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What is Sustainable Homeware?

With the global waste problem reaching heights of considerable concern, it is refreshing to see a surge in interest in sustainable shopping. But there is a lot more to sustainability than re-usable shopping bags, bring-your-own containers and buying organic.

The homeware market in the UK has expanded significantly in the last decade, growing from just under £11 billion to £13.6 billion in 2019. The trouble is, due to the rise in online retail, homeware products have become affordable to such an extent that they have turned out to be almost ‘disposable’. Which of course is not good news for our planet.

Sustainable homeware aims to cut through the worldwide waste crisis by turning the process of purchasing products for our homes into a mindful exercise. It is all about making conscious decisions about buying homewares that won’t end up in landfill the minute we’re through with them. That aren’t manufactured using toxic materials, and that consider the environmental, social and economic benefits whilst protecting health and the environment throughout the entire product lifecycle, from the extraction of raw materials until final disposal.

Why Kola Project?

Kola Project is an ethical sustainable homeware company. Our vision is to address the cause of the global waste crisis by eliminating the throw-away culture, and keeping products out of landfills and incinerators. To do this, we create sustainable homeware products, with the waste designed out at source.

Our products never compromise on quality, but courtesy of our circular design process, and our exclusive return and reuse programme, they can be considered viable ethical alternatives.

From furniture and linens to décor and laundry products, from bathroom and kitchen to dining and storage, at Kola Project, we offer an extensive range of sustainable homeware brands, all of which can be returned to us once you no longer want or need them, ready for recycling, repurposing or composting.

The Circular Design Process

The circular design process is centred on designing out waste and pollution. Moving away from the traditional linear make-use-dispose manufacturing model, circular design considers how something will be used, and what will happen when it is no longer needed or wanted.

Where traditional design focuses on end user needs, circular design casts its net much wider, considering not just the user, but also how the design will impact everyone and everything involved in the process, how long it will last, how timeless it can be, and whether it has the potential to be repurposed or recycled.

The Kola Project Return and Reuse Programme

Every ethical sustainable homeware product you purchase from Kola Project comes with an UNLIMITED BUYBACK GUARANTEE. This means that anything you purchase from our range can be returned to us free of charge, so you’ll never have to throw it away.

Depending on the item and its condition, we’ll reuse, repair, refurbish, re-manufacture or recycle it so that it goes back into the circular shopping system, rather than ending up in landfill.

What’s more, for every item you send back to us through this system, you’ll earn Kola Points, which you can use towards future sustainable homeware purchases from our range.

  • 01
    What is a sustainable homeware product?

    Sustainable homeware products will generally be:

    • Ethically sourced through responsible and sustainable methods with safe, environmentally friendly working conditions and fair pay for all involved
    • Clear on where they came from, with full transparency around manufacturing processes
    • Made from recycled and / or recyclable or compostable materials
    • Free from toxins such as VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and any other materials that are harmful to health or the environment


    Ethical homeware may also be sold through a circular shopping programme.

  • 02
    What is circular shopping?

    Circular shopping consists of circular design, which involves designing the waste element out at source or considerably minimising it, and a return and reuse system that allows everything purchased to be returned free of charge for reuse, repair, refurbishment, remanufacturing or recycling.


    Even items that are beyond repair are deconstructed and their raw materials transformed into new products, so nothing is wasted.

  • 03
    Why is it important to purchase ethical sustainable homeware products?

    By purchasing sustainable goods and making sustainability a natural part of your day to day life, you can play your own personal role in helping to reverse the damage that has been inflicted upon our planet.


    The more support the sustainable products movement receives, the wider its scope of effect. Because those companies that are yet to align themselves with sustainable practices will find that they need to step up to keep up.


    Purchasing sustainable homeware or any other ethical products helps to conserve and protect our valuable natural resources. It also reduces energy consumption generally, which is good news for the world’s carbon footprint. Waste is vastly reduced, because products are being recycled and reused rather than sent to landfill, and local and wider communities and economies also benefit as work is created for local suppliers, and living and working conditions are improved by purchasing fairly traded goods.

  • 04
    Why buy sustainable homeware products from Kola Project?

    Kola Project homewares are designed with the future of the planet in mind. They are of exceptional quality and are durable, repairable and recyclable, as well as being based on the circular design model.


    Here at Kola Project, we have created the world’s first ever fully circular shipping experience. When you browse our sustainable homeware range, you will find that every product tells its own story. You’ll learn where the product originated, what it’s made from and how, and discover the designer’s background. Information around product provenance will be openly available, including the sources of the raw materials and the manufacturer’s process.


    This supplier clarity is a crucial part of the ethical sustainable retail system. Because knowledge is the only way we are all going to help make a difference to our planet.

  • 05
    How does the Kola Points system work?

    Whenever you return a sustainable homeware item purchased from our range via our return and reuse programme, you will earn Kola Points equivalent to the item’s buyback value. For every British Pound, you will earn 100 Kola Points. Redeeming points is simple… all you need to do is apply your points to your order at checkout.


    So, as well as the incentive of helping the planet when you buy from Kola Project, you have the added benefit of being rewarded for your loyalty.


    Learn more about Kola Points…

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