Circular Design Glossary for furniture industry now available

Mebl | Transforming Furniture and the Sustainable Furnishings Council, in collaboration with SOMA_studiomilano, have created a “Circular Design Glossary: Furniture and Furnishings,” in hopes of improving people’s understanding of what it means to apply design concepts of the circular economy to the home furnishings industry.

“There’s a lot of power in shared language when creating change. So, we developed this glossary to support industry players in taking their first — or next — step toward a sustainable and circular future,” said Scarlette Tapp, SFC’s executive director.

Michael Hirschhorn, Mebl’s founder and chief executive officer, explained that the three organizations have “selected tangible, inspiring circular design applications —  from sofas to tables to lighting — that illustrate real-life solutions to today’s problematic linear ‘take-make-waste’ way of living.”  

The glossary is an independent, nonsponsored resource featuring:

  • 40+ circular design concepts, case studies and photographs
  • innovative furniture & furnishings companies 
  • emerging & established designers
  • insights, inspiration and concrete applications for practitioners

This tool provides a reference point for individuals in the home furnishings industry — from designers to product line managers to the C-suite. New and emerging circular trends highlighted in the glossary are also relevant to interior designers, retailers and media managers, as well as to marketing, sales and transportation professionals, according to a news release.


“The potential for positive climate impact from the furniture and furnishings industry is underrecognized. It is a sector with a disproportionately large environmental footprint,” Tapp said.

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Hirschhorn added: “Our aim is that this glossary will help power an economically viable, socially just, and environmentally sustainable transition.”

The glossary is available for free download on the websites of Mebl | Transforming Furniture and the Sustainable Furnishings Council, and also can be downloaded here.

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