Earth Weave Carpet & Rug FAQ
Earth Weave starts by using only pure wool. We apply no dyes (except organic dyes on Catskill products), and no pesticides or stain protections that are commonly used by other wool carpet manufacturers. The application of these chemicals would greatly affect indoor air quality through the off gassing of volatile organic compounds.
The primary backing that we use is also an industry-first combination of hemp and cotton. We chose to use the hardy hemp fiber due to its durability, strength, and mold and mildew resistance. Our all-natural primary backing is specifically designed to be used in our biodegradable flooring and is exclusive to Earth Weave.
The wool yarns are locked into place with a natural adhesive that is derived from the rubber tree. This adhesive is completely biodegradable and nontoxic as well. Unlike other carpet manufacturers, we use no styrene butadiene adhesive.
For the back of the carpet we use a jute secondary backing. Jute was commonly used in the carpet industry before the introduction of the synthetic backings currently employed. We chose to use this type of backing to further our cause of making completely natural and nontoxic carpet and rugs. Occasionally other wool carpet manufacturers will use jute as a secondary backing, but it is hiding a synthetic core of plastic and styrene.
Our carpet padding is a is a blend of coarse naturally pigmented wool, mechanically needled (not glued) together to create a luxurious, healthy cushion. The padding is free from dyes, fire retardant, glues, moth proofing and adhesives.
This 100% natural wool padding will provide many years of service before needing to be replaced. When it does, we urge our customers to recycle it to the garden where it will safely biodegrade while serving as an effective weed barrier and mulch. Over a period of 2-3 seasons the padding will completely disappear, adding nitrogen and other nutrients that plants need to the soil, essentially returning to grass. This completes the cycle and highlights our slogan, "From Nature, To Nature."
Earth Weave has developed a unique product that matches all the criteria of those looking for the purest, least toxic floor covering available. It can be used without reservation to provide the utmost in comfort and durability while maintaining indoor air quality and your health.
While we have many sensitive customers who have had a great experience with our carpet, we cannot guarantee nor comment on any individual's reaction. It is up to each person to decide on their own if our products work for them in their environment. No warranty is made as to individual reactions, physical or otherwise, regarding this carpet and its effects. (you can request samples here)
Our carpets are constructed using the highest quality wool available. This provides not only an extremely durable product, but a luxuriously soft one as well. Our carpets are not coarse like many of the other natural face fiber products such as sisal, sea grass, coir and jute. The low cost, entry level wool carpet and wool carpet blends found in the marketplace are made from lesser quality wool, and they just don't offer the softness or durability our customers demand. Many times our products are used in nurseries because of the softness. You may experience the feel of our products by requesting swatches.
We use British wool due to its excellent crimp and fiber characteristics. The breeds used are the finest, most resilient available. The sheep are raised in a free range environment, and they are outside in all types of weather, both harsh and pleasant. This dynamic environment causes the sheep to grow a very hardy fleece that allows us to produce the highest quality carpeting. Through all the elements...durability reigns supreme.
The colors are derived from the wool as it is naturally grown on the sheep's back. Just as you, your family and friends have a specific color of hair, so do the sheep have unique colors based on particular breeds. We take these naturally colored fleeces and blend them to achieve the beautiful colorations of our carpeting. When we do use dyes, as part of our OrganoSoftColors (Catskill) line, they are organic. No non-organic dyes or chemicals, such as moth proofing or stain repellents, are applied.
It is true wool carpets shed a little. This is because they are made from short "staple" fibers. In fact, all staple fiber carpets shed some, and many synthetics carpets are also made from staple fibers. Staple is really anything that is not continuous filament. The only natural fiber that is continuous filament is silk. Of course, silk would not be as durable as wool for use as a carpet fiber. In spite of the shedding that occurs with all staple carpet products, you can be assured that it is minimal and will in no way be noticeable in the appearance or durability of the carpet. You may notice small fibers in your vacuum cleaner if you were to inspect inside the collection bag. This is typical and is no cause for alarm.
Many companies are just "green washing" the public by touting recycling and/or use of recycled products. We do not feel that synthetics are sustainable and therefore are not "green/eco". As we all know, petroleum is a finite, non-renewable resource. We are committed to 100% sustainable resource floor coverings, and will not manufacture a product from non-renewable petrochemical resources. This would include the “recycled pop bottle products” gaining popularity today. Even though these are marketed as environmentally friendly because of their recycled origins, putting pop bottles into floor-coverings halts the recycling process. The fact is, virtually all consumer floor coverings go to the landfill after their useful lives have expired. We feel that to be truly green, a company must be sustainable and offer a truly healthy product. By having healthy, sustainable products that are naturally based, the planet is replenished at the end of a product's life-cycle. This is true recycling! Bio-Floor™ and OrganoSoftColors™ carpet and rugs are 100% bio-degradable, and if taken to the landfill will decompose just as trees, brush and grass clippings do. The nutrients then go back into the earth to be used in whatever way mother nature sees fit. From Nature To Nature™. Uniquely by Earth Weave.
We are very serious about the environment and protecting it through the proper implementation of the THREE R's. We do everything we can to REDUCE waste – whether electrical or physical. Earth Weave's twist on the reuse and recycle part is that we feel these are best accomplished through Mother Nature. Since the beginning of time, nature has been able to perfectly "REUSE" natural materials that are discarded into the environment. Although there is no waste in this system, the nutrients most often do not replenish Earth in exactly the same state. As an example, leaves fall to the ground, bio-degrading to become nutrients for all sorts of living plant life. Of course the nutrients are therefore RECYCLED into the natural world. It really is a perfect system but it depends on healthy, natural raw materials at both the input and output stage.
