Where Does Our Furniture Come From?

Building furniture in India. Photo courtesy Penelope Mallory.

This is one of the most popular questions asked in our stores, so we figure it warrants at least one post on our blog!

Our furniture comes from two countries: India and Indonesia. We have 11 suppliers that we currently use–and we’re always on the lookout for more! Our company makes several buying trips per year to look for what’s new and interesting for our growing stores. (Look for more modern and industrial collections coming in the fall of 2012! We’re also on the hunt for smaller pieces that will work well in apartments.)

Everything we sell is made by hand from woods like teak, rosewood, mahogany, mango and others. The woods we use are indigenous to this region, and therefore we find that it makes more sense to have the furniture made at the source rather than shipping the heavy, raw lumber to the US. We use suppliers that pay a livable wage, abide by sustainable harvesting practices and don’t use child labor.

All our furniture is built over several months, and once the suppliers have finished making it, they pack it tightly into 40-foot-long containers like a real-life game of Tetris. The containers then go on a truck or a rail car to take them to the closest port, where they are then loaded onto ships bound for the US. With no storms or rough waters, containers make the cross-ocean voyage in three to four weeks.

Once the ship arrives in US port, the container is either put on another railroad car or trucked directly to a store, where the furniture is unloaded, unwrapped and put directly onto the sales floor for customers to start buying immediately. With no middle-men, warehouses or distribution centers, we’re able to keep our prices low. And with low prices, our furniture sells fast–most stores bring in two or three containers of furniture per month!

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