The Affordable Organic Sofa

If you’re interested in creating a healthy, healing natural environment in your home, don’t overlook the sofa. Conventional sofas are made with petroleum-based foam and have added flame retardants. It may be somewhat easier to find a conventional sofa without adding flame retardants now (Ikea carries some), but a sofa made with only natural ingredients is an even better choice. Look for one that is made with natural latex, eco-wool, FSC-certified wood, and upholstery made from organic, natural fibers.

If you are set on buying such a sofa, it will cost you a few thousand dollars at least. Make sure the company you are buying from does not also sell conventional sofas. If they do also sell conventional sofas, you know that they are not committed to the issues. Also, there is a risk of contamination since the sofas are likely stored in the same warehouse.

At this writing I have not found any low-budget options for a real sofa. However, there are more affordable ways to create your own sofa, though it won’t look the same.

The Organic Futon

One option is a futon. There are futons made of eco-wool, organic cotton and/or natural latex. You can use this on a plain wooden futon frame for a simple, pure seating option. This may not fall into the range of “affordable” for most people, but would be cheaper than an organic upholstered sofa.

The Organic Daybed

Another simple option for a more affordable sofa is to go the route of the daybed. Natural latex and organic wool mattresses are much more affordable now than they were a few years ago, probably thanks to demand and some smart entrepreneurs. You can use natural latex pillows as cushions for the back. This works best when you have a nook to place the couch into, so that the back is against the wall, and the sides have something to lean against. This is the option I chose for my own home, and it cost me around $1000.

The Organic DIY Sofa

If you are a bit crafty you can make your own DIY organic sofa. Start with finding a sofa frame made of wood, bamboo or rattan. Then find some natural latex cushions, have them made to fit your frame, and either use your sewing skills to make covers for them or have an expert do it for you.

13 Comments

    1. Is $3500 too much for completely non-toxic brand new 86″ sofa? We finally just got our custom made one and it does NOT work in the space we have! We are in Raleigh, NC, so email me if you want to know more or get pix, etc. It is a beautiful sofa. Thanks Ann aconsmith@aol.com

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  1. I am searching here in Germany now an “organic sofa” with an payable price. Its frustrating me a lot, but i will not give up. I want to say you to just contact the classic producers and tell them ur opinions and ur wishes as a customer. It seems that there is just not enough pressure given from the consumers to the market to produce other things in this section.
    Regards Mark

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  2. Last year I bought an organic mattress from Prolana and an organic bedframe from Dormiente. Both companies are based in Germany, although I bought both through http://www.naturalsleep.co.uk. Have been searching for sofas and although very pricey, Dormiente do an all natural/organic sofa range called the Lounge S..the cushions are made to the same standards as their mattresses and hence can be used as guest beds also. Cannot recommend all companies listed highly enough. If you’re based in the UK or Europe Alan at Naturalsleep is beyond helpful. With regards to the above sofas it’s disappointing that all are american based manufacturers/shops and so not practical for someone from Europe to purchase due to high import charges on an already pricey purchase!

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  3. Thank you so much for your info! I’m a student and researching organic furniture but finding it so hard to find ANY suppliers of organic cotton sofas. …. Unbelievable!
    Your info will help heaps! Thank you!

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  4. Why do “green” companies have no design sense whatsoever??!! I have been searching and searching for a stylish, contemporary/modern, comfortable, non-toxic sofa and can not find one. They all look like tofu furniture. Awful.

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  5. First I want to thank you for reviewing my Eco-terric furniture line! I should like to invite you to visit my new website http://www.pinestreetinteriors.com, where you will find a whole new selection of Eco-friendly furniture and related items. I completely understand everyone’s frustrations regarding the price points of healthy furnishings and I wish there were a way to improve the situation. However, until more people who can afford it demand healthy and Eco-friendly products for the home and the balance is tipped, the needed changes will not occur. What we all need to do is get out there and talk it up! Educate everyone who will listen about the hazards of main stream household goods. Only then will we reach that point where there is sufficient demand to bring the costs down. I am inviting all of you to join me on this quest and together we will make it happen! Please contact me at Rowena@pinestreetinteriors.com or Rowena@eco-terric.com.
    I look forward to hearing from you soon!
    Rowena

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  6. At Savvy Rest, we’ve launched our organic sofas (and loveseats) line. Certified organic fabrics, natural latex, natural jute, organic wool batting, zero-VOC linseed oil or low-VOC stains (for feet) are among the materials. Please visit our web site for details: http://www.savvyrest.com. Thanks!

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  7. Cambridge Natural Mattress have developed a material called Cottonsafe(R) which is made from a unique blend of organic cotton and wool, which passes all the UK fire regulations without any chemicals. Unfortunately there are many ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ labelled mattresses which fail to say they are still using the FR chemicals- as organic cotton alone simply will not meet the regulations. As well as our range of affordable bed mattresses we are able to offer sofas, chairs, divan bases and headboards using our Cottonsafe(R) technology. Our website is http://www.cambridgenaturalmattress.co.uk . Don’t hesitate to contact us for more details.

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  8. We are D3CO, the first real ecological and natural sofa company based in Italy
    Our contemporary creations have the signature of prestigious designers and are all made with certified materials. We also give names and contacts of our supplier for transparency policy.
    That’s the most important thing: since we’re artisans we guarantee a direct line with the client that can decide which materials he wants in his sofa, and our is a 0miles production, everything comes from our region except some wool textiles and obviously bamboo.

    Davide

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  9. Don’t forget about the glues. Wood frames contain tons of glue. Some companies use glue on the latex, the padding and the fabric. Glues contain harmful chemicals and off gas. Any glue used on a natural or organic sofa (wood frame or sofa body) should, at a minimum, be Greenguard certified. If possible, the best would be natural glues on the frame – Hyde glue or fish glue – and no glue on the sofa body (meaning all fabrics and padding attached by staples etc.)

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