A 2022 report by the American Society of Interior Designers found that over half of consumers were willing to change their purchasing behavior “to help reduce negative environmental impact.” Renting furniture is to participate in the circular economy: when you’re done with a piece, instead of tossing it into a landfill because it doesn’t fit in your new place or is no longer your style—which many do: the E.P.A estimated that Americans threw out 12.1 million tons of furniture in 2018—you simply give it back. Then, it is given another life with someone else, and perhaps where they’re done with it, someone else again. And while re-selling or sourcing on your own can be quite the hassle, most furniture rental companies have white glove delivery service and set up—meaning fewer figurative (and literal) loose screws.
There’s been a boom in online furniture rental companies lately. These are sites where, instead of buying items like chairs, beds, and couches outright, you have the option to pay month-by-month, and, if you wish, eventually return your items. Why? Some of it has to do with lifestyle. The Gen-Z and millennial generation, especially those in urban areas, are predominately renters, making a flexible arrangement with furniture a must as they navigate new apartments. Then, there’s the financial benefits: paying over time for a big ticket furniture item is often more feasible, especially for those early on in their careers. (An added bonus? You can also explore different interior design styles.) But there’s one reason that’s becoming stronger than ever: it’s sustainable.
So J.Crew selected four prints from Liberty London’s pattern offerings, all colorful and cheery in demeanor: There’s “Meadow Song,” with its bright poppies and daisies, which was redrawn from an artwork found in the Liberty Archives. Then, “Giorgia Duke,” rich and paisley-esque in nature. The bursting blooms in “Garden of Life” seem straight out of a tropical paradise, whereas “Club Nouveau” has a feminine, spring-like energy. All four borrow motifs from paintings and nature. “I love the idea of pulling a color from the prints and incorporating it into flower arrangements, hand-made ceramics, crisp bedding to go along with the sheets, and more,” says Gayot. More and more stylish and storied fashion houses have been leaning into home decor as of late—Erdem, for example, is releasing a new set of jacquard wool throws, Olivier Rousteing collaborated with Maison Trudon on a limited edition Balmain candle, Sea New York began offering quilts, while Dolce & Gabbana launched a new home line, “Casa.” Part of it is due to the pandemic: as people spent more time at home, they wanted to make sure their homes were, well, actually pleasant to spend time in. But interior design and fashion have always influenced each other: look no further than the orange-and-brown earth-tone homes of the 1970s, or the over-the-top gowns and interiors of the 1890s. Gayot hopes that the J. Crew and Liberty Collaboration inspires a room and entire aesthetic: “The beauty of this collection is that it can live beyond your home,” she says.
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