Now You Know Your ABC

ABC Carpet & Home may be pricey, but they offer green products. (Photo: Cristina Bejarano [CC by 2.0]/Flickr)

Ah, ABC Carpet & Home: you venerable purveyor of super-lux home goods, gifts, and fabrics. You’ve rightfully earned your place as the Big Apple’s grand dame of upmarket home emporiums where $60 aromatherapy candles and wool rugs with price tags exceeding a month’s rent are just two of your many charms. We’ve known your treasures to be tasteful and a smidge opulent...but green? It’s like we never knew ‘ya.

A bona fide institution, ABC Carpet & Home’s splurge-worthy rep is well deserved. But what many NYC shoppers don’t realize: the store strives -- and succeeds -- at mixing green with glam.

For starters there’s ABC Real Goods Solar, the store’s collaboration with California-based solar power provider Real Goods. The partnership solarizes private homes and offices in New York and New Jersey and plans on expanding operations into Connecticut.

And although the prices of the merch at ABC may be distracting, it isn’t too hard to find a wide range of eco-friendly products: upholstered furnishings constructed from FSC-certified wood and fabrics like organic cotton, jute, hemp, and silk; throws colored with natural plant dyes; top-of-the-line air purifiers; tables made from reclaimed bamboo and salvaged glass; LED lighting; botanical bath products, and much more. My personal favorite? The elegant Goodwood Bowls (starting at $70), handmade from sustainable wood by indigenous artisans in Chile and Argentina.

And the pièce de résistance? The ABC Home & Planet Foundation, a movement the store is making towards becoming a “mission-driven business.” A key component of the foundation are “Gifts of Compassion.” The personalized certificates for gift-giving are wrapped in low-impact silk sari envelopes and support various environmental, social, and humanitarian causes both local and global. Affiliated organizations include the NRDC, Rainforest Action Network, Architecture for Humanity, and ForestEthics. Remember, the holidays are approaching. Isn’t it time you bestow your beloved Aunt Mildred with a gift telling her that she’s helping save the Boreal from destruction?

ABC Carpet & Home

888 & 881 Broadway

New York, NY 10003