As we go about our daily lives, we do not think of how much we throw away and how much we using out time wisely. Not only do we waste our time lounging about the house, but we waste our time throwing useful resources away. This past week, I felt extremely connected to the article Closing the Loops based off of the section discussing “Not fouling our Nest.” As a designer, I linked the Levi’s production movement of “just-in-time” with the production of furniture, wallcovering, carpet, and other specified items for a successful design. This “just-in-time” movement only has the company produce jeans just in time for shipment. There is no extra waste, extra storage, or extra energy being used up during the time period of making jeans that may or may not be sold. Much of this can apply to interior design, in the way that many projects might project more than they need or might ask for it months ahead of installation. The manufacturer is thus wasting their time, storage, and goods to complete the order earlier than just making it right on time for when installation date is set. Granted many projects run behind, or might even be early so there is difficulty in setting a specified time to produce the products, but at the same time, shouldn’t we as designers become more aware to this growing issue and begin to make changes to this infecting habit.
This past summer I had the opportunity to work for an amazing five-star interior design firm that created beautiful designs and constructions. As I had the opportunity to discuss with many of the designers there, they always talked about this term called attic stock. Attic stock is where a hotel, spa, resort, any commercial project or even a residential home with keep attic stock of a certain project. For example, after laying your carpet and trampling across it for several years, there tends to be wear and tear, and all of sudden that cute, little puppy you just adopted decided to leave small presents everywhere and ruins your carpet. Most residents might keep some carpet stored in their attic along with memory boxes, suit cases and what-nots. The attic stock is the extra product purchased to store in case of replacement. Now there tends to be lots of extra attic stock that is clearly unneeded by the hotel. Most wallcoverings do not wear out fast enough to be replaced by the time the hotel is due for another renovation. It’s a shame that the product sits in a dusty storage unit waiting to be used and never is touched. It’s a shame that the manufacturer wasted their time, energy, and resources on that extra attic stock. It’s a shame that the client wasted their money on the attic stock that was not to be used and could have spent it on more sustainable products or in another area of the renovation. Time’s a wastin….so stop wasting time.