century modern, contemporary and traditional designs, Worlds Away provides unique and sophisticated home décor. From seating and tables to bath vanities and case goods, there’s a stylish statement piece for every room! Just celebrating their 25th anniversary, Worlds Away will continue to dazzle homes for the years to come. 

Yogibo furniture provides full body support utilizing enhanced micro-beads to increase comfort. These luxury bean bag chairs are adaptable for indoor and outdoor settings and designed for any room in the home. Yogibo includes proprioceptive sensory input, promoting body awareness and helping to organize the brain for focus and attention. Completely customizable, Yogibo encourages customers to choose between colors, shapes and sizes so finding the right product for their needs is easy and fun! 

Lloyd Flanders develops heirloom-quality pieces that have been featured in films and can be found in historic places and fine hotels. At its inception, the company developed its own wicker process alternative to the then popular method of woven materials. Since then, Lloyd Flanders has added advanced technology to their processes to continue to produce beautiful and durable statement pieces for the home that are historically uber comfortable.

Camilla House Ltd excels in versatile and design oriented wholesale and manufacturing of residential and commercial furniture and décor. Their amazing wooden table tops are made in Canada using kiln dried American wood and are handcrafted for specific color and size accommodations. In addition, Camilla House offers seating styles, shelves, home décor and more.

Giving for the Bedroom

With a deep appreciation for design and craftsmanship this timeless ode to geography is disrupting the décor industry. The Catstudio founders discovered a way to merge their love for travel, culture and art into beautifully designed pillows, glasses, towels and more. Embroidered by hand, Cat Studio designs have collections for states, cities, national parks, holidays, universities and resorts.

Inspired and created through travels as a family, Cozy Nomad Malibu has designed beautiful home décor. Their line of pillows and blankets was encouraged by a love of “far away” places. Immersing themselves in different cultures, Cozy Nomad Malibu wanted to take a piece of their travels home. So, they built a brand where people can do just that!

With a passion to merge techniques, materials and designs from around the world, Cloud 9 Design created a fun line of home accessories tailored for all tastes. Their unique collection of home goods has evolved from traditional to transitional to trendy. Offering pillows, quilts, scarves, jewelry and more, it’s easy to find the fashion-forward accessory you’re looking for.

Pure Care utilizes essential elements to create a healthy sleep environment. Their sheets, mattresses and pillows use technical textiles to guard against allergens, bed bugs, dust mites, mold and mildew. Pure Care also offers advanced comfort and wellness benefits with their Celliant performance fibers. These clinically tested threads absorb energy emitted by the body and recycle that energy back into the body. This process promotes restful sleep and a faster recovery time from physical activity.

With true European style, Hale Mercantile Co. is spinning luxury linen. Sourced from France and Belgium, the yarns are spun from premium grade flax and individually dyed to enhance color. Hale Mercantile brilliantly crafts linen bedding and accessories for bath, table and furniture.

Home Entertainment Must-Haves

Europe 2 You believes life is best enjoyed around food, wine, friends and family and I have to agree! This collection of home furnishings and culinary accents is artisan crafted, 100% sustainable and made from completely repurposed wood. Every piece is salvaged from 19th century European buildings and made into serve ware, cutting boards, furniture and beyond!

Nora Fleming created a platter for every occasion! Each serving piece has a slot to make accessorizing easy and fun. Just place any mini ceramic into the slot and you have a platter themed to perfection. With mini football helmets for the Sunday night game and mini wine bottles for a Monday night wine and cheese platter, you can truly make every celebration one to remember.

Floor Décor

Feizy buys, sells, manufactures and collects fine, handmade rugs. These elegant, transitional and contemporary rugs are all one-of-a-kind. Feizy is the largest importer of hand knotted rugs, but you can also select from hand woven or machine made as well.

Jaipur Living, Inc. combines bold colors and distinctive styles to create fashion-forward rugs, pillows and décor. Their rug collections come in a variety of different designs including luxury, contemporary and classic. With a made-to-order option, finding the perfect shape and size rug for your space is quick and easy!

Beija Flor has created beautiful vinyl mat tile flooring. The tiles are simple to place, practical, durable and can be moved easily. Influenced by nature, this lifestyle brand also offers flatwoven and raw flooring, table placemats, runners, trivets and coasters! These eye-catching patterns and designs will make any room a statement room.

Tantuvi rugs are reinterpreting the traditional patterns and weaves of India. Inspired by abstract animation, Tantuvi offers hypnotic designed flat weave rugs, hemp rugs and throws. With an array of various shapes and colors, these pieces will catch the eyes of everyone who walks into the room.

Nancy Trent is a writer and speaker, a lifelong health advocate, a globe-trotting Nancy Trenttrend watcher and the founder and president of Trent & Company, a New York-based marketing communications firm with an office in Los Angeles. Trent & Company grew out of Nancy’s personal commitment to helping people live longer and healthier lives. A former journalist for New York magazine, Nancy has written seven books on healthy lifestyles, serves on the editorial boards of several magazines and travels around the world speaking at conferences and trade shows on trends in the marketplace. She is a recognized expert in PR with more than 30 years of experience creating and managing highly successful campaigns. Nancy can be reached at (212) 966-0024 or through e-mail at You may also visit

NOTE: WholeFoods Magazine does not endorse any specific brand or product. Always seek the advice of a medical professional before adding a dietary supplement to (or removing one from) your daily regimen. The opinions expressed in bylined articles are not necessarily those of the publisher.