Sustainability means “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the needs of the future”.

As you can see from our range, we are kinda obsessed with the beauty of nature. We are therefore passionate about looking after it for future generations. We are fastidious about only using natural materials that are hand-foraged or certified sustainable. Below is an outline of the key materials we use here at Coast, and the efforts we employ to ensure their sustainability.

 


JUTE


Also known as hessian, or burlap, Jute is the second most common fibre grown across the world after cotton. However jute is a far superior eco-friendly option as it uses way less water to produce, does not need fertiliser and once harvested regrows within 120 days!

Sourced from the bark of the white Jute plant, it requires no pesticides as it is naturally pest resistant. The production process of jute (known as biological retting) is also planet-friendly, as the fibres are loosened by soaking in water alone, without the use of toxic chemicals. Jute products are 100% biodegradable and recyclable, do not create toxic gas when burned and can go straight back into the compost at the end of their life.


Raffia

We are careful to use only the best quality natural raffia from raffia palms grown in the coastal valleys of Madagascar. We ensure all our raffia is sustainably harvested, meaning that the trees are not harmed during harvesting and can continue to thrive and produce. The Madagascan government has strict laws controlling the time of year the raffia can be harvested, to prevent over-farming, allowing time for new trees to grow and mature. We will never use synthetic (nylon) raffia. Natural raffia is biodegradable and compostable, so it won’t contribute to the earth’s growing landfill problem.


MANGO WOOD


Mango wood is a sustainable source of timber as it’s a by-product of the already thriving mango fruit industry. Mango trees are fast-growing, rising by around 6 feet every year, but cease producing fruit after 7 years. At this 7-year mark, the older barren trees must be brought down to make way for a new generation of trees to be planted, so using this byproduct as a timber source creates a healthy sustainable cycle.


HIDE AND LEATHER


It is important to us to only use ethical leather/hide sources - ie. only ever the by-product of animals raised for their meat. We also insist on only using leather that is “vegetable tanned” – meaning only natural tannins (such as tree bark) are used in the tanning process instead of the harmful chemicals used in “chrome tanning”. We support the 2019 United Nations UNIDO framework for sustainable leather manufacture and where possible we will use repurposed leather (eg. that was previously something else such as a belt or upholstery) to extend the product life cycle and reduce waste.


BANGALOW & COCOS PALM INFLORESCENCE

Palm trees reproduce by sprouting male and female flower stems (called inflorescence), which each carry about 200 tiny flowers along their span. The male inflorescence contains pollen and the female inflorescence contains an ovary. When the two meet, pollination occurs, creating hundreds of tiny seed-bearing fruits to develop along the female stem. The fruit is stripped away by bats and birds and what is left over is a series of beautiful curly/wiggly stems (the stems curve around the fruit as it grows and become “crimped” as a result). These stems then dry, snap off and fall to the ground. Normally nature would discard these, but we absolutely ADORE them, so we lovingly collect these treasures for re-use in our creations. The wiggly stems are used to create our Classic and Lux Wall Hangings, and the semicircular “collar” which attaches to the tree is used to make our gorgeous Palm Collar Sculptures.

As these are collected way after nature has used the seeds and discarded the stems, their use has no impact on the parent tree and in fact as soon as the dry stem falls, the tree gets busy straight away growing another set of stems for the next reproductive cycle. Sustainability and recycling in perfect harmony!


SISAL


Sisal is an abundant, sustainable and biodegradable natural fibre, derived from the leaves of the widely available Agave plant. Each leaf contains an average of 1,000 fibres that are extracted and sun dried and the remaining plant is used to produce electricity, helping to energize rural areas. No pesticides or chemical fertilizers are required in sisal production and being a succulent, it has little to no impact on valuable water resources.


SUAR WOOD


Suar wood is sourced from the Monkeypod tree of Indonesia - a fast growing easily-renewable species which quickly reaches 25 metres in height, making it ideal for sustainable cultivation. This widespread, abundant species is in no danger of extinction, and is approved by both the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species and the International Union for Conservation of Nature


SHELLS


We support the guidelines governing shell products outlined by CITES (Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species). As far as we can, we ensure that all our shells are collected from sustainable sources or from reliable shell dealers who respect local and national fishing controls. In addition, we aim to:
- not collect shells from any vulnerable or protected species
- only collect unoccupied shells
- not collect shells in national parks, nature reserves, Aboriginal areas or marine sanctuary zones
- only use shells that are foraged by hand, to prevent the by-catch of other species

Further information on legal shell collection in Australia can be found at:

https://www.lifehacker.com.au/2018/07/is-it-legal-to-collect-seashells-in-australia/


WHITE AIR DRY CLAY


An abundant natural material, clay is easy to excavate from the ground, requires very little processing once excavated, is non-toxic and biodegradable.

And AIR DRY clay is even better. It is far superior to fired clay or polymer clay because:
- no heating/electricity/fuel is required to set the clay

- it does not contain harmful plastic/PVC like polymer clays

- airdry clay is 100% recyclable and reusable. As long as clay has not been fired, it can be soaked and rehydrated (called “reclaiming”) so that it can be used again. There is no limit to how many times you can reclaim air dried clay, making it a sound sustainable choice.


CUTTLEBONE


It is critical to us that we only ever use cuttlebone that we have beach-foraged by hand, and in compliance with all local hand-gathering and zoning rules. This means:
- we do not collect on any beaches listed as sanctuary zones or habitat protection zones
- we NEVER buy cuttlebone from stores or the seafood industry, as these are harvested using commercial trawling, resulting in devastating levels of unintentional bycatch

Beach-foraged cuttlebone is the internal shell of the cuttlefish (a marine mollusc in the same family as the squid). Cuttlebone is buoyant and drifts to shore after the cuttlefish has passed away (usually after being attacked by sea lions or dolphins). It is therefore a natural byproduct of the marine foodchain and therefore its collection (by hand only) causes no harm to the species.

 


PUMICE


Pumice is an abundant and sustainable resource, with deposits found easily on the surface of the earth in loose aggregate form, with no mining required. Pumice is created naturally when super-heated, highly pressurized rock is violently ejected from a volcano, is constantly renewed as geological incidents occur and can be used in its natural organic state, with no refining required.


ETHICAL SUPPLY CHAIN

We only want to work with suppliers that follow our strict standards, share our values and will help us achieve our sustainability goals. Our suppliers must:

- NOT use child labour or forced labour
- NOT breach modern slavery legislation

- provide fair working conditions for their staff
- comply with international animal welfare regulations
- prioritise the use of recycled and recyclable materials


SLOW INTERIOR DESIGN


At Coast, we embrace SLOW Interior Design (Sustainable, Local, Organic, Whole).

We believe that making purposeful, mindful decisions in the decoration of our homes benefits both us and the planet. This means:
- Pausing to research the sustainability of the materials in your products
- Valuing craftsmanship and old school hand-skills

- Focussing first on how you truly want your home to feel and be used
- Not rushing into purchases: buy less and buy better quality

- Making ethical decisions regarding the brands you support
- Focussing on your own true style, not current trends

We love this article by Slow Living LDN which inspires us enormously: https://www.slowlivingldn.com/journal/interiors/slow-interiors/