We love hearing about other ethical and sustainable businesses!

This week we caught up with Alison Rentoul of Aquamarine Home, an online store that provides sophisticated coastal style interior design accessories and homewares for the ethically conscious. All products in the store are either Fair Trade, hand-made, ethically sourced or sustainably produced. When we think of moving towards a more sustainable lifestyle, homewares are probably not at the top of our list of things to change! 


Like all great business ideas, Alison’s inspiration came from personal experience. Her styling of her parents’ beachside home resulted in a sale price over the property’s valuation. She was naturally ecstatic at this success but felt a little frustrated that she didn’t really know the origin of many of the items she used in the decoration process.  


Alison laments, “Although the house looked beautiful, I was left with the very unpleasant feeling there was a greater human and environmental cost to the property makeover, that was literally being swept under the carpet.” 

Presenting a coastal inspired theme, Aquamarine Home has a range of accessories and homewares that has been carefully selected to meet the ideals of conscious and fair trade, while also being incredibly beautiful and luxurious.  

Alison says “We present only the finest quality products made from natural and organic materials. They are a curation of stunning designer accessories that bring a deep sense of inner peace, and beach house tranquility and calm into your environment.” As an added bonus, every item in the store is linked with a social or environmental project, meaning every purchase will ‘pay it forward’.  

Whether you’re after a sustainably produced cat pod, a new rug or a piece of jewellery with a difference, you will find the perfect solution to your decorating dilemma. “New, recycled or up-cycled, every item in our collection tells a story - of the people who have poured love and creativity into these pieces, the gorgeous natural materials and traditional methods used to produce them and the care and attention that has gone into their creation.” 


Just like choosing sustainability in purchasing your children’s clothes, it doesn’t need to be a difficult task when choosing similar items for your home. Alison’s advice is to start small with a few items and to do the research up front to find a few stores that have done all the hard work for you already. “When selecting pieces from an ethical retailer’s collections, you can shop with a completely clear conscience, happy in the knowledge you are making caring and respectful purchases, while also helping to protect and preserve our world for future generations.” 


There is no doubt that Alison loves what she does and is passionate about doing her small part in making the world a better place. Just like Use-Ta!, sustainability and care for the environment is at the heart of the business. Alison says “At Aquamarine Home we believe every living being on our planet deserves the right to live in beautiful surroundings, in peace, harmony, joy and love. This might sound like a bit of a fantasy but we think it's possible to do business fairly and to live as lightly as possible on our planet and we're on a mission to prove it!” 


Head over to Aquamarine Home’s website for inspiration on your next decorating project at www.aquamarinehome.com. You can also find them on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest. 

August 14, 2018 — Kiri Gorter

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