Product Faves: Designing for Art and the Environment

Published: May 23, 2024

In her work as founder of Windham, Me.-based Morrison Design House, Jennifer Morrison seeks to strike a mindful balance between nature and modernity. Here she shares some of her product faves that merge beauty and functionality, all chosen with an eye to sustainability.

Photo credit: Newport Brass

The East Linear Faucet from Newport Brass is one of my go-to faucets because it is well constructed and has a lower GPM than many other models. It can work anywhere in the U.S., including California, with its tighter standards. The impeccable internal construction means a long-lasting product that won’t end up in a landfill. The shape is clean, modern and complements a variety of designs.

Photo credit: Kohler

I like the clean aesthetic of the Kohler Purist Shower System. It is a great choice for projects with tighter budgets. The system comes in a variety of finishes. In terms of GPM, this model ranges from 2.5 to 1.75; I always specify the 1.75 so substantially less water is used.

Photo credit: Portola Paints

Limewash is an incredible alternative to paint. The finish adds a wonderful patina to every project and provides a depth that is unmatched by paint. My favorite limewash from Portola Paints is Blondie. It is soft, subtle and adds plenty of texture to any surface – and it has no VOCs, is highly breathable and acts as a mild fungicide.

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Photo credit: Fireclay Tile

When we specify Fireclay Tile, we know the product – like the Tusk brick-format tile – will not only be beautiful, but our environmental footprint stays small. That’s one of the qualities we feel best about when pulling together a materials palette for a client. The company is a Certified B Corp and uses a recycled clay for the body of its tile.

Photo credit: Loba-Wakol

From Loba, this is one of my secret weapons when designing a wood kitchen, especially when using species that are prone to yellowing like white oak. 2K Invisible Protect preserves the raw look of wood and ensures material longevity, avoiding that dated appearance that led us to rip out so many 1990s – early 2000s kitchens. VOC-free, it can be used on any wood surface. I use it primarily on flooring and on kitchen/bath cabinetry.

Photo credit: Vermont Quarries Corp.

I really struggle with the ecological implications of using materials that must make the long trip across an ocean. Any time I can specify a local stone, I do. From Vermont Quarries, VT Olympian White Danby Marble is a very gentle stone with subtle movement. It has a low absorption rate and when sealed properly can be quite durable. Personally, I find the natural patina of marble charming and I encourage clients to let that happen – a scratch here and there shows it is used and loved!


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