Published on January 30, 2020

These days, you might be feeling inclined to remove plastic from your life wherever you can, but we can think of a few instances where adding the material to your home is a good—and even beautiful—idea. Buying furniture made from plastic waste retrieved from the ocean (think: water bottles and fishing nets) can help save the planet while making your home look good, too.

That’s what New Zealander Richard Shirtcliffe thought when he decided to create a chair using ocean plastic—the Noho Move, available for purchase in February. “We also have a responsibility to clean up the waste we’ve created,” he says. “Discarded plastic has the potential to deliver on some human needs in an infinitely recyclable way.”

He’s not the only one who’s been working to turn a problem into an opportunity—designers everywhere are coming up with stylish ways to transform the materials that are polluting the ocean into impressive home furnishings, from rugs to chairs. Here are just a few of our sustainable favorites.

The Sleek Seat

This Danish design made of ocean plastic and recycled steel proves that a simple silhouette always wins. It’s just the thing to go with that bistro table you’ve been eyeing. 

The Serene Set

It’s a million times easier to relax, recharge, and rest easy in a patio chair that you know is made from plastic bottles collected from beaches and waterways.

The Lush Carpet

If you’re thinking of investing in wall-to-wall carpet, there’s an eco-friendly option that will also look great on your floors: Sedna uses Econyl yarn, which is made from recycled waste, including fishing nets.

The Surprisingly Comfy Chair

Shirtcliffe’s first piece of furniture is a seat that works at your kitchen table or desk. Its modern, woven design isn’t just nice to look at—it also offers slight give, so your back stays supported.

The Table for Two

Who would have guessed that fishing nets could also be used to make a sturdy, simple table where you can sit and catch up with friends? This Danish-made piece can easily blend with your existing decor inside or out.

The Green Effect

Great for offices, schools, and event spaces, these stackable chairs by Snøhetta made major waves when they launched at the 2019 Stockholm furniture fair. After all, they’re made entirely from recycled plastic waste derived from fish farms on the Norwegian coast.

The Puzzle Pieces

Can’t find the right size rug? Carpeted tiles to the rescue—especially these bright, graphic ones, which use yarn made from fishing nets and water bottles. 

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