Over four billion pounds of carpet enter the solid waste stream in the U.S. every year, accounting for more than one percent by weight and about two percent by volume of all municipal solid waste (MSW). Furthermore, the bulky nature of carpet creates collection and handling problems for solid waste operations, and the variety of materials present in carpet makes it difficult to recycle. Our carpets rely on the ultimate manufacturer – Mother Nature – and her extensive know-how to deconstruct our materials and get them back into the nutrient stream. This is reflected in our slogan - From Nature To Nature™
Buildings are LEED certified, NOT products. Our products do meet criteria for accumulation of LEED points. The difference is our focus on health, first and foremost.
In a word, HEALTH. This is one of the main failures of the LEED program. In a lot of cases, it does not reward, or in fact encourage, the implementation of truly healthy sustainable products. This is an area where a lot of "green washing" has taken place. It seems that the large corporations have been able to influence the program to meet the criteria of the products they produce, instead of the other way around. It is not like this in all cases, but if one looks closely, these shortcomings are clearly evident. Environmental health and planetary welfare are about more than accumulation of "points" and who has the most money to influence policy.
INSTALLATION & CARE
Definitely! We have testing data that shows where carpets are favorably used with radiant floor systems. This is real world testing in an actual room size test chamber. The data validates what we have always known and of course this is great news to our customers that want the comfort/softness of healthy, non-toxic wool carpet instead of a hard surface floor covering.
Sure you can use our pad with carpeting from a different manufacturer but you should consider why you would do this. Many companies out there have products that will be termed natural or be said to be in a natural collection. Look closely and you will find a synthetic SBR core and backing in the carpeting. If you are looking for the healthiest carpet/padding combination, it does not make sense to put a natural wool pad under a synthetic backed wool carpet. You should just use a synthetic based padding product. Please refer to our Carpet Construction Page.
Hand sewing is not required with our products. If you have an installer that can sew the seams and you prefer that method, there is nothing wrong with it. But it is generally more expensive to sew the seams, which is the main reason we do not suggest it. We suggest that you find a competent installer who has experience with wool carpeting and access to a low/no VOC seaming tape. Your installer will find that our carpets install very nicely because they do not have stiff, synthetic fillers in them like other carpet products out there. You can experience this for yourself just by touching and bending our carpet to see how pliable it is.
Many synthetic flooring manufacturers would have you believe that wool carpet with jute backing is not as durable as the products they make. This is simply untrue. In fact, our healthy wool carpeting has a "useful" life of 20-25 years before it needs to be replaced. Typical synthetic residential carpets will need to be replaced about every 7 years. The synthetic carpets do not wear out, per se, they just "ugly" out. Meaning they are no longer aesthetically pleasing to look at. They will, however, stay around in a landfill for an extremely long time; some say 10,000 years. Durable materials, such as Earth Weave's healthy wool carpeting, require less frequent replacement, generate less waste, and actually result in lower long-term costs. Having such a long useful life will reduce the cost per year, as well the carpeting's impact on the environment. The main benefit, though, is that you will not be introducing synthetic styrene butadiene into the environment.
We suggest customers use Host Carpet Cleaning Products. As with all quality natural fiber carpets, vacuuming with a suction only vacuum cleaner is recommended. Beater bar vacuum cleaners may damage the surface pile of wool carpets. Proper vacuuming on a regular basis will increase performance. Use only wool-approved cleaners for removing stains. Do not vigorously rub the affected area; lightly blot area instead. If stain persists, contact a professional cleaner and be sure they use cleaners designed for wool and natural fibers.
Yes, we manufacture area rugs using the same natural yarn that is used on the face of the carpet to serge the edges for a high-end look. This edge finish is durable, as well as more elegant that the simple polypropylene binding procedures that some manufacturers use.
Earth Weave was founded in 1997. This was well before the new wave of "green business". We are not a new fly-by-night company, nor one of the growing numbers of carpet manufacturers that are jumping on the "green" wagon. Please look closely at other manufacturers to see what they produce in addition to their "green" lines. You will often find that they are a large conglomerate producing synthetic products. Also, be aware that "green" does not necessarily mean healthy.
Being an environmentally responsible company, we do not believe that it is eco-friendly to do excessive printing of a paper brochure. We have complete information on our website and believe this will give our customers the most thorough understanding of our product offerings. However, there are samples available. We feel that a physical sample better represents our carpeting than a printed image. Of course, you may, at your discretion print any of the pages from our website, but we do ask that you please consider the environment before doing so.
We can ship to a residence, but we recommend shipping to a commercial address, such as to your installer. We suggest that you coordinate the details with [Organic and Healthy] as they can help you make the best decision for your situation. As you may imagine, carpeting is a large and bulky item, and therefore best handled by a professional who is familiar with the receiving process.
We have a 5-year manufacturer's defect warranty. The purchaser acknowledges that this is a natural product using natural wool and natural backing systems. As such, it is subject to natural variances in color, shade and texture. This carpet should be regarded as any other natural fiber flooring product such as jute, sisal, seagrass, and even wood. Color, texture and shade variances do not represent a defect and are inherent in the manufacturing and materials used. No warranty is made or implied as to the visibility of seams, matting, crushing, soiling, staining, or any other changes in appearance, which are not considered manufacturing defects, and are excluded from this warranty. No warranty is made as to individual reactions, physical or otherwise, regarding this carpet and its effects.
At this time we have not been able to develop a process that allows us to manufacture carpet tiles in way that is natural and non-toxic. All the current carpet tile manufacturers use synthetic materials throughout their product. As much as we would like to make a carpet tile, the bigger issue for us is to make it in a truly healthy, sustainable way. As you know, natural is the only true way to sustainability.
Note from Organic and Healthy -- We have over 12 years’ experience with Earth Weave and have used and recommended their products extensively. The information above is accurate to the best of our knowledge. For warranty details, please see our Purchase Agreement.