meditation cushions | eco yoga props | floor seating | body friendly office | organic bedding

A History of
Carolina Morning Designs and
Body Friendly Furniture

Ergonomic eco-furniture based on yoga principles

As published in the 2013 National Green Pages
business profiles section

Click here to go to Green America online publication

 

Inspired by her meditation practice, Linsi Deyo created Carolina Morning Designs in 1985 to sell yoga and meditation props. Deyo started by selling her own handmade meditation cushions, and as the business grew, she decided to bring in more help.

When Patrick Clark joined her as a partner in 1993, he had a vision to take the company in a new direction. Deyo and Clark saw that the health benefits achieved while performing yoga, like calming and aligning the body, were often lost in everyday life, so they decided to incorporate those benefits into everyday furniture. The gave their businessa new name, “Body Friendly Furniture,”and it has evolved to offer nontoxic, ergonomic furniture that promotes health and fitness based on meditation and yoga principles.

“Sitting in the standard right angle desk-and-chair environment has been found to cause ‘office illness,’ which is a host of health problems from obesity to high blood pressure and lowered metabolism,” Clark says.

“Our furniture puts the user in various alternative positions, like lounging, active sitting, and laying down on your tummy. The ideais to get stretching, movement, circulation, toning, rest, and alignment by alternating positions throughout the day.”

Body Friendly Furniture now supplies several distinct product lines, from meditation supplies and yoga props to organic bedding and unique pieces of furniture. The North Carolina-based company’s products are available in stores across the country and can be shipped “all over the world, from Iceland to New Zealand,” says Clark.

Body Friendly Furniture created its flagship line of home furniture with three essential pieces: the Zen Offi ce™, the Eco Backrest™, and the Eco Square™. The Zen Offi ce is a workstation with a desk and seat that allows the user to work at floor-level in a kneeling position. “The Zen Office promotes ‘active sitting’ which puts the body in alignment and tones muscles,”

Clark says, unlike traditional furniture, which can create pressure points and back pain. The desk can also double as a bench.

A second seating option is the Eco Backrest, an adjustable chair that can be used to lounge or work while lying down. Based on restorative yoga principles, the backrest promotes relaxation, spinal alignment, and deeper breathing.

The final element is the most versatile. Called the Eco Square, this handmade slatted bed platform breaks down into small wooden boards, each shorter than 40 inches. Customers can create a queen or twin size bedframe, couch, coffee table, or bench by arranging multiple Eco Squares in different configurations.

Body Friendly Furniture products are also designed to save space. “The fact that all of these pieces come apart quickly into small pieces means you have the whole concept: sleek, eco-friendly, minimalist, modular, multi-use, space-saving, and body-friendly,”

Clark says. The company strives to live up to its name in all aspects: all of the materials that Body Friendly Furniture uses are nontoxic and sustainably sourced. In addition to employing organic and natural plant-based materials, like cotton, kapok, buckwheat, and flax, the company uses sustainably harvested wood and manufactured fiberboard made from 100 percent recycled content and nontoxic adhesives. “You’re surrounding yourself with a body-friendly and eco-friendly environment so you’re not being intoxicated with all the chemicals that are in everyday furniture products,” Clark says.

The company employs creative solutions to reuse internal waste it generates. cardboard to permaculture gardens. “There’s hardly anything that leaves our facility that doesn’t get used,” Clark says. As a Green Business Member for 27 years, Body Friendly Furniture has been one of the voices in the changing green movement. Partnership with Green America has helped the business move forward as both work to achieve the same goals. “Green America gave us a platform and an audience, and so we’ve promoted the same ideals together,” Clark says. “We’ve been in the Green Pages for years and grown together and complemented each other.”

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Eco Backrest™ on EcoSquare™ for a comfotable living room nook..

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Tilt Seat Eco Chair™

Eco Backrest™

Lie Down Desk
(same as Eco Backrest™)

Zen Office™

Stand Up or Sit Down Eco Desk™

Dynamic Office™

Om Gym™
Inversion Swing

Eco Sticky Mat

Organic Cotton Yoga Straps

Organic Yoga Blankets

Eco Yoga Blocks

Organic Yoga Bolsters

Restorative Yoga Mat

Yoga carry bag/sling

Eye Pillows

Yoga Lounge™

Platform Couch

Floor Couch

Japanese Living Room Suite™

Floor Seats/cushions
(zafu, smile cushion™, zabuton sitting mat)

Floor benches/stools
(Peace Bench™, Sky Bench)

Coffee Table

Floor Lounge Chair
(same as Eco Backrest™)

Tilt Seat Dining Set

Meditation Cushions/Zafus/Crescent Zafus

Sitting Mats /Zabutons

Meditation Benches

Sky Bench™

Inflatable Zafu

Meditation Bells

Japanese Incense

Beeswax Candles

Lavender Landscape Poster

Meditation Books and CDs

Organic Kapok/wool Futon

Modular Platform Bedframe

Organic Kapok Pillows

Buckwheat Pillows Organic

Body Pillows

Organic Cotton Blankets

Quantum Calming Mat™

Modular Shelves

Tatami Mats

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